Talk:Sai (weapon)

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Jitte's historical use[edit]

I think jitte were used by police all over Japan during the Edo era. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talkcontribs)

Questionable description[edit]

"Its basic form is that of an unsharpened dagger, with two long, unsharpened projections (tsuba) attached to the handle."

I think this is fairly misleading- a sai is almost nothing like a dagger, from the rounded tine to the lack of sharpened blade or point, and the extreme guard. If anything, a sai is far more like a stiletto, since the main difference AFAIK is the lack of rather pointy tip. --maru (talk) contribs 00:17, 30 March 2006 (UTC)

Image request[edit]

It would be very nice to have an image of the Manji variant. --maru (talk) contribs 00:17, 30 March 2006 (UTC)


Didn't that one girl from the Daredevil movie use these?

You mean Electra, from the Marvel comics, yeah shes there. Twice now, if noone is gonna complain I'm getting rid of the second Trivia reference to the same person. Highlandlord 09:31, 27 July 2006 (UTC)

Use a farming implements[edit]

Well, I was at Kobudo class last night, and sensei told me that they would not have been used this way, as the imported steel wold have been far to expensive for the farmer. Instead, he says they were created by a royal bodyguard when bladed weapons were banned. Can anyone verify? -- 15:01, 27 July 2006 (UTC) Whoops! Forgot to sign in. --Big Mac 15:03, 27 July 2006 (UTC)

There is no evidence for the widely-told story that bladed weapons were banned. Sai are commonly thought to have been made as a concealed weapon, hiding in the large sleeve of a kimono. Squidocto (talk) 20:52, 14 March 2008 (UTC)

AFAIK, bladed weapons were not banned so much as very uncommon among peasant class because metal itself was rare. While most Okinawan weapons are variations of wooden or rattan farm tools, sai were created specifically as weapons, usually to use in defense against sword-wielding samurai by higher class citizens as opposed to peasants. --Daniel.whitten (talk) 04:42, 16 August 2009 (UTC)

yOU CAN FARM the pussy rly nicely with this here instruments

Japanese grammar?[edit]

I've noticed in several places in the article "sais" is used - however in proper Japanese there is no "plural" form. 1 sai, 2 sai, red sai, blue sai. But I'm no expert, so if someone else can verify this and correct it if necessary. Thanks a bunch.

You're correct. Japanese does not use plural nouns. It looks like someone's already replaced all instances of "sais" with "sai". EvilCouch 11:15, 17 October 2006 (UTC)

V for Vendetta[edit]

I have not read the comics, but it seems to me that in a good part of the movie, V uses sai (especially against the fingermen in the beginning of the movie (his first appearance)). --Ifrit 15:58, 16 November 2006 (UTC)

Sorry, upon closer inspection of a later fight scene, it seems they are thin near stiletto-like daggers with long upward-bent crossguards. --Ifrit 17:32, 16 November 2006 (UTC)

  • I removed the V For Vendetta refrence in the Popular Culture section. As V does not use actual sai it has no place in the article.

Kousekouse 20:11, 26 December 2006 (UTC)

Greek letter Psi[edit]

I would like to point out that "sai" might sound like the english pronounciation of the Greek letter Psi to which it might bear an uncanny resemblance but in Greek, the letter Psi is not pronounced "sai" but "p-see" so the resemblance is purely coincidental and I don't think it has any place in the article. You canrust me on the pronounciation, I'm Greek born and bred, however do check it out. Radaemon 01:05, 4 April 2007 (UTC)RaDaemon

are sai supposed to be blunt?[edit]

the ones i saw at a store were blunt and not sharp. is that normal?

Sai are blunt and not sharp. They are meant for piercing and not slicing. Radaemon (talk) 15:54, 15 February 2008 (UTC)radaemon

Then the text should clearly say so, since many people believe it is sharp (either the edges or the point). -- (talk) 00:00, 21 March 2008 (UTC)

Edit: Race Hazard: I have been reliably informed that Sai are not used for piercing exclusively. They are frequently used as a mini-truncheon. Heian Shodan can be performed with Sai, and there is a move that indicates that the wielder of the Sai effectively "flicks" the Sai on to the top of the head. Given the weight of the Sai, and its small surface area, this would be exceptionally painful - and could break the skull.

It needs to be made clear, in the article, that Sai are blunt! They are not like daggers. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Racehazard (talkcontribs) 01:57, 6 December 2008 (UTC)

Is this related to, as mentioned earlier in the comments here, the possibility it was designed as a concealed weapon to be hidden in the sleeve of a kimono? It wasn't sharp so that it didn't stab the person concealing it? der Scott (talk) 18:45, 11 November 2009 (UTC)

Sai originated as farm tools (along with many martial arts weapons, tonfa, kama and nunchuku for example). In the days of the samurai the peasants were not allowed any weapons so that the feudal lords and their troops could come down on the farms etc and raid them for whatever they wanted. Because of this, the villagers learned to fight back with whatever they had to hand. Sai originally had two uses, one was to attach a cart's wheel to the axle, the centre "blade" rod would fit into the axle and the side bits would fit into the wheel. The second use was for planting rice. They would make a hole in the earth with the long part of the sai and plant the rice seed in this hole. Nunchuku were used to beat the heads of the rice/corn plants to separate the desired stuff from the waste, kama were hand sickles used to cut the rice plants down and tonfa were the handles that would fit into the grind stone so they could turn it to grind the corn. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 14:38, 1 January 2013 (UTC)

I heard this years ago in elementary school when we had a martial arts presenter as part of Japan history. Yes the long blade of the sai was for the seed and the two smaller blades were for irrigation.SiXiam —Preceding undated comment added 22:17, 26 December 2016 (UTC)

Image request[edit]

It would be great to have images of a sai being held correctly! --Knulclunk 03:09, 9 November 2007 (UTC)

Edit: Race Hazard: I may be buying some soon. I'll post some pictures up if I get some. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Racehazard (talkcontribs) 01:58, 6 December 2008 (UTC) Here is a link to a pic —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 20:52, 3 May 2009 (UTC)



It's "Raphael", but yes, he does use a pair of sai. (talk) 03:22, 5 November 2008 (UTC) Jem

|image=200px (talk) 00:03, 23 April 2009 (UTC)

Are they sharp or blunt?[edit]

Are the tip of sais supposed to be blunt or sharp? (talk) 19:12, 20 March 2009 (UTC)

stop asking and read other peoples questions —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 00:51, 26 April 2009 (UTC)

Popular culture (moved here, need to be organized)[edit]

In Hollywood, sai are often portrayed as much more offensive weapons, being used as swords, daggers, and throwing knives. Little play is given to striking with the knuckle. Thus, the traditionally blunt and rounded weapon is often portrayed as a blade. For example, Jennifer Garner, who played the role of Elektra Natchios in the film Daredevil and its spin-off Elektra, holds them unconventionally with the index and middle finger straddling the central prong inside the yoku. A grip with fingers between the yoku and the middle shaft facilitates a more flashy array of finger twirls; however, it is usually frowned upon in martial arts because the fingers would be very easy to hit with another weapon, and it eliminates the possibility of catching the opponents weapon between the yoku and shaft.

Sai also feature prominently in other films, such as in the two battles between Anck-Su-Namun and Nefertiri/Evie in The Mummy Returns. They also make an appearance in the hands of Keanu Reeves in The Matrix Reloaded. In the film The Book of Swords, there is a female ninja who wields a pair of sai. In the film Bulletproof Monk, the villainess, Nina, brandishes a single black sai in a fight to the death with the heroine, Jade.

Aneka uses a pair of sai as her weapon of choice in the comedy Kröd Mändoon and the Flaming Sword of Fire.

In television, Gabrielle (Renee O'Connor) from Xena: Warrior Princess uses a pair of sai as her primary weapons in seasons 5 and 6. In the series, Gabrielle, a former pacifist, makes note of the versatility of the sai by mentioning their lethal and non-lethal uses. To demonstrate this, she often uses the knuckle to strike her opponents in battle and rarely uses the shaft to make a killing blow.

Raphael of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles uses twin sai as his weapons of choice. In the animated television series, Ronin Warriors, the character Lady Kayura uses a modified pair of sai as her weapons of choice. Whilst in the manga comics, TenTen in Naruto has many weapons including a sai attached to a chain. Also Kish from Tokyo Mew Mew uses a pair of sai, termed "Dragon swords". Sun-Sun a minor-character from Bleach uses a sai as her zanpakutō.

In the Japanese Super Sentai and American Power Rangers franchises in the series Kyōryū Sentai Zyuranger and Mighty Morphin Power Rangers, Dan the Tricearanger and Billy Cranston the Blue Ranger and Boi the Tigerranger and Trini Kwan the Yellow Ranger all wield weapons resembling sai. Also, a villainess named Camille in Power Rangers: Jungle Fury (and her Juken Sentai Gekiranger counterpart Mele) wielded sai in her warrior form.

In the popular South Park episode "Good Times with Weapons", Cartman uses a pair of "Killer Sai" when facing Professor Chaos and, later, a gang of rival ninjas in the Battle of Togikawa.

In video games, Mileena from the Mortal Kombat series uses sai as her primary weapons. Li Mei in Mortal Kombat: Deadly Alliance, Sareena in Mortal Kombat: Tournament Edition and Khameleon in Mortal Kombat Trilogy also use sai. In the Last Bronx series, sai are wielded by Nagi.

In a "Smallville" episode, Lana is seen drawing Elektra's exact same sai, with the customised "E" from its plaque on the wall and throwing it at Clark Kent.

In the manga Shikabane Hime, the antagonist Yamagami Itsuki uses a sai when he fights against Tagami Keisei.

Is there not a "throwing" sai?[edit]

I just read a book in which one of the characters used sai, but she had two different sets; one set was a normal size meant for the hand to hand, and one set was just a bit smaller for more accurate throwing.

Is this a plausible fighting reference or just an author's flourish? —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 15:47, 12 August 2009 (UTC)

There's no special sai variant made just for throwing, but bunkai of some sai katas show that they can be thrown as well. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 07:56, 28 February 2010 (UTC)


I wrote that the sai was imported from outside Okinawa and is believed to have originated in Indonesia, but I wasn't surprised when the statement was challenged. I gave a citation and now I find that the whole history section has been removed with no reason given. Can someone explain this? Could it be that certain people don't want to admit that what they had erroneously believed to be a "ninja weapon" comes from a country they never heard of? Could this be yet another attempt at perpetuating the misconception of an Asia made up of a few countries? Despite the historical and cultural links between Southeast Asia and the Ryukyu Islands, are some people convinced that Okinawa borrowed only from China and no one else? I think the answer goes without saying. Morinae (talk) 11:49, 21 July 2010 (UTC)

Sword Breaker?[edit]

Why does everyone who makes these weapons articles fall for the age-old comic book stereotype that sai were used to trap (and in even wilder cases, break) katana? This is ridiculous. I'm a fencer, and stage actor. I'm the guy they bring in to movies to teach those people how to pretend to have a sword fight. It's denying the laws of physics to say that you could block a two handed, gravity assisted (vertical, downward) strike from a weapon as heavy as a katana on a perpendicular connection. I could see this kind of block working with a one handed weapon such as a kodachi, wakizashi, or tanto. But believing that a sai could do that to a katana is ludicrous. (talk) 00:53, 2 August 2010 (UTC)

While I do agree, a katana may not just snap and break as soon as force is applied, if you pointed the tips in differnt directions while blocking, you could lever the blade to bending and warping to the point of it being ruined/rendered practically useless and to some extent may actually snap and break.--Razorstrike (talk) 07:33, 5 September 2010 (UTC)

I find it hasty to deem trapping a sword impossible in such a simplifying manner. Combat situations are complex, and while it may be that an attacker is striking with all of his weight behind a single strike, that will not be the situation in the next strike, not to mention the moment after the sword touches the ground. Moreover, blocking a strike is never as static as to stand still with the sai in position, but rather a strike towards the strike, which leads to the possibility of meeting the sword before the moment of highest velocity/momentum is generated. I will not take a stance on breaking the sword, though. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 19:18, 23 April 2011 (UTC)

Sai certainly wouldn't break a katana but it can easily be used to trap a sword, mainly by not meeting the blow head on but from the side etc where you wouldn't meet the full force of the strike (you just have to make sure you are out of the way as well!) Also it can be used to safely deflect a sword attack away from the body and as they are used as a pair the other one can be used for a counter strike. Use of sai, as with any weapon including the katana is very complex, hence why it takes a long time and a lot of dedication to really master. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 14:56, 1 January 2013 (UTC)


I think this should clarify that the sai does not actually originate in Japan. The design is just another variation of the trishul, just like the katar has various designs. Also considering the tekpi of Indonesia is believed to have originated in India and is near-identicial to the sai, I think this further supports this claim. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 00:58, 14 April 2012 (UTC)

  • Your link shows nothing related to sai as far as I can see, and the article does not say that the sai originated in Japan.Samuraiantiqueworld (talk) 02:54, 14 April 2012 (UTC)


Before its arrival on Okinawa, the sai was already being used in other Asian countries including India, Thailand, China, Vietnam, Malaysia, and Indonesia

I don't know any chinese weapon which looks like a Sai (Idot (talk) 07:28, 11 November 2012 (UTC))

There are actually 2 weapons which resemble the Sai in Medieval China, actually 3 if you count the Trident (as those who reference the Indian Trishula seem to want to)which is an edged weapon. The one which closest resembles the sai is called the Iron Ruler, (鐵尺) also called the brush-holder fork (筆架叉)a blunt weapon used by law enforcement officers/detectives called the Bǔ Kuài (捕快). By the Tang and Song Dynasties the Iron ruler was common in China. (618~ C.E.).

The second is the the Edgeless Sword, or Truncheon, (鐧) another, slightly longer blunt weapon, also sometimes called a sword breaker. It appeared much earlier than the Iron ruler, just after the end of the Han Dynasty (220~ C.E.).

All are blunt weapons, which gradually taper towards the tip, often used in pairs and the only visible difference is the overall length, how the handle is shaped, and the various shapes of the stick of metal (ribbed, smooth rectangular, 6-sided, and 8 sided metal "blade").

I know pinterest is probably a poor choice to list as a source, but they've got some awesome pictures though.

The Iron Ruler, or Sai, was introduced to the Japanese in the 1600's, or what is now called the Edo Period, A time when only the Chinese and Dutch were allowed to trade with Japan. Also this was at least 1000 years after the Chinese had developed it.

Also on a side note, while he may have developed katas, or movements for the "Manji Sai", I have doubts as to whether Taira Shinken invented the actual weapon called the "Manji Sai" either. He was born in the 1890's There are Chinese versions of this weapon that are maybe older than that (don't quote me on that, because I don't know for sure). However Some Chinese style Sai/Iron Ruler/whatever you wanna call it, have the downward prong looping all the way around to form a complete knuckle guard.

You probably can't find that anywhere in Japan, Okinawa, or the Ryūkyū Islands. --ZhaoHistorian1 (talk) 03:01, 28 October 2015 (UTC)

Sai weapon[edit]

Open main menu Wikipedia Search Show my notifications The Malevolent Breasts Blade Joined 2 minutes ago Talk Contributions Uploads You don't have a user page yet You can describe yourself to fellow editors on your user page Create your own Wikipedia

Content is available under CC BY-SA 3.0 unless otherwise noted. Terms of UsePrivacyDesktop Close Sai weapon A sai weapon is a usually a resen sorcerer baton with a guard strengthened and made stronger with what is possible of it as a baton. In America they are usually made of metal [metal is made of resen a synthetic to what everybody knows as lead, silver, gold, bronze, hence the same thing] with all pieces of it made correctly. They are sorcerer battle wands, a projectile weapon to use sorcery at what you point it at as a pointer stick with a guard. The Malevolent Breasts Blade (talk) 21:04, 20 November 2017 (UTC) The Malevolent Breasts Blade (talk) 21:06, 20 November 2017 (UTC)