_ The weapons program is also offered at NLMA. Students learn how to use various types of traditional karate weapons. Students learn katas and self-defense. The weapons students will be using change as they progress throughout the program. Students start off learning the bo, a wooden stick and most common weapon in martial arts, and progress to use other weapons such as the tongfa, kama, and sai. Students will learn the historic everyday items and uses from which these weapons were derived. For example, the bo was the wooden stick worn across the shoulders to carry water in ancient Japan.