Spring Break Trip to Seattle

March 24th, 2018Posted by Ruka


CU Naginata visited Seattle, Washington during spring break to strengthen our bonds as a team and to support our teammate Miguel Martinez (CC’ 19) during his rank promotion examination. We had to opportunity to explore various shops at Pike Place Market. We had lunch at the Pink Door—an Italian restaurant with an unassuming (and pink-doored) exterior, an eclectic interior, and some of the best pasta and fries that we have had. We also enjoyed interacting with board members and the USNF. Most importantly, Miguel passed his exam and was promoted to the rank of 2-dan. Congratulations! We celebrated with dinner at another Italian restaurant (since the wait for Din Tai Fung was too long) and with a red-eye flight back to New York.

GNY 2018 Seminar & Taikai

February 24rd, 2018Posted by Lily


This past weekend CU Naginata attended the Greater New York Naginata Federation’s annual seminar and Yamauchi Memorial Taikai. We were glad to welcome guest instructors Kurt Schmucker (Renshi) from the Pacific Northwest Naginata Federation and Ellery Engalla (5-dan) from the East Coast Naginata Federation. With their help we were able to have a successful and informative seminar.

CU Naginata did very well in the tournament the following day. In dangai engi-kyogi, Adriano Fernandes (CC ’16) received first place. In yudansha engi-kyogi, Lily Hsin (CC ’19) and Mary Quien (CC ’14) claimed second followed by Miguel Martinez (CC ’19) and C.L. Chen (TC ’15) for third.

Congratulations to Mary Quien and Lily Hsin for placing first and second in yudansha women’s individuals, and to C.L., Adriano, and Miguel for placing first, second, third respectively in yudansha men’s individuals! Finally, congratulations to the Columbia team, which ended the taikai with a second place in team matches.

We had wonderful yakiniku after the long, hard seminar---but we made it though thick and thin! We learned about the value of fighting spirit and kiri-otoshi.

Thank you to everyone who participated! We look forward to seeing all of you again next year!

U.S. Naginata Championships

July 23rd, 2016Posted by Miguel


Columbia’s naginata club, under the banner of the Greater New York Naginata Federation, had a very strong showing at the United States Naginata Nationals in Torrance, CA.

Our parent federation won awards across the board. In the morning was the engi competition, where the duo of Assistant Coach C.L. Chen (TC ’15) and Miguel Martinez (CC ’19) claimed first place in the dangai division. In the afternoon were the shiai divisions. In women’s dangai, Lily Hsin (CC ’19) burned the competition, claiming second place. In men’s dangai, C.L. Chen landed a tsuki that had the whole gymnasium captivated, claiming first place in the process. Alumnus Aaron Tierney (CC ’15) also claimed third place in this event. In women’s yudansha, our head instructor Katie Roche claimed her fourth championship. Furthermore, Coach Roche served on our federation’s women’s shiai team, along with GNY President, Sasha Corchado, and Serena Tang, which went on to win first place. All in all an amazing weekend.

We’d also like to congratulate C.L. for attaining the rank of sho-dan, our other assistant coach Shirley Chu for attaining the rank of ni-dan, and Coach Roche for getting approval to take her go-dan test in Japan.

We are grateful for a very enlightening seminar under the direction of Helen Nakano Sensei, Kurt Schmucker Sensei, Takami Tanner Sensei, and Kevin Saxton Sensei, which was conducted prior to the competition. We would also like to thank the Southern California Naginata Federation for organizing such a successful event.

Isshujiai Demo at NYC Kendo Club's 40th Anniversary Taikai

July 7th, 2016Posted by Miguel


Our club was given the honor of participating in a series a demonstrations for the NYC Kendo Club’s 40th Anniversary Tournament by none other than Noboru Kataoka Sensei, founder of the NYC Kendo Club, Head Instructor of Columbia University’s Kendo Club, president of the All Eastern United States Kendo Federation, and amazing actor under stage name Ken Kensei.

The demonstrations at the tournament consisted of iaido demonstrations led by Kataoka Sensei, an isshujiai team match, and Sensei showcasing the effectiveness of the kusarigama (sickle and flail) against both a naginata player and a kendo player. Our isshujiai team line up was as follows:

Senpo: C.L. Chen (TC '15)
Jiho: Miguel Martinez (CC '19)
Chuuken: Katie Roche (TC '14)
Fukusho: Andrew Hong (U.S. Naginata National Team Member, Southern California Naginata Federation)
Taisho: Charlotte Vandersleyen (Belgian National Team Member, Belgian Naginata Federation)

The final score came out to 4-1. The senpo match got off to a quick start with C.L. scoring a sune right out of the gate, ultimately winning 2-1, scoring two sune and losing a men in between. Jiho followed suit, also winning two sune and losing a men. Katie astounded the audience in the chuuken match, scoring two points and demonstrating many advanced techniques versus Umemura Sensei from Kenshinkai Dojo. Our first and final loss came in the fukusho match at the hands of NYC Kendo Club member Kentaro Ninomiya, who later claimed an even greater victory as part of the team that won the tournament. Nevertheless, naginata’s unique waza and style was received very positively by all the kendo practitioners in attendance. Perhaps the most exciting match to watch was the taisho match, as it featured the rare matchup of naginata versus nitto, with Charlotte scoring two points. Nevertheless, naginata’s unique waza and style was received very positively by all the kendo practitioners in attendance. After the team match, Katie faced off against Kataoka Sensei, who was wielding his kusarigama to great effect.

All of this and more (including a glorious rendition of the national anthem) can be seen at NYC Kendo's facebook page:


Once again, we’d like to thank Kataoka Sensei for inviting us to celebrate the club’s 40th Anniversary, and congratulations to NYC Kendo for winning!

Photo Credits to Alex Lin and Nuda Thamkongka.

Rhythm Naginata Performance

March 3rd, 2016Posted by Katie


CU Naginata collaborated again with with koto player Masayo Ishigure and the Miyabi Koto Ensemble for a Rhythm Naginata performance during the Greater New York Naginata Federation's 10 Year Anniversary Seminar. The rhythm team proudly wore the school colors and performed to live music! It was such a wonderful experience and we are looking forward to doing it again!

A video of our performance can be seen here:

Photo credits to Cheuk Tang.

Rhythm Naginata Performance

November 23rd, 2015Posted by Katie


CU Naginata will be doing a collaborative, rhythm naginata performance with koto player Masayo Ishigure, on December 13th. Please come by and watch our performance!!!

Location: The National Opera Center of America 330 7th Avenue, 7th Floor New York, NY 10001 (Between 29th & 30th Street)

Purchase Tickets: https://www.artful.ly/masayo-ishigure

Prices: General Admission: $17 ($20 at door) Students/Seniors: $12 ($15 at door).

Guide for Beginners Now Available

September 23rd, 2015Posted by Katie


Due to the number of requests from new members about getting a written document on basic naginata terminology, we have decided to create an easily accessible page for everyone. We will continue to update the page with additional content.

The page can be accessed here.

Congratulations to the class of 2015!

May 22nd, 2015Posted by Katie


Congratulations to the following CU Naginata members for graduating:

Kevin "Brock" Chen (CC)

Aaron Tierney (CC)

Thank you for leading the club this past '14-'15 academic year, you will surely be missed! Good luck with your med school apps!

Congratulations to our seniors!

May 31st, 2014Posted by Katie


Congratulations to the following CU Naginata members for graduating:

Paul Cornec (GS)

Seokjoon Oh (CC)

Mary Quien (SEAS)

May you all have a bright future ahead of you and successful careers! Thank you all for all the hard work and dedication contributed towards the club!

Student-Teaching Seminar 2013

November 19th, 2013Posted by Katie


CU Naginata participated in the Fall of 2013 Student-Teaching Seminar, held at Mount Holyoke College.

We had a lot of fun, despite the hard training!

Results of the 2013 East Coast Naginata Federation Taikai & Shinsa

October 14th, 2013Posted by Katie


Columbia Naginata was able to participate in ECNF's Annual Seminar & Taikai, held in Alexandria, VA.

Tournament Results:

Women's Dangai Division: Mary Quien, 1st Place
Men's Dangai Division: Seokjoon Oh, 3rd Place

Promotion Examination Results:

Mary Quien, 2-kyu
Aaron Tierney, 3-kyu
Seel Chen, 4-kyu
Addy Young, 4-kyu

Congratulations to all! Go LIONS NAGINATA!

under construction!

September 8th, 2013Posted by Katie


Please come support us at the Activities Fair, Monday, 9/9 from 1-5 pm!

Columbia University Naginata Club's First Shinsa

August 4th, 2013Posted by Katie


Columbia University Naginata Club hosted its first Kyu-shinsa! Congratulations to:

Paul Cornec, Ik-kyu

Seokjoon Oh, 2-kyu

Brock Chen, 3-kyu

Mary Quien, 3-kyu

14th Annual GNYNF Shinsa Results

April 15th, 2013Posted by Aaron


Columbia Naginata members participated at GNYNF's 14th annual shinsa, held in Jersey City, NJ, and all members passed their first promotion examination! Congratulations to:

Paul Cornec, 3-kyu

Seokjoon Oh, 4-kyu

Brock Chen, 4-kyu

Aaron Tierney, 4-kyu

  • Upcoming Events

    October 6-7: ECNF Seminar & Taikai, Washington D.C.
    October 20-21: CNF Seminar, Montreal, Canada
    December 9: Kyu Shinsa, New York, NY
    February 23-24: GNYNF Seminar & Taikai, New York, NY
    March 9: USNF Mid-year Dan Shinsa, Jersey City, NJ
    April 6-7: JSS Seminar & Taikai, Jersey City, NJ
    May 5: Stony Brook Sakura Matsuri, Stony Brook, NY

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