Mashiro's Self-Defense and Vital Points

The Black Medicine Books

I'm Mashiro. I have written four unusual books on Vital Points, Self-Defense, and Weapons, published over the last 30 years by Paladin Press of Boulder, Colorado.

Legal Warning!

The self-defense techniques described in the Black Medicine books are extremely dangerous. These techniques, particularly the use of weapons, inevitably reflect the author's individual beliefs and experiences that the reader cannot duplicate exactly. Therefore, they are presented for academic study only. The author, publisher, and distributors of these books disclaim any liability from any damage or injuries of any type that a reader or user of information contained within these books may encounter from the use of said information.

Black Medicine, volumes 1 to 4

The original book was a study in anatomy for karate students, and I called it "Black Medicine" as a play on "Black Magic." The name stuck, and so did the stark anatomical skull on the cover. Don't be put off by the cover or title; these are extraordinary books.

Black Medicine 1: The Dark Art of Death

This little book has been one of Paladin's best-selling titles for 25 years. I collected all the information I could find on traditional vital points (the best places to strike an adversary), relying on martial arts sources such as Funakoshi's Karate-Do Kyohan. These traditional sources tell you what to hit, but not why. Then I spent a lot of time in various medical and physiology texts looking for the underlying mechanisms. I wrote up the results in language anyone can understand. View excerpts and photos from BM1.

Black Medicine 2: Weapons at Hand

This is really two books in one. The first half lists the body's natural weapons. There are an astonishing number of them. This treatment runs on for 26 pages, devoting one paragraph to each part of the body that can be used as a weapon. The second half of the book describes over a hundred different common household objects that can be used as deadly weapons. Even the crudest weapon multiplies a fighter's effectiveness manyfold. View excerpts and photos from BM2.

Black Medicine 3: Low Blows

I once had the privilege of working with Briggs Hunt, the Olympic wrestling coach from UCLA. Briggs had been a ranger in WWII, first-in on Japanese-held islands in the Pacific. He loved to fight, and gleefully taught me a wide selection of dirty fighting techniques. This volume is a robust course in unarmed self-defense techniques. View excerpts and photos from BM3.

Black Medicine 4: Equalizers

"Equalizers" presents the twelve fundamental classes of weapons and described the basic moves for each. This volume emphasizes my interest in expedient weapons, the objects that are likely to be "at hand" when a fight starts. It explains how to pick up a pen, flashlight, broom, tire iron, hatchet, shovel, etc., and make effective use of them. View excerpts and photos from BM4.

My books are about $16.00 each (subject to change). If that sounds high to you, I'd like to tell you about the broken bones, sprains, loose teeth, stitches and back injuries I accumulated researching them. This is not armchair karate.

N. Mashiro

Copyright © 2008 by N. Mashiro. All rights reserved.