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Old 06-22-2009, 08:03 PM   #2
Location: Massachusetts
Join Date: Jun 2006
Posts: 3,184
Re: Thoughts on Creating a Training Mat?

The jigsaw mats that I've seen are for floor protection, not for people protection. They're a cheap temporary way of protecting floors in high traffic area -- they've got good scuff protection but no padding to speak of. Maybe you're speaking of a different type.

A $5 bokken is probably an expensive piece of firewood, but a much more expensive bokken is not necessarily any better -- there's a lot of crap weapons out there being sold to the wanker market. White oak is my preferred material -- I have a white oak bokken that I have had since...err....about 1992, I think. Some folks like exotic woods, but I'd stick to white oak and not pay a premium price for something that may be just a vanity piece, or whose difference from another wood is going to be too subtle for you to appreciate. Get a basic bokken, avoid anything stylized.

As for where to buy it, you might ask your sensei where he/she gets bokken. If that doesn't lead you anywhere, I'd say stay away from any website with "combat", "karate", "blackbelt" etc. in its site name. I haven't had any dealings with Bugei ( but they seem to be on the up and up. Bujin, for some reason, seems to only have hickory and "Brazilian cherry" (yay exotic hardwoods, let's kill that rainforest!).
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