Martial Arts Cane
Martial artists, regardless of discipline, share one thing in common: When we started we wanted to have some confidence in self defense. Part of that training may have involved weapons, but you can’t carry a sword or long staff onto the street. Have you considered switching to a cane?
The cane makes a pretty good weapon. At 36” long it’s effective for both offense at a distance and defense in close. The 3/4” hickory makes it hard enough to do damage with strikes and sweeps. Both staff and sword martial traditions can be easily adapted, as can police nightstick techniques. Perhaps most importantly the cane quickly becomes an extension of your body because of the familiarity gained by carrying it over time.
Ever since our earliest ancestors were running around in a loincloth and, in a moment of inspiration, grabbed a tree branch to hit some dude over the head we’ve been using stick weapons. Almost every country’s indigenous martial art includes some kind of stick work. Chinese short staff, Japanese Jo or Bo, Escrima and Arnis from the Philippines, the English single stick and the Irish Shillelagh, Canne do combat in France, juego del Palo in Venezuela. If it works for all of them it’s probably going to work for you too.
The cane is a qualified appliance under the Americans with Disabilities Act. You’re ‘disabled’ if you have a chronic problem or pain that limits a normal activity for more than 6 months. Sore feet, a tight back, or a bad knee qualifies. No doctor’s report necessary. No person, public or private, can take your cane away from you under penalty of law.
Why listen to me? I have 25+ years in Aikido and Tai Chi plus experience in Karate and Jiu Jitsu with exposure to most other martial arts. I have 15+ years as a certified personal trainer specializing in mind/body integration. I’ve taught Aikido, Tai Chi, Chi Gong, Self Defense, Cane Self Defense, Physical Fitness of all kinds, Somatic Integrity, Meditation, Spiritual Counseling, The Process of Change, and Conflict Resolution. These classes have taken place at dojos, schools, parks, institutions, retreats, churches, social clubs, businesses, and in living rooms. I have experience teaching children, adults, seniors, high need populations, college students, community groups, AIDS/cancer patients, educators, professionals, bikers, and cocktail waitresses in groups of 1-200.
The BadAss Cane book is both a great starting place for cane beginners and a valuable resource for experienced martial artists. It includes both basic and advanced techniques as well as a general review of cane issues. Stances, grips, strikes, chokes and movement are discussed in some detail. All techniques are illustrated and presented in a fun, albeit sometime profane, manner. The book also includes the entire Self Defense 101 seminar. Even the toughest and most experienced fighter might learn something.
We offer two cane options, the BadAss Cane and the Training Cane. The Training Cane is a stripped down version of the same strong, 36 inch long, 3/4 inch thick hickory cane with a trimmed down crook. You probably won’t find a tougher, more reasonable cane on the web. The BadAss Cane is a strong, 36 inch long, 3/4 inch thick hickory cane that’s been modified for better use as a weapon. The crook has been cut down, the hand grip has been extended, and a heavyweight ferrule is placed on the bottom. And it’s painted black, ’cause black is cool. There is nothing that will keep this cane from going through metal detectors or keep it from qualifying as a necessary disabled appliance.
Even if you never need your cane to fight off Ninjas or Zombies, it’s still a cool thing carry. It gives you a little more stability after you’ve had a few. It can make you look sophisticated or a little scary. I started carrying a cane after a knee injury and now I almost never go out without one.