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Excellent blog posts at the moment

There are some excellent thought provoking blog posts out at the moment

This from Keith Farrell:

"When watching modern tournaments in person or online, for weapons such as the longsword, messer, or sword and buckler, then the fighting often looks messy... Is this a problem? To some extent, yes… But if some fencers do not behave like this, then their opponents will never learn to deal with such behaviour and overcome it. It is therefore a necessary step to have “play masters”, “common fencers”, “buffalos” or “Winkelfechter” before we can have fencers who fight in a technical and excellent fashion."


"since the MS I.33 teaches a complicated system that requires certain situations to occur, there need to be skilled fighters who can produce these conditions before the I.33specialists can begin to dominate."

This from James Roberts:

"Thus, my brief argument here is that martial skills such as using a longsword are useful in warfare, just not necessarily directly in battle. Unfortunately, the emphasis on the study of set-piece battles in military history means we don’t have too much insight into the skirmishes that dominated warfare, but I’d argue that in these small-scale, sometimes even individual encounters, we’ll find the use for the sword in warfare."

I think reading McBain is an excellent example of what Roberts is talking about.


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My photography is lame but I hope you get the idea:

Good protection.

I would say that this setup has good protection from injury from sparring blows from fingers to elbow. Against full force blows it takes it down from injury to some mild discomfort and possibly light bruising, against moderate blows you feel some pressure with no discomfort. The fingers are where I've invested the heaviest protection but there is still some room for improvement.

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For example:

(and I'd like to make it clear that I'm not being negative on these examples, I liked and remembered both these videos I'm just using them to illustrate a pedagogical mindset.)

In this interesting video, the view is put forward that you should cut and step at the same pace to ensure that your hand and body land together. This is so that you cut with maximum strength and for reasons of balance.  The idea of not stepping and cu…