We are glad you are here. We’re excited to give you the opportunity to try out this activity, and hope that you will stay to be a long-term member of our group.
Your first months in the Fiore group
There will be a lot to learn, and some confusion, as the material is challenging. Give yourself time to get familiar with things. Practice outside of class as much as you can – even ten minutes a day can be very helpful. Try to make it to every practice. Ask your coaches and training partners for help.
Please show up on time for class. We start gathering around 6:30pm on Mon/Wed and start class promptly at 6:45pm.
What to wear
- Wear comfortable workout clothes. Your pockets must be emptied of any objects that could be damaged, fall out, or impact others.
- Bring a pair of clean indoor shoes. Ideal shoes are flat-soled, such as Converse All-Stars, or one of the many varieties of Puma sneakers.
- Men must wear a groin cup
Within the first year of practice, you should plan on purchasing the following items, which are listed in rough order of priority (most important first). We have loaner equipment for all of this, but if you are serious about sticking with this hobby, you will want to buy the following items. One thing we have learned through painful experience is that these items can be hard to get, and they can be expensive. It makes a lot of sense to buy from known suppliers, items that members of the club have first-hand experience with. So ask around. Here is the “anointed list” for now:
- A blunt longsword, such as the I-beam trainers made by our local swordmaker Angus Trim, or by the folks at Arms and Armor, who make a very nice fechterspiel.
- A fencing mask or helmet, such as one of the following:
- Back of the head protection for the above, if not already integrated into the helmet. These are fabric or leather shrouds that cover the fencing mask and provide extra padding, and rear protection against sottani cuts. Examples include
- A pair of padded leather fencing gloves, such as these. You will use these for technical drill. A beefier pair will be needed for freeplay (see below).
- A neck protector, such as this ReebokÂ which is very comfortable and sufficient for training purposes, or a proper gorget which will be more protective when you eventually start free play with steel
- Elbow protection – any kind of comfortable skateboarding elbow pad will do. If you’re ordering stuff from Purpleheart Armoury you might as well add these.
- A fencing jacket, such as this one, which these wonderful people make to your size.
Additional gear needed for freeplay
To spar with plastic wasters or with steel, you need some additional items. Talk to the coaches about these. We have instituted a policy that beginners must own the above equipment before starting freeplay. This is to ensure that you have a well maintained and familiar set of gear to protect yourself. In addition to the above, you need:
- Hand protection. Your best best currently, are the Ensifer gloves designed by Fechtschule Gdansk and sold through http://sparringglove.com. We have experimented with a number of other gauntlets including lacrosse gloves, steel gauntlets, steel clamshells etc. and feel that the Ensifers provide the best value and protection. Good hand protection is a critical and expensive purchase and so, please ask around before ordering.
- Elbow and forearm protection
- Torso protection (at minimum, a padded chest protector; ideally, a coat of plates or similar)
Within your first month, we ask that you sign up for one of the dues payment options outlined here.