A Critique

Here is a short critique* of a video of myself sparring. It was taken in July ’06 after we had had a short break in training, so probably not the best of times to go sparring, but we had to try out our new modified shinai! I’m in the blue.

Some things that might have made Liechtenauer frown 😦 –

The wrestling at the very start and end isn’t what is in 15th Century manuals. The wrestling in those manuals consist mostly of bone breaks and finishing strikes. The aim is certainly to get your opponent to the ground, however you then pin him and finish them quickly. There is very little ‘groundfighting’ in a modern sense (e.g. BJJ). Some reasons for this include having techniques useful in both unarmoured and armoured situations; being on the ground would of been troublesome in a melee; and possibility of opponent having a dagger. Here is a thread on the subject from Swordforum.

I am too static with my guards. I sit in Vom Tag at the shoulder and launch most of my attacks from there.

My measure is sometimes wrong. I allow myself to get too close to my opponent without attacking them.

My guards get sloppy.

I launch stupid attacks, often not providing a sufficient threat and getting hit because of it. (See timestamps ~58 secs and ~2: 15)

Even though my one-handed sneak attacks worked I should of recovered back into a guard quickly and safely OR kept on attacking the openings. In fact that applies across the board.

There are a few mutual kills.

Have to watch my true times.

Some things that might have made Liechtenauer turn that frown upside down 🙂 # –

I’m happy with the other wrestling (can certainly be improved upon though!). It’s nothing flash but I do seem to control his weapon and get my tip online. I do like the play starting at about 2:30 ending with me half-swording to his neck.

I sense when he is overly hard in the bind, coming in for some nice Abnehmen, most of which hit his hands and lower arm.

In the play starting around :28secs I end up getting a nice Schnitt to his arms, controlling his weapon, and opening him up for a thrust. In my mind this is evidence of a the Schnitt’s effectiveness as a controlling action, seeing as this worked with shinai against padded arms.

Some Nachreisen is in there, such as at 1:47.

A little Mutieren at the start.

Some nice counter attacks. Closing off the line, stepping off to the side so as to block his attack and land mine.

In conclusion- I like how my gambeson looks.

So there you have it, a short critique. I’m sure there are other things, but I’ll leave it at that. I encourage anyone else to video their fencing efforts and put them online for all to see. You can get some good constructive feedback from the historical fencing community.

* It was a long one, but my browser crashed and I lost it as wordpress has poor draft save capabilities. This would not have happened if Hulk Hogan was in charge of the internet.

# I hadn’t started on this section before my browser crashed. So if it seems like I talk longer on this, then that is the case as I hate having to type something twice. It’s not just me talking myself up, honest.

~ by Magnus on 6 December, 2006.

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