When In Manila, fencing is considered to be a luxurious sport that only rich people play. I remember fencing being the sport of Macaulay Culkin in Richie Rich and Lee Min Ho in Boys Over Flowers. And of course, there are a lot of other cool movies with fencing in it too, like Zorro or Die Another Day. Even Star Wars’ Master Yoda followed the tricks and stunts of fencing.
I was so ecstatic when an organization like Vicious Brainiac Fencing finally started offering fencing classes in Manila. This once-upon-a-dream luxurious sport is now within reach for people in Manila like you and me.
And so when I was given a chance to try out this oldest Olympic sport for a day, I quickly grabbed it. Our class was held at the Fencing Hall in Ultra. It was unlike what I’ve ever imagined. We were in a blank open space, pretty much like a badminton court (without nets). The open windows brought in fresh air.
My friends and I were dressed in ordinary shirts, jogging pants and rubber shoes. Just like in any other sport, we had to warm-up. We jogged 10 rounds. We did some stretching.
Then, the real thing began. Our coaches taught us the basic fencing moves in our crash course that cover most of fencing.
The “en garde” is the starting position.
Then there’s the advance position, the basic forward movement.
And the lunge position — this allows players to bend lower and extend their reach more than the advance.
It was a good exercise. I think I lost a couple of pounds that day (Haha!). And I learned a whole lot!
Most of my misconceptions about fencing were crushed to bits on that day:
Misconception #1: Fencing is for the rich.
Peter So of Vicious Brainiac Fencing clarified, “Fencing is pretty much like badminton in its costing. You just have to invest in a sword, a jacket and a helmet. You can have them all for as low as Php 6,000.”
Misconception #2: Fencing is unsafe.
The first thing I did when I arrived at the fencing hall was to touch the sword. Like in the movies, the sword bends as you flip it back and forth. But unlike in movies, the real fencing sword cannot really pierce through the skin. It’s actually as thick as a TV antenna, therefore it’s quite a safe sport.
Misconception #3: It’s all about attacking.
According to the coaches, fencing is like a physical chess. It is not as simple as attacking your opponent at all times. It’s actually strategizing and thinking at least two steps ahead of your opponent.
Misconception #4: Fencing is one sport you can master.
I was surprised to learn that there are actually THREE forms of fencing that you can master. The foil, epee and sabre. They differ in types of swords, rules and objectives.
So when in Manila and you’re thinking of trying a new sport, then throw those misconceptions away and go for fencing! En Garde!
VICIOUS BRAINIAC FENCING
Vicious Brainiac Fencing Facebook: www.facebook.com/viciousbrainiac fencing
Tel No.: 468.5834
Cell No.: +63917.5290486