PDA

View Full Version : point control?



DrT
-7th October 2003, 08:14
I just wondered if anyone had some good tips for working on point control?

I've been trying to work with a squash ball on a string, but I wonder whether the swing of the ball is too different from a fencing target for it to be really useful. For example, you really have to hit the ball straight on, but hitting the wrist is usually going to need some sort of angulation or flick of the point.

Dave Hillier
-7th October 2003, 10:49
I put some pipe lagging on the shelves of my book case then used that for target practice. It meant that I could alternate between knee, arm and shoulder height hits.
You can also try and vary hitting the top, bottom or straight on.

DrT
-7th October 2003, 11:12
that's not a bad idea. I did try hitting the top of the ball but I kept knocking it off the string :o

Rdb811
-7th October 2003, 17:56
something denser than a squash ball is needed - or a curtain ring.

Muso440
-7th October 2003, 18:00
Originally posted by Rdb811
something denser than a squash ball is needed - or a curtain ring.

Cricket ball? Bowling ball?

Rdb811
-26th October 2003, 20:41
Old cricket balls are suposeded to be best.

plewis66
-26th October 2003, 20:48
I had the same problem with kung-fu some years ago, and came up with the following, that might be relevant:

Pet shops sell solid rubber balls, a bit smaller than a cricket ball (which is a bit big, but you yourself will always know if you hit the 'edge' or near the centre). They are really quite dense and heavy.

I had three of these, drilled through with a hole big enough to run a string through twice. You run the string in the top of the ball, out of the bottom, loop it back up and run it through from the top again, and then knot it top and bottom, right tight to the ball. This makes it firm enough (with decent string) that it won't shift. This is better than just running the string through onse and knotting below, as the knots tend to get forced up into the hole, makes it darned difficult if you decide you want to change the seperation of the balls (see below). Having said that, a strike at the top of a ball with a sword will be much less forceful than a downward strike with the edge of the hand (karrate chop!)...

Anyway, do this with all three balls on the same piece of string, with 12-18 inches between them. This gives you a target at mask, abdomen and knee. By tying the string at different heights, you can make this abdoment, knee and toe. Better to do this, rather than have four balls on the string, because you can then vary the height by a few inches each time you use it, to avoid drilling yourself into always hitting the same height.

With the three heavy balls on the one string, it makes the whole thing settle down a lot faster after a hit, because the weight of the lower balls drags on the movement of the higher ones. The only time this doesn't work is with a hard lateral strike on a low ball, which sets the whole lot swinging. However, with fencing, most low strikes will be more vertical than lateral, so it might even work better than for kung-fu!

Also, if you tie the whole thing in a doorway, or from some other lowish support, you will get less swing than if you suspend it straight from the ceiling.

After striking on of the balls, the motion of the assembly tends be more 'jiggly' than swinging, and better represents the movements of an oponents target areas.

I haven't tried this for fencing myself, yet, as I'm only just getting back into it, and I'd forgotten about it until I read your thread!

DrT
-27th October 2003, 12:16
that's a really nice idea - I'm going to have to give this a go. I'm starting to feel that my "one ball" target is only training me to Tarzan! ;)

HankfromBath
-6th November 2003, 10:20
Out of desperation I once used a potato on a string...

The good points were it was a nice weight and made a great squishy noise when you hit it.

The bad was that it mucked my tip up something rotten !

Ah well, try again.

H

plewis66
-9th November 2003, 17:51
No, really.

Ok, I've finally got round to implementing my 'dogs balls on a string' idea, and it seems to work just as well for fencing as it did for kung fu.

The only differences from my original post are as follows:

The balls now seem to be just a rubber skin, filled with some manky black aggregate material, which goes all over the kitchen floor when you drill the ball. Not a big problem, not much comes out, and it wipes up easy enough.

I seem to have three slightly different balls, even though they all came from Sainsburys.

For all three, due to the aggregate filling, which, of course, does not allow a hole to stay open right through the ball, I needed a tool to pull the string through. I used a coat hanger which I strightened out then doubled over.

One of the balls is noticeably heavier than the others, and I used that one at the bottom. I ran the string through that one twice, as it has a much thicker skin, and much less aggregate.

The other two have a thin skin, and are mostly aggregate. With these, if I were to do it again, I would only drill through at one point of the skin. Then, the coat hanger can be forced through the inside of the ball, using a twisting motion, and the skin is thin enough on the other side to just push the coat hanger through.

Also, with these two, I only passed the string through once, as the aggregate (which appears to be some kind of rubber powder stuff) exerts enough force on the string to hold the ball pretty firmy in place.

I anyone wants one, I'm going to market it as 'The Dogs Balls Fencing Aid', and will be selling them on e-Bay for 9.99 a chuck, then in a couple of years, I'll retire to Barbados.

Or maybe Oldham.

Or maybe I'll not bother.

I'll just get my coat...

Rdb811
-9th November 2003, 19:24
Can't you just nick a pawn brokers sign ?

Tarmac
-9th November 2003, 22:06
Originally posted by plewis66
I seem to have three slightly different balls, even though they all came from Sainsburys.


snigger...hehehe...:tongue:

Robert
-10th November 2003, 10:21
Originally posted by plewis66
No, really.

Ok, I've finally got round to implementing my 'dogs balls on a string' idea, and it seems to work just as well for fencing as it did for kung fu.



Just made my own. I used three tennis balls, punched a whole in each side with a pair of scissors (wiggled the scissors to remove some of the black rubbery gunk plewis66 mentions). Then tied a piece of string to the tip of a pencil and used this to thread the string twice through each ball. Positioned them about 2" apart.

Had a go this morning and it seems to work really well (could only do with extension of arm because I twisted my ankle at Cardiff on Saturday). Rotating through the three balls it is like hitting lunge, riposte, low-line, each being a little more difficult than the last.

Manufacturers take note this is a very good training aid (rate as high as a lunging pad) though ideally the balls would be a touch smaller than tennis size.

Thanks for the tip Plewis.

Robert

P.S Of course I'm a foilist so point control really matters, unlike that jabby hit-em whereever you feel like it epee thing.

plewis66
-10th November 2003, 12:34
I'm not sure, but I'm guessing an advantage to using dogs balls rather than tennis balls might ge that there will be enough weight to press the button, so with one of those practice thingies, you'd know when you got a good hit.

Also, you are much more likely to press the button with a hit on a radial line of the ball, rather than with a glancing blow, so that would encourage you to hit into a smaller target - perhaps an inch, even though the ball is three inches across...

Robert
-11th November 2003, 09:57
Originally posted by plewis66
I'm not sure, but I'm guessing an advantage to using dogs balls rather than tennis balls might ge that there will be enough weight to press the button, so with one of those practice thingies, you'd know when you got a good hit.

Also, you are much more likely to press the button with a hit on a radial line of the ball, rather than with a glancing blow, so that would encourage you to hit into a smaller target - perhaps an inch, even though the ball is three inches across...

Just tried it with a practice beeper and it does trigger but you need to hit in the centre. Probably want something a little heavier than a tennis ball.

Robert

oddball
-14th November 2003, 18:31
QUOTE
"a horse is drawn to water but a pencil must be lead"

hello you stoneage fencer, modern pencils are made of graphite!!!:fencingsm

srb
-14th November 2003, 18:51
Yeah, but what are modern horses made out of?

Robert
-15th November 2003, 20:38
Originally posted by oddball
QUOTE
"a horse is drawn to water but a pencil must be lead"

hello you stoneage fencer, modern pencils are made of graphite!!!:fencingsm

Pedantry is not a good trait, especially when you are wrong. Pencils have NEVER been made from lead and were always made from graphite. Out of interest the lead on pencils did once contain lead.

Robert

pinkelephant
-16th November 2003, 09:57
Actually, pencils are made from wood or plastic. Only the pencil LEAD is actually graphite.

Muso440
-16th November 2003, 14:07
I knew someone once who had a pencil made out of a squidged down polystyrene cup. It was very cool.

Anyone ever heard of this or where you can get them?

(sorry, rather off topic here...)

plewis66
-16th November 2003, 17:50
Originally posted by oddball
QUOTE
"a horse is drawn to water but a pencil must be lead"

hello you stoneage fencer, modern pencils are made of graphite!!!:fencingsm

Hello you undercultured oddball, it's a Stan Laurel quote.

Think about it...

spirall333
-21st November 2003, 14:43
not sure if this is relevent to point control, but....
has any one tryed spining rings on the end of your epee?
ive seen references to this sort of thing in some very old fencing books, its ment to strengthen the wrist. the size of the ring alters the difficulty of the training.
B
ps Stan laurel was a god!

ceprab
-21st November 2003, 15:17
Originally posted by spirall333
not sure if this is relevent to point control, but....
has any one tryed spining rings on the end of your epee?
ive seen references to this sort of thing in some very old fencing books, its ment to strengthen the wrist. the size of the ring alters the difficulty of the training.
B
ps Stan laurel was a god!

*what* rings?




Oh. Spinning. Sorry.:o



Post continued to provide a laugh at own expense