Ginunting – a Fil and Indo Sword

May 21, 2017
Ginunting – a Fil and Indo Sword

Southeast Asia is home to a lot of famous and popular martial arts. Along with these wonderful arts, the incredible and mighty weapons that are originally useful in combat appeared. The Ginunting is one of these traditional and historical weapons that is a favorite weapon for a long time in the jungles of the Philippines.

What is the Ginunting?

A Ginunting is a sword that is usually familiar with the Philippines Marines and goes way back in history. The word “Ginunting” probably means scissors in the language of the native warriors. The reason is that the weapon resembles half a pair of scissors with its curved blade. When Japan invaded Philippines, the warriors used their short and versatile weapon to win combats much to the dismay of their Japanese counterparts.

Ginunting Anatomy

Ginunting Anatomy

How to use the Ginunting?

With its downward curving blade, the Ginunting is a perfect weapon to use in close encounters in addition to securing the movement through the thick jungles of the Philippines. It is good for many purposes, to clear bush, to carve and cut wood and as an effective slaughter tool in hunting. It is sharp enough to cut wood for fire and for scaring away enemies. It is also light and versatile and this makes it the best and most useful weapon to carry around.

The steel used to make the Ginunting is thick and this makes it sturdy and durable. At the same time, the handle is super comfortable to use and this makes it the perfect and most versatile Filipino weapon ever. Because it is fast and easy to swing, it will take away any body part it is aimed at. Even more, it can help you to decapitate your enemy in the split of a second if you aim for the neck.

In English the word Ginunting literally means “cut out” and this is exactly what this sword does. Thy will cut through anything and everything and this is why the Filipino warriors chose them over the years. The mighty weapon is still in use by today’s marines in their fights against outlaws and terrorists. It is a must have in the military world of the Philippines.

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The legend of the Ginunting

The history of the Ginunting takes us back to the time when the Guerilla tactics were the favorite war tactics of the Filipino Guillereros. At that time, a popular method was the hit and run tactic. A warrior will hide along a banana tree making him very hard to be distinguished when the enemy passes by. Then the warrior will sway the Ginunting swiftly leaving the enemy puzzled not knowing what hit him. It is too sharp that it will pass through the body reaching the other side, not even stopped by the bones. This makes it the most favored weapon until today because it can cut sharp and fast.

You can buy a high quality Ginunting here.


You can watch this video to see how to use the Ginunting in combat due to its versatile and light design. There are a lot of ways that could prepare you to use this mighty weapon. In this section we highlight a few:

The basic training

The most important thing that a practitioner must learn is how to move using the Ginunting. This will include learning the basic angels and the footwork that will allow you to move using the sharp blade. The first step is to learn the basic angles. In training you will practiced these angles in static position but as you become better at holding and using the blade they will be accompanied by footwork. These include the full swing, the half swing, circular swing, and reverse angels.

The reverse triangle

After mastering the basic training, it is time to combine your angles with the footwork. It’s an important skill that put you in the perfect position to attack your enemy. You should pay special attention to the foot you use with each angle. Your moves will affect your position and will give you power over your opponent.

When you step with the right foot, you will be able to strike with your right hand. This move is the best to strike an opponent or to defend against an attack. Or you can step with the left foot, attacking with your right, also striking the opponent and giving yourself privilege as you strike from the other side.

Side steps

The side step technique, or the Pekiti Tirsia is very special and unique. It gives you the privilege to attack on a very close range while moving. Consequently, your opponent is unable to reach you. In other attacking techniques, you have to shift your weight to attack. Pekiti Tirsia is different, almost 80% of your weight is kept on your rear foot .

From a reverse triangle position, you can strike with angle 1 and keep on stepping with your right foot. Your object is to move to the outside of your opponent while avoiding being struck by him. At the same time, you can also cover yourself if he decides to use the same angle of attack.

Using the Ginunting requires patience and practice. It is not something that you will master overnight. But you will get better with proper practice and training. The Ginunting offers an amazing way to explore the richness of the Filipino culture while learning to use one of the mighty weapons of martial arts that have become a legend with mighty warriors for long decades.

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