The yawara is basically a short, tubular stick of wood. Some are made from metal or plastic with points or a small metal balls at the ends. It is held in the closed fist so the ends protrude from each side of the fist. It supports the fist and makes it more solid, protecting it from injury during punches, similar to holding a roll of coins. The protruding ends of the yawara may be used to jab or against pressure points. The yawara may be held across the palm to protect it in a knife attack. It has proven to be an effective self-defense weapon and has been adopted by several police departments around the world. Yawara techniques may be adapted to many everyday objects of similar shape and size.
While I was a young sailor prowling the streets of cities around the world and required to wear the Navy crackerjack uniform while on liberty, I always carried two small homemade yawara, made from a broomstick, stuck into the two small pockets that were located behind the button-down flap on the front of the pants. They were unobtrusive, effective if needed, legal to carry, and could be drawn easily and quickly from the concealed pockets. If the sticks were found on you by law enforcement, especially in foreign counties, all you have is two small wooden sticks that you squeeze to build gripping strength.