Cueing and Consequence: Creating a More Accurate Training Environment

Being able to mechanically conduct a technique is important for establishing a combative base. However, being successful with a given technique requires a much greater level of understanding of its application. Every combative technique must be placed into its proper context with an awareness of time, space, and feeling (not intuitive but physical). To successfully strike…

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The Seven Principles of Kwanzaa and How to Apply Them As Martial Artists

Today is the first day of Kwanzaa.  Many of us know of  Kwanzaa, but not many of us know its origins and how it is celebrated. Today, I would like to talk about what the holiday truly means, and how we can apply its core principles to our lives as martial artists and practitioners of…

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Beginners Courses for Next Year/ January

A new year is coming so get into our next round of Beginner’s Courses! Prepare for swinging swords and pulling punches. We offer three different courses which cover different avenues of Western Martial Arts: Fight Like Sherlock Holmes Bartitsu is a complex martial art with many interlocking skills. Our four-week Fight Like Sherlock Holmes course gives students…

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Practice Symmetrical Development

Robert Borsos, my horseback archery instructor, raced down the lane and planted 12 arrows in the target. An impressive feat from horseback. As he rode past me back to the starting gate to do a second run, I noticed that he had passed his bow into the other hand and was going through a series…

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How Fast Can I Get Good At This?

This is a pretty common question. Often when we start into something new, we’re eager to get past that first awkward and potentially embarrassing stage and get onto looking like a badass as quickly as possible. I have two answers to this question: 1. About one year.  This isn’t when you’ll be a complete badass,…

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Are your hips holding you back?

Working at the front desk of the world’s largest western swordfighting school for half a year has led me to observe something. When it comes to most weapons and styles, people have preferences that are based on a number of different factors, ranging from their training background to their childhood fantasies. Generally speaking no one seems to particularly dislike one…

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Reasons to Practise Martial Art

Martial Arts have meant many things to me over time. Here are some of the excellent outcomes I feel are found within the Western disciplines we practice at Academie Duello: Personal Growth Martial arts help us test our capabilities, push our limits, build our confidence in our physical and mental selves, and face challenges of…

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Fiore’s Four Animals – Achieving Martial Success

Within his 1409 manual Fior di Batagglia, Fiore dei Liberi provides us with an effective guide for reviewing our successful execution of martial technique: surrounding his diagram of blows are a series of 4 animals, each representing an essential quality of successful execution in the art: The Lynx – Positioned above the figure’s head represents…

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Taking Agency in Learning

The drone of uniformly delivered content to rows of kids locked into desks is the initiation into formal learning that many of us come from. A system designed to output little industrial cogs who are themselves uniform. This is a system that is unfortunately devoid of passion and builds a habit for learning that places…

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Finding Your Centre – The Day Before the Tournament

This afternoon we finished up our final day of training for the Duelling Arts Rapier Tournament at the Vancouver Club. This is part tournament and part spectacle; a hand picked roster of 8 senior Duello students will be fencing in a series of matches over the course of an evening of fine dining and cocktails,…

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