The naginata (glaive) is a weapon with a curved blade (around 30 to 60 centimetres) at the end of a wooden shaft, which typically measures between 1.2 to 2.4 metres long. Originally, it was the primary weapon of foot soldiers and warrior-monks during the eleventh to fifteenth centuries. However, its usefulness in battle waned after the introduction of firearms in the sixteenth century. Naginata then evolved into a martial art practised primarily by women during peacetime in the seventeenth century. Today, it has become a thrilling sport similar to kendo, although some still study the traditional schools. Naginata has transformed over time but has always aimed to foster personal growth and mind-body harmony. Thousands of people worldwide, mainly women, now practise naginata to achieve these ideals.

NaginataーHistory and Practice

By Alexander Bennett

New updated edition of the now out-of-print “Naginata: The Definitive Guide”. Alex Bennett goes into the history and practice of Naginata, using original source materials, and technical photos taken under the guidance of Kimura Yasuko Sensei. With the approval of the International Naginata Federation, this is the most comprehensive English-language guide to the martial art of Naginata.

This link is for, but it can be purchased from most Amazon stores in print and Kindle formats.


Chapter 1: The History of Naginata
Chapter 2: Form and Theory
Chapter 3: Practical Drills Without a Partner
Chapter 4: Practical Drills With a Partner
Chapter 5: Drills With Bogu
Appendix 1 — Naginata Match Regulations
Appendix 2 — Naginata Shinpan Regulations
Appendix 3 — Handbook for Administering Tournaments
Appendix 4 — Kata Outline
Appendix 5 — Examination Questions
Appendix 6 — INF Constitution
Appendix 7 — Glossary

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