Kendama USA

Posts Tagged ‘Japan’

Ozora ReShape Kendamas Now Available @ Kendama USA

Ozora Kendama of Japan has developed a new shape that features larger cups and a semi 70/30 fade for easy hole tracking. Formally named “Odori REshape” this is the newest shape from Ozora in ten years and is the brain child of Japanese Craftman, Ryoichi Suzuki. The REShape has three meanings;”3R”, RENEW · · · Newly born design RELIABLE · · · Reliable specs and quality REACH · · · reach new possibilities.

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https://shop.kendamausa.com/products/ozora-kendama-reshape

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All Girls Kendama Tour Recap

The All Girls Kendama Event 2017 was the first of its kind. A series of contests for women, all hosted by female players in the scene, in three different countries. KendamaUSA’s tribute member Haley Bishoff teamed up with some a few other kendama players in the community to create an incredible event!

All Girls Kendama Event Trick List Video:

 

First Stop: Portland, OR.

Haley Bishoff, Carolina Herrera & Molly Harney hosted the first stop in Portland, OR in August at the Portland Pastimes & Velo Cult complex. Almost 100 people came out to support, with about 15 competitors. KendamaUSA’s Tribe member Miya Song took 1st in the Open division, with Emmy Evans coming close in 2nd. Chelsea May Perez from Sweets took 3rd! The Portland event was surely special, because it was the first ever All Girls Kendama Event in the United States.

Special shout outs: Carolina Herrera, Molly Harney, Masako Hosoi, Arque Richards Pagh, Kristin Olinyk, Dave Mateo, Portland Pastimes & all the sponsors.

You can buy a limited run T-Shirt from the Portland event HERE!

http://www.shcl.bigcartel.com/product/2017-all-girl-kendama-t-shirt-unisex

Next Stop: Tokyo, Japan.

Haley and Yuka Hyuga from Gloken put together the second stop.

The Tokyo event was once again, such a success with 100 attendees and 39 competitors, making this the largest All Girls Kendama Event, EVER! This year’s event was the second all girls kendama event in Japan. In 2015, Haley and Yuka hosted another event in Osaka, Japan. But this year’s event was so much bigger with a way higher skill level. Huge congratulations to all the competitors and winners.

Special shout outs: Yuka Hyuga, Mirai from Tokyo Dama Girls for MCing, DJ Moco, Peter Richards, Zawa, Gloken & all the sponsors.

You can watch both Tokyo Recap Videos Below!

Third and Final Stop: Kaohsiung City, Taiwan.
The Taiwan scene is incredibly special, a collection of close friends who just genuinely love kendama. The innovative mini games that Super Friends Kendy has created made the event so fun and interactive for everyone who came out. This time, 100 people attended with 32 female competitors.
Special shout outs: JiJan Chen for creating all the beautiful artwork on the flyers for all three events and MCing the Taiwan event alongside her brother, Jiaziu Chen. Duck, Janet & Rain from South Kendama for being such gracious hosts to Haley and Yuka, and of course, SUPER FRIENDS KENDY!

Watch the Taiwan Recap HERE!

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Kendama World Cup 2017 Recap

The 4th Annual Kendama World Cup took place in none other than Hatsukaichi; the birthplace of Kendama. This year was even greater than the last and seeing more and more players from across the globe shows how Kendama is spreading.  There are so many connections that are made through Kendama and friends seeing each other for the first time or linking back up at the airport and venue is always a warm welcome. The first day is always arduous as the full list of registered players which is always over 100, is whittled down to 35 top finalists which will compete in the next day’s championship round where one winner will be crowned the 2017 Champion. Let’s take a look at what all went down…

DAY 1:

The competition was fierce and by the end of Day 1 KUSA had 4 people moving onto the final round with Nobu of Tribe in the #1 spot.

DAY 1 RESULTS:

01. Nobuyoshi Norioka (JPN – 96)
02. Yutaro Fukushima (JPN – 96)
03. Lukas Funk (USA – 90)
04. Logan Tosta (USA – 90)
05. Jake Fischer (USA – 89)
06. Soma Kanemoto (JPN – 89)
07. Toko Mukai (JPN – 89)
08. Soma Fujita (JPN – 89)
09. So Kanada (JPN – 88)
10. Yuta Satoda (JPN – 88)
11. Yukie Yao (JPN – 88)
12. Nonoka Kyodo (JPN – 88)
13. Nicholas Stodd (USA – 88)
14. Liad Kotlarker (ISR – 87)
15. Kengo Kawamura (JPN – 87)
16. Parker Johnson (USA – 86)
17. Zack Gallagher (USA – 86)
18. Kenta Shikagawa (JPN – 86)
19. Jonney Kress (USA – 86)
20. Yoshiki Goto (JPN – 86)
21. Gavin Harvey (USA – 85)
22. Sho Hanasaki (JPN – 85)
23. Terence Kawamoto (USA – 85)
24. Taiki Tachida (JPN – 83)
25. Carter Justice (USA – 83)
26. Yuji Shimada (JPN – 83)

Wildcards :
- Lau Chun Ho (HKG – 74)
- Antonio Kyan (PER – 61)
- Rodney Ansell (CAN – 58)
- Nozomi Arita (JPN – 78)

Regional Seeds :
- Andrei Goia (ROM – 72; European Seed)
- Nick Gallagher (USA – 91; N. America Champ)
- Bryson Lee (USA – 98; KWC 2016 Champ)
- Wyatt Bray (USA – 70; KWC 2015 Champ)
- Bonz Atron (USA – 52; KWC 2014 Champ)

DAY 2:

So Kanada takes the win and is both the first Japanese and the first unsponsored player to take the championship title.

We love to see Japanese players embracing Freestyle play more and can’t wait where tricks will take us in 2018.

DAY 2 FINAL RESULTS:

KWC Final Score :

1. So Kanada – Japan ( 88 + 1212 ) = 1300
2. Bryson Lee – U. S. A. ( 98 + 1028 ) = 1126
3. Liad Kotlarker – Israel ( 87 + 979 ) = 1066
4. Lukas Funk – U. S. A. ( 90 + 910 ) = 1000
5. Nick Gallagher – U. S. A. ( 91 + 888 ) = 979
6. Jake Fischer – U. S. A. ( 89 + 856 ) = 945
7. Gavin Harvey – U. S. A. ( 85 + 846 ) = 931
8. Nonoka Kyodo – Japan ( 88 + 810 ) = 898
9. Soma Kanemoto – Japan ( 89 + 795 ) = 884
10. Logan Tosta – U. S. A. ( 90 + 791 ) = 881
11. Zack Gallagher – U. S. A. ( 86 + 665 ) = 751
12. Wyatt Bray – U. S. A. ( 70 + 657 ) = 727
13. Carter Justice – U. S. A. ( 83 + 636 ) = 719
14. Yuta Satoda – Japan ( 88 + 620 ) = 708
15. Nicholas Stodd – U. S. A. ( 88 + 598 ) = 686
16. Parker Johnson – U. S. A. ( 86 + 580 ) = 666
17. Yukie Yao – Japan ( 88 + 573 ) = 661
18. Kengo Kawamura – Japan ( 87 + 535 ) = 622
19. Nobuyoshi Norioka – Japan ( 96 + 500 ) = 596
20. Yutaro Fukushima – Japan ( 96 + 481 ) = 577
21. Soma Fujita – Japan ( 89 + 483 ) = 572
22. Sho Hanasaki – Japan ( 85 + 462 ) = 547
23. Terence Kawamoto – U. S. A. ( 85 + 460 ) = 545
24. Jonney Kress – U. S. A. ( 86 + 447 ) = 533
25. Kenta Shikagawa – Japan ( 86 + 423 ) = 509
26. Yoshiki Goto – Japan ( 86 + 394 ) = 480
27. Yuji Shimada – Japan ( 83 + 389 ) = 472
28. Bonz Atron – U. S. A. ( 52 + 388 ) = 440
29. Taiki Tachida – Japan ( 83 + 354 ) = 437
30. Andrei Goia – Romania ( 72 + 359 ) = 431
31. Toko Mukai – Japan ( 89 + 272 ) = 361
32. Rodney Ansell – Canada ( 58 + 254 ) = 312
33. Lau Chun Ho – Hong Kong ( 74 + 199 ) = 273
34. Nozomi Arita – Japan ( 78 + 149 ) = 227
35. Antonio Kyan – Peru ( 61 + 34 ) = 95

 

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Kendama USA Presents | Make Waves World Tour Edit ft. TJ Kolesnik

We’re happy to release the Make Waves World Tour ft. TJ Kolesnik.

Over the summer of 2016, Tj embarked on a six week journey across the world, touring to multiple countries, cities and states upon his #MakeWaves Pro Model being released. Starting in Japan, he traveled to counties like Singapore, Sweden, Canada and the United States. Each day brought a new crowd of eager Kendama players, fun and exciting experiences and memories that will last forever.

We hope you enjoy this full documentary style / video piece Tj shot during his trip. With help from all of you, Tj was able to turn his dream into a reality.

Countries:

  • Japan
  • Singapore
  • Sweden
  • Canada
  • United States

“It was crazy to be away from home for 6 weeks. I’ve traveled all over the world for the last couple of years, but going non stop for 6 weeks, I was a bit anxious to start my journey. Every second of my trip was memorable. I met so many amazing people, new Kendama players and like-minded individuals who are chasing their dreams, just like me.

I want to give a HUGE thank you to every single person who has supported me since day one, as well as all of the new players who are just starting their Kendama journey. I realized a long time ago that hard work, dedication an persistence can get you anywhere in life. As long as you’re humble, patient and hungry, anything is truly possible. Thank you to Kendama USA, Original Grain, Goorin Bros., and Dama Mods for sponsoring this tour.

Enjoy some photos along my journey during Tour. If you haven’t had a chance to pick up the Tj Kolesnik Pro Model, click below to get yours today.

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Kendama USA at JapanFest 2016

X GA DAMAX georgia kendamaX JapanX JapanFestX JewbaccaX KaizenX Kaizen KendamaX kendamaX Kendama USAX NANAX TributeX tribute kendamaX _J_F_K_

This year marked the 30th anniversary of JapanFest Atlanta. Kendama USA had the pleasure of participating in the event for the 3rd year in a row. Going to JapanFest is always an amazing time for us to experience the culture from which our favorite toy comes originates. It also allows us to meet new people and get them excited to try out Kendama. There is so much to do at JapanFest from drum shows, sumo matches, Kabuki Shows, and even eating some amazing authentic Japanese food. It also provides the opportunity to pick up merchandise from your favorite animes while getting to know new people and trying new things. This year, Jake Kopanski and Ryan Plourd were holding it down for KUSA, putting on 2 shows and a workshop to teach Kendama to everyone who was interested. It was great teaching new people how magical Kendama is and we hope to see you there again next year!

We’d also like to give a special shout out to NANA, a company we had collaboration with during the weekend. You can check out their app by clicking here.

Thank you to all of the local players that came out and helped with the event.  Damafam is strong!

“sugoi sugoi sugoi”- Jake Kopanski

 

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Nobu Nori is Tribe!

We are so proud to announce that Nobu Nori is the newest member added to our Tribe team. Nobu is our first Japanese team member and has always impressed us with his incredible Kendama play, style, and positivity.

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TJ Kolesnik Turns Pro For Kendama USA

We are excited and honored to announce Tj Kolesnik as the newest 2016 Kendama USA Pro! Tj is an embodiment of dedication to Kendama. His passion and work ethic can be seen in his progression from a player to a pillar in the Kendama community. TJ has been part of the Kendama community for several years. He began his Kendama journey back in 2010 while he was in his junior year of high school. For years, he has continued to hone not only his Kendama play and steeze but his skills in videography. He’s helped us share great moments and memories with the community and continues to host Kendama events around the globe.

TJ Kolesnik Kendama USA Pro

Tj is currently a student at San Diego City College where he is dual majoring in Graphic Design & Communications. He still finds time to jam, capture amazing moments and work with kids. It’s no secret why Tj is such an inspirational and motivational figure to countless Kendama players around the world. Join us in celebrating and check out his journey in the video below.

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Now Showing: KWC 2015 Japan Video !

2016 Japan Video Sign Up

Every trip to Japan is always an unforgettable experience for us, and the 2016 trip is right around the corner!  As we get honed for KWC 2016 over these next few weeks, we are taking a look back to remember last year’s adventures.  We are excited to release our 2015 Japan video to the public today. Enjoy!~

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Sakura Classic 2016 Recap

Sakura Classic this year was bigger than ever, with an amazing first place prize for the amateur bracket – an all expenses paid trip to the 2016 Kendama World Cup in Japan! Not only did we have members from Gloken fly all the way out to the event from Japan, but we had the world’s best kendama performing duo, Zoomadanke, show some of their most impressive Kendama play ever.

Huge congrats to the winners of the Sakura Classic!

Amateur bracket:
1st: CJ Martinez
2nd: Hayden Brickman
3rd: Keilan

Pro Freestyle Division:
Logan Tosta

We were stoked to see the commitment from the kendama community to come out and jam despite the rain. Huge thanks to all the volunteers from the Bay Area that came out to help, Gloken, KendamaUSA, Grain Theory and of course, Jake Wiens for putting on another incredible Sakura Classic! See you next year!

 

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Dave Mateo Turns Pro for Kendama USA

We are honored, humbled, and excited to announce Dave Mateo as the newest member of the Kendama USA Pro Team. Dave brings a unique flow, energy, and style to the world of Kendama. Dave’s raw talent, passion, and dedication continues to be an inspiration to countless Kendama players around the globe. He has been a leading force for developing strong grassroots Kendama scenes, most notably in Sacramento and Las Vegas. He has also spearheaded multiple community projects, including the National Kendama Retreat.

Dave Mateo Turns Pro for Kendama USA

Since day one, Dave has been extremely generous and selfless in his approach to enrich and spread Kendama culture. His passion for Kendama is undeniable, and his signature style is unmistakable. Dave has been a key part of Kendama USA for several years now, helping both publicly and behind the scenes. He continues to challenge his own limits and is committed to pushing others toward their dreams. We’ve been truly blessed to have Dave as part of our family, and we’re excited for this next chapter to unfold. Please join us in welcoming Dave Mateo to the Kendama USA Pro Team.

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Kendama USA Presents – Behind The Scenes – FlowIVamic DUO – MIXTAPE HERE & NOW

Take a trip and dig deep with Kenyatta Williams and Dave Mateo. Kenyatta had a chance to visit Dave in Las Vegas for his birthday. See what else the Flownamic Duo gets into. In FDIV you’ll find some other hobbies and some behind the scenes of what these two go through.

ENJOY.

Filmed by: Carolina Herrera, Kenyatta Williams, Dave Mateo

Edited by: Dave Mateo

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The Kendama craze in Hong Kong: what is it and what makes it so addictive?

Young Post, a Junior Reporter Club recently wrote an article about the expanding Kendama scene in Hong Kong. This amazing article covers some very important topics regarding Education with Kendama and the ability to build a community around it. Alex, Zack, and Jake are all mentioned in the article as well.

Check out the full article below.
The Kendama craze in Hong Kong: what is it and what makes it so addictive?

You’ve probably never heard of Kendama, but think of it as a game similar to cup and ball, with a growing worldwide popularity
By: Alan Yu

Around 10 years ago, skateboarder Smore Chan Chung-yin picked up a Japanese toy made of a wooden spike and a ball on a piece of string, and started playing with it at a skate park after watching a fellow skater do some tricks. Chan was immediately hooked and couldn’t put the toy down for the next three hours.

“I was playing like crazy and even when I left for dinner, I was still playing with it. I didn’t want to give it back. I had to give in and buy a kendama of my own.”

The kendama is a toy that is similar to cup and ball; the only difference is that the kendama has three cups, a wooden spike, and the ball has a hole in it. Players try to flick the ball back onto the spike, but it’s become much more than that, as players try to do tricks shots like landing the ball on each of three cups attached to the spike, toss the toy in the air and catch it again before getting the ball on the spike, balance the spike on top of the ball, or even holding the ball and balancing the spike with just the string. It’s not unlike how people have taken the yo-yo and created all kinds of tricks with it.

Chan has been honing his kendama skills ever since he discovered it. He has won several competitions, including the first ever competition in Hong Kong in 2006 and an international video competition with another player in 2007. The 26-year-old now works as a tour guide, but he founded Pak Fuk Kendama in Fanling, where he sells kendama products and coaches new players.

Kendama is steadily growing as a sport. The US has a team of professional players, and even Pak Fuk Kendama in Hong Kongsponsors seven players, meaning those players get free kendamas and coaching. Sunny Wong, a bartender who helps Smore Chan run Pak Fuk Kendama, says there are around 200 enthusiasts in Hong Kong who practise every day, and that it is a serious discipline.

“The Japanese have judo, ken-do (the art of sword fighting), kado (ikebana, or flower arrangement) and chado (tea appreciation.) For the serious players, kendama is just like one of those pursuits.”

Some people even make their living from kendama, like Alex Smith, a player on the US team who is also a woodworker and makes his own kendamas; and Jake Wiens, another US player who also does a lot of the film production and editing for the team.

People like them are rare though, and Hong Kong doesn’t have a kendama scene like the US just yet, but more and more players are following in Chan’s footsteps and taking kendama seriously.

Wu Tsz-ki is 14 and she’s one of the sponsored players with Pak Fuk Kendama. She only started playing with the kendama in May 2014 after she saw it on Instagram, but she practises every day and spends at least an hour each weekend working on new tricks. In October, she entered a competition and came fourth out of around 50 players. She says her parents are still surprised that she hasn’t gotten tired of this toy already, but she says she’s also hooked.

“Don’t underestimate this toy. It may not look very athletic, but it’s very effective in working up a sweat and honing your arm muscles,” she says. “My reflexes have certainly improved. My accuracy in swatting mosquitoes has gone from 50 per cent to 80 per cent.”

Wing Tang kin-wing, 16, is also one of the Pak Fuk Kendama players. He started playing two years ago, and back in mid-December, he entered the TKA Kendama Contest in Taiwanand beat all the other players from Japan, Korea, and Taiwan to win the timed contest, where the players try to do as many difficult tricks as they can within two minutes.

Chan says his group performs and hosts workshops at schools and universities. He says his next goal is to organise parent-child kendama classes.

Zack Yourd, a professional player for the US team and recent college graduate, wants to develop a curriculum to introduce it to schools in the US. The 22-year-old started playing with the kendama around eight years ago and he says whenever people ask him what the kendama is, he’ll show them a few tricks and they are always impressed.

“I have yet to see somebody who’s like, ‘Oh that’s stupid.’”

Yourd travelled across the US with the team, and he says he was struck by how enthusiastic the players were.

“As soon as we pulled into the parking lot, there would already be hundreds of people waiting, and they were just screaming.”

He also designs his own kendamas with different designs and types of wood, and he gets royalties every time one of those is sold. He enjoys brewing tea and coffee, so his latest model features engraved tea leaves and coffee beans. One of his kendamas costs around US$35.

“As kendama becomes bigger, it’s becoming more of a possibility to live off kendama and make it your profession. Some people that I know are doing that and it’s incredible. Right now though, it is kind of hard to make your living from competing. You would need another job.”

Lau Chun-ho (left) and Chan Chung-yin admit they’re totally addicted to kendama.
Photo: Bruce Yan/SCMP

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