Tinzu Grip

Tinzu Grip – Sword Grip

The Tinzu grip in Kempo Combination 3, the Monkey Paw in Combination 18 it can also be used to hold a katana. The Tinzu Grip uses the middle finger, ring finger and pinky to create a strong firm grip, it takes the emphasis off the pointer finger and thumb and shifts the grip to the palm of the hand.

The Tinzu Grip is beneficial for holding a katana too.

Try this exercise:

Pick up a sword use the Tinzu Grip to hold it, now move the sword around cut an asterisk in the air. If you have never used this grip holding a weapon it will feel different. Focus on the grip use those three fingers to hold it in your palm. You are no longer using the clip_image002thumb and pointer finger locked around the handle of the katana like a vice. The Tinzu Grip lets the handle of the weapon tuck snuggly into the palm of your hand.

You still need the thumb and pointer finger – the thumb secures the grip and pointer finger lightly wraps around the handle like a safety chain so you don’t lose your weapon – Lose your weapon, Lose your fight!

What else can you use the Tinzu Grip for the Bo or Nunchaku? Shake hands using the Tinzu Grip see if you can squeeze the other person’s hand a little bit more.

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More Than One Purpose

More Than One Purpose

Students studying the samurai sword, South Florida Samurai has been working on interpretations of the sword techniques or waza. Waza are easy to use against an unarmed opponent but what is a samurai to do when attacked by an opponent with a sword? I thought back to the first time I learned any new sword techniques. When one learns a new waza it is taught as a strike, because it is easy to understand, but fighting an opponent striking is not always possible, one must also learn to block or deflect a strike.

For this interpretation we will look at Waza 2, the X Strike.

A student first learns the X Strike as two strikes. The first strike is a downward 45 degree angle cut from right to left; the target is the lower base of the neck to the hip. The second strike is also a downward 45 degree angle cut from left to right; this target too is the lower base of the neck to the hip. Against unarmed opponent standing still this works really well but is not practical in a fighting situation.

SFS interpretation is using the first move as a block. In this example the opponent will attack using Waza 1, a downward vertical strike. The X Strike’s first move now becomes a 45 degree angle downward block, deflecting the blow to the left. The second move is still the downward 45 degree angle strike from left to right. The movement of the sword is the same but the purpose has changed.

How did I arrive at this interpretation?

Students’ have always asked, “How does one block with the sword?” I would explain how to block by using many of the same moves taught as strikes. I also wondered why there were not many blocking techniques shown in the sword style. I thought, “One cannot have a striking only style of fighting!” So I searched my kempo training for an answer and remembered…”A block is a strike and a strike is a block.” The techniques are interchangeable. As one study’s a weapon art or an empty hand art remember techniques can have more than one purpose. For an exercise take a favorite technique and use it offensively then try and use it defensively.


Waza 1 to 4 2007

Intruder Killed with Sword

Sword Fatal To Intruder

Jhu Student Uses Samurai Weapon

Charges Uncertain

September 16, 2009|By Brent Jones, Liz F. Kay and Jill Rosen | Brent Jones, Liz F. Kay and Jill Rosen,brent.jones@baltsun.com

Hours earlier, someone had broken into John Pontolillo’s house and taken two laptops and a video-game console. Now it was past midnight, and he heard noises coming from the garage out back.

The Johns Hopkins University undergraduate didn’t run. He didn’t call the police. He grabbed his samurai sword.

With the 3- to 5-foot-long, razor-sharp weapon in hand, police say, Pontolillo crept toward the noise. He noticed a side door in the garage had been pried open. When a man inside lunged at him, police say, the confrontation was fatal.

“He was backed up against a corner and either out of fear or out of panic, he just struck the sword with force,” said Baltimore Police spokesman Anthony Guglielmi. “It was probably with fear for his life.”

Pontolillo, who rents the house in the 300 block of E. University Parkway in the Oakenshawe neighborhood, struck the intruder no more than twice, police say, nearly severing his left hand and inflicting what police termed a “spear laceration.”

The intruder, Donald D. Rice of Baltimore, a 49-year-old repeat offender who had been released from jail only Saturday, died at the bloody scene.

Pontolillo, 20, of Wall, N.J., whose identity was confirmed by law enforcement sources, was released late Tuesday afternoon. Guglielmi said it would be up to the state’s attorney’s office to determine whether he will be charged in the incident.

In a statement Tuesday, Hopkins officials told students there had been more than a half-dozen burglaries in the area recently, and that police presence would be bolstered.

Diego Ardila, a Hopkins student who lived with Pontolillo in the three-story, five-bedroom house during the summer, said Pontolillo owned a samurai sword and generally kept it in his room. He described Pontolillo as somewhat outgoing, but said they didn’t talk a lot.

“You don’t expect to hear that someone you know killed a guy with a samurai sword,” said Ardila, 19. “From what little I know of him, he wasn’t some guy going out to kill.”

It is legal to possess a sword in Baltimore, Guglielmi said, and “individuals have a right to defend their person and their property.” He declined to comment on whether its use in this case was appropriate.

University of Maryland professor David Gray, who specializes in criminal law, said prosecutors must weigh whether Pontolillo felt his life was in danger or whether he became the aggressor.

In Maryland, Gray said, an individual is not expected to retreat from suspected danger in his own home. But it is unclear how the law applies to an enclosed backyard.

If the student felt he was in danger of severe bodily harm, then he was within his right to protect himself, Gray said: “It doesn’t matter if he used a gun, a sword or a frying pan.”

The sword police recovered from the scene, with a sharp blade and ribbon-wrapped hilt, is a replica of a historic samurai weapon. Though a real one would cost thousands of dollars, Guglielmi said, this one probably cost a few hundred.

The police spokesman said the student who wielded the weapon had no advanced sword training. “He wasn’t a ninja,” Guglielmi said. “He may have been moderately trained or on the intermediate level.”

Hundreds of varieties of samurai swords are available online to collectors and hobbyists, martial arts enthusiasts and students of swordplay through stores such as Steve Dibble’s Japanese Swords 4 Samurai site, based in Birmingham, Ala.

His swords range in price from about $50 for the model called the “Kill Bill,” after the violent Quentin Tarantino films, to more than $2,000 for a handmade “Katana” forged of steel, a hilt wrapped in leather and silk, and decorative flourishes of silver.

Midrange swords, the type apparently used in the Baltimore incident, are those likeliest used at martial arts schools, he said, where students want a weapon sharp enough to cut.

To inflict lethal damage requires some skill, Dibble said.

“To be that confident with it that he would go grab it, he may have been into martial arts,” he said. “You would have to hold it with two hands and be confident that you would really know what you were doing.”

Mantis Swords, an online outlet based in Westminster, specializes in sharp weapons. “Our swords are ready for cutting,” owner Shawn Salafia said.

Salafia sells mats that people can soak in water so that when they dry, they’ll be roughly the consistency of a person.

“You stick them on a stand, and you cut them,” he said. “If someone laid their hand into it, you could probably cut into it pretty darn deep.”

By Tuesday afternoon, two pools of blood remained on the ground a few feet away from the door to the garage, which is not connected to the home. A gate in a wooden fence surrounding the backyard was broken, allowing the scene to be viewed from the sidewalk.

Michael Hughes, who lives about a block away in the neighborhood, heard screams early Tuesday.

“I could hear the fear in the voice, and I could tell someone was scared,” said Hughes, 43, who works for Johns Hopkins’ Bloomberg School of Public Health.

He called police and then walked over to the crime scene.

“The body was near the garage,” he said. “I watched them carry the sword out. The whole thing was surreal and totally bizarre.”

Rice, of the 600 block of East 26th St. in Baltimore, had 29 prior convictions for crimes such as breaking and entering, Guglielmi said. He had been released Saturday from the Baltimore County Detention Center, where he had been held after his arrest by county police last year for stealing a car in the city. He was found guilty in December of unauthorized removal of property and was sentenced to 18 months in prison.

The incident was the second this week in which a man was wounded trying to commit a robbery. An off-duty Baltimore police officer shot and critically wounded a man who had tried to rob him at gunpoint in his Northeast Baltimore home, according to police. He chased the man for two blocks before opening fire, police said.

Baltimore Sun reporter Justin Fenton contributed to this article.


A Father’s Love

Father Allegedly Forced Daughter Into Wooden-Sword Duel


A Washington State father has been arrested for assault with a deadly weapon, after allegedly beating his teenage daughter and forcing her to  fight him medieval-style, with a wooden sword.

Fremon Seay, 38, allegedly beat his daughter, 16, with swatches made from wood branches, severely bruising her legs, according to Lt. Greg Elwin of the Thurston County Sheriff’s Office.

He then allegedly forced her to put on Renaissance-style body armor (usually used for role-playing games) and fight him with a sword made out of wood.

“They were fighting for about two hours, wearing Renaissance-type armor and fighting with swords fashioned out of wood,” Elwin said of the allegations. “She’s a 100-pound girl, and he’s a 300-pound adult.”

The alleged two-hour battle left her with bruises and welts all across her body.

It’s unclear why Seay was punishing his daughter to begin with, police said, although he apparently made comments to police about her being a runaway and being somewhere she shouldn’t have been. But investigators say no missing person’s report was filed, and they aren’t sure how or why the girl returned home.

After several hours of punishment, officials said, she was able to send a text message to a friend, who then called the police.

When officers arrived Sunday to arrest him, Elwin said he was a “Renaissance fighter,” telling the responding deputies that “she’s 16 now, so we can fight to resolve these things.”

Seay’s wife, Julie Seay, was also arrested as an alleged accessory to assault with a deadly weapon. Both husband and wife were released on bail Monday, and investigators expect charges to be filed in the next few days.

The couple have other children, none of whom have been placed into protective custody. The 16-year-old daughter is staying with another family member. Authorities are investigating the couple to determine whether other charges should be filed.

Samurai Spidey

(CBS/AP) JACKSONVILLE, N.C. – ‘Tis the season for masked “superheroes” to emerge from the shadows.

Authorities in North Carolina say a sword-wielding bandit wearing a Spider-Man mask walked into a convenience store Wednesday morning and demanded money.

The Onslow County Sheriff’s Office says the clerk pulled out a broom and poked the suspect in the stomach. A second clerk joined in the struggle. “Spider-Man” lost his mask and part of his ponytail was ripped out before he fled.

Sheriff’s deputies found 56-year-old Dale Foughty – aka Spider Man – at a nearby home and arrested him.

According to station WWAY, the arrest follows after a series of robberies in Wilmington, where another man in a Spider-Man mask has robbed convenience stores of money and cigarettes.

Foughty is jailed on $100,000 bond.