They who like the guards, and counterguards, and stringering here, there, above, and below, the feints, and counterfeints, the diagonal paces, the voids of the legs, and the crossings, necessarily form and move their bodies in many strange ways; which, as things done by chance and that were founded in no reasons that were sound and true, we will leave to their authors. — Ridolfo CapoFerro
One of the reasons that I haven’t posted many lessons up here lately is that I’ve been focusing a lot lately on my classical fencing. One of the others is that most of the rapier lessons that I’ve been giving have been fairly simple – at least in terms of the number of actions. Lately, I’ve been working more on perfecting speed, timing and timing during the lessons, throwing in tactical actions as they seem appropriate. I think that the results are good, but it does leave me with less to write about.
I did give a rapier lesson the other day that I thought was pretty fun, so I decided to share it. I did this with my wife Dori, who was preparing to participate in an upcoming rapier tournament.
From the instructor’s invitation in third, straight thrust
In time, as the instructor invites in third, straight thrust
In time as the instructor attempts to engage in fourth, disengagement
In time, as the instructor attempts to engage in fourth, feint by disengagement and disengagement
Same thing, but with an advance
Same thing, but the instructor may attempt to counterattack
In time, as the instructor attempts a blade seizure in fourth, disengagement in time
Either 5 or 7, based on whether the instructor just attempts to engage the weapon, or to a blade seizure
Same as 8, but with the option of counterattacking against the student’s feint
From the instructor’s engagement in third, three straight thrusts, end of lesson.