About Us


Kendo, or the Japanese way of the sword, is a modern martial art descended from samurai swordsmanship that has been practiced at Yale for nearly 40 years. We are undergraduate-run and focused on Yale students, but we have been fortunate to host many devoted outside members. Koushinkan (光真冠), our club ethos and annual tournament, is a reflection of Yale’s motto Lux et Veritas (light and truth). If you are interested in joining the club or have any questions, please read our FAQ.

Club History

The Yale Kendo Club was started in 1987 by Mr. Igor Popovic from West Germany and continued under the leadership of Mr. Taka Sudo sensei and his brother from 1992-2002. In 2004, the first Yale Collegiate Kendo Tournament was held from January 31 to February 1. Between 2012-2020, the club was led by Jessica Ye and Chitoku Toda sensei. Since Fall 2023, the club officers have been Derek Chen (President) and Maxwell Cota (Captain/Treasurer); the current instructor is Yeongjae Shin.

Current Leadership (2023-2024)

President: Derek Chen

Captain/Treasurer: Maxwell Cota

Instructor: Yeongjae Shin