The basics of short sticks: safety and grip

In this discussion we want to define the basics of the short sticks in the 6DKF:

  • The first goal we set ourselves is to educate our body to move like a weapon
  • Later we will learn to use sticks as real weapons (techniques, strokes, disarm, etc.)

As we have already seen, the short sticks we are going to use (read “At the base of each weapon: the short stick”) has to be as much as possible similar: they must have the same weight, length, diameter and material.

Let’s start from the handle:

  • The stick is imagined as a sword, with a piece that cuts and one to grasp
  • The stick has a bottom (the narrow one) and a top (the widest one)
  • The stick is grasped on the slimmer side, iif this is not clearly distinguishable we can make a mark that reminds us of the location of the two ends (eg a circle for the handle and / or a flipped “V” over the tip)
  • Our (single) hand should grab the stick at a distance of one fist from the handle end
  • In the first type of grip we learn, all the fingers are closed around the handle and the thumb overlap the index
  • The basic grip (which involves the whole body) must be elastic, not too rigid and not flush

Basic safety:

  • Wooden sticks are real impact weapons, therefore they must be used with caution
  • When we have a stick in our hand we need to be focused as if we were using a sharp sword (this start us to get used to the security needed with the cutting weapons)
  • Sticks should never get out of hand, fall, touch the ground or be dragged
  • Our mind must always focuses on where it is and where is directed the tip of the stick
  • Tip and (hypothetical) cutting parts should never be touched, neither actively nor accidentally
  • As long as our spatial intelligence is not trained, let’s move without looking for speed or power
  • The tip (even if large and rounded) should always be away from the eyes;
  • Let’s pay particular attention to ears, nose, teeth and fingers


  • We use two sticks rather than one to speed up training and improve coordination but when we deal with more technical issues we will start from scratch using one at a time
  • If we never took a stick in the hand, we never made any kind of conditioning we will probably have some annoyance in the hands and especially in the wrists (it is normal, it depends on the weight of the sticks and the duration of the exercise)
  • In the 6DKF, the use of rigid short weapons has several references to Kali / Eskrima, Silat, Wing Chun, Tai Chi and many other collateral contaminations (chinese, japanese, indonesian, western, etc.) but has also many differences, so we do not have to underestimate the details we will continue to expose

In the next article of this series we will see the position and the basic shots to go to the training of the limbs (arms, fingers, wrists, etc.).

Author: Master Kongling

Founder of 6 Dragons Kung Fu.

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