What is Tameshigiri?

Have you heard about Tameshigiri? If you are a fan of swords, especially Japanese ones, you must’ve heard of it. Tameshigiri means test cut or the art of cutting, literally the art of test cutting. It became popular in Japanese Edo period as a way of testing a sword’s quality. However, as time passed by, Tameshigiri became a martial art, which, instead of focusing on the sword quality, it focuses on testing the skill of the cutter. Let’s delve deeper and learn more about Tameshigiri.


Origin of Tameshigiri

During the Japanese Edo period, swords were tested by sword masters for their quality. It is important to note that only chosen swordsmen were allowed to test the swords to make sure that it is indeed the sword was being tested and not the cutting skill of the wielder.

The materials used for testing varies greatly during that time. Some of the common materials used were wara (rice straw), goza (top layer of tatami mats), bamboo and thin steel sheets. A well-crafted sword should be able to cut these materials with ease.

However, those cutting materials weren’t really the center of attention for sword testers. The most popular testing material was a human cadaver, especially of a convicted criminal. Yes, you read that one right. When a sword is tested using a human cadaver, they would acquire a “saidan-mei” or cutting signature. Nowadays, there are still swords marked on their nakago (tang) which says things such as “5 bodies with Ryu Guruma (hip cut)”. Take note that those inscriptions greatly add to the value of the sword.

However, not all human cadavers can be used as a test target. As you may have known, the Japanese are very ritualistic, and thus, they carefully inspect each cadaver for any signs of diseases or any signs of diseases. In addition to that, they don’t use bodies of lower caste or of priests because they believe that it will warp the blade’s soul.

Modern Usage

With the reformation of the Japanese law, Tameshigiri slowly removed and ultimately banned the use of human cadavers. It’s replaced by wara, which is proven to be of the same consistency and density as the human body.

Then, moving on to the present day, Tameshigiri changed from being a way to test a sword to being a way to know how skillful a swordsman is. Modern targets are usually tatami omote (which consists of the outer covering of a tatmi mat popular in Japanese homes), also known as goza or wara. They are bundled or rolled into a tubular shape – and can be soaked to add density. The additional density makes it sure to have approximately the same density as of human bone and flesh.

What Makes the Best Tactical Tomahawk

Obviously, not all people are actually interested and would talk about tactical tomahawks. For some, it is nothing but an ancient weapon. Thus, you don’t really find much information about tomahawks everywhere. What they are used for and how to find the best one.

tactical tomahawk

Currently, there are many kinds of tactical tomahawks. They come in different designs, sizes, uses and even the material they are made of. If you are planning to get one and been struggling to know about which one to go. Then all these might help you.

What is a Tactical Tomahawk

Tomahawks were first used by the Native Americans as a weapon during the Vietnam War. It’s a single-handed axe and normally used as a thrown weapon.  But recently, tactical tomahawks emerged which law enforcement and the military community finds it useful. It’s a great survival weapon which can be used for cutting, chopping, splitting and even for hunting.

Since tactical tomahawks are starting to become very popular these days, you’ll find tons of options available in the market. In which as a result, it would be hard for some to know which one is the best for them. In order to help you out, we probably have to know, what makes the best tactical tomahawk?

What Makes the Best Tactical Tomahawk?

This is that main question that we all need to ask. Here are some things that you need to consider in order to answer that question.


Whether you’d go for a long or a short handle for a tomahawk, it doesn’t matter. What matter is, how you’d intend to use it? Long handle tomahawk gives more leverage and will allow you to put more force to swing. But it’s absolutely heavier than and not as compact as the short handle one. Short handled tomahawks however, are a bit handy and can be used in close areas. And it’s easy to carry and pack.


One other thing that you need to consider when choosing the best tactical tomahawk is its poll or the backside. These days, the most common tomahawk design has a spiked back. It’s not really far from a flat or a rounded back, but still can give you additional usage such as piercing.

Cutting Side

What makes a tomahawk is of course its cutting edge. Your choice again will depend on how you want to use it. A tomahawk with longer cutting edge is absolutely heavy, which is very useful when chopping and cutting of woods. Today, latest tactical tomahawks have circular or rounded cutouts, making it less heavy, but still with the same cutting ability.

tactical tom

Choosing the Best

The number one key in choosing the best tactical tomahawk is to know what to use it for.  There are so many tactical tomahawks in the market and it would be hard to choose if you don’t have the right knowledge about it. Remember, what might be the best for someone may not be the best for you. You can always visit your nearest tomahawk shop and tell them what you need. They probably are knowledgeable enough to assist you and tell you which one is the best for you.