How to fight with a bo staff

‘The Walking Dead’s newest badass is an unassuming brawler with an equally unassuming weapon: a stick.

Morgan Jones is one of the best characters in The Walking Dead, hands down. Played by Lennie James, the formerly over-protective father has evolved into a wandering warrior monk quieted by the horrors he’s witnessed. His upgrade to series regular in season six has been a boon to AMC’s hit zombie show, but he’s been ingrained in the mythos since the beginning.

Through with mourning his kid’s death, Morgan now walks with the swagger of a hardened survivor and comes armed with a peculiar weapon: the bō (pronounced like “boat,” without the T).

It looks just like a wooden stick, because it is a wooden stick. But in the hands of a true fighter that wooden stick can be a ridiculously versatile weapon. Morgan has shown Walking Dead fans how he pounds walkers into paste with a few bashes, and last night in the season’s second episode, “JSS,” Morgan held his own against a gang of Wolves armed with knives.

A wooden stick pales when compared to crossbows, samurai swords, and revolver pistols, but the bō (meaning “staff”) has a rich history in martial arts and might actually be the best weapon for the apocalypse.

The bЕЌ can be traced back to Okinawa, Japan in the early 17th century. In 1609, the Shimazu clan of Satsuma invaded Okinawa and overthrew Sho Dynasty control. They introduced a weapons ban, leaving Okinawans defenseless against their new overlords. The natives resorted to farming tools for defense, and found that the sticks they used to carry buckets of water and harvest are surprisingly handy if you want to beat a dude up.

Bōjutsu is the dedicated martial art for the bō. The driving philosophy is to use the bō as an “extension of one’s limbs.” Imagine you’ve got an elongated third arm or leg. That’s how you best utilize the bō.

The bō is a popular weapon for live martial arts demonstrations and kung-fu movies because, well, it looks cool. But it’s also useful in real world scenarios (given the user’s skill), rivaled only by Filipino Martial Arts which is basically two sticks.

There’s not a lot of maintenance a bō needs, certainly not in the zombie apocalypse. Katanas dull and crossbows lose arrows, but a stick is a stick. They’re relatively easy to create or brandish from the environment.

There’s a reason why Bruce Lee, whose never ending goal was to bring practicality in Chinese kung-fu, was fond of the bō.

Thematically, the bō is the best weapon for Morgan. In the wasteland it’s easy to underestimate a middle aged man who needs a wooden stick to walk. But that’s the key to Morgan’s badassery and his weapon speaks volumes about his renewed, centered focus about himself. After his son’s death, he’s not some rugged survivalist like Daryl, nor is he rigid and cold like Michonne. He’s plain and blunt. What other weapon is as plain and blunt but a wooden stick?

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This section provides instructions for various Bo (staff) techniques (i.e. spins, strikes, blocks, etc.). These instructions will help beginning martial artists learn how to use a Bo for demonstrations, self-defense and sparring. These Bo techniques (i.e. spins, strikes & blocks) are also used in Bo kata. Many different martial arts including training with wooden staffs (i.e. Bo, Jo or Jang Bong) as part of their curriculum. These martial arts styles include Aikido, Bojutsu, Hapkido, Karate, Kung Fu, Taekwondo, etc.

The Bo (staff) is an Okinawan (Japan) martial arts weapon. This staff is basically a long wooden pole traditionally made of oak and is roughly 6 feet in length. However, for demonstrations, a Bo is usually a lightweight metal staff (lighter weight for faster spins, etc.). Historically, wooden staffs were common tools used by martial artists because they were cheap & readily available, served as walking/hiking aids, were not seen as threatening weapons (unlike swords and spears) etc. Moreover, their length allowed them to successfully defend against bandits armed with shorter weapons (i.e. knives or clubs). In addition, given the weight of a wooden staff, training with this martial arts tool improved a martial artist’s upper body strength and overall physical conditioning.

The information on these pages and videos are meant to reinforce and supplement the instruction given at your martial arts classes. To properly understand these techniques, you need to learn them from a martial arts instructor who can provide you with an in-depth explanation of the technique, help correct your mistakes, answer your questions and detail how the technique should be utilized. These martial arts techniques should be only practiced under the supervision of a trained martial arts instructor.

Bo – Examples of Spins – Most of these pages have tutorial videos, etc.

Bo – Examples of Strikes – Most of these pages have tutorial videos, etc.

Bo – Examples of Blocks – Most of these pages have tutorial videos, etc.

Related Wiki Sections

  • Bo Katas – Videos and/or instructions for a wide range of Bo katas.

Bo Demonstration

How to fight with a bo staff

Image Source: Wikimedia Commons via its Creative Commons license

Martial Arts & Related Quotes

Each of us has his cowardice. Each of us is afraid to lose, afraid to die. But hanging back is the way to remain a coward for life.

Martial arts books are great tools to supplement the information being taught by your martial arts school. Here are wiki pages focused on martial arts books.

This site is for informational purposes only. All martial arts techniques and exercises should be supervised by a trained martial arts instructor in order to prevent injuries and to ensure the proper technique is utilized. The information on these pages and videos is meant only to reinforce and supplement the instruction given at your martial arts classes. To properly understand these techniques, you need to learn them from a martial arts instructor who can provide you with an in-depth explanation of the technique, help correct your mistakes, answer your questions and detail how the technique should be utilized. In addition, all martial arts techniques and training should be used safely and responsibly.

Martial Arts Books

Bad to the Bone: Tips for Working With an Exceptionally Bad Boss

How to fight with a bo staff

You’re weary. You’re frustrated. You’re unhappy. You’re demotivated. Your interaction with your boss leaves you cold. Your boss is a bully, intrusive, controlling, picky or petty. You are desperately wondering how you can professionally deal with a bad boss.

Your boss takes credit for your work, never provides positive feedback, and misses each meeting that was scheduled with you. Or your boss caves immediately under pressure and fails to support you in accomplishing your job. Your bad boss never recognizes your excellent performance nor that of any other employee, so the office is joyless and unhappy.

Your boss is a bad boss, bad to the bone. Dealing with less than an effective manager, or just plain bad managers and bad bosses is a challenge too many employees face. No matter the character of your bad boss, these ideas will help you deal with them.

Your Bad Boss May Be Unaware He or She Is Bad

Start your campaign by understanding that your boss may not know that he or she is a bad boss. Just as in situational leadership, the definition of bad depends on the employee’s needs, the manager’s skills, and the circumstances of the situation.

A hands-off manager may not realize that their failure to provide any direction or feedback makes them a bad boss. Your boss may think he or she is empowering the staff. A manager who provides too much direction and micromanages may feel insecure and uncertain about their own job. This boss may not realize their direction is insulting to a competent, secure, self-directed staff member.

Or, maybe the boss lacks training and is so overwhelmed with his or her job requirements that they can’t provide support for you. Perhaps your boss has been promoted too quickly, or the staff reporting responsibilities have expanded beyond his or her competence and reach. In these days of downsizing, responsibilities are often shared by fewer staff members than ever before which can affect their ability to do the job well.

This bad boss may not share your values. The youngest generations of workers expect that they can use their vacation time and take action to make work-life balance a priority. A flexible work schedule may make the job their dream job. But, not all bosses share these views. Some, for example, think that remote workers harm the culture and interfere with developing a culture of teamwork.

If your values are out of sync with those of your boss, and you don’t think this imbalance will change, you do have a problem. Maybe it’s time to change bosses. But, until then, these actions are recommended for you to preserve your relationship, such as it is.

How to fight with a bo staff

How to Approach Dealing With an Unwitting Bad Boss

  • Talk to this boss. Tell the boss what you need to succeed in terms of direction, feedback, and support. Be polite and focus on your needs. You need to tell the boss exactly what you need from them. Telling the boss that he or she is a bad boss is counterproductive and won’t help you meet your goals.
  • Ask the manager how you can help them reach the goals they want to achieve. Make sure you listen well and provide the needed assistance he requests.
  • Seek a mentor from among other managers or more skilled peers, with the full knowledge and cooperation of your current manager, to enlarge your opportunity for experience.
  • If you’ve taken these actions, and they haven’t worked, go to your boss’s manager and ask for assistance. Or, you can go to your Human Resources staff first, to rehearse and gain advice. Understand that your current boss may never forgive you, so ensure that you have done what you can do with your boss, before taking your issues up the line.
  • You may never hear what the boss’s boss or the HR staff did to help solve your bad manager’s behavior. It’s confidential. But, do allow some time to pass for the actions to have their desired impact.
  • If nothing changes, despite your best efforts, and you think the problem is that they don’t believe you, draw together coworkers who also experience the behavior. Visit the boss’s manager to help your boss’s boss see the size and impact of the problem behavior.
  • If you think the problem is that your boss can’t—or won’t—change, ask for a transfer to another department. This recommendation presumes you like your employer and your work, so you don’t regard quitting or job searching as your best option.
  • If a transfer or promotion is unavailable, begin your search for a new job. Fleeing is always an option. You may want to conduct your job search secretly, but under the circumstances, it may be time for you to go.

When the Bad Boss Knows

A manager at a mid-sized manufacturing company wanted to improve his approach to working with his employees. He knew that he looked down his nose at them. He criticized and screamed at employees. He publicly humiliated any employee who made a mistake, as an example of his bad boss behavior.

One day he called to ask a question of his consultant. The question doomed the relationship to disappointment when he said, “I know that you don’t approve of me screaming at staff as a regular thing.” Agreed. “So, can you tell me, please, what are the circumstances under which it is okay for me to scream at them?”

This manager thought his behavior was perfectly acceptable. (The end of the story? He never did change and was eventually removed as manager.) Most managers that bully, intimidate, cruelly criticize, name-call, and treat you as if you are stupid likely know what they are doing. They may know they’re bad and even revel in their badness.

They may feel their behavior has been condoned—and even encouraged—within their organization. They may have learned the behaviors from their former supervisor who was viewed as successful.

You don’t have to put up with demeaning behavior.

You deserve a good boss who helps your self-confidence and self-esteem grow. You deserve a good boss who helps you advance your career. You deserve civil, professional treatment at work.

A letter addressed to the “University of Michigan Community” and signed by more than 100 former football players, coaches, and staff members in defense of late Michigan football coach Bo Schembechler was released Friday.

The letter includes names like Reggie McKenzie, who went on to be part of two Super Bowl victories; Jim Hackett, the former Michigan athletic director and president and CEO of Ford Motor Company; and Jack Harbaugh, the father of current Michigan football coach Jim Harbaugh and a former assistant on Schembechler’s staff, attached at the bottom. Jim Harbaugh’s name was not listed.

Last week, Schembechler’s son, Matt, and two former players said at a news conference that Schembechler knew that team doctor Robert Anderson was sexually assaulting players and did not stop the abuse. A Detroit News story in February 2020 detailed UM student Robert Julian Stone’s accusations of Anderson sexually abusing him in 1971. Since his revelation, 850 accusers, mostly former Michigan athletes, have come forward and are in mediation with UM. Schembechler died in 2006 and Anderson died in 2008.

“Our experiences tell us that the Bo Schembechler we knew would never have tolerated any abuse or mistreatment of his players, his staff, or any other individual,” the letter reads. “We believe firmly, that if he were aware of such behavior, Coach Schembechler would have acted immediately to put a stop to it and would have made sure anyone responsible for it would have been removed from the University of Michigan football program.”

In the letter, the players said they all received physicals, presumably all administered by Anderson.

“Many of us never thought at any time we had been abused during the process,” the letter reads. “And, subsequently nothing was reported to Bo. … The effort to destroy Coach Schembechler’s reputation and legacy will not go unchallenged by those of us who knew him. Just because he isn’t present doesn’t mean he’s not here.”

Jim Brandstatter, who played for Schembechler from 1969-1971, has publicly spoken in defense of his coach after last week’s news conference with Matt Schembechler, and former players Gilvanni Johnson and Daniel Kwiatkowski.

Earlier this month, Jim Harbaugh was asked how the university should handle Schembechler’s legacy.

“I can tell you this. Bo Schemechler, there was nothing that I saw the times that I was a kid here, my dad was on the staff, or when I played here, he never sat on anything, he never procrastinated on anything,” Harbaugh said during a break at a football camp in Big Rapids. “He took care of it before the sun went down. That’s the Bo Schembechler that I know. There was nothing that ever was swept under the rug or ignored. He addressed everything in a timely fashion. That’s the Bo Schembechler that I know.”

During a news conference Wednesday in Ann Arbor across from Michigan Stadium, former Michigan player Jon Vaughn said he was assaulted 45 times by Anderson. He said he “absolutely” has felt victim shamed.

“We don’t talk enough about the victims,” Vaughn said. “And I know my story is helping guys. When you’re on a team, sometimes you’ve gotta pick up the blitz, and you’ve gotta take the arrows, and you’ve gotta cut the wind. And don’t think that this is not hard. Don’t think I don’t have my dark days that I don’t want to get out of the bed and I don’t want to fight.

“But I revert back to the man that came here as a boy that left as a man and what you (Schembechler) trained me is to persevere, to not deal with pain, to overcome obstacles, to never quit, fight to the last second. I think the biggest mistake Michigan made is not understanding who they were going against because I’m not quitting, and we’re not quitting, because we were trained not to quit.”