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The Shuriken Thread
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Posted on: 2011/5/22 10:05
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Re: The Shuriken Thread
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Good stuff, Duncan. Thanks for sharing! Another idea for those who don't have any shuriken, or don't have a safe practice area in which to throw them, is to use business cards or playing cards. Not a perfect substitute, but you can practice the movement and accuracy in a safe manner without putting holes in your walls. :)

Posted on: 2011/5/23 2:27
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Re: The Shuriken Thread
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That is an excellent suggestion Jon, in fact it is a great way to learn throwing shuriken. When you can throw a playing card through two sheets of newspaper you will be amazed at how well you'll throw the real one.

Posted on: 2011/5/23 10:56
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Re: The Shuriken Thread
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Very good lessons in this thread for me to use in my training, thank you all.

I would like to pass on that I have made use of foam insulation paneling for targets. They do last quite some time, and if you use both sides, they go a long, long way. These are the 4 x 8 sheets that you can acquire at most home supply warehouses, at least in the US. 6 inches thick is the most desirable or thicker if you can find it. They have a satisfying thunk and do require some energy to penetrate.

The tin foil backed ones with yellow insulation smell, but work best, imo. The pink or blue ones work well, and do not smell.

It isn't traditional, but it is very economical and keeps your blades in good order. If you want a more traditional appearance, you can always place tatami over the insulation and spare the excessive use of more expensive tatami.

Another bonus is that they are sufficiently big as to catch errant throws, keeping real shuriken safe from damage against other surfaces.

Just my two cents, it has allowed me to really study the kihon of throwing without worrying about damaging shuriken or what I will use as a target.

Posted on: 2011/5/23 15:31
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Re: The Shuriken Thread
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I'm not regular enough to Japan to have gotten any direct instruction so base my throwing on taijutsu, as per Zenigata description, and other sources (Quest dvd's, bujinkan seminar conversations etc).

I've come up with some useful training ideas over the years (bo-shuriken):

- always start half a tatami from the target and work your way back, half-a-tatami each time, but only after 10 "successful throws"... this helps to gain the focus mentioned above

- use the outstretched hand, like in sanshin, as a "sight" and the throwing hand, as in sanshin, reaches for this sight...

- I've seen palm facing forward to throw the shuriken but I prefer palm to the side (like shuto) as i think it works better for off-angle thows (like to the side, as in hira kamae)

- I show my students these things but only after they're with me a year, and i always do it before the main class and always say "this is not bujinkan, but uses taijutsu and is good for your focus"

- I use layered cardboard boxes and insist on eye protection and use vertical tatami to surround the target,

- i throw tatami darning needles (gotten on my first Japan trip 2004) and various shuriken from the web

Posted on: 2011/5/31 2:55
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Re: The Shuriken Thread
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Gentlemen,
This is something I would love to practice on my own in between classes and whatnot, the playing cards as a substitute sounds great. Can anyone recommend any websites where I could buy good quality beginner shuriken to practice with?

Posted on: 2011/6/2 14:41
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Re: The Shuriken Thread
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I believe Lee Flynn makes some now, he's in North Carolina.

Posted on: 2011/6/2 21:35
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