UKKA was established in 1975 and is a founder member of the European Kyudo Federation (EKF) and the International Kyudo Federation (IKYF). It is responsible for ANKF gradings and maintaining the highest standards of practice and safety as recognised by the All Nippon Kyudo Federation (ANKF). It is the governing body for ANKF kyudo in the UK, and in keeping with its amateur status, UKKA is a non-profitmaking voluntary organisation. Members may not profit from the practice of kyudo.
UKKA is administered by an elected Executive, with all aspects relating to practice supervised by a Technical Committee (Shidoiinkai), which is led by the UKKA Chairman, who must be a person of the highest grading and experience in kyudo and also meet the requirements as an Executive Officer.
Clubs (dojo) are established and given recognition by UKKA, and are under the supervision of the Shidoiinkai. Each club has a dojo leader who must be a graded person and is under the supervision of the designated member of the Shidoiinkai. All instructors must hold the required instructor insurance. Individual members are joined through the clubs of the association and receive insurance cover and access to national seminars, examinations, and international events.
What is ANKF Kyudo?
The term kyudo means literally "The Way of the Bow".
Historically it comes from two main lineages, mounted archery and archery on foot, which divided basically into a ceremonial tradition with emphasis on ritual and etiquette and the warrior style expressing the vitality and technique for the battlefield. Three main schools, the Ogasawara, Heki, and Honda contributed to the developement of modern "kyudo" which has incorporated all of these qualities into its modern form.
The All Nippon Kyudo Federation (ANKF) was established in 1949 as the governing body for kyudo in Japan. This required a standardised form, so that practitioners of the different traditional schools could practise in harmony without dispute.
In 1953 a committee of Masters took all the best qualities of the traditional schools and incorporated them into the standardised ANKF form, with a front raising draw (Shomen Uchiokoshi) and a side aslant raising draw (Shamen Uchiokoshi) and the standardised forms of ceremonial shooting (Sharei) as well as the forms used in examination and competition.
ANKF kyudo is practised throughout Japan and worldwide, and is the form used by the International Kyudo Federation (IKYF) and its member nations.
What are Traditional Schools?
Traditional schools such as the Ogasawara, Heki and Honda have the purpose of preserving their individual lineage and keeping these historical traditions alive. They are important as cultural heritage and are respected by the ANKF as part of its own origins. However, although individual members are members of the ANKF, the individual schools are not.
In Japan, while traditional schools and the ANKF are distinct, they work together in harmony and demonstrations of traditional schools can be seen at public events organised by the ANKF.
ANKF Kyudo and Sport
As a recreational activity, kyudo is also practised as a competitive sport, where the challenge and demands of competition are seen to complement usual practice. In fact there are many parallels between the relationship to mental training found in sport and these traditional Japanese disciplines. Competitions are held nationally and internationally with a World Tournament (Taikai) planned for the near future.