How to use a shashka: fighting techniques


I’m finding that a lot of people seem to be searching for information on the use of the Cossack sabre, the shashka. This is something I’ve had an interest in for several years now. As awareness of Russian martial arts spreads in the west, there’s an increasing amount of material in English but, of course, most of it is in Russian.


I thought I would provide a collection of videos I’ve found over the years, in case it’s of interest to other people. The first set is of Cossack techniques, followed by a few from the Circassians – the people of of the Caucasus region who originally developed the shashka, and whose culture was borrowed by the Cossacks.

I’ll update this page if I find more material; I’ll also put up a separate post soon about dancing with a shashka.

Updated 22/12/2014. This shows some subtle moves worth bearing in mind)

(Updated 21/12/2014. This one is quite long, but interesting)



Circassian combat techniques:

Update 21/12/2014: another Circassian clip:

Image credit: Hanna Zelenko [GFDL or CC BY-SA 4.0-3.0-2.5-2.0-1.0], via Wikimedia Commons


  1. I am interested in learning this so dearly!can you point me in the direction of real basics? I had an accident and am now just getting back to Normal! Even my doctor says this would be good for me! I am not near a place to learn from an instructor…I will have to go it alone!


    1. Hello Liam,
      You are in luck. You can go to I&I sports here with link- There are now two videos translated from Russian to english that were shot last year in Russia. There are three books that are on Cossack Martial Arts that have been translated from Russian to English. Last but not least there are free videos on youtube-


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