Why Fencing?

If team sports, bat, ball and racquet are not your thing, the antidote is fencing. Modern-day duelling in a competitive sport:

  • a physical game of chess
  • a science
  • an art Where nerve and mental agility count more than strength…

Hear a brief radio interview describing the sport and the Club:

• Find out when is our next Beginners Course

• See our approach to Safety


A modern sport at all levels, participation will develop:

  • Hand – eye co-ordination
  • Balance
  • Agility
  • Respiration
  • Mental agility and tactical thinking

Fencing provides good physical exercise, employing practically every muscle and totally absorbing the mind.

The need for co-ordination, concentration, self-discipline and control of the emotions make fencing especially beneficial to young people as an education for life.

The social aspects of the sport should never be disregarded; it is equally appealing to men and women and to all ages and abilities.

Technique over brute force

From the duelling age where skill and finesse counted as highly as deadly intent, the modern sport is about technique rather than sheer strength. There is no need to hack off your opponent’s limbs, and with porper training anyone can learn to fence without causing injury. It makes fencing one of the few sports where men and women can compete on equal terms!

Find out about the rules of sports fencing: how bouts are fenced.

Safety First!

Modern fencing has an impressive record, with far fewer injuries than most other sports, attributable to:

  • Mandatory safety equipment
  • Strong regulation and governing bodies
    (in Britain it is the British Fencing, part of the FIE -Federation Internationale d’Escrime)
  • A high standard of qualified coaches.

In defense of the sport’s excellent safety record, there is a set of standards for fencing equipment, in both make and materials.

Any authorised fencing club should be able to lend beginners the full set of protective gear, namely :- a jacket, glove and mask.

• See our approach to Safety

Ancient art – modern sport

Three weapons are used in today’s fencing, each derived from its’ more lethal ancestor.

  • The foil – a light, flexible weapon, based on the training rapier of old. Only hits with the point can be scored; the target area is the opponent’s trunk of body. Beginners usually learn this weapon first.
  • The epee – a stiffer, heavier blade; a direct descendant of the duelling rapier. Again, only point hits are valid, but the opponent’s whole body is the target and there are fewer rules concerning priority of attacks.
  • The sabre – a lighter, flexible version of the cavalry sword. Hits may be scored using edge cuts or point thrusts. The valid target for sabre is therefore everything above the waist.

• Find out more about fencing weapons.

From ‘steam’ to electric!

In training and in practice bouts, fencers are relied upon to concede the hits they have against them. In competition, however, where more impartial judgement is required, additional equipment is needed.
In competition, fencers wear body wires which enable hits to register automatically on an electronic box. This shows a coloured light and sounds a buzzer indicating which fencer has taken the hit.

• Find out more about weapons

• Find our more about the history of fencing

Fencing in the New Forest

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