Kult of Athena


Friday, September 10, 2010

Sword Schools in Boston

In 1630, a Puritanical preacher by the name of John Winthrop called Massachusetts, and more specifically Boston, a City on Hill. In his sermon he called for the city, and the state, and New England in general, to be a beacon for justice and serving God and all of the fun things that Puritans did.

What better way to be a beacon for justice and freedom than to train your citizenry to be jaw-dropping, saber-swinging death machines with a fanatical love for the city and a short fuse when someone mentions anything from New York.

Ah yes, my fellow Bostonians, this city is becoming a beacon. A beacon for the SWORD!!

Recently, I have done some digging on the web to find out what type of training I could find in the Bay State for the art of the sword. The results were scant at first but with a little patience, some quick prayers to whatever sack-whacking vikings landed here before here was here, and some reserved space in the Google archives, I am now proud to present Massachusetts, the State of the Sword!

For those of you who live on the South Shore...(ok nevermind, beyond the Gas Tanks might as well be the gulag from Mad Max)..for those of you who live near to 93 or route 3 south, your training will be aided by masters from the Far East. There are 2 schools that have come to prominence that will teach you the sacred and ancient art of Wielding a Tree Branch/Golf Club/Wiffle Ball Bat Against Frat Brothers because your G/F Couldn't Keep Her Trap Shut About Leaning During Beer Pong.

These two schools of martial arts training draw on the ancient sword techniques of the Far East and educate their students on the discipline, strength, and honor that is found not only in the study of the sword but also in the spirit.

Sword Master Martial Arts is located at 582 Washington Street in Quincy and costs about $75.00 a month. You can learn sword fighting techniques that were developed in China thousands of years ago such as the beautiful, the deadly Jian Tai Chi Sword Fighting.

Knowing this sword technique in ancient China was to know harmony (and to know you have a shotgun in a pillow fight). It was to be able to move fluidly through the world around you in order to defend your home, your family, and your honor with great skill. Chinese sword techniques were passed down from generation to generation, from master to student, and the greatest masters trained royalty such as the emperors and their sons. That same prowess can be yours.

Boston Shufukai Kendo is even further east and while I am not going to say which sword style is better, because this is America and everyone gets a medal, I will tell you, as I have before in blog posts, that the study of Kendo, the Samurai, and Bushido makes we want to curl up under the bed weeping in fright with my hands covering my ears.

Located at the Boston Higashi School Gym at 800 North Main Street in Randolph, MA, this Samurai training school is going to set you back just a bit more with a annual federation fee $60, annual insurance fee $50, and a monthly dojo fee of $15 (for cleaning up all of the salty tears and pungent trails of urine your enemies leave behind). They will teach you the art of Kendo, or Japanese fencing; divulging the secrets of one of the deadliest martial arts known to man.

"But Mike," you say "I am a hipster and cant leave Boston. I have way too much going on, what with all those PBR Tall Boys chilling in my fridge and my friend's obscure band playing for free tonight in Cambridge!"

Alright, keep your quasi-ironic t-shirt on. There's hope for you too. A Korean master, not quite from China, not as far east as Japan, just right, is coming to Boston to learn your undeserving Western A the art of the sword. Shim Gum Do Sword Training , a mixture of deadly sword techniques and deep Zen meditative studies, is setting up shop in a temple in Brighton. Your master is none other than the inventor of the "Mind Sword Path" Chang Sik Kim, a 60-year-old Korean Zen master who made his name in the 1960's and 70's slicing up evil ninja's, saving poor peasants from oni demons, and slapping around blondes whilst flicking his epic moustachio

Under his tutelage you will learn sword techniques with what are called Bokken. These practice swords are made of wood so you don't slice Aunt B in half at your first exhibition. You will learn the basics of the sword, open hand fighting, deep meditative techniques to help you find your hidden dragon, and finally needlepoint.


In the final formative training sessions from your Zen Master, you will be bestowed with the honor of fighting with a handmade Korean steel blade similar to a Japanese katana.

Upon completion of this stage, and your training, you can drive around openly proclaiming your love for Justin Bieber and Kesha with the windows down and the music blaring. Go get em tiger.

The Shim Gum Do Sword Training will take place at 203 Chestnut Hill Avenue in Brighton, MA and will cost approximately $110.00 a month. A small price to pay for the smiting of one's enemies.

For those of you living in Boston looking to "Get Medieval on someone's ass" there is the Schola St. George, a school dedicated to the learning of Western Medieval Sword Techniques, hand-to-hand fighting, and microwave cookery. Sadly, their website is having some kind of Internet mental breakdown and refuses to come out of it's room. We will leave some cookies by the door and go turn on Gladiator until they are ready to talk about it.

Schola St. George