My son Thomas is a talented fencer who fenced for England and Great Britain in international competitions. I enjoyed many years of taking him to tournaments around the country, and rather missed it when he went to Oxford University after his A levels last year, so I thought I would have a go.
I only manage one training session per month on average, always with Newcastle Fencing Club at the Newcastle Fencing Centre in Benfield.
Fencing is an intense and highly skilled sport requiring high levels of fitness and above all, mental alertness. I like that combination.
To be a good fencer you need to be supremely fit and agile and have exceptional reflexes.
For me, the most difficult thing to master is blade control. You have to be able to parry and riposte against an opponent almost instinctively because there is no time to think about it.
I’ve had a few knocks and bruises while fencing, but my pride has been hurt more than my body when I’ve been roundly beaten by youngsters.
I haven’t taken part in any competitions yet but I’d like to sometime in the future.
If someone is thinking of taking up fencing I would say: ‘Go for it!’ Make contact with a fencing club that will give you a taster session to help you understand the basics.
0191 250 0315
Newcastle Fencing Club