Holds (Nigiri)

  • Basic hold jun nigiri - One hand up, one hand down

  • Reverse hold gyaku nigiri - Both hands down

  • Double hold yose nigiri - One up and down both

Together at One End

  • Palm hold hasami nigiri - Vertical staff hold between thumb and finger, top palm out, bottom palm up

Feeling and Awareness Exercise

  • Front spin horizontally in front of you

  • Side to side spin (half circle)

  • Forward spin

  • Backward spin

  • Full circle spin

Balance and Coordination Exercise

  • Side-to-side hold (work from one end of staff to the other)

  • Finger twirling (over head right/left)

  • Figure-eight

Staff Exercise

  • Hold staff and bring it for front to back, then back to front

  • Hip swing (staff at your back and twist )

Striking (Soburi)

  • Using double hold, bring staff over head, up and down


  • Using basic hold, slide staff through front hand at target

Ready Stance

  • Heisoku-dachi, feet together, staff behind, arm relaxed

  • Musubi-dachi ,feet in duck position, staff behind arm

  • Falls, rolls, jumps

Stances (Dachi)

  • Natural stance (heiko-dachi) feet straight, staff in front of arm, relaxed

  • Natural stance (soto-hachiji) feet in duck stance, staff in dachi front of arm

  • Forward stance (zenkutsu-dachi) basic hold right, forward bow, staff ready to defend

  • Rear defense (gyaku-zenkutsu) basic hold, right forward bow, Dachi body facing back towards leg

  • Tension stance (sanchin-dachi) stand in short right neutral, using palm hold at right side of body, keep staff straight

  • Horse stance (kiba-dachi) horse stance with staff at side, using basic hold, feet straight

  • Cat stance (nekoashi-dachi) palm hold, staff in front of body, right foot forward in cat stance

  • Back stance (kokutsu-dachi) palm hold, staff in front, right leg straight, back leg bent, holding about 70% of your weight

  • Straddle stance (shiko-dachi) like horse, but wider, with feet in duck position

  • Crane or one legged stance (shirasagiashi-dachi) one hand, middle hold, weight on back leg, with front leg bent up to back leg, toes behind knee of back leg

  • Fighting position

  • Forward fighting position, left forward natural with staff at opposite side

  • Reverse hold

  • Rear fighting position, rear stance, with staff back, as if to strike, basic hold, left forward stance with a twist

  • Kneeling position, palm hold outwards while kneeling


  • Overhead strike (basic hold ) uchi-otoshi

  • Upward strike ( basic hold ) uchi-age double hand

  • Thrust (reverse hold) morote-uchi ( up/down )

  • Double hold overhead strike yose-nigiri-uchi

  • Side strike ( basic hold ) yoko-uchi (low/high)

  • Reverse side strike ( basic ) gyaku-yoko-uchi (l/h)

Poking or Thrusting

  • Two handed thrust (basic hold) tsuki-komi

  • Reverse thrust (basic hold) gyaku-zuki

  • Sliding thrust (basic w/ slid) nagashi-zuki

  • Reverse downward thrust tsuki-otoshi


  • Double handed block (upward) morote-uke reverse

  • Double handed block (downward) morote-uke reverse

  • Double handed block (sideways) morote-uke palm hold

  • Double handed block (backwards) morote-uke palm hold

  • Inside to outside block yoko-uke basic

  • Outside to inside block yoko-uke basic

  • Upper side block age-uke reverse

  • Upper side block gyaku-age-uke

  • Vertical block (up and out front) tate-uke close palm

  • Foot movements back, forward, side, all 360 degrees


  • Drills block / strike

  • Strike / block

  • Thrust / block

  • Block / thrust

  • Reverse block / strike

  • Strike / reverse block

  • Thrust / reverse block

  • Reverse block / thrust

Drills with Movement

  • Strikes

  • Thrusts

  • Blocks (forward/reverse)

Form Work

  • Basic - 4 point

  • 2 - 8 point

  • 3 - full combat

The Staff