Showing posts from 2008

Fixed Website

It took a bit of doing, but now it should be fixed should now work as is, no special ways of going about it. The official was given to me all of a sudden by Google, who changed something so that my previous work around just broke it. So I had to mess around with all sorts of technical things and it now works. Now to go find all those places I put the old address. I also added a thing to leave comments and whatnot on the Contact Us page of the site. I would like to put the funny looking letters but I don't know how to embed anything into google forms. Oh well.

I am working on the next post, it should be out before Christmas. Have a wonderful season, and Merry Christmas, now if there was only a bit of fencing somewhere during that time...

Hawaii Open "Postponed"

I've been looking forward to something larger than a club tournament for the past year. Of course that means that the big tournament over on Oahu is pushed back until 2010 rather than February 2009. Flights might have been as low as 90 dollars round trip from our island. But the mainlanders can't come because they scheduled a tournament on a close weekend and tickets are expensive, so Hawaii cancels. Argh!
In good news I was contacted by a fencer up Kohala ways and I got new fencing gear from Leon Paul! The gear is shiny and the sabre blades have a real nice ring to them. Maybe I can use the bag to get my gear back so that I can fence while back on the mainland over Christmas. I doubt it, but if I contact people then I might be able to, who knows?

The Air We Consume

Humans tend to need to breathe even when it would be very nice not to. Of course it doesn't help that some people need to wash their fencing jackets, as the smell could kill several small animals. Though, truth be told, fencing equipment is much easier to clean than Kendo equipment that is dyed with indigo that tends to run. Needless to say the smell in Kendo can be overwhelming. It is very necessary to air out or wash equipment in Hawaii, as anything left in a pile will soon become colorful. And don't even get me started on rust and weapons, or that Hawaii eats everything, maybe I will write a list of materials and how they don't hold up to Hawaii some other day.

On the serious side, breathing during fencing almost needs to be well practiced. Breathing in certain loud ways before an attack or other action can become a tell-tale, so be careful. But the need for release when doing an action, such as a lunge, is very true. Holding your breath while doing any action may harm y…

Tell-tale Twitch

Okay, one of the biggest problems a fencer has is a tell-tale. Well, from what I know that is the biggest problem any fighter has. A preparation before an attack, whether it is a twitch or a pattern it can still tell the opponent that you are about to attack. So there are two things to do with a tell-tale: Eliminate it, and then use fake tell-tales.
First, you either have to be good at self-criticism, or work with a partner. Second, you need a mirror, unless you have a trustworthy partner. The drills are as numerous as the potential situations in which you could show your intention, and also being lazy this late I won't list them but say that the lunge is one of the biggies.

A tell-tale before a lunge can be as subtle as a shift in weight, to a large rotation of the upper body as though trying to gain rotational acceleration from the movement and therefore make the point of the foil move faster. Whatever the physical or mental reason for the tell-tale, it signals the opponent, so w…

The Secret to Skewering

Many times I will miss an opponent utterly, or just continue to hit off-target. Both of these things are frustrating, especially after pulling off a wonderful parry. Ben says that it is because I am not lining up the shot, or in other words being hasty, and trying to throw my point out to the opponent without aiming.

The secret is to parry, put the point in line, and at this point two things might happen: The opponent might very well run onto the point with a strong enough attack, and you will be pointing at his target, or the opponent will stop making it necessary to extend the arm for the riposte, as well as possibly lunging. However the basic physics lesson for today is that an opponent who is coming toward you tends to continue coming unless fleet of foot and able to stop on a dime.

So, parry, point-in-line, riposte in one fluid motion will make many rpiostes much better. There are many other bladework ideas in foil, but I will cover more later.

Resetting the Counter

Just a quick note that whatever counter I was using before had some really weird links. Just to click on it sent me to some probate thingy. Oh well, I suspect that I won't quite get the 400+ visitors I had before, but that is certainly alright. I will put up a new post about my struggles with bladework soon.


With any martial art footwork is the foundation for the rest of the movement. If you don't know this or are just beginning a martial art, then you will here this quite often. Fencing is no different, and in fact it can play into high-level strategy as well. Though what I am going to cover is pretty basic.

In both of the gyms we practice in, there is a problem with the stickiness of the floor and the potential for tripping and/or twisting an ankle. This is caused by humidity, a clean floor, and not having one of those fancy grounded-metal strips. The problem people have is that they don't quite pick their feet up all the way and their toe catches on the sticky floor, causing them to fall or reel. Sometimes it is just due to inexperience with the floor or basic footwork, but sometimes it is due to people trying to be sneaky by leaving their toe to slide along the floor so that it seems that they haven't lifted their foot. This can be used as a tactic but shows a few flaws.


Turning a New Blade

Rather than just blog at random, I have come to a decision that I could help myself, my club, and potentially our website by blogging about fencing. The nice thing is that the title for the blog doesn't need to be changed, only a few other things do, but anyway. Go checkout the website at And come fence with us!!

Today I was walking like I have been for the last few weeks for my noon break up and down the hill. This a really sticky affair as it is usually well near 80 for both humidity and temperature. I was stopped by someone from one of the other telescopes and he asked me when and where fencing met. I was wearing my Hawaii Island Fencing T-shirt so I wasn't too surprised. Hopefully we will see him Monday.

Last night I posted about 10 photos taken by Bill Harby of Imagery Ink of our fencing club fencing in the old Mountain View Gym, if you would like to look at the photos, they are at the website and are copyrighted. Bill used to fence with the club but has …

So I do have a blog...

Well it has certainly been a while. So long in fact that many things have changed, specifically I am living and working on the Big Island, Hawaii. Talk about a change. If I were to move to any place that was much more different from Wyoming it would have to have a foreign language. Oh yeah, I guess the locals have a pidgin dialect that is actually considered a creole which is one level below being a recognized language.

Anyway, I should really start writing again, although I write in several other places about many different things, hmmm... Well then I don't know. I will write sporadically, how about that? Maybe a bit more frequency than once every 10 months.