SWORDS- A major weapon in battle or wars!! Until they were replaced by guns or other equipment in the Industrial era.
Be it warfare, self-defense, or involving the settlement of one-on-one duels, sword fighting remained the commonest of all. The proliferation of firearms now has modulated sword usage into a well-known form of recreation and sport.
Numerous sword fighting styles have been created and mastered over the centuries with swords. And the art of killing using a sword is referred to as swordsmanship.
Are you aware about this?
The swords and their prominence is more related to Japanese movies and these self-defence tools have gained much popularity due to their depiction in the movies.
All the techniques used for swords have been a part of the Western world and the medieval age holds much proof about this. Initially, this was recognized as a gladiator sport who used to fight in the coliseum.
With the years rolling by this sport has mesmerized a huge number of onlookers who have gathered their love for these steel blades and felt like picking up the sharpest sword.
Today these are available in various sizes, shapes, and styles.
A pernicious martial art which was experienced by the Spanish and Italians is fencing, though now it is called a sport. Domenico Angelo is the person who has brought this technique to England. Only the aristocrats were taught this great art.
The major weapons used for fencing are:
Famous actors of Hollywood such as Errol Flynn and Antonio Banderas have added much glamour to fencing. Earlier this aimed to kill while in today’s times fencing is considered as a competitive sport in the Olympics. In this game the person who lands with the first strike is awarded with a point.
2. OFFENSIVE MOVES
The prime move remains the lunge. In this the attack on the opponent is done by taking a step forward in a striking-form.
Feint - A move in which the opponent is provoked to make a mistake or lunge so that you get a chance to attack first. The front leg is extended in a thrusting attack while the body is propelled forward using the back leg.
Disengage - In this move, the rival is tricked by attacking a particular target, movement is done in a semi-circle arc for attacking a different area. This is commonly supported with a circle-parry.
Remise - This is a 2nd attack which is followed after the first after its deflection.
Flick - A method in which the blade is bent for striking the rival.
Beat Attack - This focuses to beat the enemy’s blade continuously. This is done to distract the rival’s aim by attacking the target area.
3. DEFENSIVE MOVES
Riposte - When a counterattack is made by any defender after a lunge. By using a parry or lunge the defender strikes back.
Parry - This is a counterattack to lunge, which enables you to block the opponent with his own sword. This way the defender retains his original position and the attacker is, in turn, pushed away.
Circle Parry - As the name suggests, the sword is supposed to be bent in a circular motion for catching hold of the attacker’s sword tip for averting it.
4. BROADSWORD FIGHTING
Known as the medieval fighting form of fighting, using a shield and broadsword the basis of most of the moves are quick sword attacks and stances.
For supporting the shield the hips are cocked slightly and the feet are away at a 30-degree angle always. In this the sword is held tightly in the hand, keeping the blade-edge down while corresponding to the trailing foot.
Remaining mobile is the best way to employ and the weight should be shifted in such a way that it remains concentrated on the balls of your feet. This provides you with the benefit to move either way.
5. JAPANESE SWORD FIGHTING
This sword fighting aims for one-on-one fights. The major 3 Japanese styles are:
- Kenjutsu (Japanese way of the sword)
- Battoujutsu (art of drawing the sword)
- Iaijutsu (A quick draw technique)
Shinai or bokken is a wooden sword with which you practice.
Varied styles surround Japanese Swordsmanship, and to list a few:
- Muso Jikiden Eishin-ryu
- Hyoho Niten Ichi-ryu
- Ono-ha Itto-ryu
- Yagyu Shinkage-ryu
Japanese swords technique support dual-sword and one-sword both.
JAPANESE SWORD FIGHTING MOVES
In this, the forward slicing cut is considered to be the basic move. This starts from the overhead position until it makes contact with the head or shoulder of the rival.
The sword is placed behind you while the swing is accomplished and later an arc is made for cutting your rival.
Kenjutsu or Kendo - While practicing this the technique used is harai waza. In this, the opponent’s sword is flipped with yours in order to strike him.
Maki waza - This is another Japanese sword fighting technique that includes the opponent’s and your sword (shinai) connection with spinning it at a 360-degree angle.
Kendo and its basic strikes-
- Do-uchi – A strike to the body
- Mein-uchi - A strike to the wrist
- Kote-uchi - A strike to the wrist to disarm the rival
Nukitsuke - This is a quick-draw move of iaido. Involves the drawing of the blade to cut and positioning the shinai back in its scabbard.
Japanese sword fighting iai techniques comprises of two more groups:
- Iwaza - Attacking while sitting
- Tachi Waza - Attacking while standing
- Haya Suburi - A style in that involves the execution of vertical strikes with the sword in the air.
6. HAIDONG GUMDO
Similar to Japanese arts- battoujutsu, kenjutsu, and iaijutsu, this is the Korean way of the sword.
Prior to initiating the practice with the real one, a wooden sword should be used instead known as Mok Gum. The primary styles are:
- Begi (Cuts)
- Palkom (Paldo)
- Chakkom (Sheathing)
This type of sword style trains you to tackle multiple opponents at a time and this marks its difference from the Japanese style.
Haidong Gumdo Moves
- Chungmyôn begi – center cut
- Chao u begi – left-right cut
- Ee-oh begi – continuous cut
- Ollyo begi – upward 45-degree cut
- Chwa begi – left cut
- Naera – downward 45-degree cut
- Dae gak begi – angle cut
- Makki – block
- Hwengdan begi – horizontal cut
- Nae-ryo begi – diagonal cut
- Chirûgi – thrust
- U begi – right cut
- Sandan begi – A combination of left, right, and center cut
- Bit kwang cha begi – 6 cuts
- Yun-suk begi – Multiple cuts
This unique art involves the usage of both hands. Considering the weight and size of the sword, mastering this technique isn’t easy. The attack moves in this is quite the same as fencing as they consist of the strike, thrust, and parry.
The primary defense moves include stepping and blocking.
Burst - In your passing step when your back foot passes your front foot.
Lunge - In a passing step when your front foot passes your back foot.
- OX ward stance - This is performed by putting the left foot forward. The sword remains close to your face and targets the rival’s body (upper regions).
- Plow ward stance - This initiates when the right foot is put forward. The sword is positioned near the knees, while the blade aims at the chest of the enemy.
- Fool Ward - This is accomplished by starting with a left foot forward stance. The sword aims to the ground and the left foot remains in front.
10. ATTACK MOVES
When there is a vertical blow against the head of the rival then it is known as high blow.
- Wrath blow - In this the sword is implemented from above and this aims the rival’s ear diagonally.
- Middle blow - This is carried out horizontally. This could be from right to left or left to right.
- Low blow - This is performed when the sword swings from below pointing towards the arms of the enemy.
- Overhead thrust - A move in which the rival is nudged single-handedly using a sword.
There are four different types of slashes:
- Oberhau - An upper strike which is set in motion form above.
- Zornhau - Set afloat from above a diagonal upper body strike.
- Unterhau - Strike which aims from below.
- Mittelhau - Middle strike that can be instigated form either sides.
11. DEFENSE MOVES
- Voiding - This is a type of defensive move in which you can step backward, forward, or sideways. You need to come out of the sword’s attack-range.
Arc of attack is a part of this instead of line of attack in voiding a slash, rest is same as voiding a thrust.
- Uppercuts - Voiding takes place by dropping the blades to your side.