weapon_sai

Sai

Sai is the Ryukyu name for a traditional Okinawan weapon.

The basic form of the weapon is that of a pointed, rod-shaped baton, with two long, unsharpened projections (called yoku) attached to the handle. The very end of the handle is called the knuckle. Contrary to popular belief, the shaft of a traditional sai is not a blade.

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Kusari-fundo

Kusari-fundo is a weighted short chain weapon that is closely-related to the kusarigama in application.

It is a close range weapon, approximately 46–76 cm in length. It is generally constructed of a non-reflective etched steel chain or thick rope for training purposes.

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Kusarigama

The kusarigama is a traditional Japanese weapon that consists of kama (the Japanese equivalent of a sickle) on a metal chain (manriki) with a heavy iron weight at the end.

Though the kusarigama is derived from a farmer’s scythe, and though the sickle was often carried as a weapon by farmers during the feudal era of Japan, these farmers did not carry kusarigama. Its purpose as a weapon was very obvious, so unlike a sickle, it could not be carried openly. The art of handling the kusarigama is called Kusarigamajutsu.

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Kyoketsu Shoge

The Kyoketsu Shoge, which means “to run about in the fields and mountains”, is a double edged blade, with another blade attached at 90 degrees to it. This is attached to roughly 18 feet of rope, chain, or hair which then ends in a large metal ring. It is thought to have developed before the more widely known kusarigama (sickle and chain).

Almost exclusively used by the ninja, the kyoketsu shoge had a multitude of useful applications. The blade could be used for pulling slashes as well as thrusting stabs. The chain or cord, sometimes made from human hair or horsehair for strength and resiliency, could be used for climbing, ensnaring an enemy, binding an enemy and many such other uses.

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The hanbo

The hanbo is a quarterstaff used in martial arts. Traditionally, the hanbo was three shaku (90 cm) long, exactly half the length of the usual staff, the rokushakubo (“six shaku staff”).

As with any weapon, bearers would often find one best suited to their build, opting often for one that comes up to about waist/hip height.

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