Art of Fencing, Art of Life

Month: May 2018 Page 1 of 2

Why You Should Yell and Scream In Fencing

Yelling and screaming in fencing: why you should yell and screamRecently I was at a competition, and a new parent approached me. She has a young fencer new to the sport and they were both new to the experience of competitions. She asked me, “Why do the other girls yell so much?” She thought it was inappropriate to behave in that way and that the other girl should be penalized or punished for her outbursts.

If you’re new to the sport of competitive fencing it’s easy to mistake the outbursts to be some kind of temper tantrum or even bad sportsmanship. But the truth is it’s completely appropriate behavior, and in fact, it is encouraged and even sometimes cheered!

Here’s why.

For the Love of the Sport of Fencing

For the Love of the Sport of FencingTo live a healthy active lifestyle many people will choose an activity that they can and want to do. This is a way to insure that activity will be a part of your entire life. For example, if you hate running, odds are good you won’t be a runner when you’re in your 60’s. But if you love running, it’s possible for you to continue running marathons until well into your 90’s and some have even run marathons older than that!

For many, fencing can be and become a lifetime passion.

12 Ways Parents can Encourage their Young Fencers

12 Ways a Parents can Encourage their Young FencersWhen it comes to being the parent of a fencer, everyone wants to see their child win the match. That sounds simple and straightforward, but in reality it’s not so easy to know how to give your child that support.

The first thing parents need to realize is that the key is to ENCOURAGE your child in fencing, NOT TO PUSH your child into getting better at the sport. The difference is that encourage is allowing the motivation to spring from inside your child, where pushing your child is forcing your will onto them. The goal of sports is to develop good qualities in our children that will long outlive the time that they spend actually playing the sport!

Poor sport parenting puts undue pressure and stress on kids. It’s counterproductive as it leaves children not liking fencing, being burdened with feelings of failure, and taking negative feelings into other parts of their lives. What parents give to kids while they’re training on the strip stays with them well beyond.

If you want your child to come out of their fencing experience as a winner, (by winning we mean feeling good about themselves and having a healthy attitude towards competition, NOT that they get a bunch of medals), then they need YOUR HELP! You are a central, critical, important part of the athlete-coach-parent team that is what makes fencing work.

Keep in mind that no one wins unless everyone wins. These dozen tactics will help fencing parents to become more skilled in youth fencing, because there is no handbook for fencing parents that’s got all of the answers!  

How to Get Your Kids Off Their Electronic Device With Fencing

How to Get Your Kids Off Their Electronic Device With Fencing

A few years ago I snapped this picture of our son busily playing with his phone while he was waiting for the rest of us to finish our practice at the club. I’m sure this is an image that is very familiar to many parents. In fact, so many kids come to us obsessed with their Playstation or focused on their electronic devices.

I understand and empathize with these parents. My kids, while all serious fencers, have their moments with electronic devices. But I’ve also seen their growth and maturity affected by falling in love with the sport.

A Device Obsession

In many cases, parents of device-obsessed kids are concerned for their health and their activity level. They’re often found hunched over their phone, or stuck in a dark room glued to their computer monitors or TV.

Some kids end up suffering from text neck, which puts pressure on your spine and can cause mostly just pain and discomfort, but if gone untreated could lead to other complications.

I’ve known many parents who have set ultimatums with their kids. Forcing them to try one sport or another with the expectation that this would end the technology obsession. And unfortunately rarely does this seem to help. That is, until they somehow find their way to fencing.

One Thing Your Fencing Mom Wants this Mother’s Day

One thing that your fencing mom wants this Mother’s DayThis weekend, we celebrate Mother’s Day and as the mom of four fencing kids I look forward to the extra family time to connect and enjoy one another.

While the joy of watching our children thrive in a sport they love and are passionate about is part of why we chose to do all of this, it doesn’t make it any less exhausting at times.

I know I’m not alone in this. Being a fencing mom is often a thankless and tiresome endeavor that involves a lot of extra thinking, planning, organizing, worrying, and executing of all of these plans and organization.

That’s why I’d like to share with you the one thing that your fencing Mom might want to get this Mother’s Day, and every day.

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