Martial Arts Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for students and teachers of all martial arts. Join them; it only takes a minute:

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

Are there any Eastern arts that utilize a shield with a sword or a spear?

share|improve this question
up vote 9 down vote accepted

Okinawan kobudo (weapons training) has a short-spear and shield combination called the tinbe (shield) and rochin (shortspear). Purportedly, the shield was made of a tortoise shell, which is now illegal, causing modern versions to be made from plastic.

The tradition of Okinawan weapons is often associated with Okinawan and Japanese karate but it is also studied independently in traditions such as that of Shinken Taira (pictured below). Tinbe/rochin practice is less common among karateke than practice of sai, bo, and so on.

Shinken Taira, Okinawan kobudo guru, brandishing a tinbe and rochin

share|improve this answer
Are either practiced in the States? – Btuman Sep 9 '13 at 13:58
Yes, in a few Okinawan/Japanese karate dojo, and by the (quite rare) kobudo teachers. – Dave Liepmann Sep 9 '13 at 17:27

Krabi Krabong the tradtional weapons art from Thailand has a panoply of arms, including different shields.

The shields are usually combined with offensive weapons. During a fight/show the participants often switch weapons/shields or pick up weapons others dropped. Thus many combinations are possible.

Two different shields used in Krabi Krabong

share|improve this answer

Shields were used historically in Chinese martial arts, made of woven stems such as rattan, or wood covered in leather, in various sizes and designs.

In Shaolin Kung-Fu, a round rattan shield (Tengpai) is sometimes used with the single-edged sword (dao).

enter image description here


enter image description here

share|improve this answer

The Indian MA Kalaripayattu focuses on weapons and includes shield combined with various weapons, to include sword and spear.

enter image description here

share|improve this answer

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.