Okinawan Martial arts is both Karate & Kobudo

Okinawan Martial arts is both Open Hand ( Karate ) and Weapons ( Kobudo)

shorinkan karate and kobudo ( weapons ) all oneUnlike most martial arts, japanese karate-do and Korean arts, Okinawan Karate sAt ystems like Shorin-ryu combine both open hand and weapons in to one system. 

At the start of the Karateka's journey at OBI Karate school, or similiar Okinawan Dojo, he will begin to learn open hand techniques, starting with basic stances, blocks and punches.  As he progresses he will begin to start learning kata, Shorinkan Shorin-ryu, has 15 open hand kata.  Once he progresses to a point that of understanding, usually around the third kata Shodan, he will be introduced to Kobodu. 

Kobudo means weapons, Okinawan weapons based on what the Okinawans had available. These where farming and fishing people, so the weapons are based on tools commonly found on the farm or around fishing boats.  In Okinawan Shorin-ryu open hand "karate" and weapons "kobudo" compliment each other. By learning weapons, one strengthens and furhers their understanding of karate, and the opposite is true as well.  

The most widley recgonized weapons is the Bo, a 6ft staff.  The student must learn to wield this weapon using two hads working together, in harmony.  A strike with a Bo has two parts, the first is the most forward hand which is delivering the strike, the second hand furthest from the strike provides the pull and power of the strike. Both hands must start and stop at the same time to deliver the body weight.   This understanding of the hands working toghether is just one example of how weapons enhance open hand training.