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George Silver's Weapon of Choice
Eaton Rapids Joe: Quarterstaff

You might find this interesting. It seems like a stick heavy and long enough to qualify becomes a burden in itself. Good comments.

Ever play with these?

-Checkered Demon

CD, thank you for this great link.

I have trained and fought with the staff, in two lengths, with spears and with the trident, and I am not very good with polearms. Polearms, contrary to popular belief, favor the stronger partner, Just as large shields favor the bigger man. The two-handed sword is the small man's friend, but the staff, and oar and other such polearms—in a duel—favor the stronger man.

Musashi is credited, in the modern mind, with sword wizardry for defeating a duelist armed with a katana while the larger Musashi wielded an oar. That is not even a fight. I'd take the oar over the sword any day. Polynesian warriors, biggest men on earth, used paddles as swords and as polearms. Burton, in his book on the sword, points to oars and paddles and war clubs as sword prototypes.

However, for self-defense the staff is excellent, especially in light of the fact that an older man's likely attackers are quicker and less strong.

Do avoid the martial arts moves that have you standing square with a grip shoulder length apart in the middle as seen on almost all movies in which staffs are used. This is bullshit. You want to adopt the kind of guard you see these young men from Eaton Rapids using, an extended guard, using the length of the weapon, using it like it is a weapon of war. The block seen in martial arts, where the opponent's stick is blocked with the length of your staff between your hands, is idiocy—broken hands waiting to happen.

With the light gear worn by the fighters in this club, control is necessary. A good staff stroke will cave in mask and head.

I recommend:

-mobility and power training with the heaviest hardwood weapon

-non contact and controlled training drills with the walk-around weight staff

-sparring and competition with rattan and wax-wood staffs available at 5 feet to 7 feet

Look into George Silver's treatise on the arts of defense below, in which he decries the Italian and Spanish schools of longsword fencing for the more warlike, working class sword and buckler and staff.

I can tell you, as a small weapons specialist, that taking the stick or sword or machete against a staff or trident or spear in competent hands is a nightmare. These small weapons cannot beat the staff offline, which is both heavier and powered with two, rather than one, hand. Additionally, two-handed gripping applies core strength to the weapon much better than a one-handed grip. Numerous old black men in Baltimore walk with a staff, and when they pass me by, we salute, armed against the same feral foe.

Being a Bad Man in a Worse World

Fighting Smart: Boxing, Agonistics & Survival

Add Comment
BobNovember 27, 2017 1:16 AM UTC

Friar Tuck, for that matter, wasn't someone to be trifled with.

In the agonistics video, Mr. LaFond mentions (hilariously) that Western LEOs are hopeless when it comes to baton retention and use, in contrast to S. Korean or other Asian corps. Is the because the latter's training focuses on baton proficiency, or is it a broader cultural or sporting thing (Kendo, etc.)?
Lynn LockhartNovember 26, 2017 10:59 AM UTC

If you start carrying a staff I will have to start calling you Gandalf on the podcast.