Student Teachers

Discussion in 'Club Corner' started by JCrafton, Apr 11, 2018.

  1. JCrafton

    JCrafton Rookie

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    I'm an officer of my college's fencing club. We don't have the resources of an actual fencing instructor, so whoever is elected president of the club teaches during practices, so our teacher is always just another student. We teach the basics in all 3 blades and do what we can to prepare new fencers for tournaments, but in the end, we are all students learning as we go. Any thoughts or advice on what we could do as a club to help better teach new students and improve our fencing without a proper teacher?
     
  2. jkormann

    jkormann Podium

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    1. Go to askfred.net, put in your zip code and see if there is a club nearby. Ask if someone there may want to be a volunteer coach.
    2. Guessing that the president has some prior (high school) fencing knowledge. Find a copy of Dr. Vinny Bradford's book on foil instruction. Very good breakdown.
    3. YouTube, and don't be shy about asking things here. We can be cruel, but it's in a caring way.
     
  3. JCrafton

    JCrafton Rookie

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    Do you know the name of the book you're talking about?
     
  4. JCrafton

    JCrafton Rookie

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    Taking Foil Groups to the Competitive Level: A System of Progressive Drills for Teaching Beginners and Training Competitors?
     
  5. jkormann

    jkormann Podium

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    Yes
     
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  6. JCrafton

    JCrafton Rookie

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    Thanks!
     
  7. Strytllr

    Strytllr DE Bracket

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    Since I'm not aware of the fencing education your club president or your fellow officers have, I'll start some basics:
    Make sure that your fencing sessions have a set structure. (ie. the sessions always are footwork first, bladework drills, then free fencing/practice).
    Make sure that that all fencers participate in all parts of the session as much as possible. (Nothing ruins new fencer development faster than "experienced" fencers skipping out on drills and only coming in to free fence)
    Make at least 1/3 of each session footwork drills.
    Work on bladework basics a little bit each week. (parry/riposte, disengage/coupe, beats, etc) Then work on them some more. :) Focus on making smaller motions and proper form across the board.
    As instructor, I usually find it best to demonstrate different bladeworks drills with one or more fencers every week so that the class can see it, but it might be beneficial for your instructor to practice drill plans a week in advance with a more experienced fencer to iron out any wrinkles or bad forms in order to present a more perfect looking example. That also gives you two people who are now "experts" in that bit of bladework who can walk around and correct the rest of the class.

    You didn't say where you are located, but I hope you have the opportunity to find a local coach who is willing to give you guys a short clinic every once in a while or at least some advice. If not, PM me and I'll send you along some other suggestions.
     
  8. JCrafton

    JCrafton Rookie

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    We are located in Murray, KY if that helps any. And thanks for the advice! We follow a plan similar to that, but lately it's been more free fencing then drills.
     
  9. Samuel N Lillard

    Samuel N Lillard Rookie

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    Hi Crafton:
    We have an apprentice program. We offer to train student instructors who are interested in teaching introductory classes in each weapon at Columbus Fencing & Fitness, LLC. You are welcome to send your student teacher to our facility for a week (7 days) and we will provide a course plan, instruction and allow the instructor to shadow our classes at no cost. There is a written agreement to at least teach for 6 months if the training is accepted & the instructor must be a professional member of US fencing. (safe sport & background check). The program is at no cost. However the student instructor will have to pay for her/his own travel, food and board. However, free room and board may be possible given the week selected. If interested you can contact me at [email protected].
    www.614fencing.com
     

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