The study of traditional martial art weapons has many benefits. The student develops keen discipline, confidence and self-control because acute accuracy and coordination is required to successfully execute the moves contained in weapons training.
At Bob Davis Karate, we teach traditional weapons that come from Okinawa Japan. These include Nunchaku (Nun Chuks), Sai, Tonfa, Bo Staff, Kama, Oar. Other weapons we study knife (tanto), 3 sectional staff, Tai Chi sword, Samurai sword. Kendo, weapons originated in several countries, China, India, Japan, Okinawa, Philippines, Indonesia, Korea. Many countries adapted weapons, United States, Great Britain, Hawaii and France. Weapons training at Bob Davis Karate consists of first studying each weapon, its history, its original purpose, how it was adapted to be a weapon and why.
- Nunchaku: or Nun chuks, made famous by Bruce Lee and the Ninja Turtles. The nun chuks consist of two sticks originally used as a farm tool connected by horsehair to become a devastating weapon with whipping force. So popular were the nun chuks many police departments replaced the traditional police baton with nun chuks in the 1970’s. This only lasted a few years due to all the compensation claims made against the police departments for injuries caused by the nun chuks. They are simply too effective. Great skill is required to learn how to use the nun chuks effectively. Modern inventions such as nun chuks made of foam and plastic have made nun chuk training safer. Thanks to USA technology, even children can enjoy using the nun chuks in class and in competition.
- Bo Staff: A long stick or pole/staff, a common tool still used in many countries today to haul water from the well, placing one bucket of water on each end and then balancing the bo staff across the shoulder. The bo staff as a weapon is unique in that it is held towards the middle and both ends are used to strike and block the opponent, also thrusts are utilized as strikes. As with most Okinawa weapons, the bo staff was primarily used to defend against the samurai sword. The shoguns (governors of provinces or states in Japan) hired samurai warriors to protect them and to enforce their policies. The civilians (peasants) of Okinawa were not allowed to own swords, so they were forced to develop the farm tools to defend themselves.
- Tonfa: The tonfa is based on the grinding wheel used for grain, basically a stick with a handle about two thirds of way on the stick. The tonfa is a very effective weapon. It has been adapted to police and law enforcement to replace the traditional baton.
- Sai: Designed with hooks on both sides. As with most traditional weapons, the hooks are for breaking the samurai sword in combat. Japanese police used to carry Sai which came in pairs.
- Kama: A sickle for cutting grain, has blades at the ends of a stick, comes in pairs. Practice weapons available for safety.
- Oar: Literally an oar for rowing boats. Okinawa being an island, this is a natural weapon. Although large and heavy, a very effective weapon and fun to learn.