Academy of Fencing Masters Blog

Art of Fencing, Art of Life

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Smart Device to Help Fencers to Combat New Unwillingness to Fight Rule in Fencing

Smart Device to Help Fencers to Combat New Unwillingness to Fight Rule in FencingThe new unwillingness to fight rule in fencing has created a lot of confusion among fencers, even veteran fencers. It’s something everyone has been talking about since it went into effect earlier this year, and we’re always working to find new solutions for fencers who need to address problems like this one.

With this new rule, fencers must constantly be aware of the clock. With this new rule, if you don’t keep track of how much time has gone by then you might be in for a rough surprise in the form of a p-card! That’s hard to do in the middle of a fight when you’re also worried about your opponent getting a point against you! Even when the scoring apparatus has a timer, it’s hard to keep track of how much time has elapsed since the last touch. That problem gets even worse for a fencer in the middle of a fight when there is no timer on the scoring machine, with the ref using his or her own timer or their smartphone to direct the bout.

A lot of fencers have gotten caught getting a significant number of p-cards, including p-red and p-black cards as a result of these simple confusions.

Is there no way to better manage this problem? Surely there must be some answer to save us from the terrible fate of getting carded in a bout for something so simple and easy to track as the time?

We’re glad you asked.

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A Lesson in Inspiration – the Fencing Grand Prix in Anaheim

Absolute Fencing Gear Foil Grand Prix Anaheim 2019There are fencing competitions, and then there are fencing competitions.

The fencing Grand Prix is a fencing competition that is unlike anything else in America. There are certainly other competitions in the world that have a similar stature in terms of size or media coverage or fencing prowess, but not here in the United States. It’s a yearly exercise in the best, and it’s something I look forward to year after year.

What is the Fencing Grand Prix?

When we think of the words “Grand Prix”, for lots of people that brings to mind automobile racing. Honestly in fencing it’s much the same as it is in car racing, except instead of cars racing around courses in different parts of the world on the hunt for the top prize, it’s fencers chasing each other across the strip to hunt for the top prize.

The international governing body of fencing, FIE, organizes a series of nine events around the globe each year for the best fencers in the world to meet and challenge themselves. These competitions are called the Grand Prix, and they take place literally all over the world.

  • Men’s and Women’s Epee – Doha, Qatar
  • Men’s and Women’s Epee – Budapest, Hungary
  • Men’s and Women’s Epee – Cali, Columbia
  • Men’s and Women’s Foil – Turin, Italy
  • Men’s and Women’s Foil – Anaheim California, USA
  • Men’s and Women’s Foil – Shanghai, China
  • Men’s and Women’s Sabre – Caire, Egypt
  • Men’s and Women’s Sabre – Seoul, South Korea
  • Men’s and Women’s Sabre – Moscow, Russia

You can see that there are three Grand Prix held for each weapon, and that they are held across the globe. The competitions run from January through May, with fencers vying for international rankings and qualification for other competitions.

Grand Prix are different from the Fencing World Cup competitions, of which there are five each year. They are also distinct from zonal championships, which cover only a certain region of the world. The world rankings are fed into through qualification from World Cup, Grand Prix, and zonal competitions. The Olympics are a totally different thing, governed by a different organization, the IOC. Satellite competitions are held in addition to all of these other international competitions.

So there you are, the basics of the Fencing Grand Prix.

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8 Best Fencing Blogs to Read in 2019

8 Best Fencing Blogs to Read in 2019The year is already moving full steam ahead, but unfortunately due to the very niche nature of our sport there aren’t many new fencing blogs to read.  There are some newcomers this year and we highly encourage our readers to check out lots of sources for information, as there is always more knowledge out there! Not to mention established blogs that are still delivering the in depth information we’ve come to deeply appreciate them for.

Figuring out what to read on the net is not an easy task though. There’s a lot to sift through, a lot to dig into to try to figure out what’s worth reading and what’s not so worth reading. That’s why we’ve put together our list of great blogs for you to read in 2019.

Ranked from good to great, here our the blogs you should be reading this year!

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A Love Letter to the Fencing Referee

A Love Letter to the Fencing RefereeDear Fencing Referee,

We know that the most hated person in pretty much any sport is the referee. No matter how hard you try, no matter how evenly you call a match, somehow you always end up with someone unhappy with the choices that you make. Whatever decision a fencing referee makes, one side or the other is going to be on the receiving end of bad news. In the eyes of many fencers who get on the wrong side of the call, you are taking the side of their opponent and keeping them from winning their match. This is of course a totally unfair assessment.

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Celebrating Five Years of the AFM Blog

Celebration Five Years of the AFM BlogLet’s take you back, way back. Half a decade back. All the way to 2014.

It was a good year overall! Here’s a quick reminder of what was happening.

  • The Winter Olympics in Sochi were held under the cloud of Russian state-sponsored doping.
  • People poured buckets of ice over their heads on the internet in the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge.
  • Americans could visit Cuba again for the first time in more than fifty years.
  • A spacecraft landed on a comet.
  • Guardians of the Galaxy topped the box office.
  • Jimmy Fallon took over as host of the Tonight Show.
  • Barack Obama had another two years left as president.

Can you remember it yet?

Early in the year though, something remarkable happened for us. On Monday, February 3rd, 2014 we published our very first AFM blog post, which is still our most popular post. We can’t believe five years have gone by so fast! How is it possible? When we look back, those events seem like so long ago!

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