'Kubotan' is a registered trademark of Takayuki Kubota, who originally developed it as a tool for police officers to restrain suspects without permanent injury. Its popularity began in the mid-1970s when Kubota first brought the weapon to the attention of the LAPD and began schooling female officers in its application. It is often touted as extremely effective in breaking the will of unruly suspects with painful locks and pressure point strikes. Because of that the Kubotan is also sometimes dubbed the 'instrument of attitude adjustment'. In some law enforcement and security circles it is known as "The Persuader".
The Kubotan keychain (as designed and sold by Kubota) is a hard high-impact plastic rod, usually made from Lexan, about 5.5 inches (14 cm) long and 9/16 0.56 inch (1.5 cm) in diameter. The body is lined with six round grooves for added grip and there is a screw eye with a split ring attached to one end for keys.