About "Naginata" (Long-handled sword)
The Naginata is a kind of long weapon originally used by the samurai class. As powerful firearms were imported, the Naginata became less useful for men, so it became a weapon for self-defense for women.
The Naginata in ancient Japan was between 180 cm and 300 cm in length. The Naginata comes in all lengths and their techniques (sword skills) are also different. Though it is difficult for you to use the long sword (Naginata) which cannot be seen elsewhere, it is truly interesting.
There exist two types of competition, the Naginata match and the Naginata performance. The Naginata match (Individual match and team match) is to strike the target areas of an opponent while wearing a protective mask. The Naginata performance is to compete for the superiority of Naginata techniques. According to the rules of each competition, the contestants' performance is measured by the number of valid hits in "attack and defense" (Combinations of basic techniques) and "All Japan Naginata Federation Kata" (Combinations of traditional Naginata techniques). The competition is held in pairs between contestants that are divided into two teams.