There are two well known ways of holding the Tanto, as seen in several Tanto dori. The question that follows is which side the sharp side should point to. I can tell you from experience that are different opinions out there.
Before I go into the different ways, I will start by explaining the Kanji, as you are used to. 短刀 (Tanto) means short sword or dagger. If you analyse the Kanji seperately it does not really get any more exciting. 短 means short and 刀 means sword. What might be fun to know (but does not get you anywhere I suppose) is that the character for 短 consists of two elements. The left part 矢 means arrow and 豆 means bean. So like I said, I suppose it does not get you anywhere..
If you are creative you can hold a Tanto perhaps in more than two ways, but basically there are two forms.
No. 1: Hold the Tanto with the blade at the side of the thumb.
No. 2: Hold the Tanto with the blade at the side of the small finger.
Which side should the sharp side point to? Both ways have their respective advantages and disadvantages and opinions differ on the topic. I will share the different ways without any judgement. In the video, I will also mention these advantages and disadvantages and I will explain the connection between the Tanto and the sword.
The Tanto is - in case of using a steel one - sheathed in the Saya. You have to take it out for training, but also have to put it back in. In the photo series and in the video I demonstrate a method that you can use to sheath your Tanto while maitaining Zanshin.
In this blog you will find: