Video Lessons: Offhand Invitations, Sidesword Stretta & Alta Guards, Longsword Low Guards and Fading Exercise

It's the week of the Vancouver International Swordplay Symposium at Academie Duello. We're all eagerly anticipating an awesome weekend of workshops, lectures, sparring, and socializing. This week we're on our regular schedule of classes at Duello and on Duello.TV. At level 1 (Green) we're looking at defending with the offhand, level 2 (Blue) and level 3 (Red) are exploring further guards with the sidesword and longsword respectively. Enjoy your week, I know we will be!

Longsword Focus

Before we begin our main topic for this month we're going to start out with some fundamental movement mechanics, this week focused on use of the reverse weighted posture. In this lesson we are using the reverse posture to 'fade' away from attacks from the opponent, return to counter-attack, or evade further.

Longsword Fading Exercise


Green Cord (Level 1)

This week in our classes we focused on inviting our opponent to strike through our sword to lead them into the primary defence of our sword with our offhand support or the reverse with the offhand playing the dominant role.

Offhand 1: Open Positions

Blue Cord (Level 2)

This week our focus in sidesword is on guards where the point is oriented toward the opponent. From a point-on position we can control and constrain the opponent through threat (we may stab them) and our sword position against there's. In these lessons we'll look at how we arrive in the mid (stretta) and high (alta) guard positions and from these positions how to exploit the advantages and respond based on how the opponent responds.

Sidesword Guards: ProgressionSidesword Guards 3: Stretta Guards
Sidesword Guards 4: Alta Guards

Red Cord (Level 3)

We are continuing our work on longsword guards and countering them this week where we are examining two diffrent low poste: Porta di Ferro with the sword low on the right and Dente al Cinghiara with the sword low on the left.

Longsword Guards 3: Porta di FerroLongsword Guards 3-1: Countering Porta di Ferro
Longsword Guards 4: Dente al CinghiaraLongsword Guards 4-1: Countering Dente al Cinghiara


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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.
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