Why Do We Fight?


To get out of danger. Self-defence is one of the oldest reasons for conflict.

To uphold honour, right wrong, and make just. Both noble aims and righteous justifications.

To tell a story. To explore characters, their conflicts, and their motivations and take the audience along for the journey.

To challenge ourselves. Keeping the body in alignment, making that technique work, standing against that oh-so-intimidating opponent.

To get the heart moving, limbs working, and blood pumping. It’s way more fun than running (sorry runners).

To impress. Let them see what you’ve got and dare them to answer. A tap dance competition with steel in hand.

To inflict damage. This is what makes it an art of Mars.

To study. To parse what works from what doesn’t, to put the art in context, and inspire an understanding of what’s written in manuals. Fighting is a tool of the martial scholar.

To demonstrate. To show the grace and power of physical potential, the intricacy of martial strategy that is as much in the mind as the body, and to tell a story about skill, history, and mastery.

To compete. A martial game that motivates us to be our best, fight our fiercest, and face all comers.

To dance. A dialog that is not about winning but about knowing the art with another.

It’s a beautiful thing that we live in a time when fighting can be whatever we want it to be.

devonboorman 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.