Tanto - Aikido Knowledge Base - Aikido Glossary

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Tanto

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia:

A tantō (短刀 ?, "short sword") is a common Japanese single or, occasionally, double edged knife or dagger with a blade length between 15 and 30 cm (6-12 inches). The tantō was designed primarily as a stabbing weapon, but the edge can be used for slashing as well. Tantō first began to appear in the Heian period, however these blades lacked any artistic quality and were purely weapons. In the early Kamakura period high-quality artistic tantō began to appear, and the famous Yoshimitsu (the greatest tantō maker in Japanese history) began his forging. Tantō production increased greatly around the Muromachi period and then declined in the Shintō period ("new sword" period). Consequently, Shintō period tantō are quite rare. They regained popularity in the Shin-Shintō Period ("new-new sword" period) and production increased.

Tantō are generally forged in hira-zukuri, meaning that their sides have no ridge line and are nearly flat, unlike the shinogi-zukuri structure of a katana. Some tantō have particularly thick cross-sections for armor-piercing duty, and are called yoroidoshi.

Tantō were mostly carried by samurai as commoners did not generally carry them. Women sometimes carried a small tantō called a kaiken in their obi primarily for self defense.

It was sometimes worn as the shōtō in place of a wakizashi in a daisho, especially on the battlefield. Before the 16th century, it was common for a samurai to carry a tachi and a tantō as opposed to a katana and a wakizashi.

Tantō with blunt wooden or blunt plastic blades exist and are used to practice martial arts involving the use of a tantō safely. Versions with a blunt metal blade are used in more advanced training or demonstrations. Martial arts that include techniques with tantō include:

* Aikido
* Aikijutsu * Jissen Kobudo Jinenkan (Jinen Ryu Tantojutsu)
* Bujinkan Budo Taijutsu
* Genbukan Ninpo Taijutsu
* Jujutsu
* Koryu Bujutsu
* Shorinji Kempo
* Modern Arnis (taking place of dagger)

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Aikido is a modern Japanese Martial Art and is very different from disciplines such as Karate, Kick Boxing, Taekwondo, Kung Fu, MMA, BJJ, Kempo and Krav Maga where there is emphasis on kicking, punching or wrestling.

Aikido is an extremely efficient self defence (also as Self-Defence Women London) system utilising balance-taking and posture-breaking movements to achieve joint locks, pins and throws. It contains elements of Ju Jitsu, Kendo, Judo and other budo.

Aikido Classes are held every Tuesday and Wednesday evening at our Harrow dojo, and Thursday evening at our Pinner dojo in NW London. Pinner Aikido Club London is a part of the Kai Shin Kai International Traditional Aikido Association (KSK), which is a member of the British Aikido Board (BAB).

Aikido is essentially a non-violent Martial art system that encourages the avoidance of confrontation and harmony with an aggressor. The classes are well attended with Aikido students always on the mat and aimed at all levels, from beginner to advanced but everyone is welcome to come along regardless of fitness or experience.

Our Aikido students work at their own pace during the training sessions and no one is forced into doing anything they are not comfortable with.
Pinner Aikido Club in London can help you achieve self-defense skills, self-esteem, confidence, and fitness. Most of all though, our classes are fun.

You do not have to be competitive or naturally athletic to take part in the Aikido class. Learning Aikido is about self-improvement and self-confidence.

Regardless of your size, body type and current level of physical ability or disability. If you are looking for a healthier, more confident way of life, then the modern art of Aikido may well be for you.

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