Fencing Different Handed

Discussion in 'Fencing Discussion' started by Bigguy543, May 25, 2018.

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  1. Bigguy543

    Bigguy543 Rookie

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    Hello. I have been fencing foil right handed, which is my dominate, and I was wondering if I fenced a weapon like saber with my left hand, then will I lose my point control? Will saber interfere with my foil? Will my foil footwork get messed up? I have done some research and I was wondering what you think
     
    Last edited: May 25, 2018
  2. Allen Evans

    Allen Evans Podium

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    Fencing with a non-dominate hand is unlikely to effect the skills you have with your dominate hand. I'm curious why you want to fence a second weapon with your non-dominate hand?
     
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  3. Ancientepee

    Ancientepee Podium

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    Has the fencing of foil with your dominate hand caused you to lose the ability to write?
     
  4. Goldgar

    Goldgar Podium

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    If you've been fencing foil for a while, I don't think fencing sabre even with your dominant hand is going to affect your point control. But if you are worried about the possibility, I'd say it's extremely unlikely that fencing sabre with your non-dominant hand is going to have any effect on your dominant hand's point control.
     
  5. Purple Fencer

    Purple Fencer Podium

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    Not only the hand, but the feet come into it.

    Going left handed means I can barely advance, let alone lunge...and the less said about my lefty bladework the better.

    Stay with your dominate side, regardless of weapon.
     
  6. jkormann

    jkormann Podium

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    A member of the Univ club decided to switch from right-hand fencing to left-hand fencing because that was his boxing dominant hand. He did it in about a month and hasn't regretted it.
    Start by doing your footwork as a lefty. Get comfortable with that, then pick up a blade. Don't stress about it. You're effectively starting over, except you know the terms.
     
  7. mfp

    mfp Podium

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    Yes if you hit your right hand with your saber.
     
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  8. Inquartata

    Inquartata Podium

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    Also, you CAN use the point of a sabre, you know. ;)

    Some people can do OK fencing with their off hand/feet. I have tried it and it was a horrible experience. Like Purple, I could not coordinate my feet to save my life...and I had to concentrate so much on that that I could not coordinate my hand, either. Gave it up after two attempts.

    NB If you go that way you will not only need a left-handed lamé to compete but a left-handed jacket as well..
     
  9. keropie

    keropie Podium

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    As well as lefty glove and knickers...
     
  10. Inquartata

    Inquartata Podium

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    You can usually get away with using wrong-way pants, no one ever checks those.

    Now that I think of it, though, no one ever seems to check the jacket under the sabre lamé, either. Laser focused on "Is there a plastron under there?" If you fenced epee someone would notice ( and object ).
     
  11. Zebra

    Zebra Podium

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    YMMV, but I found it sometimes helps to fence a different weapon with the same hand. The differing blade position helped me understand some parries better.
    <speculation>
    This might be one reason more adults fence multiple weapons than teens do. We have more of an ability to relate one to the other.
    </speculation>
     
  12. Quinn

    Quinn Made the Cut

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    Fencing with the other hand could help compensate for imbalances in muscle development, caused by the asymmetrical fencing engarde.
     
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  13. tbryan

    tbryan Podium

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    I doubt it. That is, I've never noticed a correlation between a fencer's age and his ability to apply skills learned in one weapon to another.

    Other possible explanations.
    • More adults have fenced at multiple clubs. Sometimes, you have to learn another weapon simply because your preferred weapon isn't offered at your new club or because there are more training opportunities (better coaches, more fencers, more adult participants, etc.) in another weapon.
    • Veteran 40+ adults who want to focus on veteran competition sometimes fence multiple weapons so that they have more events to fence when attending a NAC.
    • Many young fencers focus on one weapon, at least for competition, because they would prefer to be really good at one weapon than mediocre at multiple weapons. Adults sometimes have different reasons for fencing (e.g., fitness or socialization) and may not worry about losing ground in their primary weapon while they work on a second.
    • I'm not sure whether it was just the clubs in the area where I started fencing, but it seems like it was more common to see fencers competing somewhat seriously in multiple weapons 25 years ago. Fencers who started then are now some of the adults who fence multiple weapons.
    /tangent
     
  14. paulfriedberg

    paulfriedberg Rookie

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    You might be pleasantly surprised if you fence sabre with your dominant hand, in particular b/c of point control that you are experienced with through foil, which many sabre fencers lack. However, more precise footwork is required in sabre, which I argue will help your foil fencing. But make no mistake, footwork is different in both weapons. You can think of sabre footwork being close to fencing once critical distance is reached in foil. But if you use foil footwork to get into distance in sabre, odds are it will be difficult to win the initiative/right of way. Otherwise, it is generally a good idea to fence opposite hand - from time to time, or with inferior opponents - particularly in the weapon you are used to. This will help you (and your body) solidify your understanding of strategy and movement, and provide a challenge for you when fencing others who you would easily beat with your dominant hand.
     
  15. K O'N

    K O'N Podium

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    No combination of hand and weapon will hurt you. If you find it interesting, by all means go for it. Fencing off-handed may have some mild benefits in a symmetrical workout, and who knows? Maybe it's the kind of "try new things" that's good for your brain.

    I used to know someone years ago at Dallas FC who would put on a foil and epee body cord on each hand, and fence each in turn. He was a good fencer, too.
     
  16. Inquartata

    Inquartata Podium

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    Especially when it involves the passe-avant steps that foilists and epeeists do. ;)
     

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