There are many different stylistic approaches to the use of weapons in the martial arts. There is a common theme though. As a general rule, weapons are simply considered an extension of your body. The stances, blocks and strikes you use when unarmed are used in the same contexts when using a weapon. The only difference is that you use the weapon as an extension of your body to enhance your defensive or offensive capabilities.
In Can-ryu Jiu-jitsu, we emphasize the use of weapons of opportunity. Weapons of opportunity are simply items that are commonly found in your environment that could be used in self-defense, but aren’t necessarily carried for that purpose. This includes things like a flashlight, hair brush, rolled up magazine, umbrella, stick, cane, etc. Whatever the weapon, we still use the same stance and style of movement as we do in our unarmed defenses, we just introduce ways to enhance one’s impact, reach, and overall effectiveness, using the unique qualities of the weapon used. (more…)