In Arizona, students at the Arizona School of Traditional Karate in Gilbert, Mesa, Chandler and Tempe forcus on karate as well as martial arts weapons. It is traditional that students of the Shorin-Ryu karate systems learn kobudo along with karate. Kobudo is primarily the art of using ancient Okinawan farming implements and fishing tools for weapons – basically the tools of trade for peasants. Some students may also elect to train with bladed weapons of the Japanese kobujutsu styles (such as kenjutsu). By learning kobudo and kobujutsu, it becomes apparent that a belt, pen, baton, car keys, cell phone, book and most any tool can be used as a weapon of self-defense at the spur of the moment.
Kobudo is a martial art that blended with karate in the Okinawan martial arts systems. It is thought that the practice of kobudo began in earnest sometime after Okinawan King Shoshin issued a proclamation (1480 AD) requiring all peasants of the kingdom surrender their bladed weapons. This was done because King Shoshin was a non-violent Buddhist who felt all Okinawans should share his beliefs. As a result, Okinawa was later invaded by Japanese samurai and since there was no Okinawan army, there was little to no resistance to the invasion. The Okinawan trade industry then became the possession of the Satsuma clan of Japan and the Okinawans became subjects of the samurai.
In recent years, many Asian and American hybrid systems of karate elected to remove kobudo from their curriculum for unknown reasons, even though original forms of karate included kobudo. Even many of the Japanese karate styles eliminated kobudo after karate was introduced to Japan in the 20th century. This likely was because kobudo was seen as a peasant martial art to the Japanese, whereas karate was both a peasant art and art taught to royalty.
The shaft of a sai is referred to as the monouchi, the pointed tip is the saki, and the bottom rounded knuckle at the opposite end on the handle is the tsukagushira. The handle is the tsuka. Three-quarters of the way up the shaft are two curved prongs known as the yoku and the tip of these prongs are tsume. The yoku are considered as wings that extend from the shaft from the moto (base of the wings) perpendicular to the shaft.
|Soke Hausel teaching Sai-jutsu at the University of Wyoming.|
At the Seiyo Hombu in Mesa, Arizona (Arizona School of Traditional Karate), members train in all weapons of Okinawa Kobudo.
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|Ryan Harden shows his power in blocks at the|
Arizona School of Traditional Karate in Mesa,
Gilbert and Chandler in the East Valley of Phoenix