Tag Archives: épée

RDFC Pre-Season Invitational Tournament 2014


The Harrison Fencing Club has been invited by the Lowell High School Red Devil Fencing club to compete in the RDFC Pre-Season Invitational on Saturday, November 8. The tournament will be held at the Lowell Middle School Gym in Lowell, Indiana, and events start at 8:00 am.

Given the relatively short distance for travel and small field of competition, this event is ideal for beginning fencers who want to a “taste” of what competitive fencing is like. Yet, it will still be a challenge for returning fencers. The schools in the Great Lakes Conference have always trained tough, smart fencers. If you are considering competitive fencing but are unsure, talk to Coach about your interests and concerns.

There is a fee for competitors but no charge for spectators. The cost will be $20 per fencer per weapon fenced. Also, this tournament will require foil bibs (on masks) for foil fencers. If you do not have a mask with a foil bib, don’t worry. We will discuss an inexpensive option at practice along with any other equipment requirements.

I will be asking for parent volunteers to help with transportation. For those of you who will not be competing, you can tag along to support your teammates as long as we have enough room for those fencing and their equipment. I should have a better idea of how many seats we’ll have available by the week of the tournament. Bring snacks, beverages (lots of water!), and a lunch or cash for concessions.

If you know that you’re ready to participate, you can get registered for the tournament by going to the AskFRED site. The tournament link is https://askfred.net/Events/moreInfo.php?tournament_id=28059. If you don’t have a membership to AskFRED (it’s free) , read our post, Getting Ready for Competitive Fencing, to learn how to register for a membership.


Club Equipment Order


I will be placing the first club equipment order on Tuesday, October 21. If you would like to order any equipment, please have your order and money ready for on by practice on Tuesday. For those of you considering competition, there will be a few events where a lame bib will be required on your mask (foil fencers). If you have any questions about equipment, contact me as soon as you can with your questions.

If you are looking for some inexpensive items to round out your personal arsenal, check out our Gear for Sale category of the blog. We have some odds and ends that might interest you. 🙂

Upcoming Event: Purdue Spring Open 2014

PFC-spring-openOn Saturday, April 12, 2014, the Purdue Fencing Club will host its annual Spring Open tournament. All three weapons will be on the event lineup, with mixed épée starting at 9:00 am, mixed sabre at 12:00 pm, and mixed foil at 2:00 pm. If you do intend to compete, plan on checking in at least 30 minutes before your event starts. You will NOT need a USFA membership in order to compete–this event is open.

To sign up, go to the AskFRED link: http://askfred.net/Events/moreInfo.php?tournament_id=24840

Good luck, and have fun!

Results – Harrison @ WLHS Fencing Club

Yesterday’s meet at West Lafayette High School Fencing Club was great fun! The meet started out with individual events for mixed foil and mixed épée, and then finished with a One-Touch Épée event. We thoroughly enjoyed ourselves! Big thanks to WLHS Fencing Club for hosting the event and sharing equipment, and also to our esteemed directors, Mark Brandyberry and Paul Geraci with River City Fencing!

We did not have any fencers in the épée event, so West Side obviously dominated in that event. In foil, our fencers finished in the following places: Jack Stuckey – 1st, Alex Mohler – 2nd, Logan Kyle – tied for 3rd, Sam Schmalzried – 5th, Sarah Motley – 7th, Jacob Ashman – 8th, and Heather Bucher – 9th. Well done, everyone!

The official results from yesterday’s meet at are now posted on AskFRED – http://askfred.net/Results/results.php?tournament_id=25460

The Flèche, Stripped Down and Defined

Photo credit: Australian Academy of Fencing

Photo credit: Australian Academy of Fencing








For some of you, our last practice introduced you to an offensive maneuver called a flèche. For the rest of you, this is a refresher. This is term originating from French (like many terms used in the sport of fencing), meaning “arrow,” referring to the surprising style of the attack. Here’s how the United States Fencing Coaches Association (USFCA) defines a flèche:

Attacking footwork formed by either leaping or running forward, with the rear foot crossing past the front foot

Wikipedia also has a good working definition with photos to help illustrate the execution of the attack. The flèche involves speed and an element of surprise. The flèche is absolutely not a charge down the piste at an opponent at distance. The flèche utilizes timing, not distance, so the distance shouldn’t be greater than an advance-lunge.

The flèche is only used in foil and épée. In sabre, it is forbidden for the back foot to pass in front of the front foot, outlawing the flèche.

Just in case the definition isn’t enough, at the tail end of the video below is an example of a flèche in slow motion. Enjoy!

Fencers Rock! Or Do Rockers Fence?!

I stumbled upon an article at Loudwire.com (or was it UltimateClassicRock.com?) about Iron Maiden frontman, Bruce Dickinson. I can’t say that I am a big Iron Maiden fan, but I am a child of the 80’s, so I am familiar with his work. He is definitely an energetic performer. And now I understand how his footwork training has helped him onstage!

Check out the article on Loudwire – http://loudwire.com/iron-maiden-bruce-dickinson-duels-olympic-fencer-bartosz-piasecki/?trackback=fbshare_top

New Tournament: State Games of Michigan

First let me start by acknowledging that school’s out for the summer. Woohooo! I’m not an Alice Cooper fan (sorry!), so I won’t attach his video here. But I think you all get the point. Vacation time!!

stategamesofmichiganFor those of you who are interested in competing in events this summer, I have been informed of a unique opportunity. The Meijer State Games of Michigan are scheduled for June 21 – June 23, 2013 in Grand Rapids, Michigan. The signature event of the West Michigan Sports Commission, the Meijer State Games of Michigan is a multi-sport, Olympic-style event that welcomes athletes regardless of age or ability. Like the Olympics, the Games include an Opening Ceremonies that allows thousands of spectators to witness the Parade of Athletes, Lighting of the Cauldron and experience great entertainment. Having participated in a state competition such as this (Illinois’ ill-fated Prairie State Games), I can tell you that the Olympic-style experience is unlike any other tournament. Athletes from many different sports compete in these types of games, not just fencers, so you get to meet many different people!

Normally these games would be limited to Michigan residents only, but in the case of the fencing event, the doors are open to competitors in neighboring states. You will need electric equipment for the weapon of your choice and a USFA membership, and the registration fee is reasonable considering the size of the event. Since this is a USFA event, any changes in ratings will be earned.

For more information and registration, go to: http://www.stategamesofmichigan.org/index.php?module=cms&page=22. Registration is being handled on AskFRED – http://askfred.net/Events/moreInfo.php?tournament_id=21092.

Any questions can be directed to the Tournament Director, Barb Nemecek via email, nemos3@aol.com. Download State Games of Michigan Flyer (PDF).

Upcoming Tournament: Orland Park Fencing Competition

While at the Red Devil JV Invitational this past Saturday we met a fencing master, Marek Stepien. He currently has a salle (a fencing club or hall) in Orland Park, Illinois, and has organized a tournament for May 18, 2013. All three weapons will be included, and the competition is open to all skill levels–from the brand-new fencer to the developing, intermediate fencer, anyone with one day, one week, one month to one year of experience or more. Foil and sabre fencers will need to bring their own equipment. This will be a pool competition and all who compete will receive a trophy or medal. Additionally, Joe Guinan, newly chosen Ohio State Fencing Team member, will speak about his exciting experiences in fencing and share some pointers prior to competition.

Registration can be done at the Orland Park Recreation Center website (Program #72302), or you can register on site at the event.

Let me know if you want to compete, and we can work out equipment for the competition.


Getting Ready for Competitive Fencing

Santelli Fencing Tournament 2012

Photo Credit: Jerry McCrea/The Star-Ledger

If you are ready to make the transition from recreational fencing to competitive fencing, there are some easy, preliminary steps to take prior to arriving on the strip. This post will lay out the steps for getting registered on the askFRED.net website (FRED stands for the Fencing Results and Events Database). There is no cost to register at askFRED; yes, it is free. Doing so will keep you connected to opportunities to fence at meets and open tournaments locally and all across the country.

If you have a USFA membership, you can record your membership information and rankings in your profile with askFRED. But don’t worry–you will not need a USFA membership in order to register.

So, let’s begin!



1. Go to http://askfred.net by clicking on the link provided here.

2. At the top right corner of the page, click on the link “Create Membership“.

3. In the field provided on the page, enter your last name and click GO.






4. On the next screen you will have the option for searching for your name or creating a new profile. (In the example below, I used the last name of “Harrison” for demonstration purposes only.) Unless you have previously fenced in a tournament that may have added your name for you, you will need to make a new fencer record. So, click on the link “Create a New Fencer Record.”










5. The site will produce a form for you to fill out with your personal information (see below):

















When you get to the field requesting your club information, find Harrison High School Fencing Club on the list which will be found alphabetically listed with the other “H” clubs. (Our club abbreviation at askFRED is HHSFC.).

  • For the Division field, select Indiana.
  • If you have any ratings from the USFA, you may enter them here. The numbers after the letter in the rating refer to the year that you attained the rating. For example, “C2013” means that the fencer attained a “C” rating in the year 2013.
  • For the last item on the form, the checkbox for a Bout Committee Account, leave this unchecked.
  • Click on the Register button to submit your information.

You will be able to update your profile information at any time simply by logging back into askFRED and navigating to your profile. Also, you will now be able to pre-register for any fencing event. There may be a few events will allow you to pay your registration through askFRED as well.

Competing in USFA events will give you the opportunity to earn a rating depending on how many athletes compete. In order to compete in USFA events, you will need to have a current USFA membership.

I encourage you to explore the site, taking note of the page for upcoming tournaments. Our club calendar is updated according to these events, however if you find a tournament that you would like to attend on your own, you are free to do so.

Most everything at askFRED is fairly easy to understand, however, if you have any questions just let me know.