Currently (as of 2015) Kendo training is lead by Shoko Bunder (5 Dan Kendo) and David Bunder (5 Dan Kendo).
For the first 25 years of training at the University of Wollonong Kendo Club training was lead by the clubs founder
Ted Rixon, Yondan (4th dan) Kendo.
From 2001 to 2010 he was assisted by his brother
Paul Rixon Sensei, Rokudan (6th dan) Kendo.
We have had other sensei training at Wollongong over our 30+ years of operation, for the first six months of 1997, Wollongong also had the good fortune of having Sensei Katsumi Kuramochi, at the time Godan Kendo, formerly based in Ballarat and the 1996 Australian Open Shiai Champion as a second Sensei, leading our Sunday training. He has since moved on to Northern Queensland. Subsequently Itakura Takashi, Rokudan Kendo, assisted regularly from 2002 to 2011.
In addition we enjoy good relations with other NSWKA and ACTKR Kendo Clubs, in particular Sydney and ANU. Sensei from all of these groups have attended or conducted training events here. Wollongong Kendo Club has hosted an annual NSW training weekend near Picton on the southern highlands since 1996, that 1997-2014 incorporated the state grading, allowing our students contact with Sensei from throughout the country.
This photo is of Sensei Rixon (on the left), and Sensei Gould at the time the Central Coast Kendo Club (which was based in Gosford/Wyong) instructor conducting a NSW State Kyu Grade Training in Wollongong prior to the 1996 Nationals in Perth (where NSW kyus had a clean sweep of the individuals as well as winning the team event).
This is our founder Sensei Rixon with his instructor, Sensei Shizawa, Professor of Kendo at the Japanese Physical Education University (Nitaidai) in Yokahama (and
Shizawa Sensei's wife) in Sydney, August 1994 on one of Nitaidai's annual visits.
Sensei Katsumi Kuramochi, on the occasion of his second visit to Wollongong in 1996, at which time he was based in Ballarat, Victoria. He joined us in January 1997 after moving to NSW. He is currently teaching Kendo, Jodo and Iaido in Cairns.
Our Seitei Iaido Instructor, Robert Brown, holds the grade of Godan (5th Dan) in Seitei Iaido, supported by Aden Steinke who is Yondan (4th Dan) in Seitei Iaido.
In Wollongong, untill Robert reached Sandan in 2004, traditionally we did not have access to an Iaido Sensei of our own, so our practice in the 1990s was very limited except when we could arrange visits by Sydney (Blue Leaf) Iaido Club members for higher level instruction, or when there is the opportunity to attend training camps such as the two week training in Perth over the Easter period in 1996 where two of us from Wollongong were among those to have the benefit of two hours a day of the late Hiraga Sensei.
For the first half of 1997 we had Sensei Katsumi Kuramochi who instructed in Iaido as well as Kendo, and since 2000 the University of Wollongong Kendo Club has been represented at all of the annual Iaido national championships and seminars.
This is Hiraga Sensei!
From 2003 the University of Wollongong Kendo Club has had the honour of Ramon Lawrence Sensei (Perth Budokan) assisting with our iaido training through notes and personal instruction with one or two training visits per year to the east coast which has been key to our development. Also providing our koryu instruction in Tamiya Ryu.
Ray Lawrence (middle) with Wollongong's Robert Brown and Sydney Iaidoka Ruth
Franklin on the occasion of his training visit to NSW, April 2003.
For Kendo Federation (ZNKR or Seitei) Jodo, which makes the bulk of the Jodo program, training is lead by Robert Brown Godan (5th Dan) Seitei Jodo and Aden Steinke Yondan (4th Dan) Seitei Jodo.
The club has been helped in its ZNKR Jodo development by the Australian Kendo Renmei Jodo Technical Adviser, Nagayama Sensei of Sendai, Japan who has assisted both Robert and Aden to prepare and grade in Japan.
For Koryu(SMR) training the University of Wollongong Kendo Club has never had a Jodo sensei of its own, instead students support their self practice by periodically travelling to the Sydney Shindo Muso Ryu Jodo dojo on saturday mornings for instruction under Paul Maloney. From May 2003 until the end of 2006 Maloney sensei arranged for himself or another of his qualified instructors to visit for a 3 hour session once a month, this gave our training a significant boost until our experience increased.
Paul Maloney on the ocassion of his first monthly seminar in Wollongong May 2003
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