Originally posted by mike lee
I also teach to never strike another's weapon because it's a waste of time and could easily leave an opening if you miscalculate.The way I was taught, there is no defense, only harmonize and attack, attack, attack -- that's for both aiki-ken and aiki-jo.
Different approaches for different places, of course. I will note that there is at least one major school of Japanese sword that includes a large amount of contact between the swords, but in which the contact between the swords (bokuto, actually) masks the real intent of the cuts (on purpose, or so I was told) from outsiders observing the training.
Also, in places like Iwama there is a great deal of tanren uchi training, so the bokuto takes a lot of punishment even without coming in contact with another weapon. Case by case, as always
. Even more so because there is nothing even approaching standardization in weapons training between Aikido schools.
I'd agree with the splintering with red oak - that's one of the reasons that white oak is pretty much the standard for weapons (both bokuto and jo) in Japan.