Weapon sparring (again)

Discussion in 'Weapons' started by kobudo_tob, Jul 1, 2003.

  1. kobudo_tob

    kobudo_tob Valued Member

    (Time for a serious post)


    As you probably all know I teach an Okinawan weapons class. We do a lot of on-step, two-step and other prearranged 'sparring'. I am however wanting to introduce more 'free-sparring', but I don't have access to any protect gear etc.

    (I have heard of action-flex, and how they made those padded weapon things, but I'd prefer just using rattan staffs, foam nunchaku and steel zai with face guards.)

    So my question is - what do you recommend me to buy? Price is not really an issue.

    I'm aiming at YODA and Andrew_Green here.

  2. YODA

    YODA The Woofing Admin Supporter

    Ok - to start with u til you get brave / daft enough to go with fencing masks...

    WEKAF type headgear....


    available from....


    --- Ice hockey gloves and hard plastic elbow & knee pads
  3. kobudo_tob

    kobudo_tob Valued Member

    OOOOOOOOHHHHHHH.......I want a Leather Groin and Abdomen Guard. Hopefully it will provide more 'protection' than my silk boxers :)

    Damn, they are sold old.
  4. Andrew Green

    Andrew Green Member

    The weapons we use have a light foam cover so that we use very little protective equipment.

    For staff you could go with the century foam one, it's rattan with a thin layer of foam. Or you could make your own, PVC pipe, pipe insulator and hockey tape gives you a good, cheap sparring weapon. You might want to stick a thinner Pipe inside the thick one to make it less bendy.

    For short sticks the ones we use are a plastic pipe with the same sort of foam. The century ones tend to break rather easily, especially if you do grappling with them. The ones we use come from Jukado and hold up well, but hurt a little more.

    The sai we use are custom made. It is a injection moulded foam with a steel base, handle very nice. I would recommend against sparring with steel sai, to much chance of injury.

    Our nunchaku are the old century sticks that broke tied together..

    For gloves we wear MMA style gloves that go right to the last knuckle and have a padded thumb. Hockey gloves I find to bulky and because of the foam on the weapons we can get away without them. They are basically a harbinger clone that we get from Jukado.

    For a mask we go with these [​IMG]

    They give good vision and protect well, they can take a moderate punch too which is important as the hands and feet are involved in our sparring as well. We've only been using them for a little while but so far they've held together pretty well. Although cleaning the mask is a bit of a pain.

    Fencing masks would be good too though, or even motorcycle helmets. Anything that protects the face and doesn't destroy the weapons.

    But the reason I prefer foam to rattan:

    It doesn't scare as many people away

    We can get away with a lighter glove giving us better use of the hands.

    Less protective equipment needed - elbow/knee/shin pads.

    Less chance of serious injury.

    They still hurt, and can still give you some nice bruises, but you won't break anything.

    Here's a couple of the kids going at it, shield & spear vs 3 sectional staff.
  5. sfjohn

    sfjohn New Member

    All these helmets and protective gear are nice, but when we really started sparring with weapons, we didn't have the money for this type of stuff. So basically we made our own protection with what we did have. We started by buying rolls of foam. We wrapped this foam around all our weapons, at least our heavy impact weapons such as the staff, the stick and the sword. We secured the foam by totally enwrapping the foam and weapon with duck tape. If you have seen our videos the montage at some of the begginings shows this method. For body protection we used regular TKD sparring equipment meaning the chest protectors, shin guards and another set of shinguards for the forearms, don't le me forget kneepads. The gloves we wore were the standard fingerless gloves (UFC type). And the only thing we had to buy was head gear that protected the eyes. At this time since no one we knew of was making the plastic visors on the kendo masks, we used fensing masks (a cheap ulturnative today especially at your use it again sports store). As you get better and have more control over the weapon, you can start getting rid of the protection, and just start putting padding on the vital areas. Then once your done with all of this, start making drills from the important aspect of your sparrin so you can plant the seed of necessary weapons training in your students as soon as possible.

  6. kobudo_tob

    kobudo_tob Valued Member

    Thanks for the advice guys. I'll bear it all in mind :)
  7. Andrew Green

    Andrew Green Member

    Good bashing to you ;)

    You may find that your step sparring is rather... um... "different" from what happens when you actually start sparring.

    It's all about timing, distance and pressure. None of which can be done is prearranged sequences.

    If you need some drills to get going I got lots, and I think I train with all the weapons you do.
  8. kobudo_tob

    kobudo_tob Valued Member

    Cheers Andrew - and yes, it is a lot different that pre-arranged sparring. I just have to get the students to realise that :p
  9. Cudgel

    Cudgel The name says it all

    you can also try

    store.yahoo.com/kendobogu for head gear

    and www.thehaca.com has plans for weaighted padded weapons

    www.woodenswords.com has some padded weapons also

    you can also try www.sca.org for plans on heavy weapons armor and weapons
    Last edited: Jul 7, 2003

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