July 23, 2008

Kendo Medical Alert - Achilles Tendon

Pay attention to this and make yourself aware ----
Even though injuries in kendo are, by and large, not terribly common and not terribly major, Achilles Tendon injuries are not unheard of and they can be, to varying degrees, serious business. Snapping the Achilles Tendon isn't life threatening and, as I understand it, they tend to heal just fine with surgery and don't have real long-term detrimental effects to your ability to walk, run, etc., but those kinds of injuries can certainly affect your kendo future, so pay attention to this email I received a little while back, but have put off posting here...


Dear Fellow Kendoka and students of Budo:

This message is an urgent medical alert for all Budo students and specifically for Kendo and Naginata students.

Distribution list:
Budokai Kendo List
Budokai Business List
Arai Sensei
Maeda Sensei
Hyun Sensei
Strawn Sensei
Seto Sensei
Dr. David Hall / courtesy
Dr. Bill Dvorine / courtesy
Dr. T. Inoshita, GNEUSKF / courtesy
Summerlin Walker / courtesy
Mr. Alex Bennet, Kendo World Magazine / courtesy

On Tuesday, July 8 (yesterday), the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) issued a "Black Box" warning regarding the antibiotic drug Cipro. Specifically, the warning alerts all users of this drug, and the related antibiotic drugs Avelox, Floxin, Proquin, Levaquin, and Norfloxacin, that the use of these prescription antibiotic drugs has been linked to a significant weakening of muscular tendons, particularly the Achilles Tendon and the Rotator Cuff, and may contribute to tendon rupture or tendonitis.

See this link: http://www.allheadlinenews.com/articles/7011544965

The story is also being given wide circulation on Reuters, the Associated Press, and CNN, and was a lead story this morning on CNN at 7:52 am EST.

The mechanism by which these drugs weaken muscular tendons is unclear, but it is believed that they raise the toxicity level in muscular tendons, thereby weakening the tendons and rendering them much more susceptible to rupture. What is certain, however, is that there is now a undeniable linkage between these drugs and an increased probability of tendon rupture, particularly the Achilles Tendon. As all Kendoka know (or should know), rupturing the Achilles Tendon is the most common and debilitating injury in Kendo, so this news is of particular interest to us. If you are practicing any martial art and particularly Kendo or Naginata, and you are taking any of these prescription drugs, you are in danger of rupturing your Achilles Tendon or tearing your Rotator Cuff. The obvious stress placed on the Achilles tendon in the practice of Kendo makes Kendoka particularly susceptible to this threat. If you are a Kendo student and currently taking any of these drugs, please consult your physician to see if there is a prescription alternative to these drugs, or consider modifying your practice schedule. Perhaps it is time to brush up on your Kata?

As Budokai Chairman for 2008, I request that all Budokai instructors share this information with their respective practice groups. As a member of the SEUSKF and a Kendoka, I urge my fellow Dojo leaders in SEUSKF, as well as the Dojo and Federation leaders copied in this message as a courtesy, to consider passing this message on to your clubs and students. I am also of the opinion that the AUSKF should probably alert member Federations as well.

I hope this message proves to be timely and useful to the Kendo community, and I pray that it serves to prevent any Kendoka on these medications from suffering an injury that would prevent them from enjoying this art that we all love so much. May we all train in good health!

Yours in Kendo,
Reverend Chion Ernest Lissabet
Chairman of the Board 2008
Capitol Area Budokai, Washington DC USA
Wednesday July 9, 2008

July 02, 2008

Club Zekken/Nafuda for Memphis Kendo

As the SEUSKF tournament approaches, some of you folks in bogu have been involved with kendo long enough for you to need a "nafuda" (or "zekken" or "thing-with-your-name-on-it-that-fits-on-the-tare").

It is highly recommended, encouraged, etc. (in fact, AUSKF laws REQUIRE it), that you purchase such an item prior to the SEUSKF tournament and since it normally takes around 4 weeks for them to get it back to you, this is something you need to think about (and order) fairly soon.

In order to maintain consistency (letter style, size, etc.) with those who already have them, we ask that you please place your order with E-BOGU at the following link:

If you order on your own, $35 is a fairly standard price to pay, regardless of what company you go with, so... please... go with E-bogu. If you go with anybody else, that's fine, but be advised that your zekken may NOT look exactly like everyone else's.

If at least 5 of you can get your collective minds and money together, there is a discount (see the link) if you order at the same time. Shipping is also free for any order more than $100 (I think that's still true.. see the website for details).

Ordering instructions:
1. access the above website linked.
2. click on "add to cart" and go through the process of filling out your information AND paying for the item
3. then PRINT OUT this form: http://www.e-bogu.com/Customer-Downloads/ZekkenOrderForm040220.pdf
4. on the form, write MEMPHIS across the top line; write your last name in Romanji (that's "English") on the bottom line; write your last name in Katakana (or Kanji, if applicable) vertically down the center. It doesn't have to be perfect handwriting in any case, just so long as it's legible.
If you are not absolutely 100% certain of how to spell your name in katakana, please consult Yasuda-sensei.
5. after filling out the form in full (be sure to have your order # handy to write on the form as well), FAX the form to E-bogu. ***Obviously, you'll need several of these forms if you order as a group ****

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