Tessenjutsu: The Art of the Iron Fan

Tessenjutsu is a Japanese martial art that utilizes the war fan or “tessen” as a weapon. Tessenjutsu has a long history in feudal Japan and was initially practiced by samurai warriors as a form of self-defense when carrying a sword was outlawed.

Tessenjutsu is a form of martial arts that is still practiced today. It is admired for its grace and delicacy.

This article will look at the fascinating history of tessenjutsu, how it is currently practiced, and the various competitions that highlight this distinctive martial art.


The history of tessenjutsu is a fascinating tale that takes us back to feudal Japan. At this time, the imperial palace and the residences of high-ranking officials were among the places where samurai were not permitted to carry weapons. Samurai started carrying tessen, or folding fans, which were frequently used by nobles and other members of the aristocracy, as a form of self-defense.

Tessenjutsu, a martial art created by the samurai and centered on the use of the tessen, has been around for a while. In addition to using this martial art for self-defense, samurai also used it to demonstrate their dexterity and skill. The tessen was a multi-purpose weapon that could be thrown as a projectile, used to strike, block, or disarm an opponent.

Samurai used tessenjutsu in secret and taught a few chosen students what they had learned. Tessenjutsu eventually began to be practiced by people from the merchant and artisan classes in addition to the samurai class.

Tessenjutsu is still practiced today by martial artists all over the world, and it is admired for its grace and delicacy. The art of tessenjutsu is a reminder of Japan’s rich martial arts tradition and the ingenuity of the samurai who created it, even though using the tessen as a weapon is no longer necessary for self-defense.


Today, tessenjutsu is practiced as a traditional martial art that emphasizes technique, control, and discipline. It is often taught in specialized dojos, or training halls, where students learn the various techniques and forms associated with the art.

The traditional tessen, which is typically made of iron or bamboo, is used in the practice of tessenjutsu. Practitioners also learn how to defend themselves from weapons like swords and spears. The tessen is used to perform a variety of strikes, blocks, and throws.

The emphasis on accuracy and control in tessenjutsu is one of its main characteristics. Practitioners learn how to execute movements with the least amount of effort possible by utilizing their body and their breath. Focus, concentration, physical preparation, and strength training are all essential for this.

Students study the background and philosophy of tessenjutsu in addition to the physical application of the art. They learn about the principles of loyalty, honor, and discipline that were essential to samurai culture by studying the teachings of the samurai who created the art.

Overall, tessenjutsu practice today offers martial artists a way to engage with Japan’s rich martial arts heritage and to grow both physically and mentally in a demanding and rewarding setting.


Tessenjutsu competitions are not as common as they were in the past, as the art is primarily practiced for personal development and self-improvement. For practitioners who want to demonstrate their abilities and compete with other martial artists, there are still some organizations that host competitions.

Participants in tessenjutsu competitions typically execute a number of predetermined forms, or kata, to show off their mastery of the tessen. Technique, speed, power, and accuracy are just a few of the criteria used to evaluate the forms. Additionally, competitors are judged on their overall performance, which includes their focus, breathing, and posture.

Sparring matches, in which competitors simulate combat using the tessen, may also be included in some competitions. To ensure safety and fairness, competitors in these competitions wear protective gear and adhere to a set of rules and regulations.

Overall, tessenjutsu competitions give practitioners a chance to put their skills to the test and compete with other martial artists in a safe setting. Although tessenjutsu is not primarily focused on competition, it can be a rewarding experience for those who want to challenge themselves and their limits.

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