Jogo do Pau

English quarterstaff fighting in the 1880s had no self-defence or combat value, but Jogo do Pau, the Portuguese staff fighting art does. Like Sicilian Paranza, it’s a practical shepherd and partisans art that was still in use during the early 20th Century and was more than a recreational pastime; it was designed to be used in potentially mortal combat against knive or staff wielding bandits. 

Although it’s past it’s sell by date as a form of self-defence — sheep rustling can’t be that prolific in Portugal — the system still retains it’s combat efficacy,

It’s was also usable against multiple attackers, which quarterstaff fighting isn’t because of the linear footwork.  

And interestingly they train to recover from the ground, which most European staff fighting arts don’t.  

And apparently the techniques of Jogo do Pau were taught in bayonet practice to Portuguese soldiers during WWI.

3 thoughts on “Jogo do Pau

    • @ heather

      It’s very sophisticated too, when he was defending against three opponents he forces them into a triangular pattern with himself at the base instead of getting caught in the middle.

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