Control matters


Trainer: 
Falko Fritz

Description: 
This workshop is an introduction to safe sparring without protective gear for longsword and messer. The "Bloßfechten" techniques we find in the Liechtenauer tradition (and others) were trained by fencers well aware of their vulnerability. This awareness, knowing that the only effective defense is our sword, cannot be simulated adequately once we put on mask and padding. So in this workshop we'll leave out all body protection and focus on blade control to ensure safety. Starting with simple exercises to practice the necessary control over our swords, we'll work our way up through some exemplary techniques and eventually engage in easy, controlled freeplay.

The exercises are intended for beginners and advanced fencers who are interested in the historical context of 15th century fencing, when the masters and their students also had to train safely without the benefit of protective gear. Since training without gear is rather a completely different approach to practicing HEMA than a new technique for your repertoire, most of the exercises will be fairly generic and applicable to all weapons. Especially if you're interested in HEMA research and/or playful, non-competitive sparring, I hope that this workshop will be beneficial to you and that you can take some inspirations home for your own training. 

Needed Equipment: 
Longsword or messer. No protective gear. Extra tip protection (rubber arrow blunt or thick paper taped around the tip) may be necessary as a precaution. If you can, bring plastic goggles.

Skill level of Participants: 
Beginners to advanced.