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What is it?

Fencing’s origins are in real-life sword combat, however the sport is more disciplined and can be regarded as being similar to a martial art. Today, many people like to fence for a range of reasons including social, for fun and fitness and competitive, with the desire to fight and win.

Three different types of sword are used; the Foil, which targets the torso, neck and groin, the Epée which targets the whole body and the Sabre which targets the upper body except for the hands. Points are scored for successful hits and good technique is essential if you are to succeed in the cut and thrust of this most noble of sports.

Why is it good for me?

Fencing has many health and well-being benefits and women and girls all over England love it because:

  • Aerobic and cardiovascular workout in both training and competition
  • Improved hand-to-eye coordination
  • Improved judgment and decision-making
  • Increased speed and agility
  • Self-discipline and mental toughness
  • People of different standards and ages can train together
  • They like the people they meet when then fence
  • It’s a way to be part of a group
  • They can go at their own pace
  • They don’t need to wear lycra
  • It’s low impact and indoors
  • They fight with swords – can be aggressive in a safe environment
  • They like the connection between fencing and films

How much does it cost?

No equipment is required to start fencing as it is provided as part of the introduction to the sport, but if you’re interested in competing then buying your own weapon and the protective equipment is necessary.

Some providers offer free taster sessions and a beginner session can cost as little as £5. An introductory course of lessons will cost from around £10 per lesson. Individual coaching is more expensive.

What equipment do I need?

For all beginner sessions you will only require some basic clothing:

  • A sweatshirt or t-shirt
  • Jogging bottoms (no shorts, as legs must be covered)
  • Trainers

If you get into fencing more seriously, then you might consider buying your own specialist equipment. Starter packs are available consisting the following kit and cost about £200:

  • Weapon
  • Mask
  • Glove
  • Protective clothing, including a jacket and a plastron (protection where you most need it on your torso)