I read some of the posts here about lightsaber physics, but I never found an explanation to a question someone just asked me:

When a lightsaber duel is happening, is it a useful tactic to turn off one's saber for a split second, allowing you to avoid certain obstacles (like the opposing saber)?


This is actually a recognised saber technique, described in The Jedi Path : A Manual for Students of the Force) as 'Trakata' or 'Passing the Blade'

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As to why it's not used more commonly, the answer is that it's a risky (and highly advanced) technique that seems prone to failure.

The Star Wars Wookieepedia page on Trakàta describes a number of occasions on which it has been used. Note that all examples are from non-canon sources such as the EU novels and comics:

Members of the New Jedi Order known to employ this technique include Jedi Master Mara Jade Skywalker. Jedi Master Corran Horn used a variant of this technique during the Yuuzhan Vong War, one notable occurrence being while he was battling Shedao Shai on Ithor. During the battle, Horn and Shai were locked in combat, and Horn deactivated his lightsaber, then reignited it into Shedao Shai, killing the temporary Supreme Commander.

During her duel with Ben Skywalker, Sith apprentice Tahiri Veila used this technique to great effect. Skywalker forced her lightsaber aside, so Tahiri switched her lightsaber off and on so fast Skywalker barely had time to react, allowing her to extend the blade to where his throat had been just moments before

  • That's it, that's what I wanted. Will accept in 3 minutes.
    – 5xum
    Dec 9 '14 at 15:08
  • I respect your knowledge about Star Wars.... wow
    – LcSalazar
    Dec 9 '14 at 16:25

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