The ideal weapon for the ideal circumstance.

     Your choice of weapon depends very much on the circumstances in which you want to use it. Do you want it for self defense? Do you want it for dojo use? Do you want it to feel confident while on the trail? Do you want to keep it light, heavy, in your pack? Visible? 

     There are so many factors it is impossible to list them all. However lets go over a few.

     Do you want to use it outside? If you want to use it outside in relatively open spaces a bo staff might be good for you. The room that you have to use two hands works with you, and you have both sides of the weapon to work with without it getting in the way. Also the reach that you can get can make you feel confident no matter where you are.

     Do you want to keep it by your bed at night so you can feel safe? In this situation... a bo staff for exactly the same reasons you wanted it outdoors, becomes problematic. There is no room to wield it. The back end is a hinderance. For using only one end in a confined space it is slower. Better would be a 48" jo staff.

     What width do I want for a jo staff? You might think heavier is better. Bigger width numbers pack more of a punch. But this is not correct for martial arts weapons. If you can get your 1,1/4" jo staff swinging as fast as a 1" jo staff, then the 1,1/4" Will of course do more damage. But how much longer does it take to get this weapon up to speed? A lot. This is physics. If it is twice as massive, it will accelerate twice as slowly. This means also that if you miss... it takes twice as long and much more energy to recover. This is wasted time. And probably will end your engagement.

     A 1" jo staff is the standard for a reason. Speed is MUCH more important then mass when it comes to transmitting energy. For instance, if you double the mass you double the kinetic energy of an object. But if you double the speed, you quadruple the kinetic energy. In other words... a less massive jo staff which you can get up to a greater speed will do quite a bit more damage then a heavier one. And think of how many more techniques you can perform in a certain time too.

Heavier staffs are great for weight training, and building muscles... but not always best for practical uses. 

     There are many factors you might want to consider in purchasing a martial arts weapon. What do you want out of it? Where will you train with it? What outcome do you want with it? As with all things, the environment and your goal with the tool should shape your decision of what tool you want, and some wise considering will help you make a wise decision of what will make you feel safe, or give you the best results. 

Laminated Hickory Ipe Bo Staff for Martial Arts


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