Today's tactics are brought to you by the letter "Halberd," which is a horribly inspecific class of weapon: pretty much anything that is a long stick with some
kind of non-stick item attached to one end has been called a halberd a time or twenty, but the one I've got today is built like a heavy scimitar with a four-foot
handle. It's a very different weapon from the "axe on a pike" flavor of halberd, and allows for a good mix of techniques adapted from both sword and staff. I like it.
One of the best (and most challenging) aspects of the design is the asymmetry of it: you do a lot more grip reversals and switches with something like this than
you would with a sword, but you always have to remain aware through each movement which way the sharp side is facing, so you generally have to rotate it in
your hands during any grip changes.
The sharp edge is similar to a sword, but with a greater range, the concave side works well for parries and disarms, and you can use the non-bladed end like
a staff (there's usually a counterweight at the end for balance, which gives you even more technique options). It's a bear to practice with indoors, however, and
tends to get tangled up in the window treatments,
so I've been taking it out to the driveway with a boombox full of Rammstein to run through my katas.
On the warmer days, I thought I'd see if I could even out my amazing
farmer's tan at the same time by working out in a pair of "tan-through" swim trunks. I'm not sure that it's done a whole lot for my tan, but at least I'm doing my part
to make the neighborhood more interesting.