Throughout history, the martial arts have seen their fair share of unique and devastating weapons, but there are some that just take the cake for being both weird and frighteningly deadly. Let’s have a look at some of the most unusual martial arts weapons ever to be created.


1. Blackjack
Fans of the video game series ‘Thief’ might recognize this close-range weapon. A club made up of a heavy weight attached to the end of either a spring or shaft, the blackjack is designed to knock out a target using devastating blunt-force impact. It’s easily concealed, and you can even make an improvised one by merely putting a rock or other weight inside a sock, and swinging it around.

2. Kelewang
A short sword with a blade that broadens from the base towards the tip into a notch, the kelewang might look strange, but this Indonesian weapon is not to be trifled with. When the Dutch colonists went to war with the Aceh Sultanate, in the late 19th century, they found themselves fighting warriors armed with kelewangs, who made short work of their cutlass-wielding troops. After the Dutch won the war with firearms, they adopted the kelewang, and to this day it can be found in ceremonial use among certain parts of the military.


3. Meteor hammer
The meteor hammer has been a part of the Chinese arsenal since ancient times. A pair of weights connected by a rope or chain, it’s designed to be swung and thrown, then wrapped around a target’s body, before being pulled and unwrapped, allowing the weight to strike the target freely. It’s a variant of the rope dart, a similar weapon, but with a metal dart at the end instead of a blunt weight.


4. Nunchaku
Made famous by Bruce Lee’s incredible onscreen demonstration of skill in his trademark yellow tracksuit, nunchaku are traditional weapons from the island of Okinawa. Two sticks of hardwood, traditionally aged in mud for years to harden them even further, are connected by a chain, and used to strike with great force, wrap around and constrict movement, or disarm an opponent.


5. Caltrop
Caltrops are a set of spikes arranged in a shape that causes them to be propped up, a single spike facing upwards, when thrown on the ground, making short work of any troops with thin soles. Easily mass-produced and used since ancient Roman times, caltrops were perfect for slowing down troops, cavalry, animals, and even vehicles.

Got any more unique martial arts weapons that you’d like to share with us?