Yugake – Glove Protection

Kyudo is known as Japanese martial arts of archery. An expert in this field is referred to as Kyudoka. As a form of protection for the hands, these archers wear Yugake on their right hand. These are generally made of deerskin.

There are two varieties of this Samurai Suit. There is a soft and hard yugake. The hard glove has a hardened thumb area while the soft glove does not have this. There are reasons why archers use their preferred Yugake.

In the case of the hard glove, it has a pre-made groove that helps to pull the string or tsuru. With the softer version, the thumb is flexible. This allows practitioners to create their own techniques based on their preferred shooting habits.

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Samurai Armor Equipment

Typically, Yugake as a Samurai Armor has three or four fingers. There are names given for these kinds of fingered types. MItsugake is the three-fingered version while Yotsugake is the four-finger version.

Again, there are reasons for each type of fingered varieties. Yotsugake works best in pulling heavier bows of 18 to 20 kilos or even higher bows. Mitsugake pulls below 20 kilos of bows.

With the exception of the Ippongake, Yugake is used with an under glove referred to as Shitagake. This is made of cotton or synthetic cloth.

This protects the user from sweat while the version that uses a deerskin breaks down due to normal wear and tear. Suffice to say that materials like these last longer than the use of deerskin. The powder is used from burnt rice husks known as fudeko.

This is applied to the hands as it absorbs sweat. Female archers wear a chest protector known as Muneate. This protects their breast from being struck by the bowstring during shooting proper or practices.

Samuraiantiqueworld [CC BY-SA 3.0], via Wikimedia Commons

Modern Versions of Yugake

Yugake is custom made. These can come in three to five finger types, unlike its old form. Like its old form, there are specific uses for each finger type. Five fingers Yugake are used when shooting from a horse.

Four finger versions are used for shooting for a long period of time like from 12 to 24 hours. This will help the shooter avoid being tired as he frequently used his thumbs and fingers on the bow.

The thumb is fashioned longer and points downward. The three-finger gloves are considered best for shooting from a distance of 28 meters. Among the equipment used in Kyudo, Yugake is the best to adapt to its user.

This glove can last for years and maybe even for decades with the right kind of materials. The value of this glove is different from the other gears used in Kyudo. This must be kept clean since grim and dirt tends to stick to this glove.

Repairs must comply with Dojo regulations. It is a must, therefore, to prevent these from wasting away. The use of upbeat colors other than the standard black or brown is applicable to the modern version.

Colors like light brown, grey-black or white can be a good option. The use of expensive leather can put a dent on the budget but, it is worth it.

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