Karate is a form of martial arts fighting that originated in Okinawa, a city in Japan. The name Karate originated from the term empty hand meaning that the only weapons that are allowed in this type of fighting are the fist and leg.
Early Japanese martial artists practiced this combat by kicking, defending strikes by blocking, punching. Karate is usually fought for two purposes either as a sport or as a major fight known as (Kumite). During the porting bouts, the fights are carried out mainly for entertainment, there are no real hits and strikes, the sporting bouts do not last longer than 3 minutes, that is if neither opponent scores a clean “kill” point. This is usually determined by the judges.
Karate has its origins in East Asia, where different fighting methods were developed. However, they all had one thing in common, which is that the fighting was done without the use of any weapons except with the use of the hands and the feet.
Karate fighters follow a strict hierarchy system and the only way to get to the top is by fighting and defeating your opponent, the classification is by the color of the belts they wear. Karate also favors having the right attitude mentally to be able to excel in the game. Also, it favors having the right costumes, integrity, discipline and courtesy.
Over time, the sport has evolved from the basic form of just fighting with the fists and legs to allowing the use of some weapons during the course of the fighting. Some of these weapons are as follows:
Also read: How to Do Karate Chops?
The Nunchaku is a “chainstick,” a famous martial arts weapon that was first used in Okinawa. This stick made of twin woods linked by a chain is used to strike the opponent and cause damage that is more severe than the fist.
Almost all skilled martial artists favor the use of the stick and wield it quite swiftly. Even though this weapon has been around for a long time, it became a common feature in the karate fighting scene after the legendary actor Bruce Lee featured it in most of his films.
To get the best from this weapon, the fighter needs to develop his balance and hand movement, so that he can exert enough force while wielding the stick.
This weapon may alternatively be called tong fa. It is a very useful weapon that is employed by karate fighters in their fights against their enemies.
It is believed that this weapon may have originated in ancient China or East Asia, its origin is greatly debated.
It is a versatile weapon. It is used basically in blocking off unwanted strikes and attacks. It can also be used as a hook, and to strike down the opponent. With this obvious function, it is no surprise that the weapon is loved by great karate fighters.
This weapon is made out from different materials such as rubber, woods, or oak. It is made in a thin rectangular shape and a handle is fixed at about one-third of the length of the stick. This protrusion is necessary to enable the fighter to handle the stick better.
Also read: Best Karate Belt Displays
This is one special and favorite weapon of karate fighters. The tekko-kagi is also called the hand claws. This is so because it is made into the shape of the human fist with four protruding nails made from iron.
The earliest use of this weapon can be traced to the early ninjas. The initial plan that led to the production of this weapon is that it should be used as a farm implement to weed out unwanted plants. However, the ninjas thought differently and used the tekko-kagi as a fighting tool; they carried the tekko-kagi around with them to carry out attacks by scratching their enemies. It could also be used for defense from enemies.
There are basically two types of hand claws, each designed differently to perform specific functions. One type of this weapon was where the edges of the weapon were placed at the back of the hands, while the second and highly favored edges were placed in the palm of the hand of the fighter wielding it. The tekko-kagi was worn on both hands.
Also read: Best Striking Martial Arts
These weapons are alternatively called the ninja stars. These are an absolute favorite of Karate fighters. This weapon has its origin in Japan. Shurikens mean hidden hand blades. It was a concealed dagger that fighters used during combat, it can travel many distances when thrown at an opponent.
They are designed into many various shapes. This weapon is very popular because it was used to support the sword during the fighting. They are very sharp and effective. Also, these weapons are made in minute forms, they can be carried in large quantities, making them a good choice for fighters.
As a kid, I watched many movies where shurikens were used and were always fascinated at the skill and speed at which these weapons were handled. They were quite small but they were capable of causing a lot of damage.
Also read: Karate Belts – Everything You Need To Know
This is a weapon that has the physical semblance with a sickle. In the earliest times of its production, it was used in the farm by the Japanese farmers. To effectively use this weapon, they had to be used in pairs. They required a great deal of training and skill to wield them against an opponent.
The Kama weapon is made up of the handle which is made from wood and the blades which were made from metal. Due to its growing popularity among karate fighters, it is now being produced in a more stylish and effective form for combat.
A major function of this weapon is that it is used in cutting down opponents, blocking the wielder from harm, and striking a contender during battles.
From the foregoing, it is clear that karate has evolved from the basic mode of just fighting with hands and feet , to embracing a more sophisticated and dangerous form of combat. Now, karate fighters make use of some approved weapons when they spar. These weapons include, but are not limited to the following Kama, tong fa, nunchaku, shurikens and tekko-kagi.
The use of these weapons has revolutionized the nature and the scope of the game. Now, karate fighting has the tendency to inflict serious injury or even become fatal.
I am a huge fan of both BJJ and MMA. Jiu-jitsu is my biggest passion, and I’ve been training it for more than 5 years. I have recently been promoted to a purple belt. In this blog, I will be giving you tips on how to improve and how to choose the best BJJ equipment!