Writing the Rules

I will start this off by saying what this is not It is not a discussion on the pros and cons of competitions, nor is it in favour of a particular rule-set. I am unbiased on that last point; I used to be very much in favour of one particular set, but then I found that the rules began to …

New to Alte Herren

Techniques and Interview with Jake Norwood A lot of things going on with Alte Herren these days. The first is a video reviewing four techniques from three fights at the 2015 Swordfish Open Longsword. We breakdown exactly what the fighters are doing, looking at their body mechanics and footwork, and what it is that makes them land their successful hit. …

Offline Step in Rapier

A short video lesson on stepping offline Moving offline means to step out of the path of the attacking enemy; in this case (for a right handed fencer), moving to the left. The enemy is assumed to be lunging or making a very committed attack. The step needs to be made lightly, so not with a heavy step, with the weight overly …

Interviews: New in Alte Herren

We have two new interviews in our vlog, Alte Herren, with Rob Runacres and Hans Jornlind as hosts. Ilkka The first of the interviews is with the Finnish martial artist Ilkka Hartikainen talking about his love of the Italian ‘Bolognese’ form of martial arts. The Bolognese was a style originating in the fifteenth century, reaching its peak in the early …

Alte Herren

Alte Herren, a new video blog starring the elder statesmen of HEMA, Rob Runacres and Hans Jörnlind. Alte Herren is for all things HEMA and blade based martial arts, with discussions, interviews and vlogs from all the events they got to. It’s a bit rough and ready, but we think you’ll enjoy it. The first video is a review of …

Swordfish 2015 Video Blog

This was my fourth year at Swordfish; my third as Tournament Manager. Over the last six months, I’ve been helping to organise this premier historical European martial art (HEMA) event: designing the schedule, drawing up the pools for the tournaments,  and coordinating referees and judging staff. Over the weekend, I ran the Swordfish tournaments (including a special invitational Sword and …

I Want to Get Good

When will I be good? Probably THE question we ask ourselves and our teachers. Some already know, or think they are good. Most of us stumble along hoping to be good, and irritate our friends for some form of affirmation. Most teachers in response to this question have a nasty counter of ‘well, what do you mean by good’. This …

Running a HEMA Competition

The first question any organiser asks themselves when considering running a competition again is ‘why on earth would I want to do this?’ Starting a new event is usually an easier task, mentally, with enthusiasm as yet untempered by the difficulties and disappointments that come along the way. Often, as with birth, there is escalating pain, (unexpected despite all the warnings …

Cavalcabo’s fencing treatise

Available for some time as an Ebook, Cavalcabo’s treatise on fencing is now available in print here. Originally, I had not intended to publish in this format, but a number of you have expressed an interest. Available from the same site is ‘The Sword of Combat’, who is, shall we say, straight to the point on the matter of sword …

Tournaments

Tournaments are a major feature of Historical European Martial Arts, offering competitors one way in which chance to try their skills out against opponents in an adrenalin-filled, if controlled environment. Tournaments follow various formats and in this article I will sketch out the broad format used in competitions as I have experienced at Swordfish, the Nordic League, ILHG and other …