I had a question the other day about putting together a weapons form so I thought I'd share a few sources here to help you get started since it is an item on this week's One-Step questions.
1. You Tube is a great source. I like to look at competition videos and have found several good ones off of www.SportMartialArts.com. Their channel has lots of videos from the various tournaments around the country. Also search You Tube by your particular weapon for additional videos.
2. www.ehow.com has some good videos from experts that break down how to do tricks with different weapons.
3. www.blacknbluevideo.com has tons of videos for sale but they also do 24 hour rentals online (similar to Netflicks) that are inexpensive and a good way to check out a bunch of different artists.
4. Books/videos through the King County Library System at www.KCLS.org
Once you have some sources for tricks and cool moves, think about what types of moves YOU like to do. Are hook/rounds or butterfly/back kick combinations your favorite? Do you like doing double knives or jumping kicks? Are there parts of the BBC weapons form that you liked doing? Is there a part in one of our traditional forms that you like? I pulled the hook/round/step-round from Palchugi Yuk Jang for my weapons form but added in some Kama work.
Write up a list of different combinations of moves that you enjoy performing and then think about how you can link these together and add weapons moves.
Pick out a weapons trick or two to showcase during your form and show us all your mastery of the weapon. This is the "special move" we talk about that will be unique to your form.
Figure out a strong opening move and big finishing move to your form.
Think about varying your heights to create a dynamic feel in your form - example, going to one knee to execute a Sai move, bringing your Bo staff to the ground, doing cartwheels over your weapon, shoulder rolls, etc.
Once you have a basic form written up, get to the dojo and try it out with the floor space. Sometimes things that worked in your head will need some adjustment to work with the floor spacing. You might need to add a kick to get yourself on the correct foot for your next move. These adjustments can all be made once you have a basic rough draft of your form.
Just like writing a paper for school or doing a project, you'll need to edit - adding and subtracting moves until you get the form the way you want it to look with good flow, dynamics and use of floor space. Its kind of like putting on a play for the audience. A video tape of your form will help you see the things you need to change. The most important thing is to give it your all and have fun - this is one of the areas that YOU get to create something that reflects who YOU are as a martial artist.
There are lots of people who enjoy helping out with weapons forms so don't be shy about asking for feedback on your form from your peers and the current Black Belts. Good luck and have fun