Archery is a millenniums-old skill in Japan, mainly as a hunting and warfare skill, but it is still a fairly popular sport in modern Japan. When the rifle arrived in Japan with the Portuguese in the 1600’s, the decline of the bow and arrow as weapons of war came swiftly. It was Zen Buddhism that saved archery as a practice in Japan as it was adapted as a form of meditation for samurai with too much time on their hands. Today, you might be fortunate enough to see kyūdō being practiced at Japanese high schools or universities, like the dojo on the campus of Tokyo University.

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