Throwing Stars

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Throwing Stars: Everything You Need to Know

Throwing stars, also known as shurikens, are a type of weapon that originated in Japan. They are small, flat, and sharp-edged, with multiple points that allow them to stick to surfaces and inflict damage when thrown. In this article, we will explore the history of throwing stars, their use in modern times, and how to throw them safely and effectively.

History of Throwing Stars

The use of throwing stars dates back to feudal Japan, where they were primarily used by ninjas for stealth attacks and as a means of distraction. The first throwing stars were made from everyday objects, such as nails or coins, but soon evolved into more sophisticated designs made specifically for combat.

Types of Throwing Stars

There are several types of throwing stars, each with a unique design and purpose. The most common types include:

    • Bo Shuriken: This is the simplest and most common type of throwing star. It has a straight, tapered design with a single point at the center.
    • Hira Shuriken: This type of throwing star has a flat, circular shape with multiple points around the edges. It is designed to be thrown at a spinning motion, which increases its accuracy and effectiveness.
    • Kugi Nuki: This is a variation of the bo shuriken, which has a hole in the center. This design reduces the weight of the throwing star, making it easier to throw accurately.
    • Hoko Shuriken: This type of throwing star has a spear-like shape, with a single pointed end and a flat, wide base. It is designed for long-range throwing and is often used for hunting or fishing.

Modern Use of Throwing Stars

While throwing stars are still used in some martial arts and self-defense practices, they are mostly used for recreational purposes such as target practice or as collectibles. Many people also enjoy the art of throwing stars as a hobby, with competitions and exhibitions held around the world.

How to Throw a Throwing Star

Throwing a throwing star requires skill, practice, and proper technique. Here are some steps to follow when learning how to throw a throwing star:

    1. Choose the right type of throwing star for your skill level.
    2. Hold the throwing star between your index and middle finger, with the point facing forward.
    3. Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart and your dominant foot slightly behind the other.
    4. Draw your arm back and bring it forward in a fluid motion, releasing the throwing star at the right moment.
    5. Follow through with your arm and body to maintain accuracy and momentum.

Safety Tips for Throwing Stars

Throwing stars can be dangerous if not used properly, so it is essential to follow these safety tips:

    • Always wear eye protection when throwing.
    • Only throw in designated areas, away from people and animals.
    • Ensure that your throwing star is not damaged or bent before use.
    • Always hold the throwing star by the edges, away from the sharp points.


Throwing stars may have originated as a weapon of war, but they have since become a popular recreational activity enjoyed by people around the world. With the right technique, equipment, and safety precautions, throwing stars can be a fun and challenging hobby for anyone interested in martial arts or outdoor sports.


    1. Are throwing stars legal to own and use?
      • The legality of throwing stars varies by country and state. It is essential to research your local laws before purchasing or using them.
    1. Can throwing stars be used for self-defense?
      • While throwing stars can be used for self-defense, they are not a practical or effective weapon in most situations.
    1. Can throwing stars cause serious injury or death?
      • Yes, throwing stars can cause serious injury or even death if not used properly. It is crucial to follow safety precautions and only uses throwing stars in designated areas away from people and animals.