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Shinai vary by the type of bamboo they use and how their body is shaped. The material of the shinai is roughly divided into three types: madake bamboo, keichiku bamboo, and carbon graphite. Madake is regarded as the best material to use due to its excellent fiber density, flexibility, color, and feedback when striking. Since the fibers are tightened to the back side of the bamboo, it does not crack or scuff as much as other kendo shinai. Because of the life cycle of bamboo, most madake has grown and since died 25-30 years ago, making madake shinai increasingly rare and more expensive. >>>Read more
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Nito Ryu Shinai Short Uchikomi Shinai Deluxe GIN Uchikomi Shinai Standard
Nito Ryu Shinai Short
Our Price: $43.65

Uchikomi Shinai Standard
Our Price: $40.00
Standard Furnished Shinai Tozando Custom-made Shinai Standard Furnished Shinai - Bulk Packages
Standard Furnished Shinai
Our Price: $27.50

TOZANDO Custom-made Shinai
Starts from: $59.10

Standard Furnished Shinai (Junior) Smoked Bamboo Dobari Shinai 'FURINKAZAN' Mini Souvenir Shinai
Mini Souvenir Shinai
Our Price: $13.65

Hasegawa Carbon Graphite Shinai Hasegawa Carbon Graphite Shinai Pieces Koto-style Madake Shinai - Fujin
Hasegawa Carbon Graphite Shinai
Our Price: $262.75

Thick-grip Jissengata Dobari-style Shinai - Issen Thick-grip Koto-style Shinai - Daigo Koto-style Shinai - Daigo
Koto-style Shinai - Daigo
Our Price: $50.95

Dobari-style Deluxe Madake Shinai - Izumo no Kami Thick Grip Dobari-style Deluxe Madake Shinai - Izumo no Kami Oval Octagonal-grip Koto-style Shinai - Oniyanma
Oval Octagonal-grip Dobari-style Shinai - Oniyanma Slim Koto-style Shinai - Shingessai Oval Grip Shinai "Suzaku"
Oval Grip Shinai - Suzaku
Our Price: $44.55

Koto-style Shinai - Ittou Ryo Dan Tozando Original Hello Kitty Standard Furnished Shinai Jissengata Dobari-style Shinai - Issen
Dobari-style Madake Shinai - Raijin Jissengata Dobari-style Madake Shinai - Shouryuu Standard Furnished Shinai - Pack of 3
The hayabusa's slim tapered body makes it excellent at delivering fast and final cuts. Hayabusa Tsukatan - Short-grip Jissengata Shinai The dense grain of the Tokuren's madake bamboo results in a durable body that lasts and provides clear feedback from your strikes.
Hayabusa - Jissengata Shinai
List Price: $54.55
Our Price: $49.98

Tokuren - Supreme Madake Koto Shinai
List Price: $90.91
Our Price: $81.80
Sale Price: $78.50

There are 6 broad types of shinai. Choose your favorite one after reading descriptions for each. If you are new to kendo, you may want to choose the standard shinai made with keichiku at first before exploring which other typs of kendo shinai suit you. Several of these types can be combined.
Standard Type (Fukyu-gata): This is the most common form of shinai, so beginners will most likely start with this type. Because it is focused on high durability and safety, it is often used in regular practice or for drills where you do repetitive striking agaisnt other shinai.
Oval Type (Koban-gata): The tsuka of this shinai resemble that of a bokken or real Japanese sword. By using a shinai with an oval handle, you can grip it naturally and strike the blade straight. For young children and beginners, it is difficult to grasp the shinai properly at first, so it is recommended to practice the proper form of holding the shinai in the palm.
Fat-bodied (Dobari-gata):By using bamboo with a broad main body (the dobari), the center of gravity becomes closer to the user's hand, making its tip feel lighter when strikingdespite its actual weight. If the tip's weight is lighter, quick striking is made much easier, and as a result, you would find yourself easily striking in uchiai, and doing degashira waza and certain types of ouji waza.
Jissen-gata:Jissengata are similar to Dobari, but instead of a broad base, they taper towards the end resulting in a slightly different balance that is well liked amongst competitors. Again the center of gravity is pushed towars the hands, and the tip of the shinai is thinner, making it feel light when you strike. Because the tip is light, it can be swung quickly, allowing you to shorten the interval between strikes. It will also make it easier for you to do uchiai at a short distance, degashira waza, and nimble ouji waza. Due to the tip of the shinai being carved into a thinner shape, this style of shinai is not as durable as the standard type.
Tsukabuto Jissen-gata:This type of shinai has a thick handle with a thin tip that allows you to feel the lightest weight of swing compared to other types. It is the best shinai for short distance uchiai and doing degashira waza and ouji waza. If you have large hands, we highly recommend you to try this balanced shinai. Because of the thinner tip, it is not as durable as the standard shinai.
Old Style (Koto-gata): Compared with other general shinai, the koto is thicker all around and its weight makes it easier to make powerful strikes and not be easily deflected by your opponent's movements. Also, the tip of the shinai feels heavier, when doing menuchi, it feels like tip of the shinai is stretching, and almost as if it is flying.
Octagonal Style (Hakkaku-gata):Thes tsuka of these shinai is not rounded, instead it is shaved to be octagonal. Many practitoners prefer this grip as it is not only comfortable, but easy to practice altering the orientation of your shinai with finger mvoements during techniques. It is often combined with a koban-gata style to make a unique and tactile tsuka.