The Swords Club
ABOUT FENCING

There are three weapons used in fencing: Foil, Epee and Sabre.

INTRODUCTION TO FENCING

Weapon: Foil

The electric foil is a light weapon which weighs about 450 grams and is approximately 100cm long. A small, spring-loaded tip is attached to the point of the foil and is connected to a wire inside the blade. The fencer wears a body cord inside his uniform which connects the foil to a reel wire, connected to the scoring machine.

foil

The valid target area in foil is the torso, from the shoulders to the groin, front and back. It does not include the arms, neck, head and legs. The foil fencer's uniform includes a metallic vest (called a lamé) which covers the valid target area, so that a valid touch will register on the scoring machine.

foil

There are two scoring lights on the machine. One shows a green light when a fencer is hit, and one shows a red light when her opponent is hit. A touch landing outside the valid target area (that which is not covered by the lamé) is indicated by a white light. These "off target" hits do not count in the scoring, but they do stop the fencing action temporarily.

Right of Way

One of the most difficult concepts to visualize in foil and sabre fencing is the rule of right-of-way. This rule was established to eliminate apparently simultaneous attacks by two fencers.

Illustration: Francois Cartegnie

QUICK LINKS

About fencing
Three Weapons