Academy of Fencing Masters Blog

Art of Fencing, Art of Life

Month: July 2014

Following the Action: Tips for watching (and enjoying!) a fencing bout

Parents Cheer their Fencers During Foil Competition at Academy of Fencing Masters

Parents Cheer their Fencers During Foil Competition at Academy of Fencing Masters

Have you ever seen someone sit through a football or baseball party bored and uninterested in the game? It’s usually because he or she doesn’t know the rules and can’t follow along. When it comes to a lesser-known sport like fencing, most parents come to the table with little knowledge of the rules and strategies. It’s much easier to enjoy fencing competitions and support your young fencers if you can follow the action! This post is intended to give you some pointers for the next time you’re cheering at a fencing competition.

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Competitive Fencing Equipment for Children: What do you really need?

Foils in thefencing  bag of the competitive fencer

Foils in the fencing bag of the competitive fencer

Many novice parents want to know what fencing equipment is really required for fencing competitions. They look at the heavy bags and cases carried around by experienced fencers and they see dollar signs. All of that stuff looks expensive, doesn’t it? Buying fencing gear can be a burden to a family’s finances. That’s why it’s important to understand what you truly need so you can maximize your investment.

So what is the bare minimum of weapons one must have to compete? What is “enough”, what is “one too many”?

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Fencing Rules for the Novice Parent: Strategy differences for foil, epee, and sabre

Fencing Rules for the Novice Parent: Strategy differences for foil, epee, and sabre

When you attend big fencing tournaments with events occurring simultaneously for multiple weapons (foil, epee, and sabre), you will notice how different the bouts are to watch depending on the weapon. You will see epee fencers jumping in place for a long time until one suddenly flies towards the other. You will notice foil fencers moving quickly from one side of the strip to the other with much weapon beating. In watching sabre fencers, you will notice how the fencers immediately lunge towards one another after hearing “Fence!” You can see these differences for yourself at any big event, such as Summer Nationals, NACs, SYCs or RYC, and other regional competitions—or you can simply search YouTube!

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Fencing Rules for the Novice Parent: Rule differences for foil, epee, and sabre

Fencing weapons - foil, epee, sabre

Fencing weapons – foil, epee, sabre

We know the rules of fencing can be confusing when you’re only talking about one weapon, then you add in three different sets of rules for three different weapons! Well, first, many rules are exactly the same for all weapons as covered in our last blog. Second, most fencers start with one particular weapon and may never add another … so as a parent, you really only need a thorough understanding of the rules for one weapon. However, it’s good to understand each of the weapons at a high level, so let’s talk through them and we’re also going to provide a handy chart!

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