Martial Arts Weapons And Their Lack Of Effectiveness
Possibly the only thing cooler than having the ability to use your arms and legs to defend yourself is being proficient in martial arts weaponry. There are a host of interesting weapons including the Kama blade, Nunte spear/dagger, the Naginata sword or the Bo Staff. Then there is the legendary Nunchaku. A feeling of pride and confidence swells in your chest as you become an expert in the use of these weapons. Yet the fantasy is better than the reality in this instance. Martial arts weapons are, in the main, a bad idea as a means of self-defence for a host of reasons.
Lack Of Skill
Beneath all the legal problems associated with martial arts weapons is the fact that becoming over-dependent on them is dangerous. It’s one thing being an ace when it comes to wielding a Bo Staff, it’s quite another when you find yourself in a combat situation without one. This is not ancient Japan. Your opponent will not allow you to retrieve your weapon before engaging in a bout. If you have improved your expertise in weaponry at the expense of your unarmed technique, you will quickly find that a huge mistake has been made.
How To Carry Them
Then you have the practical aspect of using weapons. Where exactly are you going to keep a Bo Staff? In your pocket? Most people don’t have room in their bag for a Samurai sword and Nunchaku can be a burden to carry. There’s no better way to attract attention than by carrying a huge 16th century Japanese sword down the street. You will certainly ward off attackers but will have company in the form of the police force.
Unless you have been living under a rock, the majority of martial arts weapons have been deemed illegal. Nunchaku for example, is deemed to be an illegal weapon in nations like Russia and Canada with various states in the U.S placing it on the restricted list. Until recently in the United Kingdom, Nunchaku could be purchased by those over the age of 18 though they couldn’t be carried in public unless you could prove you were travelling between your home and martial arts training. A February 2010 case ruled that Nunchaku fell into the illegal weapon category as outlined in the Criminal Justice Act 1988.
Most countries also operate a strict no tolerance policy when it comes to butterfly knives, the Bo Staff and a variety of other weapons. Being caught in possession of such a weapon could see you hit with a large fine or even a custodial sentence for multiple offences. It is also illegal to use such weapons for self-defence. Believe it or not, if you used a Bo Staff to defend yourself against a gun, you could technically find yourself in trouble!
The final reason not to use martial arts weapons is for your own personal safety. Just because you see an expert use a sword or Nunchaku with ease during a demonstration doesn’t mean that you can follow suit. These men and women have been practising for decades in many instances. When you’re handling a sword, one mistake could cost you a limb or even worse. Martial arts weapons are often deadly in the hands of an expert but are more dangerous when handled by a novice.
Simply put, you can’t expect to have good times with martial arts weapons. They are not a practical method of defending yourself, are against the law and could do more harm to you than your assailant. Once you bring a weapon into play, a host of legal and physical ramifications manifest themselves. It’s much better than leave things uncomplicated and learn to use your hands and feet more effectively.
Justin Wheeler is a fitness fan, martial arts practitioner and evangelist for online Martial Arts supplier Black Eagle.
Special thanks to Mike Oliveri for the use of his photos.