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Introduce yourself!

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BKA:
Welcome to the BKA forum!

Why not take the time to introduce yourself in this thread? Perhaps give us a little bit of info about yourself - where you are, how long you've been playing, or anything else you feel like sharing with your fellow Clickers!

GbH:
So, this is my first post!

Hi all - I'm Guy Heathcote (aka GbH) one of the more elderly Team KD members.

I've been playing with kendamas since first seeing Donald Grant and Fritz Grobe (of Mentos/Coke fame!) practicing with them at a juggling convention many years ago.  For a long while, I just used the plastic versions that were, back then, occasionally found in British toy shops.  As I knew all-but-nothing about Japanese kendama culture and what was really possible, I didn't make too much progress (some might argue I still haven't....).

Eventually, having looked around the web for any English-language instructions, I decided to write my own Kendama page (which can still be seen here - http://www.guyheathcote.com/KendamaBriefGuide.html).  I still didn't know any of the terminology or many of the standard tricks at the time, but the page came to the attention of at least some people in Japan and I was kindly sent my first proper JKA damas (yep, including my first Mugen), along with some other cool stuff.  As it happened, this also seemed to coincide with a slight increase in interest from at least a few others in the juggling community, eventually leading to the whole Team KD idea getting hatched on a long coach journey from Bodmin to Redruth during the 2006 British Juggling Convention.  The Team KD idea seemed almost like a joke at first, but somehow Robin (and, later, Void) managed to turn it into something real.  I was officially asked to join the team some while later and wear my official shirt with pride (when Void makes me...  :) ).

I've since competed in each of the UK competitions, previously winning both the Advanced Trick List and Speed Trick Challenge competitions.  I also won the recent BKA art competition, which was a nice surprise.  I've also served as a competition judge.

I've been responsible for two kendama videos, Kendama Variations and More Kendama Variations, both of which can be found on juggling.tv.  I've also made appearances in a few of the other TeamKD/BKA productions, to a greater or lesser extent.

Personally, although I still like to learn a certain amount of standard technique, I seem to have more fun thinking up different ideas, silly variations and eccentric ways to present the prop to others.  But, maybe this is just an admission that I'm not good enough to be attempting the 'sick tricks' that now feature in so many on-line videos? 

Oh, and before you ask, no, I don't know how many kendamas I have, nor what make they all are.  And, no, I'm not currently interested in selling Mugens!

Click, click....


Guy

The Void:
Hello, I'm Void. I've been playing since 2006, but seriously since 2007. Based in the UK, and I usually run the British Kendama Open, and so far I've also run 1 Dutch Kendama Open, and 3 European Kendama Opens.

I love meeting up with other players, and having fun.
I like kendama 'cos there's always a new challenge around the corner. I also [noembed]make videos[/noembed]  - on kendama and other stuff.

See you around!

Dave:
Hello,

I'm Dave and i have been playing kendama for about 137 days and Im totally addicted. i basically haven't put the thing down and I m coming up with some really fun stuff. Loving the Hydra kendama since Leicester convention after playing with Voids.

i Have 3 regular oozora's a Yumu and a Deathray Hydra with an oozora ken.

Im a big fan of the Kendama Kettle Rule and my current Kettle Trick is speed Trick B which Im down to nearly 100 seconds!!!!

Big Love For Kendama

Dave

Juggle Sensei:
Hi everyone!

My name's Matt Hall and I've been a kendama enthusiast since 2000.  The short version is that I was the translator for Masahiro Mizuno at the 2000 Portland Juggling Festival, and as a thank-you gift, he gave me my first kendama--an old school Japanese Kendama Federation model (that's right, there used to be TWO organizations).  Being a Japanese teacher gave me ample opportunity to travel to the Land of the Rising Sun and score some great learning materials in the original Japanese, as well as get tested for a JKA 1st kyuu certificate (still need to go back and get my 1st dan....sigh). 

For many years I dabbled with translating some of the classic Japanese kendama instruction books, but thanks to the herculean efforts of The Void and Donald Grant, I no longer have to sort that out.  Cheers to them! 

Peace be the journey!

matt
Team KD

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