Help! Russian fencing terms

Discussion in 'Coaching Corner' started by jfarmer, Apr 19, 2018.

  1. jfarmer

    jfarmer DE Bracket

    Apr 22, 2005
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    I have a new student, just moved here from Russia, who fenced fairly seriously up til about a year ago. She wants to get back into the game and has joined my club to do so. (/background(

    My knowledge of Russian is nil, specially to speak it... Her stepfather will get getting a tutor for her and her siblings during the summer, but until then we're using Google translate as a go between for simple sentences.

    What I want/need is some sort of fencing term translation list, and maybe a pronunciation guide. Yeah, I could compile one using Google translate but:
    1. I'm leery that simplistic translation will drop meaning,
    2. I know that some fencing terms in English, especially colloquial versions, don't translate well, and
    3. I figure someone has to have already faced and solved this problem...

    I want to make her more comfortable in her lessons, and be as clear as possible during them.

    Any help out there?
  2. tbryan

    tbryan Podium

    May 6, 2005
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    If your Google-fu is strong enough, you can sometimes find what you're looking for:

    With an experienced student, you shouldn't need to say much at all, right? ;)

    Anyway, you can also use it as an opportunity to build some rapport with the student and also give her an opportunity to teach her classmates something, if she'd like. With a good demonstration of the action (and maybe needle's glossary from the link above), you could have her provide the translation.

    "Today we'll start with direct riposte. What's the Russian word for parry?" Demonstrate a parry.
    "Zaschita." (Probably laughing at the pronunciation.)
    "OK. Let's try. Parry. Zaschita."
    And so on...
  3. Doighté

    Doighté Rookie

    Jan 13, 2005
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    I would be inclined towards using french terms.
    Alternatively as has been suggested, demonstrate and learn from her as she learns from you.
    Just be aware that in Eastern Europe there is a tendency for the fencing language to be more complete and intricate.
    Hungarian for example has Kitaro (Disengage), Valto (Change thrust), Kizaro (thrust ending in opposition), Feelo (Bind), they also name feint attacks for the parries they go around. So for example a "simple quarte feint attack" goes around a simple quarte parry, and a "circular sixte, semi circular seconde" feint attack goes around a circular sixte parry and a semi circular seconde parry.
    Other Hungarian terms Kiterish (Lunge), Vivo Alas(h) (en guarde), lepes (step), Hatra (backwards), elore (forwards). I'll ask around some of my Hungarian friends who might have an idea about the Russians terminology.

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