Sword Press (Fencing Press Actually) From Around the World

Given the dearth of WMA related material available this week, I thought We’d take a look at some unique elements of what has fallen out of our Art – Olympic-style fencing.  Respects, Wes

Everything Old is New Again

FIRST COAST NEWS (Jacksonville, Florida) 15 January 12  Jacksonville Fencing Tournament Debuts ‘Dagger Fencing’  (Jovi Irwin)

The 225 members the Jacksonville Fencing Club hosted the “Duel Til You Drop Tournament”, an event during which the first Dagger Fencing Association (http://www.daggerfencing.com) tournament was held.

Using an epee and a dagger reminiscent of a ‘mini-me’ modern sabre, competitors spar ‘in the round’, and register hits using the latest in wireless technology.  Previous to this initiative, the sword cord necessary to monitor hits restricted modern fencing to a firmly defined back-and-forth ‘piste’.  I’m curious to see if the technology can be adapted in the future to the heavier WMA weaponry!

Of note, We were somewhat taken aback by the video in which one gentleman claimed that the Jacksonville competition was “first dagger event in history”!  HEMA (Historical European Martial Arts) teams have been running sanctioned, ‘international’ rapier-and-dagger events for years – and the workshops to go with them.  But then again, the problems with some news interviews is that one gets juicy quotes offered that are totally out of context to the rest of the (deleted) interview.

The DFA has one laudable goal however: “We hope one day dagger fencing will be the first Olympic sport to be non-gender specific, where women and men can compete equally,” said David Falcon of the Dagger Fencing Association.

Video and photos at URL below:


‘Feel’ the Distance

KWTV (Oklahoma City, Oklahoma) 16 January 12  Oklahoma Blind Fencer Hits Mark With Documentary (Darren Brown)

George Adams, an instructor at Oklahoma Sport Fencing, where classes for blind and low vision students are offered, is filming “Touché’ The Movie”, featuring blind fencer Catherine Bolton and the participants in a visually impaired fencing tournament.

“The tactile information you can gain from a blade is very similar to the tactile information you can gain from a cane,” said Oklahoma Sport Fencing-owner Carolyn Gresham-Fiegel.

“When you think fencing, you don’t correlate it with blind people,” said Bolton. “I just wanna show that hey, it can be done.”

Regardless of who is holding the blade, some things never change.  In the video, there’s a line that all fencers, historical and modern, sighted and blind have to take to heart: “The fencer must be aware of distance …”.

Video and photos at URL below:


‘See’ the Distance

CORE 77 DESIGN MAGAZINE (New York, New York) 17 January 12  Fencing Finally Filmed the Way it Should Be (Dave Seliger)

Olympic-class fencer and film maker Holly Buechel has created an “absolutely gorgeous fencing short” that highlights some of the ‘poetry in motion’ aspects of using a blade.

We were perplexed however, by Mr Selger’s editorial comment of: “Although spectators never see fencing at this speed, fencers often see their opponent’s actions in slow-mo”.  It’s been Our modest experience that Our opponents move at double, if not triple real-life-speed!

Video and photos at URL below: