View Full Version : Handle wrapping for a Bokken?

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Vincent Paglia
02-21-2005, 03:17 PM
I was told that this can help you maintain your grip. Anyone know where to get sword handle wrappings? I don't want something expensive, b/c my bokken is simple cheap wood.

02-21-2005, 03:27 PM
Vincent_ if you go the traditional route for a handle wrap- it'll get pricy.
I recomend that you visit your local sports shop and see if they have the leather strips used to wrap tennis racket handles-as an alternative visit the proshop at your local tennis or golf club.
If you buy non selfadhesive type material- I recomend that you take several practice runs before you try to wrap your handle"for real"- a good glue to use the the stuff called "gorella snot", or you can try to use a contact type adhesive- just be aware of the dry/application times and ventaliation requirements. The fumes from some glues can be bad news to your "little grey cells"
If you do the job right, your sensai will be envious, as well as everyone in the dojo. Good Luck!

02-21-2005, 03:28 PM
Here are my thoughts on the subject:


(from this thread: http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/showthread.php?t=6883)

-- Jun

Vincent Paglia
02-21-2005, 03:42 PM
Thanks for the info. I didn't see that thread before I posted. I think Tennis Racket grip may be the way to go.

02-21-2005, 04:28 PM
IMHO, I think you may be trying to find a solution for a problem that could be handled a simpler way. Is your bokken fairly new, to you? If so, have you yet sanded off the varnish coat (with fine grit sand paper) and oiled it with lemon oil or linseed oil? I find that an oiled finish is much less slick than a varnished finish, and actually feels good in your hands. Sweat dosn't seem to affect my grip on oiled wood as much it does on varnished wood.

If you tape the handle, you are probably going to develop some compensatory training problems :( -- for example, you'll become dependent on the friction of your grip-tape, rather than on your hands and how you manipulate the bokken. Aiki-Weapon traditionalists wouldn't even consider taping a bokken handle (some of them won't even tolerate tsuba...).

I would consider using a couple of cheap rubber hand-strengthening balls, properly conditioning my bokken, and observing more experienced practitioners to see how they "handle" their bokken ;) , before I'd try taping mine.

Vincent Paglia
02-22-2005, 05:58 PM
So I lightly sanded my bokken handle and my jo. I'm going to see how it works for a while. Right now, its slicker than before, but thats to be expected when you sand something. Now that the finish is off though, it should absorb sweat better. I sort of agree with you Peter and Jun, so I'm holding off on the handle wrapping for now.

Lachlan Kadick
02-22-2005, 09:20 PM
I would say use something soft, because some of the grip tapes actually encourage you, in a way, to grip tighter, and that impedes your training because both Iaido and Aikikendo you need light grips. I would think something that is like cloth would work.

02-23-2005, 05:15 AM
You have to ask yourself, why is the grip not good enough on a wooden bokken? It's better not to use aids to account for what may be an incorrect grip. Why/how is it slipping in your hands? What does your sensei say? I've never seen anyone using a special grip on their bokken and I've never felt the need myself. I think I would be a bit perturbed if someone in my class felt they needed a tennis racket grip on their bokken to keep it in their hands.