There is no difference between training to use a stick or a blade
One of the most persistent myths within the FMA community, is that there is no difference between training to use a stick or a blade. This has occurred for a variety of reasons, and I had not given it much thought until Stephen Shy of School of Arms Florida came up to Illinois for some training. In the recent past, this myth started along with the other myth of the all encompassing martial arts method, due to either misunderstanding, or out right hyperbole. Nevertheless, this myth once started remains, and it is time to put it to an end. First, truly bladed (sword) FMA methods are rarely available here in the United States. If you find yourself lucky to have been taught an authentic method, count yourself lucky and please pass it along. Even in the Philippines these systems are dying out and very few smiths know how to manufacture a true fighting sword. It is true, that many sword based methods use and train with stick as wasters, after all no one wants to damage their very expensive sword blade in training. It is also true that many sword based systems will also fight with sticks. However, whether fighting or training, a sword based method will wield the stick as if it is the sword blade type which guides all the techniques and strategies of the method. I am not saying however, anything negative about stick based methods, just that there are true differences and we need to understand them to be more effective teachers and ambassadors of the wonderful arts that we teach.