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Ninh explains, the Rules of Fencing.
Fencing, sometimes referred to as ‘Olympic Fencing’, is a combat sport that is contested
between two people with swords.
A word of warning before you continue to watch this video – don’t blink!
Olympic level fencers are bullet fast, and you’ll need quick reflexes just to watch
fencing, let alone play it.
The contest is staged on a strip known as the ‘piste’, and it measures 14m long
and up to 2m wide.
The piste has a centre line, en garde lines, warning lines and limit lines.
The contest starts with both fencers on their en-garde lines.
The referee will issue sets of instructions and once he tells you to go, the clock starts.
The aim of fencing is to contact your sword into the target area of your opponent whilst
avoiding being hit yourself.
Modern fencing is wired up electronically, so that lights turn on if you strike the required
This is to indicate to the referee and spectators who hit who first.
If you hit the required area, you score one hit and the clock stops.
The whole process starts all over again and for individual contests, you compete against
another individual.
Elimination matches are contested in 3 periods of 3 minutes each.
Whoever scores 15 points first or who has the highest number of points after 3 periods
… wins.
In a team competition, you are part of a 3 person team and you have to fight the three
fencers on the opposing team.
The contest is contested in 9 periods of 3 minutes each.
The highest score at the end of time, wins.
Huh, that was easy?!
I wish it was that simple … but it’s not.
Rather confusingly, Olympic Fencing has three different disciplines, which are fought with
three different weapons, and have uniquely different rules from each other.
But before I explain what those are, you need to know about one very important concept.
Right of Way.
It’s complicated, but put simply.
If both fencers hit at the same time, it’s the person who is in an attacking position
first, or who controls the initiative, or that fights more aggressively, is the fencer
that is given the point.
A n attacking position is where an arm is extended and the tip of the blade is pointing
at your opponent.
To give yourself right of way, you can either attack first.
(Fall Short) Where you make your opponent miss and then attack.
(Parry & Riposte) where you deflect an opponents attack so that they don’t have right of
way, and then riposte (which is a counter attack).
Or Beat, where you knock your opponents blade away without warning, and then score yourself.
Okay I got that.
So what are the three disciplines?
The Foil The foil is the most common discipline in
fencing, and is considered to be the most technical.
The foil is the smallest and lightest of the three weapons, and the target area is anywhere
on the torso or the back.
In foil, you are only allowed to attack an opponent by thrusting with the tip of your
Hitting with the side of the sword doesn’t count.
The right of way rules applies here so being able to parry and riposte accurately, especially
with such a small target area is key.
The Sabre The sabre is the fastest of the three disciplines.
The sword itself has a different handle and is slightly shorter than a foil.
The target area is now anywhere above the waist.
The sabre is the only discipline where you are allowed to cut or slash with the side
of your blade, as opposed to just attacking with just the tip.
This means that with the right of way, the increased target area and the ease of scoring,
it is advantageous to attack first and ask questions later.
The Epee.
If the sabre was the fastest, the epee is considered to be the slowest by comparison.
The epee is the biggest and the heaviest of the three swords, but the target area is now
the entire body.
Like the foil, you must only attack with the tip of the blade, but unlike foil and sabre,
the epee is the only discipline where the right of way rules do not apply.
So if both fencers touch at the same time, both are awarded a point.
With a longer heavier sword and the whole body now being fair game, fencers are now
very cagey.
They have to be selective when to attack, as you can easily be exposed in Epee.
That’s the bare bones of it all, but there’s a couple more things that you need to know
before playing or watching fencing.
For example.
Penalties There are things you cannot do in fencing
such as stepping off the piste during play, turning your back on your opponent, or using
your non playing hand.
A yellow card indicates a warning.
A red card indicates that your opponent is awarded a point.
And a Black card signifies that you have been disqualified from the contest.
Non combativity.
On the rarest of occasions, both fencers will refuse to attack each other.
If the referee feels that neither fencer is making any effort to attack, he will stop
the clock and declare non combativity or non-combativeness.
He will end the period and a new period will begin.
This is a strategic move, particularly in the team competition to force an opponent
to attack more aggressively in the next period, especially if they are down on points.
If you have found this video at all helpful, please like share and subscribe.
It takes me ages to make one of these things and good karma is very much appreciated.
If you’re also on Reddit you can post this video and discuss it there.
But in the meantime, enjoy Fencing.
Ninh Ly - - @NinhLyUK
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The Rules of Fencing (Olympic Fencing) - EXPLAINED!

278 Folder Collection
黃郁玲 published on July 20, 2017
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