Fencing (not with wood and nails)

Discussion in 'Sports, Adventure Training and Events' started by Sixty, Aug 5, 2009.

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  1. Sixty

    Sixty LE Moderator Book Reviewer
    1. ARRSE Cyclists and Triathletes


    Does anyone fence for recreation? (please all now take the time to get jokes about the one you did in your back garden and made a great job of out of your system).

    I’m looking for something to take up in my free evenings that will hopefully be a bit less repetitive than running and thought that fencing looks interesting enough and hopefully quite enjoyable.

    Looking at Edinburgh Fencing Club at the moment but was wondering if I could get some insights from those that already participate regarding:

    Age: I’m 35. Too old?
    Equipment required (swords, clearly) and cost?

    Any and all help appreciated. Piss takes tolerated with a sigh.
  2. rampant

    rampant LE Reviewer Book Reviewer

    Highly recommend it as a sport, though it is murder on your legs when you first start, and sabres hurt. EFC have a good rep, my old school were affiliated with them IIRC.

    Or you could try an old friend of mine Paul MacDonald:


    More traditional.

    Or here for more info:

  3. Paul is very good, especially in the area of Traditional European Martial Arts.

    If I was'nt training in four different systems already, I'd join his Academy! :D
  4. Fencing's brilliant, very good for legs, core stability and CV work. You will be absolutely dripping with sweat after a few minutes on the piste.

    Trying to find a place to start again myself.
  5. rampant

    rampant LE Reviewer Book Reviewer

    Good lad too, met him years back when I was at uni. Likes a drink and an absolute wealth of information.
  6. A world class sword-smith(?)as well; I was given one of his Skien Duhs as a present years ago; it's still razor-sharp.

    His swords etc are expensive but you get what you pay for.
  7. rampant

    rampant LE Reviewer Book Reviewer

    Ay, he uses high quality steel, rather than alumninium or stainless unlike some-called sword manufactures who make display pieces for tourists, his are designed for use and can take a solid beat without cracking or, god forbid, shattering.
  8. Very true; apart from McDonald Armouries, the only other place I'd consider buying a blade of any kind from would be Cold Steel, an American company.

    Unlike Paul, CS mass-produce a lot of their stuff, but still to a very high standard. :)
  9. I started sport fencing (started on foil) when I was in my mid 30s and found plenty of people either starting or getting back to the sport around the same age. Second hand swords and electrics aren't worth the risk but you can normally borrow most stuff from a club for long enough to see if you want to engage fully.

    If you are more interested in historical fencing than sport fencing then try asking around the Schola forum: http://www.fioredeiliberi.org/phpBB2/index.php

    If your are still serving then there is an Army Fencing Union.


  10. rampant

    rampant LE Reviewer Book Reviewer

    Simon Fearnham (Raven Armouries) down in Essex does a lot of good work for the Royal Armouries, although tbh his work of late tends towards the fantasy stuff, doesn't decry the quality of his work, just more of a question of following the money.

    Oh and Sixty, for equipment look here:

  11. If you don't mind a waiting list, Rob Miller at Castle Keep is, in my opinion, the best swordsmith in the world right now. He tends to make historical swords, but will turn his hand to anything asked, he likes a challenge. He's also, along with Raven, one of the only two swordsmiths in the UK to forge his blades.
    Take a gander at his forum for some examples of his work.
  12. Sixty

    Sixty LE Moderator Book Reviewer
    1. ARRSE Cyclists and Triathletes

    Thanks guys. MacDonald Arms looks interesting but probably a bit too theatrical (I'm aware that's not really the word I'm looking for) although that's not to decry the guy's skill in any way at all. Just not sure I'd like the style but I may well email him and pop along since it's not very far from work.

    PAXBloke, cheers. I'll see if I can get some info regarding the Fencing Union on ArmyNet.
  14. I wondered where Paul had gone.. I remember getting thrashed in a foil match in the dome by him many moons ago...