Sword fighting has become a piece of art that continues to exist even today. In many cultures, the art of sword fighting has prevailed longer than ever. One of those places where the art of sword fighting has been prospering is in Japan. In this article, we will discuss the art of sword fighting along with its techniques and the types of swords that are needed to fight.
What is the different sword fighting styles?
There are various different types of sword-fighting styles that have been going on for ages.
- Fencing is one of the Olympic sports. It has three different categories of the non-lethal sword
- The foil: The foil is convenient and easy to flex. It is based on the sword that the French duelists used.
- Epee: The epee is a lot tougher than the foil which is based on a 19th-century sword named rapier.
- Sabre: The sabre is a sword similar to the sword that was wielded by the cavalry soldiers. It can be used to stab and slash.
Kendo: It generally means ‘the way of the sword’. A wooden sword is used to practice this particular art, katas. For sparring, bamboo swords. They wear armors to protect themselves. It can be lethal.
Medieval sword fighting: The weapon that is wielded for this type of fighting is known as the broadsword. It is not played in the Olympics stage however the sword fighting is held on the national and international level.
Theatrical sword fighting: This particular sword fighting is totally staged and is used for theatrical purposes. This type of sword fighting is totally safe and secure because the whole movement is choreographed. In movies like Pompeii, gladiator, etc this sword fighting was used.
Types of swords used in the sword fight:
There are different types of swords made to serve different kinds of techniques. Each sword has been made in a way to serve the techniques that are needed to master certain kinds of sword fighting styles.
German longsword: This particular type of sword was utilized from the medieval era to the renaissance era. This particular sword is also known as a bastard sword or a hand-and-a-half sword mainly because it can be wielded with both hands and at times one hand too. It is easier to manage on a horseback.
Rapier: It was used mostly in medieval times, particularly in Europe. It is a lightweight sword that needs to be wielded with intellect and finesse. Rapier is a very lethal sword that is mainly famous for its cutting and thrusting. The structure has been adapted in modern sword-making too which is known as epee.
Samurai sword: This particular sword was used mainly from the 13th century to the 17th century. The swords that samurai used are full-fledged sharp swords that had to be wielded with smartness and speed. It is only after applying their chi and gaining the zen that is needed, one can wield the sword of the samurai. The sword technique that is used here is called kendo or kenjutsu.
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Types of sword techniques you can use while wielding a sword:
There are various types of sword techniques that you can use while wielding the sword.
- Classic arnis approach: This particular approach sprang from philippine and the Hispanic martial arts culture. The idea behind this technique is to not only get your own sword get blocked by the opponent’s sword but attacking the person or your opponent. It calls for a direct assault on hand or shoulder rather than getting blocked.
- Modern arnis approach: This approach shares the same idea but a bit deviated from the main one. Here the technique lies in blocking the opponent’s attack so that you can control or manipulate the sword of the opponent.
- Standard blocking techniques: These standard blocking techniques comprise a block to the inside while putting an attack, meanwhile maintaining a block to the outside as well as roof is known as the overhead block. There is a figure-8 pattern that can be used too but it makes the counterattack from your opponent an easy thing.
- Displacement: It is another alternative technique that can be used instead of blocking. It means you have to attack hard towards the opponent. You have to keep attacking in order to displace the weapon of the opponent. However, there is a vital point, the attack has to be made towards the vital points of the opponent to make it more effective.
Types of sword attacks:
There are different types of sword attacks which will definitely put you in a good spot. These attacks are effective and have been going on for ages.
- Muso Jikiden Eishin-Ryu: This particular sword attack calls for bringing out the sword and cutting while maintaining the same movement, rather than slashing from a traditional posture.
- Hyoho Niten Ichi-Ryu: This particular refers to the most common yet classic posture where both swords will be held above the head while making an assault. The attack will be carried out in rhythm. One opponent waits in order to attack.
- Tenshin Shoden Katori Shinto-Ryu: This is the oldest sword cutting style that has been going on in the world. Since 1447 the technique has been handed down. It has to be carried out using a katana, naginata while utilizing their jujitsu so that they can indulge in open-handed combat.
- Mugai-Ryu: This particular technique is the combination of kenjutsu and taijutsu that has been going on since 1691. The practice session goes on using a bokken sword. The technique looks forward to cutting while maintaining a certain angle to do more harm.
Conclusion: Swordsmanship has been going on for ages. The ancient techniques used in swordplay styles have become a piece of art that thrives to save the culture. Though the swordplay is not used nowadays in combat, it has definitely been preserved to come to be known as a masterpiece.