30 for 30 Swordplay Challenge 2015 Edition

[Updated - Fixed link so it goes to correct facebook group - Dec 30, 2014]

In the summer of 2013 I created a challenge, primarily for myself and a few senior students, to practice 30 minutes of swordplay each day for 30 days. The challenge went from my small initial group of invitees to a group of over 300 participants from all over the world, a good percentage of whom completed the month and many whom continued the challenge for weeks afterward.

30 days is a great way to help set a new habit and over that month I learned about people who brought themselves back to regular practice, built up their sub-dominant sides, got over their fears of sparring, and developed ability in new disciplines they’d never practiced before. I think it is a straight forward challenge and that is part of its beauty.

It’s time to reissue the challenge for the new year. January 2nd will be the first day. The parameters are largely yours to define. Practice swordplay for at least 30 minutes each day. You can include your current training schedule or you can challenge yourself to go 30 minutes beyond it. Training can be solo, with partners, with sword in hand or through mental exercise. It’s up to you. Other martial disciplines that don’t include swords are welcome too - last year we had wrestlers, mounted combat specialists, Japanese martial arts practitioners, and more on board.

Sign-up to our Facebook group and state your intention as well as your own parameters (the first and most powerful part of resolution is disclosure of intent). Then every time you complete your challenge send a note to the group, you can share your experience or simply say “I did it”.

I look forward to seeing many of my distant training partners back on board for the new challenge.

Devon Boorman is the Co-Founder and Director of Academie Duello Centre for Swordplay, which has been active in Vancouver, Canada since 2004. Devon’s expertise centres on the Italian swordplay tradition including the arts of the Renaissance Italian rapier, sidesword, and longsword, as well as knife and unarmed techniques.
Read more from Devon Boorman.