Country: Japan, China Category: Culture By: Kiki
The nunchaku (sometimes called "nunchucks", "numchuks", or "chain sticks" in English) is a traditional weapon of the Kobudo weapons set and consists of two sticks connected at their ends with a short chain or rope. A sansetsukon is a similar weapon with three sticks attached on chains instead of two.

Although the certain origin of nunchaku is disputed, it is thought to come from China through the Japanese island of Okinawa. The Japanese word nunchaku itself comes from the Hokkien (Min Nan) word ng-chiat-kun. When viewed etymologically from its Okinawan roots, "nun" comes from the word for twin, and "chaku" from shaku, a unit of measurement. The popular belief is that the nunchaku was originally a short flail used to thresh rice or soybeans (that is, separate the grain from the husk).

It is also possible that the weapon was developed in response to the moratorium on edged weaponry under the Satsuma daimyo after invading Okinawa in the 17th century, and that the weapon was most likely conceived and used exclusively for that end, as the configuration of actual flails and bits are unwieldy for use as a weapon. Also, peasant farmers were forbidden from using conventional weaponry such as arrows or blades so they improvised using only what they had available, farm tools such as the sickle. The modern weapon would be an ineffective flail.

Another popular theory is that the nunchaku originated from China, Song Dynasty. It was named "da pang long gun", meaning great coiled dragon stick. The weapon is composed of one long stick and a short stick connected by horse hair. It was commonly used in wars against cavalry to trap horse legs. The weapon eventually evolved into a short range weapon as seen in our present day nunchaku.

The nunchaku as a weapon has surged in popularity since martial artist Bruce Lee used it in his movies in the 1970s. It is generally considered by martial artists to be a limited weapon, although it is also one of the least understood weapons. Complex and difficult to wield, the nunchaku lacks the range of the bo (quarterstaff) and the edged advantage of a sword. The nunchaku has a steep learning curve. It is also prone to inflicting injury on its user. Nonetheless, the nunchaku's unrivaled speed, confusing motion, and incredible striking force contributed to its increasing popularity.

Although it may cause injury to an inexperienced user, the nunchaku is a very effective close-range weapon. When used in combat, the nunchaku provides the obvious advantage of an increase in the reach of one's strike. Somewhat difficult to control, the rope or chain joint of the nunchaku adds the benefit of striking from unexpected angles. Practitioners of the flashier styles contend that the motion of the nunchaku is often found distracting by opponents, who may have trouble keeping up with the nunchaku's rapid movement. In addition, the reach of the nunchaku is often underestimated, even by those experienced with its use. However, when swung, the nunchaku loses between one to two inches in reach.

The original Okinawan techniques involve holding the weapon in a variety of preparatory postures. Once an opponent has moved their weapon or body into close range, the nunchaku is used to strike vital spots, and apply joint locks, chokes and other control techniques. The chain link version of the nunchaku has also been known to be able to fend off enemies with swords or staves.

Gripping the nunchaku is usually a matter of preference. Gripping it close to the chain or rope link increases control but decreases both striking power and reach. A grip further down would have the opposite effect of increasing reach and power while decreasing control and, with the link further out, would also render it susceptible to capture. Unless in expert hands, it is unadvisable to use a nunchaku against a staff or a stick since disarming is often only a matter of striking at the link and jerking it hard out of the hands of the nunchaku practitioner. It is primarily because of this specific vulnerability of the nunchaku that most styles tend to minimize striking.

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You can always tell an expert! Thanks for congiibutrnt.
December 05, 2016



Why does this have to be the ONLY reiablle source? Oh well, gj!
December 05, 2016



- I have no idea what the little riignng noise is for. I keep hearing it at random times and I can't tell what it means.- I keep running into rooms that are dead ends or blank, or both.- Enemies like to jump off the edge.
November 05, 2014
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