Fencing – The Basic Attack

    Published: 06-16-2009
    Views: 16,410
    Fencing instructor George Schleh shows how to perform a basic attack in fencing.

    George Slay: Good evening, I am George Slay, fencing Instructor with Recreational Fencing of Manassas. Tonights lesson will cover the Right-of-way and the direct attack. In fencing, its not enough just to put your point on the other opponents target area.

    There are some important rules to keep in mind. First, there are rules of etiquette. Now, well cover that briefly here before I ask the fencers to put their masks on. Again, you may remember, were in the opening stance. Id like each of the fencers to salute, and this is done at the beginning of every match to show respect for the opponent and then to put the masks on.

    Of course you always want to see your opponents face prior to the match. Gentlemen, get on the guard position. Now, I am going to ask Ivan to advance on Don, Don will stay in place which is not usual stance, but Ivan will advance on Don and attack. One thing weve to keep in mind in fencing is that attacks must come with a straight arm, and this is to indicate priority. Priority is very important in fencing and it originates back in the days when duals were fought with sharp swords and in this case, no one would ever walk up to another fencer whose arm was extended, that would be a suicide mission. So, the idea is to get your arm extended first into the other fencer. That fencer has priority over the other and his hit will score over the opponents.

    Ivan go ahead and advance on Don to within striking distance, please. The key here of course, extend the arm and push into the inside, high inside target area. The bent blade here indicates its a good touch and Ivan is at the correct distance. Now, am going to ask Ivan to retreat back to the on guard line and Don will take his turn and advance on Ivan and keep in mind that Don should be straightening his arm as he comes in for the attack and a nice bent blade, perfect attack on the high inside line, the four, of course. Both were able to score, touches here because each did not oppose the others blade. Were going to talk about that in a later lesson, but the next lesson will cover striking your opponent from outside of this close distance and to do that were going to employ the classic fencing maneuver, the lunge.