We use wooden wasters for a lot of Historical European Martial Arts (HEMA). Via Insty, here's a video about how dangerous these little things really can be.

Still, you gotta practice with something.


Eric Blair said...

It's basically a wooden club, of course it can kill.

raven said...

Sasaki Kojiro found out how effective a wooden sword could be.

In a rowboat, enroute to the fight of his life, Minamoto Musashi whittled a wooden sword from the remains of a broken oar and killed Sasaki Kojiro with it in the subsequent duel.

"Musashi", by Eiji Yoshikawa, translation by Charles Terry. An excellent read of the rise from layabout country boy to the most famous hero of Japan.

First lines of the book.

Takezo lay among the corpses. There were thousands of them.
"The whole worlds gone crazy," he thought dimly. "A man might as well be a dead leaf, floating in the autumn breeze."

This refers to Sekigahara, that pivotal battle in Japanese history.

Ymar Sakar said...

Eventually the FBi is going to use stuff like this as evidence to prosecute those training in weapons to "murder" people.

Ymar Sakar said...

It reminds me of people who thought I was crazy when I said I used a blunt sword to cut through a target.

Tom said...

Actually, it's Miyamoto Musashi. The Minamoto were a different family.

Yoshikawa's novel is great, but it is only loosely based on history.

Musashi historically fought several duels using a wooden sword against bushi armed with steel swords. His duel with Sasaki Kojiro is the most famous as Kojiro was also a famous swordsman with his own unique style.

raven said...

" Tom said...

Actually, it's Miyamoto Musashi. The Minamoto were a different family.

Of course- Thank you!

Ymar Sakar said...

M and M needed a weapon with a longer reach, equal to his opponent's. In other duels, it appeared he wanted a sword that wouldn't kill.

In later popular fictions, it became called the Sword of Life vs the Sword that ends life. The US occupation put a ban on various martial arts and several dying sword lineages already became less and less popular as a result. They weren't allowed to train with weapons for one thing, so aikijutsu started mimicking the motions without weapons. The old one hand chop movement that the uke uses to attack the nage.

Using inferior weapons, also makes people underestimate you. As the Afghans, Vietnamese, and Iraqis might attest.

Pride can be used to bring down a superior opponent. M and M, Alinsky, and the Alt Right all used little psychological games to get the edge. Many people will believe that other humans can't do anything, because they lack a reputation or because the weapons they use are inferior and non orthodox. They lack credibility in the eyes of the elect and the status quo powers.

douglas said...

Given that he said it was a 'dry' piece of wood, not sure, but perhaps fire hardening (which does more than just dry the wood) may have added a little to the performance of that 'blade'. tens of thousands of years ago primitive man was making wood spear points that were sometimes harder than a comparable copper point.

When I go to summer camp as an adult leader with the Scouts, invariably the boys, many after buying their first pocket knife from the camp store, start finding sticks to whittle, and of course whittle them into points- I think it's instinctive in the male homo sapiens. I then would remind them that they have essentially just made a 'knife' and as such it was subject to the rules for knives in the camp and under the Totin' Chip. That was usually enough to keep them out of trouble, but allow them to make pointy sticks, as every boy should do.