When I first began my Ninjutsu training twenty four years ago, there was a lot of emphasis on learning how to fight with old school Japanese weapons or protection tools. We trained with long staffs and swords as well as throwing stars and spikes.
It was fun pretending to be Ninja and Samurai warriors but what I really wanted was Reality Based Self Defense training. I discussed this with my teacher and he said that through training in historical based protection tools we were actually being trained in modern day reality based self defense. He went on to explain that there was FIVE PROTECTION TOOL CATEGORIES; impact, edged, flexible, projectile and combinations of the first four. He then said that any tool that we would deploy to defend ourselves has to fit into one of the five categories and that we will use the same body dynamics to use any of the protection tools. We wouldn’t have to learn different postures or striking/cutting methods for each different tool. I began to see the wisdom in this.What my teacher was doing was training us to USE ANYTHING AS A PROTECTION TOOL.
After that revelation, I started to train with everyday objects to see how they held up to being pressure tested. I trained with everything that was in my shed, shop and office. My trusted training partner and I, VERY SLOWLY explored both the use of AND defense against all the different protection tool categories, using only everyday objects; rake v. shovel, tire iron v. jumper cables etc. In short time I felt very confident in my ability to press anything in my environment into action. Right now you probably have the first four categories of protection tools on you. IMPACT: pen, EDGED: credit card, FLEXIBLE: belt, PROJECTILE: coins. Anything and everything can be deployed to save your life in a conflict. The most important type of weapons training is learning how to use IMPROVISED protection tools to survive a violent encounter.