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canco
-10th May 2008, 11:50
With all of the talk of the Olympics and how so few qualified this time around, there has been a lot of debate over how to raise the standard of fencing in GBR.

Most people seem to agree that although it is the elite who need the funding to qualify, that there must be a solid base of fencers pushing behind the "elites" to keep fencing as a whole progressing.

For this to happen, there has to be a desire to improve. One of the requirements to improve are that fencers must compete at higher levels.

So, if GBR is hosting a satellite in Gateshead and few are entering the competition. Would you it be reasonable to think the desire isn't there from the fencers? Is the standard in GBR so low that coaches aren't pushing students to go to satellites? Is the Gateshead satellite just bad timing for the WF satellite fencers?

What's the cause of the low entry and how do we change it?

riposteinprime
-10th May 2008, 12:17
Whats the current incentive to enter? The NIF is mediocre, and the promise of world cup points for the top 8 is meaningless unless you fence world cup events.

The downsides are requiring full 800N FIE gear and blades, the ridiculous stripes requirement and the fact that it's miles away from the big foil clubs in London and the south east and west.

That's why I think it's undersubscribed.

riposteinprime
-10th May 2008, 14:11
Negative rep is accusing me of being so negative that I should 'pack it in'.

Lets look at last years entry list from Newcastle:

Rang Pts Nom Nationalité Naiss. Licence
1 4 ANTIPOVA Olga KAZ 07.04.77 07041977001
2 3 SIBERT Catriona GBR 30.10.90 30101990000
3 2 COLEMAN Monique NZL 10.03.86 10031986005
3 2 MULLINS Philippa GBR 28.01.90 28011990000
5 1 THOMSON Natasha GBR 24.12.91 24121991000
6 1 PONZONI Eleonora GBR 10.12.89 10121989001
7 1 TELLER Tarenn GBR 03.08.77 03081977001
8 1 HILL Tegan GBR 23.04.87 23041987001
9 0 BOWYER Jocelyn GBR 18.10.57 18101957000
10 0 RAU Yeu-Chian TPE 11.04.76 11041976000
11 0 HAWROT Kathryn USA 25.03.92 25031992000


It's a county level event in FIE clothing.

canco
-10th May 2008, 14:37
I would have thought that the presence of World Cup Points inticed a higher standard to a competition.

I'm fencing in satellites (MS) and I think I'm a bit off from achieving points but the prospect is there. Is fencing much better fencers not enough of incentive? Does it have to be a large competition to be recognised as a worthy GBR event? Is quality without quantity pointless?

These are the things we have to work out.

Repositeinprime, what do you think makes a competition worthwhile?

Foilling Around
-10th May 2008, 14:51
So riposteinprime, what do you suggest, lets just throw in the towel. Hell its not worth it. I mean to say all of the top events on the continent are held in the middle of the big cities at really convenient times aren't they?

Actually they are not! People work hard to make them succeed and if they are lucky they don't get ******* (deleted) people being so negative. Have some rep by the way.

Your reaction is like that of the person who cries out "we're all going to die" and then smiles, as you are hit by the runaway truck, because you were proved right!!!

First of all I hardly think the quality of the WF event last year was "county standard" Olga Antipova recently finished 8th in tha Asian championships, just ahead of Iris Rau. Catriona, Philippa and Natasha are 3 of our top Juniors and currently in the Adult top 10.

County in numbers maybe, but not in standard!

I fear we will not get the likes of the Top 5 in the GBR rankings, because it will not fit in with Pathway programme. Shame because they are the fencers who would really benefit from the points to get potentially easier poules at the World Cup and Grand Prix events

I have also posted elsewhere that Barry Flood informs me that there are at least 3 international entries this year who, when combined with the Brits I know are entering, take the NIF to 30+

We need to create a virtuous circle for this event not a negative one. It is after the majority of the exams and a decent warm up for the Nationals. So until the nationals are moved I hope we will support it.

I could go on but what is the point....... we're all doomed anyway!!

shepherd
-10th May 2008, 15:13
The only way out is to "trap" a bunch of kids (around 6 years old) in a confined area, providing nothing but food, water, air, swords and good coaches for 10 years :cool:

riposteinprime
-10th May 2008, 15:53
So riposteinprime, what do you suggest, lets just throw in the towel. Hell its not worth it. I mean to say all of the top events on the continent are held in the middle of the big cities at really convenient times aren't they?



maybe base the competition off the pro sabre model? Invite the top fencers and the rest will come. Provide decent referees at all stages. Receptions, prizes, the competition needs to provide the incentives to fencers, otherwise they won't show up. Whilst my points might be negative, something is very obviously wrong if you're struggling to get 15 people to show up.

More effective advertising: The major selling point for this competition is the world cup points, and if as you say, the top 5 can't enter because of pathway - the points are only useful to overseas fencer looking to blag a few points.

Your comments on the strength of the open only prove my point further. The only attendees are one or two top level fencers or a handful of top level juniors, all of which own their FIE gear already. For top 50 Jane Doe to enter this competition she would need to buy jacket breeches mask and 3 new weapons. Then get name and stripes printed, then buy an FIE licence. Even if she had a few 800N pieces already this is adding up to several hundred pounds. All for a competition with less than 15 people. She'd get more quantity and quality by showing up to Salle Paul.

I understand competitions have to start from somewhere, but you have to provide fencers with value (however you calculate it) for money otherwise they won't turn up.

pinkelephant
-10th May 2008, 16:54
maybe base the competition off the pro sabre model? Invite the top fencers and the rest will come. Provide decent referees at all stages. Receptions, prizes, the competition needs to provide the incentives to fencers, otherwise they won't show up. Whilst my points might be negative, something is very obviously wrong if you're struggling to get 15 people to show up.

More effective advertising: The major selling point for this competition is the world cup points, and if as you say, the top 5 can't enter because of pathway - the points are only useful to overseas fencer looking to blag a few points.

Your comments on the strength of the open only prove my point further. The only attendees are one or two top level fencers or a handful of top level juniors, all of which own their FIE gear already. For top 50 Jane Doe to enter this competition she would need to buy jacket breeches mask and 3 new weapons. Then get name and stripes printed, then buy an FIE licence. Even if she had a few 800N pieces already this is adding up to several hundred pounds. All for a competition with less than 15 people. She'd get more quantity and quality by showing up to Salle Paul.

I understand competitions have to start from somewhere, but you have to provide fencers with value (however you calculate it) for money otherwise they won't turn up.

You don't need stripes.

riposteinprime
-10th May 2008, 16:56
You don't need stripes.

when did this come through? I was told very strongly last year that no stripes = no play.

Saxon
-10th May 2008, 17:30
...as discussed elsewhere...

http://76.162.189.46/forum/showthread.php?t=9811&highlight=stripes

riposteinprime
-10th May 2008, 17:42
...as discussed elsewhere...

http://76.162.189.46/forum/showthread.php?t=9811&highlight=stripes

From that thread:


So what's the consensus? Do you need them for Gateshead, definitely? Before I get someone to sew them my spare kit for me?


If you're talking about WE at the Cole Cup, then the answer is basically yes. Why risk it?


I was just wondering what has changed. I guess it makes it 20 cheaper than my initial estimates, but still a drop in the ocean compared with 24 for FIE licences, hundreds for kit (although this is not a one off), and potentially hundreds in travel and accomodation.

How can you expect people to justify it for such a small competition?

Saxon
-10th May 2008, 19:58
No offence intended to Nick_C, but I believe you missed out the advice from all the *qualified* individuals in that thread.

Red
-10th May 2008, 21:51
maybe base the competition off the pro sabre model? Invite the top fencers and the rest will come. Provide decent referees at all stages. Receptions, prizes, the competition needs to provide the incentives to fencers, otherwise they won't show up. Whilst my points might be negative, something is very obviously wrong if you're struggling to get 15 people to show up.

More effective advertising: The major selling point for this competition is the world cup points, and if as you say, the top 5 can't enter because of pathway - the points are only useful to overseas fencer looking to blag a few points.

Your comments on the strength of the open only prove my point further. The only attendees are one or two top level fencers or a handful of top level juniors, all of which own their FIE gear already. For top 50 Jane Doe to enter this competition she would need to buy jacket breeches mask and 3 new weapons. Then get name and stripes printed, then buy an FIE licence. Even if she had a few 800N pieces already this is adding up to several hundred pounds. All for a competition with less than 15 people. She'd get more quantity and quality by showing up to Salle Paul.

I understand competitions have to start from somewhere, but you have to provide fencers with value (however you calculate it) for money otherwise they won't turn up.

The Pro-Sabre is special. It isn't just a competition, it's a bloody good weekend.
The numbers are poor. But if a 30 NIF event has the 5th biggest NIF count, then numbers are poor EVERYWHERE in WF. The issue isn't with this competition, it lies with WF - a discussion that has taken place on here ad tedium.

I'm sorry, but if you buy 350N masks for yourself then you're remarkably silly. An FIE mask is twice as expensive, but will probably last you 2-3 times longer.
I agree with the jacket/breeches, but can't you sell on the old 350Ns to a clubmate?
Non-FIE blades are a fool's economy, they don't survive anywhere near as long - in the long run they're much cheaper.

Foilling Around
-10th May 2008, 22:14
maybe base the competition off the pro sabre model? Invite the top fencers and the rest will come. Provide decent referees at all stages. Receptions, prizes, the competition needs to provide the incentives to fencers, otherwise they won't show up. Whilst my points might be negative, something is very obviously wrong if you're struggling to get 15 people to show up.

More sensible approach thanks RIP! There already is prize money, but it is not big enough to be a draw. There are decent referees already, if I remember it was me and Ian Hunter.


More effective advertising: The major selling point for this competition is the world cup points, and if as you say, the top 5 can't enter because of pathway - the points are only useful to overseas fencer looking to blag a few points.

I think the pathway situation is a mistake, there is a tactical advantage to be gained from gaining points at satelites. You can call it "blagging a few points" if you want but I call it using the system to your best advantage.


Your comments on the strength of the open only prove my point further. The only attendees are one or two top level fencers or a handful of top level juniors, all of which own their FIE gear already. For top 50 Jane Doe to enter this competition she would need to buy jacket breeches mask and 3 new weapons. Then get name and stripes printed, then buy an FIE licence. Even if she had a few 800N pieces already this is adding up to several hundred pounds. All for a competition with less than 15 people. She'd get more quantity and quality by showing up to Salle Paul.

Most of the top 50 women have 800N kit, especially as many of them are Juniors and cadets travelling abroad anywhere, and can't work out why they need 3 new weapons when virtually al weapons are FIE already. We now know that all you need is a metre of GBR tape on your arm and an FIE licence. Total cost about an extra £26. So why not go over to Amsterdam for the other FIE satelite?


I understand competitions have to start from somewhere, but you have to provide fencers with value (however you calculate it) for money otherwise they won't turn up.

However if it is not sold from the top then you are pushing uphill even if it is a good product.

Anyway - a NIF of 30+ plus so far does make it an attractive proposition for a fencer looking for domestic points.

Ronald Velden
-10th May 2008, 22:57
I think that the real problems are threefold:

1. Too many competitions.
2. This is the end of the season.
3. Womens Foil as I have pointed out for many years has been neglected
and there are insufficient numbers to make a proper quorum particularly
in a FIE Tournament which does not attract overseas entries.

pinkelephant
-11th May 2008, 01:48
We now know that all you need is a metre of GBR tape on your arm and an FIE licence.




I repeat - you don't need stripes. From the horse's mouth -
http://www.fencingforum.com/forum/showthread.php?p=195908#post195908

randomsabreur
-11th May 2008, 08:09
I always used the Cole as a warm up for nationals, as there is a big break between Birmingham (which can be awkward for many people for family reasons) and the Nationals which are right at the end of the season. Most serious fencers have FIE kit anyway. I'm probably not doing it this year as I'm not organised enough to have appropriate kit, but when I do get sorted with the left handed kit, I'm not about to drop back to 350N kit. Major issue is that I don't really want my name on my back left handed - don't want to be too recognisable when I'm trying to remember which way around to come on guard!

riposteinprime
-11th May 2008, 12:07
No offence intended to Nick_C, but I believe you missed out the advice from all the *qualified* individuals in that thread.

The point I was making is that last year the competition organisers were insisting on stripes despite evidence that they are not needed. Why the change?


More sensible approach thanks RIP! There already is prize money, but it is not big enough to be a draw. There are decent referees already, if I remember it was me and Ian Hunter.

But again, thats two referees of which only one is FIE (nothing against your refereeing).




I think the pathway situation is a mistake, there is a tactical advantage to be gained from gaining points at satelites. You can call it "blagging a few points" if you want but I call it using the system to your best advantage.

Again I agree, but the WC points are useless unless you are doing senior A grades. The top seniors should be made to do this competition to assist seeding for next year. Is Alex O'C doing the event to assist his Olympic seeding?



Most of the top 50 women have 800N kit, especially as many of them are Juniors and cadets travelling abroad anywhere, and can't work out why they need 3 new weapons when virtually al weapons are FIE already. We now know that all you need is a metre of GBR tape on your arm and an FIE licence. Total cost about an extra £26. So why not go over to Amsterdam for the other FIE satelite?


Extra £26 is quite a lot of money for a tiny competition. I find the other satellite suggesting hilarious as that would cost hundreds of pounds for another small competition. Looking it up, the Copenhagen competition only had 13 entires in WF. How could anyone justify it unless they were doing the A grade circuit as well?

Saxon
-11th May 2008, 12:34
The point I was making is that last year the competition organisers were insisting on stripes despite evidence that they are not needed. Why the change?
Check P.E.'s link above, and ponder on the meaning of the forum handle "Coupe du Nord"

riposteinprime
-11th May 2008, 12:48
Check P.E.'s link above, and ponder on the meaning of the forum handle "Coupe du Nord"

Bloody hell. I've never disputed it. I just want to know why the change in policy when they were so fiercely adamant about it 6 months ago.

Saxon
-11th May 2008, 13:00
Bloody hell. I've never disputed it. I just want to know why the change in policy when they were so fiercely adamant about it 6 months ago.

Sorry to labour the point, but who is "they"?

riposteinprime
-11th May 2008, 13:05
Sorry to labour the point, but who is "they"?

satellite competition organisers.

Foilling Around
-11th May 2008, 15:35
But again, thats two referees of which only one is FIE (nothing against your refereeing).

No offence taken, I have no intention of becoming an FIE referee.



Again I agree, but the WC points are useless unless you are doing senior A grades. The top seniors should be made to do this competition to assist seeding for next year. Is Alex O'C doing the event to assist his Olympic seeding?

No of course Alex is not doing the Gateshead, because he already has points from full world cups. There are other sabreurs who do not have so many full WC points for whom it would be useful.

I don't dispute that WF has problems world wide not just in the UK. The numbers involved are small, but the quality is high so there are no international events on which to "cut you teeth". It makes it less than cost effective to travel abroad.



Extra £26 is quite a lot of money for a tiny competition. I find the other satellite suggesting hilarious as that would cost hundreds of pounds for another small competition. Looking it up, the Copenhagen competition only had 13 entires in WF. How could anyone justify it unless they were doing the A grade circuit as well?

Glad you have a sense of humour!

1) It makes little difference whether there are 13 or 33 fencers in an event, you still get a poule of 6 or 7 followed by DEs. To win it you have 4 DEs with a field of 16 and you only have 2 more fights in a field of 64! And you get to fence those with different styles and abilities.

2) If you prepare well in advance as an adult you can fly to Amsterdam and stay 2 nights for say £150. Treat it as a weekend holiday as well!

OK RIP - for you the cup is half empty (more like three quarter from what I can see) whereas for me it is half full.

I may very well end up more frustrated with life, but I hope I will make more of a positive difference as well!!

pinkelephant
-11th May 2008, 15:37
Satellite competition organisers were told by the FIE to apply the rules for Junior World Cups. At the time that included stripes from the L32. That has no longer been the case at Junior World Cups for a few years (name and country code needed throughout, but no stripes). As far as I can tell, it has simply taken satellite organisers a while to catch up.

JulianRose
-11th May 2008, 15:44
No offence taken, I have no intention of becoming an FIE referee.




No of course Alex is not doing the Gateshead, because he already has points from full world cups. There are other sabreurs who do not have so many full WC points for whom it would be useful.



given that satellites no longer get substituted it is worthwhile until you are counting the maximum number of A-grades you can from any one zone, and even then only if they are better results than the 4 points you can get from a satellite.

rugmike
-11th May 2008, 16:36
Don't know anything about WF ,or indeed much F or E in general, but Red is right as far as sabre goes - most of those likely to enter have the kit anyway, it's in your own interests to do so.

And as for the "do satellites/don't" etc.... The Cdu N's we've been to ( inc. Barry's !) have all been some of the very best organized events, and the folk helpful and friendly, and very understanding - i.e. being very nice about a certain country turning up with too many fencers and not enough ref's.

And other European ones have a real mix of good fencers from all over Europe.
So yes, it's worth having a bit of a holiday now and then !

Dunno about the getting organized bit tho.

canco
-11th May 2008, 22:31
So back to the question I was asking at the start of the thread...

Why people aren't going to the satellites seems to be addressed by RIP, whether people agree with him or not doesn't matter if they're not alone in their opinion.

How can we change this view? When people say that WF is neglected, how do they mean? (I'm ignorant on this one)

Red
-11th May 2008, 23:32
So back to the question I was asking at the start of the thread...

Why people aren't going to the satellites seems to be addressed by RIP, whether people agree with him or not doesn't matter if they're not alone in their opinion.

How can we change this view? When people say that WF is neglected, how do they mean? (I'm ignorant on this one)

I think FA has hit it on the head - the top WF are so far ahead of the rest it's unbelievable. Look at Vezzali - she has absolutely dominated WF for years (according to a recent copy of Escrime) and it doesn't look like changing. She is no doubt a superb fencer, but may have been one of the worst things to happen to WF.
Maybe the character of foil is to blame? If your sense of timing is only marginally better than your opponent's, you should win as (s)he won't be able to hit you at all. I'm probably rambling a little (just had a county team foil comp - 8 teams in poule unique. Never again....)

Gangsta G
-11th May 2008, 23:53
Ok...

I don't like to stick my neck out too much on the forum but I am going to this time - I disagree with most people re. why the Cole Cup WF is poorly attended! I think Red is along the right lines. Compare last year's MS entries with last year's WF entries. The majority of the MS entries only required their FIE licences, kit etc for satellite events. So I disagree with the argument that people don't attend because of the extra expense. The pathway argument may hold more water, however I don't pay too much attention to who is and isn't on pathway so cannot really comment. All I will say is two of last year's MS top 5 (Moncreiff and Farren) were at the Cole, plus a good few from 6-20.

I would argue that in WF, the Cole Cup has not gained a reputation for having a big nif. In MS, it has. Therefore, fencers feel compelled to attend. IMHO, it's as simple as that.

Ronald Velden
-12th May 2008, 09:10
The point which Red said about Vezzali and for that matter Trillini and
Badea is of course correct in global terms.

It is also relevant that McIntosh and Strachan dominated the British
scene for a decade.

However, the decline in British Standards can be directly attributed to
dilution of womens fencing into three weapons [foil was previously the
only international weapon] since 1996 and more importantly the prioritisation
since 2000 of womens sabre in this country.

The other factor as I explained previously is that womens foil lost between
2000 and 2003 its four most successful junior international fencers ie
Smith,Glisson,Datoo and Velden.

The other point I made is that the Cole Cup comes right at the end of
the domestic and international season. It is in fact the last event on
the FIE Sattelite Calendar apart from Tabriz,Iran which has a mens foil
event.

Fencers like other sports people do need a break at some stage of the season.

Ronald Velden
-12th May 2008, 09:10
The point which Red said about Vezzali and for that matter Trillini and
Badea is of course correct in global terms.

It is also relevant that McIntosh and Strachan dominated the British
scene for a decade.

However, the decline in British Standards can be directly attributed to
dilution of womens fencing into three weapons [foil was previously the
only international weapon] since 1996 and more importantly the prioritisation
since 2000 of womens sabre in this country.

The other factor as I explained previously is that womens foil lost between
2000 and 2003 its four most successful junior international fencers ie
Smith,Glisson,Datoo and Velden.

The other point I made is that the Cole Cup comes right at the end of
the domestic and international season. It is in fact the last event on
the FIE Sattelite Calendar apart from Tabriz,Iran which has a mens foil
event.

Fencers like other sports people do need a break at some stage of the season.

randomsabreur
-12th May 2008, 11:05
For British fencers the comment about timing doesn't really wash as the nationals are a couple of weeks afterwards, and as for those on the edge of senior A-Grade selection (i.e. unfunded fencers), there haven't been any accessible Senior A-Grades since Marseille in March. Also no major domestics. Looks like a break to me. The top 3 or 4 hopefully shouldn't need satellite points (equivalent to a L32 at a standard A-Grade or a L64 at a GP at best) and they are the ones who might be funded by the BFA to attend the more distant A-Grades and GPs. Those outside the top 3 or 4 should find the Gateshead (Cole) a useful warm up competition for the nationals after a long break, thus making the Nationals less of a random event tacked on after the season proper.

The Cole for WS is generally quite small but of good quality, and the poules are tougher than most opens, as the FIE Kit and licence will tend to discourage the least competitive fencers who tend to give a couple of easier fights at opens.

cesh_fencing
-12th May 2008, 11:14
The other factor as I explained previously is that womens foil lost between 2000 and 2003 its four most successful junior international fencers ie Smith,Glisson,Datoo and Velden.

How many of these were due to injuries (fencing related or made worse), Glisson & Datoo certainly, and most of the ladies foilists I come accross seem to have some kind of niggly or quite serious injury by the time they hit 18 (if not much earlier), let alone 20 or 25. Another example of early success then serious injury is Dom Stowell.

One of the major issues I have with Ladies Foil in the UK at the moment is that because Cadets can succeed so easily at Senior level, many of them are doing every event possible as they want to get Cadet, Junior and Senior points in the bag.

As such they are competing too much and their bodies are broken before they get the chance of a successful senior career. The big question is how can this be stopped so our top fencers actually have a senior career.

Ronald Velden
-12th May 2008, 16:26
Fiona McIntosh advised me when Clare first started fencing that it was most
important that she did a balanced exercise regime, because fencing had
the potential to cause injuries. Fiona played at county level hockey as
well as fenced and she complained of serious problems to her back.

Clare was a multi talented sports girl so that she did a range of sports up
to 15 including gymnastics. Eloise like Clare was also light framed and both
trained fairly consistently and were less injury prone than Michelle and
Camille or indeed many other fencers.

Michelle was advised from memory to give up the sport by the BOA Medical
Centre and Camille had serious knee problems from a fairl early stage of
her career.

Foilling Around
-12th May 2008, 18:29
To answer RS - unfortunately the top 3/4 WF fencers are not achieving L64 or L32 results on a regular basis. As such 4 to 8 points from the 2 available satellites would help rankings into full World Cup events.

I agree about the over fencing. I am really glad that FAJ elected to be English rather than Scottish. Not because I deny her Scottish heritage, but because many of the Scots and Welsh young WF fencers are in demand at Cadet Junior and Senior level.

There is a theory that you only have a certain amount of training and competing in your body before you burn out and the more you do early on, then the shorter your carreer will be.

Though we may decry the Pathway for depriving the circuit of the top fencers, the BOA do have a point about keeping the fencers fresh.

I think there is also the point that Foil has been a very neglected weapon by the fencer themselves. Sabre and Epee have seen themselves as "niche" weapon and the Epee Club and Sabre Club created group identities. The Sussex House/Salle Paul/Salle Boston/CADS battle has created rivalry in MF, but WF has had neither the identity nor the rivalery nor the critical mass to drive up standards.

Ronald Velden
-12th May 2008, 20:36
I omitted one further point. From a fairly early age I limited Clare's competitions to one or a maximum of two each month and we were
extremely selective chosing only high quality events eg major
domestic opens or championships and a select number of internationals.

By the end of her career she was only competing perhaps four times
in Britain, but she was doing then Grade As on both U20 and Senior
Circuits.

One of the main mistakes with most British fencers is that they tend to overcompete, which is something which the Performance Director and
National Coaches are redressing.

World Class Fencers limit their competitions and focus much more on quality
training.

I recall that Golubitskiy admitted in one interview that he took part in only
two three World Cup events annually and focussed on peaking for
Championships.

Last week I was advised that Byrne the Irish Girl who defeated Jo Hutchinson
had hardly competed this year on International Circuit chosing to focus
on training in Ohio so that she could peak for the Olympic Qualifier.

Dave Hillier
-12th May 2008, 20:43
Over training as well as over competing can also be an issue. The Chinese fencers (athletes in general) apparently suffer from this leading to shortened careers.


http://www.france24.com/en/20080507-training-lose-hard-work-hurts-chinese-olympic-chances

cesh_fencing
-12th May 2008, 21:54
So if there is a general opinion that many of our younger fencers are over-competing, should some action be done to dissuade our top cadet & younger fencers of all weapons from competing at so many events (especially the senior level ones)?

Here are some ideas; I am not stating my personal thoughts of how it could be done just ideas to think about/discuss so please do not shoot me too quickly.

1) Decrease the number of events that can be used for Cadet/Junior rankings. If only 4/5 domestic events were nominated for cadet rankings there would not be the need for kids to go to so many events (also saves parents lots of money), so decreasing the wear & tear on young bodies.

When I was a cadet foilist I can only remember having a few events that counted as cadet qualifiers (Cadet National, Portslade U17 Intl, Ashton U20, Eden Cup and a couple of foreigns). Senior events were not included as nominated events as far as I can remember and LPJS had not started.

2) Co-ordinate the events that count for British/England rankings so kids are not forced to over-compete because the two rankings nominate different events. Also where possible link U17 nominated events at U20 events which should make the level of fencing higher and allow the fencers at the top of U17 ages get U20 points in the same time.

3) Not allow under 16 fencers to become senior ranked fencers. By doing so you stop them feeling they have to chase senior points. Allow them to compete at senior events for experience, but just for fun, by not allocating points for their results we will allow them to choose more appropriate events for developing their fencing rather than trailing around the country to all the big opens.

4) BF may wish to create guidelines to parents about how much training/competing is beneficial and when it is too much (very hard to quantify at a general level I know). Also to push the point of taking part in other sports to help even up body development so decreasing the chance of injury (especially when kids are still developing). I used to swim at a county standard, play hockey as well a dabble in Pentathlon, windsurfing and canoeing; generally my knees, ankles and back ar pretty good for someone in their mid 30s, even after 25+ years of fencing.

5) I know the proposed Cadet circuit is being developed by Neil Brown for all weapons, but will this actually dissuade younger fencers from fencing at all the opens, especially for ladies foil, or will it just add to the number of events they feel they have to fence at?

BigWill
-13th May 2008, 14:54
I would still go with Sheperd's advice and lock up some kids for 10 years with good coaches. :)

scottishsabreur
-13th May 2008, 15:33
3) Not allow under 16 fencers to become senior ranked fencers. By doing so you stop them feeling they have to chase senior points. Allow them to compete at senior events for experience, but just for fun, by not allocating points for their results we will allow them to choose more appropriate events for developing their fencing rather than trailing around the country to all the big opens.



First I would like to point out that I do agree with the points made here, I think there are some very good ideas in there.

I agree it would be a good idea not to allocate points for opens but I don't think that will affect younger fencers doing opens as they will still get experience against "better" opponents than they might at cadet level. One of the kids from my club is finishing this season in the Scottish youth circuit at the age of 12 (will be 13 in time for next seasons opens). This is because she and her coach both believe it will be better for her fencing if she fences with adults...this again is another option, she wont be over competing as she is dropping the youth comps (U15s, etc) in favour of opens INSTEAD not as well as.

Sorry if this isn't very well expressed, just out of a 2 hour Sport in Society exam which made me feel I had been studying the wrong subject for the last week :(

Ronald Velden
-13th May 2008, 17:40
The most important development is the creation of a Cadet Circuit, because
most fencers between the ages of 13 and 16 should not be fencing in
adult competitions.

However, you should not make it a hard fast rule, because there are cadets
physically strong enough and more importantly good enough to compete at
this level.

Rebecca Ward won the World Senior Sabre Championship whilst still a Cadet
and at domestic level Dominique Stowell won the British Senior Foil Championship at 14 and my daughter was also a Finalist at the same age.

This year Iliasz [Hungary] was winning World Cups at U20 level in Sabre whilst
still a cadet and I am sure that James Honeybone was good enough to compete at top level in mens sabre in this country as indeed Alex O'Connell
was before him.

What is most important is that young fencers are not over competing, which
is what clearly many do.

TomA
-13th May 2008, 18:14
Maybe the prospect of fencing in adult competitions also discourages some of the younger, yet still talented fencers? Look at the BYC results - there are several names in the higher positions who aren't even on the cadet ranking list to my knowledge (obviously the entirety of the U18s for starters, but they don't count :tongue: ).

pinkelephant
-13th May 2008, 18:21
Maybe the prospect of fencing in adult competitions also discourages some of the younger, yet still talented fencers? Look at the BYC results - there are several names in the higher positions who aren't even on the cadet ranking list to my knowledge (obviously the entirety of the U18s for starters, but they don't count :tongue: ).

Many of the BYC finalists at epee are Modern Pentathletes, who are not on the cadet ranking lists because they are usually far too busy doing 4 other sports. Others qualify via far-flung regions, which they rarely leave. For some, the BYCs actually encourage them to do cadet ranking competitions as they realise they can succeed at that level.

TomA
-13th May 2008, 18:24
For some, the BYCs actually encourage them to do cadet ranking competitions as they realise they can succeed at that level. I know, I'm not criticizing the BYCs in any way. They're a fantastic competition. :)

Gangsta G
-13th May 2008, 22:37
I know, I'm not criticizing the BYCs in any way. They're a fantastic competition. :)I think the point that PE is trying to make is that the reason you do not recognize some names on the BYC results lists is because for many fencers the BYCs are the only competition they go to. This was certainly the case with me until my last year of cadet.

TomA
-13th May 2008, 22:50
I think the point that PE is trying to make is that the reason you do not recognize some names on the BYC results lists is because for many fencers the BYCs are the only competition they go to. Foil and Sabre certainly wouldn't be affected very much by pentathlete numbers. Regions will have an effect on those weapons, as PE pointed out, I was just looking at other reasons why you don't see some of the decent cadet-level fencers at cadet-nominated competitions.


This was certainly the case with me until my last year of cadet. Me too, except I did badly at both! :D

Gangsta G
-13th May 2008, 22:55
Foil and Sabre certainly wouldn't be affected very much by pentathlete numbers. Regions will have an effect on those weapons, as PE pointed out, I was just looking at other reasons why you don't see some of the decent cadet-level fencers at cadet-nominated competitions.Ah right. I understand you now. Another reason why foil and epee should follow sabre's lead and not nominate any opens at cadet level.

Neil Brown
-13th May 2008, 23:16
We are thinking along the same lines here, some of these plans are already being discussed.


So if there is a general opinion that many of our younger fencers are over-competing, should some action be done to dissuade our top cadet & younger fencers of all weapons from competing at so many events (especially the senior level ones)?

Here are some ideas; I am not stating my personal thoughts of how it could be done just ideas to think about/discuss so please do not shoot me too quickly.

1) Decrease the number of events that can be used for Cadet/Junior rankings. If only 4/5 domestic events were nominated for cadet rankings there would not be the need for kids to go to so many events (also saves parents lots of money), so decreasing the wear & tear on young bodies.

When I was a cadet foilist I can only remember having a few events that counted as cadet qualifiers (Cadet National, Portslade U17 Intl, Ashton U20, Eden Cup and a couple of foreigns). Senior events were not included as nominated events as far as I can remember and LPJS had not started.

Plans are being discussed by the International Committee to do just this, to have 4 domestics (fencers can score points from the best 3) for cadet & junior.


2) Co-ordinate the events that count for British/England rankings so kids are not forced to over-compete because the two rankings nominate different events. Also where possible link U17 nominated events at U20 events which should make the level of fencing higher and allow the fencers at the top of U17 ages get U20 points in the same time.

The new pathway should accomplish some of this. There will be overlap between cadet & junior events & junior & senior events. The only extra England events are the selection events for the TA U15 squads. The selection of these should involve discussion with the British cadet weapon captains who may be looking at similar events for the development rankings.


3) Not allow under 16 fencers to become senior ranked fencers. By doing so you stop them feeling they have to chase senior points. Allow them to compete at senior events for experience, but just for fun, by not allocating points for their results we will allow them to choose more appropriate events for developing their fencing rather than trailing around the country to all the big opens.

Not sure about this. Some of our cadets have had excellent international results & experience of fencing in senior events may well be part of this. My issue is that these events should not be decisive for selection & are not appropriate for many. We know from studies in sport that late developers are the senior champions of tomorrow IF they don't give up because of perceived lack of early success.


4) BF may wish to create guidelines to parents about how much training/competing is beneficial and when it is too much (very hard to quantify at a general level I know). Also to push the point of taking part in other sports to help even up body development so decreasing the chance of injury (especially when kids are still developing). I used to swim at a county standard, play hockey as well a dabble in Pentathlon, windsurfing and canoeing; generally my knees, ankles and back ar pretty good for someone in their mid 30s, even after 25+ years of fencing.

I am meeting with our new CEO this week, partly to discuss exactly this point. Coaches now all know (I hope) the LTAD model but the information from British Fencing doesn't really reflect this (apart from some of the information the CPP fencers have seen).


5) I know the proposed Cadet circuit is being developed by Neil Brown for all weapons, but will this actually dissuade younger fencers from fencing at all the opens, especially for ladies foil, or will it just add to the number of events they feel they have to fence at?
Hopefully it will reduce the number of events our fencers feel they have to go to. When fencers & coaches read the points system carefully the decisive events will be clear. If they're not every weapon has a weapon captain/coach who will be able to give the best advice on what events to do.