• Jackie Bradbury

Dojo Denizens: The Weapons Geek

The reasons we train in the martial arts are as varied and personal as each and every martial artist.


That being said, we do tend to fall into... well... types. That's what "Dojo Denizens" is all about - those types.


Today, let's talk about the type I know all too well: The Weapons Geek.


This. Is. Me.

LITERALLY. This is me, in front of the area of my house I call the "Armory", which displays a portion of the collection of training and live weapons I own.

The weapons geek is ALL ABOUT THE TOOLS.


Sure, sure, he or she can do the empty hand stuff. Punching, kicking, sparring, forms... yeah, she do that, and she has fun with that, and she can be good at it.


But it doesn't make his heart SING like using a weapon does.


Sure, sure, never mind the fact that most of us don't walk around with a sword or sai or tonfa or a bo or sticks or long pole or an iron fan or nunchaku (even if they're legal where you live now, Arizona) or even knives ready for deployment.


You have a point.


BUT. Most of us know that all of those various tools translate to real-life applications, and some of us train that very thing using real-life analogues of our training weapons.


Even if we don't, that argument ignores one simple fact about martial arts training.


It doesn't all have to be 100% applicable to self defense.


Sure, part of it is the fantasy role play of being all cool and stuff with a weapon. Because weapons ARE super-cool and awesome.


If it weren't, we wouldn't have video games with ridiculous fantasy weapons, we wouldn't have movies and TV shows lionizing weapons use, and we wouldn't have tales of magical weapons bestowing powers or even the right to rule over other people.


For me, though, the reason I geek out on it so hard is the challenge of manipulating a tool to do what you want it to do, especially when you can do it against people who don't want to let you do it.


It's harder than it looks, and you risk a LOT when you don't understand what you're doing with a weapon. That's part of the fun of it - the risk to self as well as the risk to other people.


You gotta admit, there's something attractive about the danger of it, y'know?


The Weapons Geek is the one who is always - ALWAYS - gravitating to the wall where the training weapons are kept. He or she will end up "just running through a form" with one of those weapons at the end of class if they get the chance.


The Weapons Geek will NEVER forget his weapon(s) when they come to class, even when it's not planned to work with it that day, JUST IN CASE the instructor changes his mind.


The Weapons Geek is always the one who will sputter and complain about unrealistic weapons use in movies and TV. I mean, if you're expecting me to SHUT UP about the scene below... well, don't hold your breath because I WILL NEVER STOP.

METAL STICKS TO THE HEAD, people. ARGH!


Yep, if you train for any period of time, you're going to run into a Weapons Geek. Pity us, because we just can't help spending any spare cash we get on a weapon... or two... or three... dozen.


Now if you'll excuse me, there was a Blade Show recently, and I have some photographs to... examine.


Do you know a Weapons Geek? Are you a Weapons Geek, like me? What are the upsides and downsides of Weapons Geekery? Let us know in the comments!

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