Why Choose Shogun Kendogu?
After countless hours dedicated to trialling a range of stitching and material combinations, our equipment has become renowned for its protection, fit, and competitive price. These factors should be considered when purchasing any item of kendogu, and are explained in more detail below.
Protection – It is commonly believed that a wide-stitched item of kendogu is for children or beginners. However, it is now also the chosen stitch pitch of many elite kendo athletes. The reason is in the fewer number of stitches across the futon – resulting in a thicker and softer material, with comparatively superior absorption and padding qualities on impact.
In the past, in times when machine stitch bōgu was not yet an option, hand stitched bōgu was made to an approximate 9 millimetre grade, allowing for maximum impact absorption and a notably comfortable fit. We consider that our wide stitched bōgu is the modern day equivalent of this approach. Importantly, it is our innovative use of materials that has enabled us to re-introduce the wider stitch while maintaining the highest level of quality and resilience.
Superior fit – Our bōgu is softer and therefore fits better from the outset. As many of our customers will attest to, this optimal fit from the beginning results in the set feeling much lighter, while maintaining the cushioning only a wide stitch set can provide. Daiki Kiwada, 2012 All Japan Kendo Champion and Osaka Policeman, agrees: "I found this gear to be extremely comfortable and easy to use in my fights at the All Japan Championships."
Competitive price – Every item of kendogu on our webstore is made from scratch to the customer’s specifications. This includes sizing, design, and colour selections. In addition to the exceptional fit and trusted quality found in Shogun Kendogu’s equipment, each set in the Shogun Kendogu range comes with:
• a huge range of design options for the listed price – available through our unique “Bōgu Builder” technology
• an unheard of 3 Year Repair Warranty on every item – including “wear and tear” of kote palms
• assurance that every item of kendogu is order made to exact customer size specifications
• a ‘buddies bōgu repair discount’
• free international shipping to most parts of the world
• fast and friendly service
As the international bōgu market continues to grow, kendo equipment can be found online for very low prices. However, cheaper off-the-shelf bōgu is not only poor quality, but can also be ill-fitting and lack protective properties. We at Shogun Kendogu are confident that, with all we include in one set of gear, we are providing exceptional value for money.
Why have we chosen a wide stitch for our bōgu?
It is not uncommon for kendogu to be considered good quality if it is stitched at any pitch between 2 to 5 millimetres. The truth is, however, that it is the materials used and the skill of the craftsperson that play a more important role. Additionally, as many kendo-ka will acknowledge, the smaller the stitch, the less comfortable the initial fit.
What is the difference between each set of gear from Shogun Kendogu?
The Blue Label
The Blue Label has been specifically designed for kendo training. Developed in response to the special requests and requirements of kendo-ka in Japan’s special police forces, the ‘pillow-like’ futon across the entire 12mm machine stitch set offers exceptional protection.
We knew that simply increasing the rigidity of bōgu in order to improve protection was not an option. Instead we chose to produce a set with a wider stitch that accentuated the padding of the futon. The finished product is a light weight, durable, and comfortable set, with a totally unique look – exactly what our customers and friends of the police requested.
Check out this video for more information on the Blue Label.
The White Label
The 7mm White Label set is recommended by our expert team as an ideal set for kendo shiai. Almost every aspect and dimension of the White Label can be modified to match your preferred specification – including length and depth of curve in the kote tsutsu (forearm).
The very best know the physical and psychological importance of having a custom built set of gear – and from the snug and secure fit of the men and the tare, to the astonishing flexibility of the orizashi kote, this refined and sophisticated set of this bōgu will help to give you the competitive edge.
Check out this video for more information on the White Label.
The Red Label
As our premium machined stitched set, composition of the 6mm Red Label futon uses the finest materials. It is quick to mould to the shape of its owner, and naturally becomes more comfortable with time. The quality materials used in both the exterior and the interior design of this set means that, in addition to the trademark fit of Shogun Kendogu equipment, it offers an enhanced durability and malleability.
The Red Label is recommended as a top-of-the-line set for special occasions – whatever that maybe in your kendo career – and the customisation available will ensure you look and feel the part on the floor.
Check out this video for more information on the Red Label.
The Black Label
The traditional and often desired appearance of a hand-stitched set is captured by the Black Label set. Through our research of hand-made kendo equipment we have found that a 1.8bu stitch is the ideal width to provide protection whilst remaining flexible – and the more it is used, the better the fit.
Genuine Fujioka (aizome) deer leather is used to reinforce the head of the kote, and the same high quality leather is also used for the palms. True of all kote in the Shogun Kendogu range of equipment, our original “Kazutaka Cut” ensures optimal fit and ease of use from the beginning.
Simply, the 1.8bu Black Label from Shogun Kendogu is our premium hand-stitched set, and is ideal for the discerning kendo-ka seeking quality, flexibility, and a stylish appearance.
Check out this video for more information on the Black Label.