Mississippi Isshinryu Karate
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Okinawan Weapons




The bladed weapon, the kama was a genuine farmer's tool. It was used as a weapon in many villages for centuries. This weapon brings to the practitioner the feel of steel and the hint of fear a live blade gives. The techniques for the kama include any number of multiple slashing, hooking, thrusting and blocking maneuvers, executed with two kama, or Nichokama. The corner of the blade to the shaft should have a groove cut into it for catching the Bo and other weapons without the blade digging into and getting stuck into the attacking weapon.

The weight of the shaft is dependent upon the strength of the user and should be tapered to the butt end with increasing thickness. This allows for ease of catching and sliding when changing grip. The blade should add sufficient weight to ensure it is the heaviest point in the weapon. This also allows for ease of usage. The length of the weapon should extend to about 3cm passed the elbow when held in reverse grip. The handling of the weapon is the same as the Sai.

The dexterity of the fingers is paramount to the changing grips the weapon affords and needs in kumite. Most students commence with wooded Kama to ensure safety and acclimatization before moving to the more demanding live blades.


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