70-year-old Japanese police weapon

We reinforce concrete and steel for construction and plastic for insulation. Sometimes, it just might be necessary to reinforce your fists. In 1947, Professor Frank A. Matsuyama developed an eight-inch plastic stick he called a yawara stick, named for an early Japanese martial art.

It became a popular item for Japanese police – many of whom were ex-servicemen with some basic knowledge of hand-to-hand combat and some who were experts in jujitsu, judo or boxing – as it was easier to use than a nightstick and easily concealed. Held in a fist, it can significantly reinforce a punch and do considerable damage, especially when that punch lands on a bony area of a person’s body. I definitely like the idea of something small, basic and portable that could make the difference in defending myself from an attacker!

Check out this pamphlet on the yawara stick, a very basic close combat weapon that increases combat effectiveness.

As with any weapon, a yawara stick should be used only when absolutely necessary in a self-defense situation. If it is illegal to carry a yawara stick where you live, there are many alternatives. A titanium stick, hair brush or even a magic marker held in a fist would serve as a reinforcement to a punch.

If you have ever used such a weapon while in self-defense mode, let us know if it worked for you. What other items have you held in your fist to reinforce a punch?

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