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HalfMind
-16th July 2003, 16:29
I'm just getting started fencing and I don't know the diffrence between all the grips... Whats the diffrence?:dizzy:

reposte
-16th July 2003, 16:35
French grip: Ideal for beginners. Teaches point control and encourages correct movement of wrist.
Russian pistol grip:
The next phase after French. A pistol like grip that doesn't allow for finger and point control to be neglected.
Italian Visconti: Flicking, the fencing answer to the Eighties's fashion.
That's the recommended path in my view through grips as you go on fencing.
Good Luck.

HalfMind
-16th July 2003, 16:37
OOOh ok thanks. :transport

Rdb811
-16th July 2003, 23:23
Err - I think reposte is well off the track and doesn't have the experience to comment - depends whcih weapon and what your style is like - in general a French grip is classically supposed to allow for quicker reactions - whereas the pistol grip allows for more powerful blade work - I changed from French to pistol in epee, attempted the Leon Paul long handle but found it a compelete disaster (no strength against prise de fer) - a lot of epeeists use a french grip for pommeling, but that requires very strong muscles and a lot of practise. I now use 'elephant ears' grips so that I can execute prime.

On the other hand, I may go back to franch grips for foil, but I do so little that it's not worth replaceing the blades.

I'm not really the best person to ask, either.

Rdb811
-16th July 2003, 23:39
You can always hacksaw a french grip blade to fit a pistol grip - you can't go the other way.

reposte
-17th July 2003, 10:50
Perhaps I didn't clarify. The way I got it from the original thread poster, he's looking for a grip to start with.
I laid down my personal view of grips not for an experienced fencer who has to choose a grip to suit him - where your reservations are in order - but for a beginner who is only now beginning to train. I DO think that the lay out I set accommodates a certain training philosophy which I certainly did not invent. Almost all classical trainers start with French.
I do agree that most fencers in the world never come to use Russian, in many cases never even heard of it, but my personal opinion is that it will help facilitate the transition from classical point control French to more modern fencing, when many fencers tend to neglect the point control when moving on to pistol.

reposte
-17th July 2003, 10:52
And I do think that the characterization I made for the various grips Is valid.
But certainly halfmind should bare in mind that the right honourable rdb&11 is a coach and I'm not.

Rdb811
-18th July 2003, 00:12
Actually I'm not a coach, I just look like one. I have a lot of experience in changing grips though and it's a not a simple subject. The best paln, as always, is to ask your caoch and stick to what he says untiil you know enough to make your own judgement.

CKRedd
-3rd August 2003, 21:52
Can anybody offer an opinion on the gardere grip?

http://www.leonpaul.com/acatalog/Epee_Handles.html

Rdb811
-3rd August 2003, 22:05
For once, no - I've only ever seen one once, on an old foil.

neevel
-4th August 2003, 04:33
Originally posted by CKRedd
Can anybody offer an opinion on the gardere grip?

http://www.leonpaul.com/acatalog/Epee_Handles.html

I've rather liked the ones I've held, but the Gardere grip (and similar "pommeled" orthopedic grips) aren't legal for competition, pursuant to item m.4.6 in the rules:

If the grip (or glove) includes any device or attachment or has a special
shape (orthopaedic) which fixes the position of the hand on the
grip, the grip must conform to the following conditions.
(a) It must determine and fix one position only for the hand on the
grip.
(b) When the hand occupies this one position on the grip, the extremity
of the thumb when completely extended must not be more
than 2 cm from the inner surface of the guard.

Basically, the FIE decided that the finger-moldings on such grips permitted fencers to pommel hold the weapon without as much loss of control as one would have with a French grip, and thus gain an advantage of a few inches reach without enough of a compensating disadvantage in control.

-Dave

Rdb811
-4th August 2003, 23:49
Aha - "the illegal Spanish grip" that crops up on the Fencing FAQ that no-one has ever seen. You could pommel with a pistol grip if you had really strong fingures.

pinkelephant
-5th August 2003, 11:50
Originally posted by Rdb811
You could pommel with a pistol grip if you had really strong fingures.

Not legally, you couldn't.

Rdb811
-5th August 2003, 12:45
If your fingers were that strong you could snap them and blow the referee away.:cool:

neevel
-5th August 2003, 19:21
Here's the commentary from the US Fencing Officials Commission website concerning legality of grips:

Is my grip legal?

Is my ______ handle legal? (Fill in the blank with "Dos Santos," "Guardere," "Spanish Modern," or any other name.) This question is very difficult to answer in that there are just too many variables. Different vendors give the same handle different names and the size of the handle in relation to the size of the fencer's hand also determines if a handle is legal. Yes, a specific handle that is perfectly legal for one fencer might be illegal for someone else.

Many people think that the rules concerning various types of grips are not very clear. The three main reasons for this are: 1, People don't know the rules. 2, The rules are all too frequently ignored. 3, Vendors sell illegal handles. One should be aware that just because some vender sells a handle or just because a referee allows someone to fence with a handle does not make that handle legal. (The complete Rules Book is easily available from http://www.USFencing.org/, the USFA web page.)

If you look in the Rules Book at Article m.4, 6, you will find that the handle with attachments that does not allow the thumb to be 2 cm or less from the guard is illegal for that fencer. (Now you can understand that a handle could be perfectly legal for someone with a very large hand while it would be illegal for someone with a very small hand.) Does your pronged handle allow you to hold it in more than one position (without going into some sort of contortions)? If so, it is illegal. If there are prongs that would allow you to hold it as you would hold a "French" handle with a finger hooked around a prong so that your thumb would be more than 2 cm from the guard, it is illegal.

The use of a strap to assist in holding the weapon has caused some confusion. If one has a legal orthopedic grip (including the Italian grip), one may use a strap. If one is using a French grip, one may not use a strap. (The applicable rules follow.) The basic concept here is that if one wishes to have a weapon that will allow for longer reach (French handle), one may not have a device (strap) that will give the user added strength.

The main rules that govern grips are:

t.16: With all three weapons, defense must be effected exclusively with the guard and the blade used either separately or together. If the handle has no special device or attachment or special shape (e.g. orthopedic), a fencer may hold it in any way he or she wishes and he or she may also alter the position of his hand on the handle during a bout. However, the weapon must not be - either permanently or temporarily, in an open or disguised manner - transformed into a throwing weapon; it must be used without the hand leaving the hilt . . .

m.4: 1. The maximum length of the grip in foil and épée is 20 cm, measured between lines B and E, and 18 cm, measured between lines B and D. In saber the maximum length of the grip is 17 cm (see Figures 8, 9 and 13, pp. 86, 89, 94).
2. The grip must be able to pass through the same gauge as the guard. It must be so made that normally it cannot injure either the user or the opponent.
3. All types of hilts are allowed providing that they conform to the regulations which have been framed with a view to placing the various types of weapons on the same footing. However, at épée, orthopedic grips, whether metal or not, may not be covered with leather or any material which could hide wires or switches.
4. The grip must not include any device which assists the fencer to use it as a throwing weapon.
5. The grip must not include any device which can increase in any way the protection afforded to the hand or wrist of the fencer by the guard: a cross bar or electric socket which extends beyond the edge of the guard is expressly forbidden.
6. If the grip (or glove) includes any device or attachment or has a special shape (orthopedic) which fixes the position of the hand on the grip, the grip must conform to the following conditions.
(a) It must determine and fix one position only for the hand on the grip.
(b) When the hand occupies this one position on the grip, the extremity of the thumb when completely extended must not be more than 2 cm from the inner surface of the guard.