Modern Urban Combat Tactics (M.U.C.T)

Monday, May 7, 2012

The Tactical Short Staff (Jo Staff)...

If you could learn only how to use one weapon, what would that weapon be? Before you answer that question, I want you to think long and hard about a few factors first abundance, second force multiplication ability and thirdly ease of use. Now please take a second and be realistic in your thinking, don't pick the weapon that you like the most or think is the coolest. If you picked the short staff also known as the quarter staff or jo staff then you can pass go and collect your $200.
Why is this a great answer? Well lets think about a few things, the short staff (quarter or jo staff) is about the same length as a pool cue, broom handle, rake or shovel. Now some people will say the bo staff but how often do you see a 6ft stick laying around, now think how often you see brooms ( even in government buildings and airports).  Even if the student has little or no interest in using a short staff they must learn it, because it is everywhere. This weapon is often neglected by more "modern" styles of martial arts, but really should be the first weapon learned and is a necessity for any serious practitioner of combatives.The short staff offers some advantages that can help to defend against armed attackers or multiple attackers, it offers the safety of distance and the ability to block and strike larger areas. It has 3 points to strike and block with, the two ends and the middle between the hands. Now I can hear the traditionalists saying well I train with a Bo so it is the same, well you are WRONG!!! It is not the same at all, while some basic techniques and movements do translate over the use, range and maneuverability are quite different. You have the ability with a shorter staff to make tighter circles and pass the staff in front of the legs (this is a hard concept to describe in writing), you also have the ability to wield it one handed. I truly advocate training with the short staff over a longer staff, the days of the Bo or spear are long gone, whilst the short staff is ever present and  abundant. We really have a limited time to train and even if you dedicate your time to training, mastering the use of a weapon is a long and laborious task which is why being practical is so important. There are really only a handful of weapons that one can train with that you may realistically encounter and use. Now If I had my choice of weapons if this was some theoretical duel of some sort would it be my first choice, no I would opt for a firearm or Katana or something of the like. But that is fantasy and I live in reality so I train for reality. Now if I had to face multiple attackers or a guy with a knife and had the choice between a 3 inch knife or a 4 foot staff well I would always pick the staff (plus that knife is always on my person as a back up). Just like warriors of old who trained with what they had at hand, so should we the "modern warriors". Remember If You Want To Stay Clean You Have To Fight Dirty!!!!!!!!

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