The art of Hanbo Jutsu (short staff)

 Hanbojutsu 半棒術 is also called Sanjaku-Bojutsu. Depending on the Ryu the length may vary from “Sanjaku” (90.09 cm) to 100 cm. The diameter is “Hachibu” to “Issun” (2.4 cm to 3.3 cm). It is made from red oak, as red oak was considered the Shogun’s tree. In Kukishin Ryu the length of the Hanbo is the same as a sword from tip to tip. Therefore Bikenjutsu and Hanbojutsu have a close relationship. There are 2 related stories of how Hanbo techniques were born. Below is one of them.

 In January of 1338, Ashikaga Takauji forces attacked the Emperor Godaigo’s forces at Kyoto. The Emperor’s top fighter fought using a long spear with the top fighter of Ashikaga’s who used a long sword. At one point the spear was cut in half. Ohkuni suddenly jumped and hit down on Yashiro head with the remaining shaft. He then realized the value of the remaining shaft and added his knoweldge to the system. Over time the hanbo evolved into a comprehensive system. There are many techniques with the ultimate level being the iron fan.

“As with Bojutsu it is the same with all of life. When you fight with an enemy etiquette requires strictness, technique requires preciseness, power requires suppleness, and the spirit requires an attitude of Hisho (must win), and necessity requires only one thing: concentration.” – Amatsu Tatara Kangi No Den

below are some practice tips for basic hand movement and strikes.