Art of Fencing, Art of Life

Month: October 2019

Victories Won in the Past Become Uninteresting in the Present – Interview with Ildar Mavlyutov [Translated from the Russian Fencing Federation]

Ildar Mavlyutov with Inna Deriglazova

This incredible interview of Ildar Mavlyutov by Tatyana Kolchanova was posted originally on the Russian Fencing blog on October 18, 2019. Ildar Mavlyutov is a major fencing coach from Russia who has been a mentor to Inna Deriglazova. Inna is the 2016 Olympic Champion, a six-time Fencing World Champion, and Olympic powerhouse foilist. 

It is always fascinating to learn from the world’s best athletes and coaches, and Ildar Mavlytov and Inna Deriglazova definitely proven themselves to be of that world’s best caliber. Deriglazova is called by some “the Fencing Goddess”.  They both live in the small city of Kurcharov, which is near Kursk, a city in Russia which became famous due to a World War II battle. Kurchatov is a very small city, with a population of slightly over forty thousand people, yet it is home to multiple World and European foil fencing champions who have been raised by Ildar Mavlyutov. When he offers his insight about fencing, training and motivation, using the example of his best student, Inna Deriglazova, it is definitely worth to read.

A few months ago I translated an interview with Deriglazova, which showed her character. Now it is even more interesting to learn about her character through the lens of her famous coach. So I am happy to bring this insight from Ildar Mavlyutov to an English reading audience.  We’ve kept this translation as true as possible. You can find the original piece here. Happy reading!

How to Strategize Regional Path Qualification in Fencing

How to Strategize Regional Path Qualification in Fencing

Regional path qualification for Fencing Summer Nationals is an important path to the big competition. It’s a path that offers what I think is one of the most accessible ways to get to Fencing Summer Nationals, and it’s a way that I encourage my fencers to pursue.

Strategizing for regional qualification is important! To make it to Fencing Summer Nationals is no easy task, and it’s one that requires thinking ahead. If you plan things out smartly and with the help of some good advice, well you can make everything not only possible, but a lot easier. 

Fencing Parents & Patience (or Lack Thereof)

Fencing Parents & Patience (or Lack Thereof)

Patience is a virtue, but it’s one that many of us struggle with. 

I know that I struggle with patience, particularly when it comes to things that I don’t feel like I have a great deal of control over. I get frustrated when I get stuck in traffic or lose my patience when I get stuck on hold with my cable company. It’s a tough thing. I get that.

Patience is something that I see a lot of other parents struggling with as well, particularly as I watch parents navigate their kids in beginner fencing. How a child progresses in fencing can be frustrating for parents, in large part because it is out of their control. Whether your child “gets” it and moves forward in the sport isn’t anything that a parent can do for them.

Instant Validation, Instant Success

People talk a lot about how kids today want nothing but instant gratification. It’s not just kids – parents want instant gratification too sometimes. 

Fencing Safety Rules [Infographic]

Fencing Safety Rules Infographic

Fencing is a very safe sport, actually one of the safest. But as with any physical activity, especially those that involve swinging swords, it is up to fencers and everyone else in the venue to ensure the safety.

In the past we extensively wrote about fencing safety rules and measures and I’ve decided to convert this post into infographic.

If you want to print and hang it in your club, please let me know and we will send you a high resolution printable version.

Your Child Fencer Sacrifices a Lot

There is no competition between parents and kids when it comes to sacrifice. Just as we sacrifice a lot for our kids to fence, so they too sacrifice a lot.

What exactly is sacrifice?

Everyone has a different definition of what it means to give a sacrifice. Something that is easy for one person to give up might be heart wrenching for someone else to give up. It’s hard for us to see that, because it’s inherently unnatural for us to get into the mind of another person. We naturally see things from our own perspective.

Flexing our empathy muscles can be important for all of us, especially when it comes to being a parent. It was a long time ago that you were a kid yourself. Though you might remember it in a vague way, you probably don’t have your head really in the understanding of what it was like for you then, so you can’t get what it’s like for your child now. That’s where the work comes. 

What Parents Put In

Recently I had a discussion with a mom who said that her child does not appreciate all the sacrifices she makes for fencing – family vacations, money, weekends, errands, etc. There is a lot to being a competitive fencer, and it is definitely a whole family venture. Any of us who have been in the position of a sports parent of any kind will recognize this reality.

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