Academy of Fencing Masters Blog

Art of Fencing, Art of Life

Author: Igor Chirashnya Page 1 of 64

7 Ways to Help Kids Balance Sports and Academics in the Time of COVID

7 Ways to Help Kids Balance Sports and Academics in the Time of COVID

There has always been a careful balance between school and sports, but now the facets of this challenge have changed completely. Not only is school and sport totally different than it has been before, there is also the added struggle of navigating a crisis. Everyone is stressed in ways that they have never been stressed before. 

We must all keep moving forward, so how does that work for fencers who also have academic obligations during the time of COVID? School and sport have not stopped, then have just changed. Everyone must find a workable balance between their interests and their education. This is not something that we can teach all in one fell swoop, but there is also a pressing immediacy to this issue right now. We have to give all of the tools we can to our kids. 

Parents, we know that you are stretched right now too. Juggling working and distance learning for kids, well it is exhausting. I know this firsthand with trying to balance every aspect of my own family life. Hopefully this post will help some of you to feel less alone while providing practical solutions.

Here are seven ways to help kids balance fencing and academics during the time of coronavirus.

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How to Learn to Start Fencing Online

How to Learn to Start Fencing Online

Six months ago, I would have told you that this isn’t worth it. I would have said to you that it was all temporary and that start fencing online was a stop gap for a few weeks until we figured things out. 

Today of course we know differently. We know now that we have to adapt and learn in a situation that is far from what we have traditionally worked with. Learning fencing is different.

It’s important to realize here that adaptation is everything. There is not a straight line from the start of the pandemic to the end of the pandemic – it is back and forth, up and down. Moving forward and backwards on the strip. We have seen stay at home orders loosen and tighten, and who knows what will happen in the coming months. The only sure thing is change, so we have to change with it. If you want to fence and have not before, now is the time to start!

Most clubs and coaches in the world now see this online option as part of their job. It is what fencing is now, with all of its frustrating disadvantages and all of its wonderful advantages. We have learned, adapted, and created programs to teach fencers of any level, from total novices to the most advanced fencers.

You can start fencing online. Whether you are uncomfortable in person because of the pandemic or whether you have other factors that keep you away from physical instruction in person, it doesn’t matter. You can definitely start fencing right now!

Step-by-step guide to getting started with online fencing

Starting is the hardest part!  If you’re reading this, then you are probably lost with how to get going with your fencing. It can seem like a big task if you’re new to it, but don’t worry – we’re here to walk you through. Step-by-step and easy do it is the way to get going. 

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World Fencing Day: Now is the Time to Pass the Torch and Share the Passion

World Fencing Day: Now is the Time to Pass the Torch and Share the Passion

Mentorship is life changing. It is unlike any other relationship that an individual can have in the personal way that it inspires growth and development. Mentorship that is founded upon peer relationships is often even more powerful than the mentorship that comes from an authority figure. There are many reasons for this, but one of them is that the individual can see a very attainable path in a peer who is on the same path ahead of them. It’s something that they can reach. 

There is a very real sense that this is passing the torch along to the next generation, and that is a hugely powerful thing. You are fellows on the same journey, compatriots and brethren. It is a very special relationship, and it benefits both the mentor and the mentee in profound and lasting ways. 

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Picking Apart Fencing Greatness with Cyrus of Chaos

Andrew Fischl, aka Cyrus of Chaos, videotaping a fencing bout

Some fencing figures are more than what they seem, and one such figure is Andrew Fischl, known to most of us as Cyrus of Chaos.

For those of you who might not know it, Cyrus of Chaos is a major resource for fencers on YouTube. I’ve been subscribed to this channel for many years, and his fencing videos and analysis have been a wonderful addition to my own fencing knowledge. They are in depth and thoughtful, and totally unlike anything else out there. It’s a resource that has become a huge value for many fencers, no matter your weapon.

In the last few months, the channel has branched out in a wonderful way, featuring analysis with fencing coaches, great fencers, and sometimes even with fencers themselves as they analyze their own bouts. It is refreshing, it is mind blowing, and it is positively brilliant.

This is a positive source of next-level fencing understanding who’s importance cannot be overestimated, particularly during these pandemic times when we are forced to be innovative and when we are looking more and more at our screens. Cyrus of Chaos offers us the perfect mix of a solid, tried and true member of the fencing community who knows what fencing is about, mixed with youthful, out-of-the-box thinking. 

In this interview, we learn more about the man behind Cyrus of Chaos, including how Andrew came to find this wonderful resource and what keeps him going. Some of the answers will surprise you, and all of the interview will enlighten you. 

If you aren’t already subscribed to Cyrus of Chaos’s YouTube Channel, hop on over and subscribe!

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How to Learn Right of Way/Priority

How to Learn Right of Way/Priority

Many parents are eager to learn Right of Way. It takes a lot of practice! Even the world’s most famous fencing parents do not always get it. I do believe that, with time, most experienced fencing parents start understanding the concept a little bit. However, they have a hard time following quick actions. Which is understandable!

I think you can teach yourself the concept and become quite good at it and thus enjoy fencing as a sport as well enjoy the fencing of your child even more. 

This last bit of advice that I’m giving you is good for fencers in general and for fencing parents as well. Fencers just have an additional means of training in their club, while parents will use this as their major source of self-education.

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