Had a great two practices this week. I’m sore and a bit bruised, but none the worse for wear.
The first practice was Lionsdale’s Wednesday practice. It went really well. It was our first day indoors, the hard packed dirt is amazing on the knees. It lets you practice a bit harder without the knee pain that I get occasionally from lunging too much on concrete. We started out with a bear-pit to warm up, as we’re all getting ready for the fall tournament season and shaking off the dust from war fighting. I haven’t fought in a tourney since Sir Eddies, and I”m planning on fighting this weekend, so I needed the practice.
With the bear-pit I started working on the semi-refuse guard that we were taught a few weeks ago. It seems to work well for defence and fits in perfectly with my current style. It’s very aggressive while allowing me to defend quickly. I was still having some issues with controlling my opponents blade, but not too much.
After warming up with just the three of us (Sebastian, Alejandro, and myself) a fourth person got there, Cion. He’s working on getting authorized, so we decided to test him out on the basics. We had him teach us how to stand, how to lunge, cut, and Parry. He taught us how to use a dagger, a shield, and a baton. We didn’t work on cloak, as we didn’t have one with us that day. He’s doing pretty good. Then we quizzed him about the rules for different things like engagement, holds, melee, and weapon requirements. He’s got most of those down too. That just left combat. So we started a four man bear-pit to test him out. He seems safe, though we haven’t tried unsafe activities against him yet, which is a major portion of the auth test, dealing with others mistakes.
Had a fun practice time on Thursday. Lions Gate practice has been moved to two hours, so it now runs from 8-10pm. I still have to head home at about 9 in order to be home and functional the next day, this created a problem in that I would only get an hour of practice. So I went over to Blood and Iron on Front Street in New West (not that far from Saperton Hall where Lions Gate Practice is). I hung out with Lee, the head instructor there and talked rapier and research, then did some warm-up and drills. I did cutting drills for about an hour, and worked on accuracy and control.
After that I went over to Lions Gate practice and did sparing for about 45 minutes total, against Godfrey and a gentleman I hadn’t fought before. I had a blast, working on integrating cutting, and trying different things.
When I started this fencing journal I had a few goals:
- To learn to use the advantages of a shorter blade against the disadvantages of a longer blade
- To learn better use of the dagger in both defence and offence
- To increase my aggression
Since then I’ve added a few goals:
- Knowing my thrusting range better
- Controlling my cuts better
Fencing last night was great. I had the opportunity to fight vs longsword. Very interesting. I had a speed advantage, but that was balanced by his strength. When I was using dagger we were very much equals, but when I was fighting open hand I was definatly strugling. My guard Read more…
Things I have been working on up to now.
Don Godfrey has been helping me work with the shorter blade that I use rather than trying to imitate those with longer blades. Makes sense. Instead of trying to mimic the strengths of the stronger blade focus on your own strengths and find your opponents weaknesses.
One new thing on this is that I’m now only using sword and dagger. The reason behind this is that with the shorter blade I have two choices: I can stand further out beyond my opponent’s reach (and much beyond my own) and counter punch what they throw, which may be sometimes effective, but I can’t parry everything all of the time; and the second is to close to where I am within a comfortable distance and my opponent is having troubles because I”m too close for them. What this means is that I”m at a range where I can use a sword, but my opponent will be using his dagger. In order to combat that I will need to use a dagger myself. That way I will equalize their advantage, and surpass it. I will have two blades which I can easily wield at that range, and my opponent will only have one.