Academy of Fencing Masters Blog

Art of Fencing, Art of Life

Category: For Parents (Page 1 of 38)

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.

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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!  

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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.

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How to Prevent Burnout

How to prevent burnout in fencingA few weeks ago, for the first time in four years of writing and operating this blog, we didn’t post a blog or send an email. This was both nerve wracking and also somewhat of a relief. While we always have many blogs that Igor and I are writing, we chose to take a much needed break for us, for our family, and actually for the first time in a very long time…go on a vacation.

Our fencing kids, all competitive youth fencers, train about four or five times a week, sometimes up to 3 hours, and in addition to their training and regular competitions, as every other child they have their homework and bunch of other extracurricular activities.  

As a fencing family, we are particularly aware of the concept burnout as it applies to our fencing kids, and to ourselves as parents of fencers. For us, taking a vacation was an important step to preventing a scenario of burnout that could affect the whole family.

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What Happens As You Age Into New Age Category in Fencing?

What Happens As You Age Into New Age Category in Fencing? As your child advances and grows within the sport of fencing, they will encounter physical and mental hurdles that will be difficult, but not impossible to overcome. They will become stronger. They will become more competitive. But surprisingly, there is one hurdle that many parents and fencers do not anticipate, until they are met with it: Aging into a new age category of fencing, and eventually, aging out of youth competitions altogether.

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