training and mastery in fighting with weapons were unavoidable in the
old days.In KalariPayattu, after learning meipayattu movements,
weapon training is also started. First weapons made of cane are taken
up and after skill acquired in them,wooden weapons are practised. The
lethal metallic weapons are practised lastly. The weapon training begins
with the 'Kolthari'( Stickfights).
Weapon fight start
from Nedum chan (
10 span stick ) as it is usually as tall as the individual's
body (upto nose).Once a person attains competency over this long stick
and is able to steady the eye movements,the remaining lessons become
easy.Thus this long stick wielding is taught first among the weapons.
The base mid portion and top of the stick is effectively used in both
attack and defence.
vadi ( 3 span stick fight )
This is the fighting technique using a short stick about 3 span length
that is used in both offensive attacks and defences.
Otta Kol( An elephant tusk shaped weapon)Like the grammar in any language,
the Otta lessons are considered to be the grammar of kalaripayattu.
The basic foundation for all higher weapons is laid during the study
of the otta.The key 108
marma points on the human body can be precisely attacked
and defended using this queer shaped weapon, covered in 9 lessons. The
speciality of these lessons and the weapon is that it improves ones
mental concentration tremendously.
( The Dagger )
This is first weapon in the metallic weapons section called the 'Angathari'.The
dagger enables many swift and sharp defensive and offensive moves.It
also gives the basic lessons on unarmed combats also.
Parichayum ( Sword and Shield fights
This is the standard fighting method followed for centuries holding
the offensive sword and the defensive shield.Most feudal disputes were
settled in the sword and shield fights during the olden days. Certain
tactics in the fight having similarities to a tiger's offensive and
defensive attacks are called Puli angam ( Tiger
fights ). The beauty of the fight is when the fighters use
the weapons as part of their bodies.
( A curved sword )
A curved sword carried with the body along the waist is called the udaval.
This style involves fighting a sword with a sword.It is a highly rythmic
and scientific technique.
( The Flexible Sword )
Urumi is a flexible double edged long sword. It can effectively defend
and ward off an armed attack. Perfect mind body concentration is required
to wield this dangerous weapon.