Y12 foil

Discussion in 'Parent's Corner' started by MarylandFencingMom, Mar 14, 2016.

  1. MarylandFencingMom

    MarylandFencingMom Rookie

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    So my son is 10 years old now and will be moving out of Y10 into Y12 next year. I understand that he can now use a longer blade in tournaments in Y12. He is a tiny kid so I'd like the lightest weight weapon he can possibly have. Any advice what to order? His only requirement is a Belgian grip.
     
  2. Diesel

    Diesel Made the Cut

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    Ask his coach. Most are very particular about what their fencers use. Once you know what the coach wants, be sure to change all the weapons so your son is not switching back and forth. (if your son still plans to do any y10 events, it probably makes sense to only fence w shorter blades until he's done w y10)

    Cheers,
     
  3. jdude97

    jdude97 Podium

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    Fwiw I had both weapons for awhile when I was fencing both events. I don't think there's anything wrong with that. I think it's pretty silly when I see kids fencing with shorter than required weapons in Y12 -- seems like you're just putting yourself at such a disadvantage.
     
  4. Goldgar

    Goldgar Podium

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    Depends on the fencer's size and hand strength. Better a weapon he can manipulate easily than one which is longer but unwieldy. And this is a question about foil, rather than about epee where an extra couple of inches' reach may be very significant.
     
  5. jdude97

    jdude97 Podium

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    Indeed reach is everything in epee. I guess finesse is a primary factor moreso in foil
     
  6. Goldgar

    Goldgar Podium

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    I would not say reach is "everything" in epee; just that it's more of an offsetting factor than in foil.
     
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  7. jdude97

    jdude97 Podium

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    Agreed no one factor is everything in any weapon but especially in youth epee, the best fencers (or more specifically, the fencers with the best short-term results) are almost always the tallest fencers. That seems to be because there is less tactical play and parrying/footwork skills so just extending your arm and poking the other person first is very effective. Interestingly, these relatively tall fencers seem to end up doing worse as they age and their peers catch up to them in height because they've spent their formative years not working on important things like parries and footwork, relying on reach alone. I see this especially in Y14 where there are a group of kids who went through growth spurts earlier and those kids tend to dominate. To a lesser extent in Y12, although those who are taller tend to do just so much better because their opponents are on an even lower level. But by cadet, the field seems to even out, and sometimes these tall youths are unable to continue their success. Sorry for extreme thread drift but good discussion.
     
  8. Mac A. Bee

    Mac A. Bee is a Verified Fencing ExpertMac A. Bee Podium

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    Yesterday I reffed one of the shortest Y12s wielding a "2" versus a "4" quite effectively. Contretemps, the tallest 12er (only 11!) lost his L32 to a much smaller, more mobile and better-skilled opponent.
     
  9. jdude97

    jdude97 Podium

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    Granted there's always exceptions and short fencers, especially particularly skilled ones, learn to use superior footwork and bladework to beat taller fencers. But look at the points standings for the last few years, or see a podium at a youth NAC, and you'll see the trend.
     
  10. foodle

    foodle Made the Cut

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    A number of companies offer special lightweight components. For example, Leon Paul has a lightweight aluminum bell guard and magnesium grips (although these are only currently in the medium size and likely too big for his hand). You'll have to test various blade manufacturers/types to see which is the lightest, but we've had good luck with BF white maraging.

    Also, total weight may not be as important as balance point for weapon/point control. Talk to his coach about where he/she would recommend setting the balance point. Our coach said she likes it just in front of the bell guard.
     
  11. DHCJr

    DHCJr Armorer

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    Don't give up on the shorter blades yet. Like Mac A. Bee, I know of a fencer, an A fencer who had different length blades and different handles. He was of average height and when he came upon some of these giants, he would switch to his shortest blades. They were about 72 cm long. The shortest of the manufactured blades are around 77.5 cm long.

    They would get inside the opponents reach and from that point their opponent could not hit them because of their long arms and long blades.

    Something to consider.
     
  12. Zebra

    Zebra DE Bracket

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    I was going to say something like that. At one of the RYCs I refereed this season, I saw a small Y12 fence effectively against bigger Y14s by getting inside.
     

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