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Thread: Counsel needed

  1. #1
    Senior Member LUDICROUS's Avatar
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    Counsel needed

    Hey all.

    Lately my weekly fencing has consisted mainly of free fencing, 3 nights a week. I know my lunging and footwork is off, and it pisses me off. Hence, fencing itself kind of pisses me off.

    I've decided to cut back free fencing to 1 night a week, and go to a footwork class once a week. The idea being I'll develop good habits (and better footwork) through the footwork class that won't be eroded by so much free fencing.

    What y'all think?
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  2. #2
    Posting Hound Go? Fencing?'s Avatar
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    Footwork class is definately a good idea, and when you're free fencing, don't worry too much about winning, focus on keeping good form. It's not a competition, it's practice- so practice.

  3. #3
    Senior Member lefty_monster's Avatar
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    Sounds like a good idea. If you KNOW that your fencing is is sucking, you need to get help.
    We now return to our regularly scheduled programming.

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  4. #4
    Senior Member Goofy's Avatar
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    On the third night, is there the possibility of lessons from your coach? A training week of free fencing, footwork class, and an individual lesson would seem an ideal way to get back to basics without losing any advances you've made on your own.
    But those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.

  5. #5
    Senior Member Cipher's Avatar
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    I've found that when my footwork is getting sloppy during free bouting, then it's time to start doing drills repetitively. On all my non-fencing days i'll try to do 100 or 200 of some particular move (i.e. advance-lunge). If I have more time, then I increase that, but I'll shoot for 100 minimum per day. There is nothing better than repetition to induce muscle memorization. A weekly footwork class is great for reinforcing correct movements, but you shouldn't rely on it for the bulk of your improvement. It probably took 2000+ repetitions of a balestra before I was satisfied with it and could do it during a bout without having to specifically think about it.
    Everybody has to believe in something. I believe I am going to have another beer.

  6. #6
    Senior Member ThatReallyHurt's Avatar
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    I agree with lefty_monster - it's one thing if someone else picks up your footwork, but if you're uncomfortable with it yourself, then I think you're doing the right thing...
    Pound for pound, the amoeba is the most vicious animal on earth.

  7. #7
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    perfect example of to much bouting leading to a drop off in technique. Important thing to keep in mind is that winning (or losing) bouts in a club setting really doesn't matter.

    The idea of working on footwork is always a good one.

    It is also possible to use bouts as technical tools, instead of trying to win focusing on using specific actions - or not using them as the case may be.

    Sometimes you can do this in agreement with a partner - you will for example take turns bouting as aggressive/defensive etc. Or you can do something as simple as practicing each phrase as a distance holding practice - rather than charging in on the command fence hold distance, move with your opponent, make three different fients before you actually attack, in fact just about any variation you can think of is good.

    remember; club bouting is for training and competitions are for fighting.

  8. #8
    Senior Member ReverseLunge's Avatar
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    It depends on how your footwork class is run. If it basically doing lunges, advances, retreat and tempo changes then what's the point since the problem you have is lunging incorrectly or poorly. You need to take a private lesson or a few with a qualified person and have them correct your form. I don't think footwrok class or drilling will help if your form isn't right.

    Last year someone here filmed themself lunging and posted it here. We corrected his lunge really good. I suggest you do that too if you can.
    Last edited by ReverseLunge; 06-25-2005 at 02:45 PM.

  9. #9
    Senior Member LUDICROUS's Avatar
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    Sorry chaps, I should have made myself more clear (I often don't).

    I know how to do the lunge properly, it's just that it hasn't become second nature yet. I can do it properly if I really concentrate on it during a bout, but then I tend to concentrate too hard on that, then stuff up/get hit because I dwell on it too much. I can't multi-task in other words.

    I want to use the footwork class to do it properly, and do it enough times so it becomes second nature. I don't aim to win while bouting at practice. Usually I try work on something. Often I don't work on anything, because I come to fencing in a distinctly non-fencing mood alot - but thats just me
    I am he
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  10. #10
    Senior Member foilz's Avatar
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    You have to split a hair between learning and bouting (or free fencing). They aren't the same thing.

    Getting the routines right is one thing. You have to practice, and take lessons, and learn, and practice more.

    Then there's bouting, free or wired, where you try to bring everything together.

    It can be frustrating.

    For example, to perfect your disengage while bouting, you practice the disengage, but you lose bouts. It depresses you. Ok.

    Forget trying to live to other agendas. Work on your own. Forget what other people think. Worry about how you are doing by your own estimation.

    If you need help, talk to your coach. He or she already knows what you're going through. They are ready to talk to you about it.

  11. #11
    Posting Hound oiuyt's Avatar
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    Another option is to find a club mate (or mates) interested in spending some of what would otherwise be free-fencing time during drills or footwork (footwork you can do without the partner, but in my experience you'll spend more time and higher quality time when working with someone). A group of sabre fencers at my club (FAP) has started doing this recently, and I definitely think it's helping us.

    -B :)
    "Oh but you can't expect to wield supreme executive power just because some watery tart threw a sword at you!"

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