This is a quick reference covering the equipment that we use in the Club's various activities. This guide should go some what towards helping to identify what you might need to purchase. There is always a range of price points (and quality) available for all of these items, and it is advisable to check with the relevant instructors before you obtain anything to ensure that it is fit for purpose and vale for money. Remember that the Club enjoys a wholesale relationship with a number of suppliers, and we pass on saving to Club members.

Any equipment that you use must be maintained in good repair. If in doubt about the suitability of a particular item, please talk to your relevant instructors.

The following matrix is colour coded where green is specifically for a particular art, blue is suitable to use in that art and brown is usable (but not ideal) for the art.

The following matrix is colour coded. 

  • Green means the item is specifically for a particular discipline. It is suitable for (and may be necessary for) all gradings and demonstrations.
  • Blue means the item is suitable to use in that discipline. It will be serviceable for regular training, and may be acceptable for public demonstrations/gradings, but you will need to check with your specific instructor.
  • Brown means the item is usable (but not ideal) for the discipline.It is fine to use as a stop gap for regular training or until you obtain the appropriate item. However it should not be used for public demonstrations or gradings.
  • Red means the item is unsuitable for the activity and should not be used.

Specificly for

Acceptible for

Useable in

Not suitable

Item Description AiArDwGoGSIaJoJuJgJjKaKeKuKyPuSISyTaTC
Safety Equipment
Mouth guardCritical piece of equipment for activities where there is an increased liklihood of an unprotected blow to the face. "Boil and bite" style guards are adequate, but the best performing are the dentist fitted ones.
Groin guard Important piece of equipment for activities where there is an increased liklihood of an unprotected blow to the pelvic triangle. They can be either over- or under-pants in design.
Shin/instep guardsUseful in reducing injuries to the lower leg and feet that would take you away from training for days (or weeks).
4 oz. MMA glovesFingerless, open palmed gloves that protect the hands while allowing you to grip and grapple.
Wrist wrapsWorn under boxing glove, bag mits or MMA gloves to provide extra support when engaging in heavy and/or repetitive punching. Can be either a long bandage style or a "quick wrap"style.
Boxing gloves Come in 10 oz. 12 oz. 14 oz and 16 oz. There are weight requirements for particular types of ring sport. However the main differentiation is the added difficulty of using a heavier glove for a whole session.
Under kote wrist protectorExtra padding to reduce the "sting" from overly heavy kote cuts. You can source purpose made protectors, or use a children's shin guard to provide protection.
Heel protectorUsed to prevent injuries caused by the application of fumikomi (stomping), particularly in Kendo. Very useful in assisting in recovering from injury to the heel.
Ankle/Achilles protectorSock styled compression garment that can provide some stability to the ankle.
Knee padsKnee damage is among the more common and serious types of martial arts related injuries. The use of knee pads will certainly make it easer to train with damaged knees, and in some cases will prevent damage in the first place.
Sparring Equipment
Kendo boguProtective armour worn during kendo practice. Comprises of men (helmet), kote (gloves), do (brestplate), and tare (apron).
TenuguiLitterally a a thin cotton "hand towel" of approximately 90x30 cm. Used to cover your head before putting on the men in kendo (or simply mopping up the sweat!)
WTF Compliant sparring gearCurrent standard for comprtition comprises head gear, reversable breast plate, groin guard, shin and forearm protectors and hand and instep protectors. Some of this equipment can be used in other disciplines.
YoroiFull traditional Japanese battlefield armour.
ShinaiWeapon made of four staves (traditionally made of bamboo) used as a fascimile for a Japanese sword. Large variation in cost based on quality of materials and workmanship. There are specific competition requirements.
Rattan canesCore consumable for Arnis training. Diameter is approximately 20mm and ideal length varies based on the size of the practitioner.
BokkenA solid wooden fascimile of a Japanese sword, sometimes referred to as a bokuto. Usually comes in a standard length. The quality of the wood and crafstmanship determines price. Will come with a tsuba (sword guard) that can be removed.
SayaA scabbard for Japanese swords or their fascimilie. Saya for metal swords are fitted specifically for the individual blade. Those for use with a bokken are a more standard size, though not all bokken will necessarily fit. Should come with a sageo (scabbard cord) but these are often of very poor quality.
SageoScabbard cord used in Japanese sword arts. Range from basic machine woven cotton to expensive hand woven silk. Needs to be an appropriate length in order for the practitioner to tie it correctly.
IaitoNon-sharp Japanese sword made of metal designed to handle the physical stresses associated with repetitive practice. Often made of an alloy to reduce weight and make maintenance easier, and sometimes make out of the same high-carbon steel that sharp Japanese swords are forged from. Will come with saya and sageo.
Shinken Sharpened metal Japanese sword designed for cutting targets, and can be used for iai practice. Made from high carbon steel to reduce the chance of a critical (and dangerous) failure during practice.
JoTraditional Japanese short staff of 127 cm length. Typical diameter is approximately 25mm. Price depends on quality of wood used and skill of manufacture.
HanboJapanese "half staff" of 90 cm length.
TanjoJapanese walking stick. Generally 90 cm in length and tapered.
Rokushaku BoTraditional Japanese staff of 183 cm length.
TantoA type of Japanese knife. Usually, the term is used to refer to a range of knife facsimilies used in training. These are usually made of either wood, rubber or non-sharpened metal. The use of a particular material is determined on safety considerations for particular disciplines/techniques.
Kodachi bokkenA wooden fascimilie of a Japanese short sword. Jodo requires one with a tsuba (hand guard).
Aiki bokkenA bokken specifically used in Aikido. It is usually thicker than a standard bokken and is used without a tsuba.
NaginataTraditional Japanese polearm. Those used in training are usually made from solid wood or have a bamboo blade section similar to a shinai.
Fuku shinaiA shinai that is padded in some way so that it can be more safely used wien sparring without protective equipment.
Jugger WeaponsPadded weapons used in the sport of Jugger. There are a variety of requirements for these weapons that are set out on the Jugger information page. Given the similarity of shape to some of the traditional Japanese training weapons, they may be of use in other disciplines.
JutteTraditional Japanese single-pronged iron truncheon. A training version for use with bokken with a wider-set prong is also used.
KusarigamaTraditional Japanese weapon consisting of a weighted chain or cord attached to a modified Asian sickle. A wooden version with a cord and padded bag is used during training.
FundogusariTraditional Japanaese weapon consisting of a chain or cord with a weighted end(s). Sometimes referred to as a manrikigusari
TessenTraditional Japanese weapon comprised of a fan made from iron. Wooden forms resembling a closed fan are used for practice.
JianThe jian is a double-edged straight sword with a 2,500 year history in China. In Chinese folklore, it is known as "The Gentleman of Weapons" and is considered one of the four major weapons, along with the gun (staff), qiang (spear), and the dao (sabre)
QiangThe Chinese term for spear. It is known as one of the four major weapons, along with the Gun (staff), Dao (sabre), and the Jian (sword), called in this group "The King of Weapons".