We got in touch with the Shinbudo crew a while back simply because we admired their craft and dedication to their passion. They have very similar story to ours in that they are two dudes chasing their dreams, so we naturally resonated.
The team is comprised of Dennis King and Ethan Hubler. Both avid martial artists that make some pretty amazing martial arts training tools. It's cool because they firmly believe that if you're using a bokken to train with (hoping to progress to a shinken) it shouldn't feel completely different. To do that, they focus on finding denser woods, and using alternative materials to create bokken that capture the feeling of training with a live blade without sacrificing the durability needed for standard training.
Now these guys know their way around the woods! They have made hundreds of training tools over the years, tested all types of different woods, and really have a solid feel for what works best. In this video, Dennis discusses the the pros & cons of some different types of woods, and goes over what to look for when making your selection: