I've kinda got to thinking about the ideal body type for a fencer. Everyone says that foilists and epeeists should generally be tall (I get that part), skinny (maybe epeeist with a bit more muscle mass than foilists but not much) and generally very light. I don't really know how big the best sabreists are but I'm guessing they're probably around 6 feet and maybe carrying a bit more muscle mass than the other 2.
So for let's say foil you've got this mental image of a guy who's like 6'2 and 180 pounds or so. Why is this? Everyone says weight and muscle mass will make you slow but look at nearly any other sport. For starters, look at sprinters: http://www.nccu.edu/campus/athletics/jstfpr03.jpg
This guy is fast as hell, with a lot of extra weight. Yet fencers seem to be more like marathon runners, who carry almost no weight and don't have great top speed: http://marathonrun.greatnow.com/runner.jpg
Ok, well not that frail looking, but I couldn't really find a better picture.
So I mean when I think about the nature of fencing, it seems like you'd want to be built like a sprinter, but what about direction change? There is no changing of direction in either of these sports, so what impact does that have on the ideal body type?
Also, is there a point where muscle mass decreases fine motor skills? This is one thing I would really like to know.
Anyways what are your thoughts on this guys?