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By Jikishin Kobudo, Sep 20 2015 11:00AM

According to the simple mathematics of a straight line, the closest attack point for your limbs (which emanate from the torso) are your opponent’s middle section targets or chudan. For that reason some may say they are the easiest targets.

Chudan can be divided into two areas - the torso and the arms. Whilst the arms are the most mobile part of the body, the torso is the most immobile and so strikes to the middle section form somewhat of a paradox.

If we ignore footwork, the arms must rely on their speed of movement to avoid attack whereas the torso is defended by hands, weapon or armour. Strikes to the fast moving arms may be a useful tactical option, in order to open up targets on the torso. Strikes to the hands and arms can immobilise your opponent and cause them to drop their guard or weapons.

Strikes to the torso can inflict significant and even mortal damage, but generally strikes to the middle section are useful if you want to end a fight without causing death. It is possible to injure an opponent sufficiently that they will not wish to continue the conflict Jigou Jitoku自業自得 (one’s action is one’s advantage).

Because injuries to the torso cannot be seen with the eyes, many ignorant martial artists strike each other to the torso with full force in training. This may be OK if four criteria are met: Fighters attacks are not too powerful, the musculature of the defender is developed, adrenaline is released in the defender, strikes are not targeted to vital points. However, according to common sense, attacks to the major organs in the body should always be avoided, as these can cause more complex and long term injuries and can lead to the development of diseases.

The middle section striking targets are:

DANCHU – Top of the sternum

SONU – Middle of the Sternum

KYOTOTSU – Base of the sternum

SUIGETSU – Solar-plexus

KOKANSETSU - Hip joint

INAZUMA – Above each hip

GANCHU – Below each nipple

MYOJI – Below the navel

KYOEI – Upper ribs

DENKO – Lower ribs

SODA – Upper spine

KATSUSATU – Central spine

JINZO – Kidney

KANZO – Liver

WANSUN – Upper arm


UDEKANSETSU – Inside the elbow

KOTE – Top of the wrist

SHUKO – Back of the hand

UCHIJAKUZAWA – Inside of the wrist

SOTOJAKUZAWA – Outside of the forearm

By Jikishin Kobudo, Sep 27 2013 11:00AM

We are fortunate to practice martial arts amongst one of the largest collections of arms and armour in the world, at the Royal Armouries Museum in Leeds, England.

One of the objects on is display is exhibit XXVIM.17: Listed as a Chinese parrying weapon. The weapon is steel and measures 48.9cm in length. Its shaft is octagonal and the hilt is very sturdy.

The exact age of this weapon has not yet been determined, but we believe it to be at least one hundred years old. This weapon was purchased from a collection of South and East Asian weapons in the second half of the 20th century.

At the moment we are investigating as to whether this item is Okinawan or indeed Chinese and would welcome the thoughts of other martial artists with experience in this area. The item can be viewed at the museum inside the Oriental Gallery.

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