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Old 06-21-2000, 01:04 PM   #2
Norman
"Norman"
IP Hash: 82e59966
Location: Weymouth, Massachusetts
Join Date: Jun 2000
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OK BIG DISCLAIMER here;
I have never studied any budo swordsnamship, but have trained extensively in european styles and perhaps could offer a few insights.


European styles differ mainly on the weapon used.
for example fencing, depending on foil, sabre, or eepe, is generally very target orientated. you are aiming for specific organs in the body. There is no such crushing blows in fencing, so the strategy basically is to feign the opponent in to moving his defenses out of the small above the waist target area, then strike with a precise killing blow.

The tactics, and style are altogeather different when figting with a broadsword. Usually you are both fully armored (about 80 pounds of armor) and the strategy is either knock your opponent off balance then once on the ground, follow ontop of him and with your dagger cut the throat, or to bludgeon specific armor pieces to cause an internal injury, or lack of movement.

then fighing with a shield, or on horseback, are again totally different styles, but one thing holds true to all of them...

When I am instucting beginning swordsfighters they are unaware about two things,

One, the only part of the blade you are ever going to hit with is from the tip to six inches down. that is the area that will gain the most momentum.
and likewise the only are you wil block with is the 12 inches from the guard up. this tis where you can sucessfully block a stike.

Two, people often think that it is wrong to use your hands. when you close the distance you can easily punch, push, bash or pommel the opponent. this also includes grabbing ahold of their sword. (remember the only part worth shapening is the 6 inches at the tip and usually your hands are gloved)

I would also like to say that since no one martial art is compleete, I see no problem with western warriorship blended with eastern.

Just a note on credability, I traveled with the Hanlon-Lees Action Theater for a few years. They are a troupe of jousting knights that perform at rennisance faires. I lent my blacksmithing skills to make whatever repairs were needed to tack, and armor and weapons. Yes the groundfighting is all worked out ahead of time, but everyone there after hours would spen all night sparing and learning from one another. So all my knowledge is from books and mainly from real combat expiriance. Also the jousting is real to a great degree, the horsemanship is crucial to a safe show.

I do not claim to be any great european swordsmaster, but many many bumps and bruises later, I feel I can offer some insights that may or may not bennifit someone.
Also a post like this can never lend a great deal of information on any topic, but I hope the insights may help someone

Norman Harvey
New England Aikikai

"We see the world as WE are, not as IT is, because it is the I behind the EYE that does the seeing"
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