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Thread: Fan kata?

  1. #1
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    Question Fan kata?

    I have seen fan katas in Chinese styles but has anyone ever seen such a kata in a Jap/Ok style? Or self defense techniques with a fan?
    With the fan as a mainstay in Samurai dress and as competitive as they were, you would think that something along the lines of competition would have developed.
    Any thoughts??

    Gene Gabel

  2. #2
    Henrik Jonsson Guest

    Default Re: Fan kata?

    Originally posted by Gene Gabel
    I have seen fan katas in Chinese styles but has anyone ever seen such a kata in a Jap/Ok style? Or self defense techniques with a fan?
    Hi there, Gene.

    I believe the fan is called a Tessen and there are plenty of
    Ryu-ha teaching Tessenjutsu, I believe.

    Some styles have substituted the actual fan for a small stick
    about a foot long, which I think is for practical reasons. (Or
    it could be some other reason, in which case I'm a fool :-)

    The styles I've seen have used the folded tessen, though,
    I don't believe I've seen any styles using the fan when
    spread out like you might see in Chinese opera performances.

    Anyway, I'm sure someone more knowledgable will come along soon. :-)

  3. #3
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    You are correct about tessen is the fan. I had to laugh when thinking about someone using a small stick( chopstick maybe?) in a kata. The reason is a couple of weeks ago my Sensai was showing me an Iaido techinque without benefit of the sword. We were relaxing after lessons and he was using a back-scratcher as his sword as a teaching aid. It was pretty funny.. I laughed later on the way home..

    Gene Gabel

  4. #4
    Henrik Jonsson Guest

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    Originally posted by Gene Gabel
    We were relaxing after lessons and he was using a back-scratcher as his sword as a teaching aid. It was pretty funny.. I laughed later on the way home..
    I've used a wooden spoon at home at times to demonstrate
    (very simple) tessen (or short stick) techniques to friends. Do
    not underestimate the pain that could be inflicted by a
    back-scratcher. ;-)



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    Cool Tessen

    I believe the tessen started out life as a fan, which was carried by Samurai, when they went to court and fuctions etc...

    And quickly developed into basically a piece of Iron which looked like a closed fan, if I remeber correctly this developed, due to the Samurai not being allowed to take their swords into functions with the Shogun, senior officals etc. So they needed somthing to protect themselves hence the development of the Tessen.

    I could be wrong but that is what I've been told.

    Gareth Mason
    Do Shin Ken Yu Kai
    www.doshinkenyukai-kendo.org.uk

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    Default

    I am having trouble remembering, but there was some type of "ninja" weapon with the tessen spelling or something close. It was a shaken not shuriken type of weapon. An iron bar with a point that could be thrown or used for piercing..
    Come to think of it I havent seen the secret, or mostly forgotten infamous "oar" kata and I think there is one with a "hoe" also'' (the wood and metal kind) Anybody seen these??

    Gene Gabel

  7. #7
    Don Cunningham Guest

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    I am primarily familiar with Japanese martial arts, but I believe some Chinese styles use an open fan. In the case of Japanese martial arts, I am not aware of any which use a fan when opened. Many styles do employ a fan with heavy iron ribs, generally referred to as a tessen, much like a truncheon or club. In some cases, a solid cast iron weapon in the shape of a closed fan was used instead of an actual folding tessen.

    There are many kata in both kenjutsu and jujutsu martial art styles which incorporate the tessen or "iron fan." For more information about the history of the tessen, as well as many other alternative weapons, may I suggest you refer to my book, Secret Weapons of Jujutsu.

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    Our head instructor (of Shinto Ryu) in Japan collects and uses the iron fan (tessen). Although it is not part of the formal kata sylabus of our style, it is part of what might be considered the oral tradition. It is valuable enough to him to always be on his person, and it is my understanding that he has used them on several occasions. I got to see several applications of the fan and would describe them as sword like strikes moving into jujutsu locks, using the tessen as a kind of lever to put some extra authority to the joint locks. This is probably very similar to the stick/ baton techniques used by Japanese police forces, but I am only speculating on this. Perhaps someone here is more familiar with the similarities inherent in the two weapons?

    Another part of our school is Kenbu and the tessen is a standard part of the outfit and the kata in those forms. Typically they are used more for show but there are some applications demonstrated within the kata. I am not very familiar with the kenbu kata, most people in my school only study Kenbu or Iai-Battojutsu, but not typically both. If anyone knows of a good place to acquire tessen, please let me know, I am interested in starting my own collection.
    Christian Moses
    **Certified Slimy, Moronic, Deranged and Demented Soul by Saigo-ha Daito Ryu!**
    Student of:
    Shinto Ryu Iai-Battojutsu
    Tuesday Night Bad Budo Club (TM)

  9. #9
    Don Cunningham Guest

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    Hi Chris,

    I had overlooked the use of the tessen in leverage for kansetsu waza and other similar techniques. Of course, you are right. The Japanese martial arts also employed the tessen much like the yawara-bo, the jutte, and other implements, including the kane muchi. I also find it appropriate to carry a solid tessen on many occasions.

    I have several antique tessen in my collection. Some of them are for sale. Contact me if you're interested. Otherwise, I suggest searching Japanese swordshows, gun shows, and online auctions like eBay.

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    Question Umbrella

    By the way, it's somewhat common in popular media like anime or games to see oiled-paper umbrella fighting (bangasa, I guess). Is there such thing in real life or it's just another fantasy?
    --Leonardo Boiko

  11. #11
    Don Cunningham Guest

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    The founder and head instructor of the Roppokai demonstrates some aiki-jutsu techniques using the oil-paper umbrella in one of their videotapes. Sorry, but I don't recall the title or even his name. Maybe someone else will be encouraged to provide more on this subject?

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    Default

    Daito-ryu has both tessen and kasa techniques. My understanding is that tessen are usually iron fans. They can be either functional fans, with iron ribs, or short iron sticks shaped to look somewhat like a closed fan. Typical paper fans usually with bamboo ribs can also be used either open or closed. I too carry a fan on occasion (its my top choice right now for travelling, since folding knives are now restricted).

    The second Roppokai MUAV video entitled "Daito-ryu Aikijujutsu: Okuden" contains several kasa techniques demonstrated by Okamoto sensei.

    Yanagi-ryu also has a number of cool techniques for tessen, and they also use either iron or paper fans.

    Brently Keen

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    Default

    Do you guys include the fan performances in Japan's kenbu (sword dance), or nichibu (traditional dance)? While not combative they have some pretty slick moves.

    --------------------

    Daniel Lee

    PS: Whoops! Sorry Chris, I should have read your post more carefully before opening my big mouth

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    Default Shuri-Ryu Katas

    here is a couple videos from the Shuri-Ryu system

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PUG3et0k39Q

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    The guy in the viedo looks like Batman or something flipping those fans open and closed. I think it would look cooler with a cape

    Quote Originally Posted by jfarver@hotmail View Post
    here is a couple videos from the Shuri-Ryu system

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PUG3et0k39Q
    Christopher Covington

    Daito-ryu aikijujutsu
    Kashima Shinden Jikishinkage-ryu heiho

    All views expressed here are my own and don't necessarily represent the views of the arts I practice, the teachers and people I train with or any dojo I train in.

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