+ Reply to Thread
Page 1 of 9 12345 ... LastLast
Results 1 to 20 of 167

Thread: Fitness for fencing

  1. #1
    Senior Member rpryer is a jewel in the roughrpryer is a jewel in the roughrpryer is a jewel in the rough
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    Chilwell Blades, Nottingham
    Posts
    792

    Default Fitness for fencing

    What do people think are the best exercises for improving your fencing?

    Obviously you need to get the technical stuff right, and fence against better fencers to improve tactics and add experience. Aerobic exercise to strengthen the cardio-vascular system is probably also important.

    However, which resistance (weights) exercises will develop the right muscle groups for fencing? Any particular tips for effective aerobic work?

    In case it makes a difference, I usually fence sabre (well, try to.)

  2. #2
    A wild and crazy man Rdb811 has much to be proud ofRdb811 has much to be proud ofRdb811 has much to be proud ofRdb811 has much to be proud ofRdb811 has much to be proud ofRdb811 has much to be proud ofRdb811 has much to be proud ofRdb811 has much to be proud ofRdb811 has much to be proud of Rdb811's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2003
    Location
    Streatham
    Posts
    4,635

    Default

    I spent a summer working out (15 mins CV and then an hour of circuits on Nautilus machines - 2 sets of three reps o 15 on ach machine in the set) - first fight back I was still weehzing down the piste. (although only half as badly as the previous year).

    I suspect short stepped execrcises on the corss trainer (say six minutes a stiff setting doing 'hills') might be the way forward.

  3. #3
    Pudding haggis is a jewel in the roughhaggis is a jewel in the roughhaggis is a jewel in the rough haggis's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2003
    Location
    Belfast
    Posts
    1,027

    Default

    Without having any information on your age, height, weight, exercise regime, training program, BMI (body mass index), cardiovascular fitness (VO2 Max), etc., etc. nobody's going to give you a useful reply here. Go have a look at www.brianmac.co.uk and find out whether you're a slob or an adonis. Once you know, feel free to re-post on this subject (God, I hate the instant answer brigade).
    A stranger in a strange land

  4. #4
    Senior Member doobarz has a spectacular aura aboutdoobarz has a spectacular aura about
    Join Date
    Apr 2003
    Location
    Chippenham
    Posts
    1,046

    Default

    Hmm, that link didn't seem to work. I also tried brianmac.com, just in case the domain was wrong, and crikey.... not to be viewed by anyone sensative to little clothing!
    Hoping for support from Dyson

  5. #5
    Senior Member fencingmaster has a brilliant futurefencingmaster has a brilliant futurefencingmaster has a brilliant futurefencingmaster has a brilliant futurefencingmaster has a brilliant futurefencingmaster has a brilliant futurefencingmaster has a brilliant futurefencingmaster has a brilliant futurefencingmaster has a brilliant futurefencingmaster has a brilliant futurefencingmaster has a brilliant future fencingmaster's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2003
    Location
    SW London
    Posts
    1,288

    Default

    If it's still available try "Fitness for Sport" by Rex Hazeldine* ISBN 1-85223-085-1 The Crowood Press.
    Covers: energy systems, endurance, flexibility, strength, speed, nutrition

    * Loughboro' University and National Coaching Foundation

  6. #6
    Senior Member rpryer is a jewel in the roughrpryer is a jewel in the roughrpryer is a jewel in the rough
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    Chilwell Blades, Nottingham
    Posts
    792

    Default

    I think the correct link is www.brianmac.demon.co.uk, which has lots of info on different aspects of training and coaching.

    I wasn't expecting an instant answer - I hope that I'm not naive enough tothink there is one - just some general indications of which muscle groups it would be useful to develop, for instance.

    If you want to make answers more specific, I'm 26, 6' with a BMI in the 25-30 range (which I'm aiming to bring down). I don't know my VO2 max, but general fitness is OK (e.g. able to work at 80% of maximum heart rate for 30 minutes comfortably).

    As I mentioned I'm a sabreur, finishing 70 in the rankings in 2002, but not fencing as much this year due to work. I train once a week (need to find another club nearby with a group of sabreurs) and exercise a further 2-3 times with a mix of resistance and aerobic work.

  7. #7
    Senior Member Aoife will become famous soon enoughAoife will become famous soon enough Aoife's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2003
    Location
    University of Sussex / Brighton
    Posts
    1,013

    Default

    If you want to make answers more specific, I'm 26, 6' with a BMI in the 25-30 range (which I'm aiming to bring down). I don't know my VO2 max, but general fitness is OK (e.g. able to work at 80% of maximum heart rate for 30 minutes comfortably).
    What's BMI and how can I find mine out? Is VO2 max the maximum volume of the lungs? And how do I find that out?

    At the gym I recently started going to there's a wall chart about best training heart rates and stuff, but the graph only goes as low as age 20 (I'm 16). Currently I'm using CV things like bikes and treadmill, I'm also using some other machines (leg ext, leg push, leg curl, rowing, a few things which involve my arms, can't rememebr their names, and some other bits). Are they all okay for fencing?
    Trespasser, Sussex University Fencing Club

  8. #8
    Senior Member rpryer is a jewel in the roughrpryer is a jewel in the roughrpryer is a jewel in the rough
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    Chilwell Blades, Nottingham
    Posts
    792

    Default

    BMI is Body Mass Index, and indicator of whether you are the 'right' weight for your height. To work it out, divide your weight in kilos by your height in meters squared.

    Generally, a BMI under 20 is considered underweight, 20-25 normal, 25-30 overweight, and 30+ seriously overweight. BMI is only a rough guide, as it doesn't take into account the components of weight (e.g. muscle tissue versus fat).

    VO2 max is a measure of how efficiently your cardiovascular system can get oxygen into the blood and around the body. The higher it is, the harder you can work without moving to anaerobic energy systems.

  9. #9
    Senior Member Jambo is on a distinguished road Jambo's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2003
    Location
    Newcastle/Laszlo's Fencing
    Posts
    563

    Default

    This is a very commonly reoccuring thread, perhaps a sticky thread with the best advice on would be a good idea??

    I'm still hunting for some handy little exercises for non-fencing periods, not fitness (thats a personal pref kinda thing IMO) but coordination/footwork. Any suggestions for exercises or books/videos?

  10. #10
    Moderator Gav has a reputation beyond reputeGav has a reputation beyond reputeGav has a reputation beyond reputeGav has a reputation beyond reputeGav has a reputation beyond reputeGav has a reputation beyond reputeGav has a reputation beyond reputeGav has a reputation beyond reputeGav has a reputation beyond reputeGav has a reputation beyond reputeGav has a reputation beyond repute Gav's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2003
    Location
    Edinburgh
    Posts
    5,046

    Default

    Jambo makes a good point that this is a recurring theme. I will make this a sticky for a while. Folks, please continue to post useful advice. I'll check in regularly and if things go way off topic I will prune out the offeding posts.
    "Evil does not wear a bonnet!"
    "Thanks Ants ... Thants.


    It is forbidden to dream again;
    We maim our joys or hide them;

  11. #11
    Initiate Urban Spaceman is on a distinguished road Urban Spaceman's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2003
    Location
    West Yorkshire
    Posts
    26

    Default

    Originally posted by Jambo

    I'm still hunting for some handy little exercises for non-fencing periods, not fitness (thats a personal pref kinda thing IMO) but coordination/footwork. Any suggestions for exercises or books/videos?
    I think I read somewhere on here about dangling a tennis ball on a piece of string from somewhere and using it as target practice. Also I heard from somewhere (but can't remember where) about some computer program that barks out commands at you for footwork practice. ("Advance", "Retire", "Lunge" etc. presumably) but I've never found this anywhere.
    I went to play darts with my friend.
    I said "Closest to bull goes first"
    He Said "Baa"
    I Said "Moo"
    He Said "You're closest"

  12. #12
    Senior Member Jambo is on a distinguished road Jambo's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2003
    Location
    Newcastle/Laszlo's Fencing
    Posts
    563

    Default

    I've seen the tennis ball trick used, for footwork too.

  13. #13
    A wild and crazy man Rdb811 has much to be proud ofRdb811 has much to be proud ofRdb811 has much to be proud ofRdb811 has much to be proud ofRdb811 has much to be proud ofRdb811 has much to be proud ofRdb811 has much to be proud ofRdb811 has much to be proud ofRdb811 has much to be proud of Rdb811's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2003
    Location
    Streatham
    Posts
    4,635

    Default

    Old cricket ball or curtian ring - attempt to lunge it.

  14. #14
    Senior Member oiuyt has a spectacular aura aboutoiuyt has a spectacular aura about oiuyt's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2003
    Location
    Philadelphia, PA, USA; Temple University
    Posts
    228

    Default

    A golf ball on a string gives even better practice. And a satisfying clunk when you hit it. Just screw an eyehook into the golf ball (starting the hole with a nail makes this MUCH easier), tie the string to the eyehook and to a convenient place for hanging and you're good to go.

    Aoife: The chart almost certainly uses the formula 220-Age for the maximum heart rate. It probably then gives training ranges of 50-60% of MHR, 60-70% MHR 70-80% MHR, etc. This is just so you don't have to do the math. Some charts give the target rate in beats per minute (bpm), others in beats per 10 or 15 seconds (quicker to read your pulse for those time periods). At 16 your MHR is (roughly) 4 bpm faster than that of a 20 year old. Multiply that by the appropriate percentage and you'll know what to add to the bpm listed on the chart. (eg for the 50-60% range add 2-2.4 bpm, for 60-70% add 2.4-2.8 bpm, etc.) As far as finding your BMI, do a google search for "BMI calculator" and you'll find a bunch of them. Of course BMI is basically worthless.

    Hope that helps.
    -B :)
    "Oh but you can't expect to wield supreme executive power just because some watery tart threw a sword at you!"

  15. #15
    Senior Member DrT is on a distinguished road DrT's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    Huddersfield/Stockport Sword
    Posts
    250

    Default

    I know nothing has been posted on this thread for a while, but I'd be interested to hear a bit more about what people do (or should do!).

    For cardio training, do people do simple runs or interval training? If the latter, what sort?
    Think, before someone does it for you!

  16. #16
    Senior Member Robert is on a distinguished road
    Join Date
    Jun 2003
    Location
    Wingerworth
    Posts
    849

    Default

    Originally posted by DrT
    I know nothing has been posted on this thread for a while, but I'd be interested to hear a bit more about what people do (or should do!).

    For cardio training, do people do simple runs or interval training? If the latter, what sort?
    I have only just started doing competitions so I decided I needed to train properly over the summer. I have seen some improvement, and here are the excercises I have done and the benefits I have seen:

    Swimming: Twice a week, about an hour on both occasions. Really not a good exercise for Fencing, develops completely different muscles, you have tendency to stiffen up so loads of stretching to compensate, doesn't improve endurance much because the water takes away the most important factor in fencing (over-heating). On the plus side fencers do put on a lot of mass between the waist and the knees (esp. female fencers) so something that develops the upper body is good.

    Walking: Three times a week, about three miles. Seems to help with endurance but only as long as you really puch the pace.

    Skipping: Each day in 10 minute bursts using an egg-timer. Well worth doing, my footwork and endurance really improved and I noticed the difference at Colchester.

    Distance: Lots of distance practice games. As important as footwork on club nights. Try to do 15 to 20 minutes each night. Once I worked on it I realised just how many hits that appear to be blade-work are really about distance.

    Coaching: Get a lesson each week at the club. Always get as many lessons as you can, these are much better than free-fencing. The important thing is to really put the effort into the lesson, like it was a reall bout, and not get dispirited because you can't see improvement, it tends to come in bursts.

    Fencing better people: This is what comps are for. So enter as many as you can, esp. the really tough ones, and treat it as an extra day of practice.
    I find my fencing as a whole really improves when I am fencing people a lot better than me. It goes downhill when I fence bouts at the club.

    Other sports: Do two nights a week of another sport, but only real benefit I see is in exercising muscles the fencing doesn't use and getting away from the fencing for a few hours.

    The other thing is sticking to the regime you set. I ought to do do about 13 hours a week, but I would say I tend to skip some of the things each week and it is more like 8 or 9.

    Robert

  17. #17
    Initiate Urban Spaceman is on a distinguished road Urban Spaceman's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2003
    Location
    West Yorkshire
    Posts
    26

    Default

    Originally posted by DrT
    I know nothing has been posted on this thread for a while, but I'd be interested to hear a bit more about what people do (or should do!).

    For cardio training, do people do simple runs or interval training? If the latter, what sort?
    I do 1 hour in the gym 5 days a week consisting of stretches followed by 20 mins on a cross trainer, then a few repetitions on some weights machines (nothing that strains too much, just gets the muscles working) then some more stretches to warm down.

    I should also do footwork and distance exercises but fitting them into a day isn't something i've managed yet.

    oh, and some fencing at the club. mostly free fencing or a quick pool with a few people.
    I went to play darts with my friend.
    I said "Closest to bull goes first"
    He Said "Baa"
    I Said "Moo"
    He Said "You're closest"

  18. #18
    A wild and crazy man Rdb811 has much to be proud ofRdb811 has much to be proud ofRdb811 has much to be proud ofRdb811 has much to be proud ofRdb811 has much to be proud ofRdb811 has much to be proud ofRdb811 has much to be proud ofRdb811 has much to be proud ofRdb811 has much to be proud of Rdb811's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2003
    Location
    Streatham
    Posts
    4,635

    Default

    Originally posted by Robert

    I find my fencing as a whole really improves when I am fencing people a lot better than me. It goes downhill when I fence bouts at the club.
    Presumably the people who are "a whole lot better" don't have the same qualms about fencing you.

  19. #19
    Initiate nahouw is on a distinguished road
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    NJ, USA
    Posts
    75

    Default

    Originally posted by Robert
    I have only just started doing competitions so I decided I needed to train properly over the summer. I have seen some improvement, and here are the excercises I have done and the benefits I have seen:
    Hi Robert,

    I think that you have made really good recommendations for a solid overall plan. I don't think that you should discount the importance of swimming. Swimming is very good for all over body balancing and muscle coordination, especially core work. I incorporate swimming into my training. Considering that fencing is an unbalanced (one-sided) sport, it is very important to incorporate balanced muscle training. In addition, fencing is very hard on the hamstrings, and without proper stretching, you can eventually have too tight hamstrings and have problems. By especially swimming breaststroke, you will help stretch your hamstrings.

    As far as to doing other sports, tennis (or any other racquet sport) is beneficial to your fencing, because you have the rapid change of direction. In my tennis club, many members comment as to how good my footwork is and how come I have such good footwork (footwork in tennis is not something that is practiced). I told them that I have good tennis footwork because this is necessary for fencing, and we practice it routinely, and showed them how I practice footwork.

  20. #20
    Senior Member doobarz has a spectacular aura aboutdoobarz has a spectacular aura about
    Join Date
    Apr 2003
    Location
    Chippenham
    Posts
    1,046

    Default

    As Robert says, swimming can over-develop the shoulders, but is good CV work.

    The one problem I have found with raquet sports is that it's feet then hand whereas fencing is always hand first....
    Hoping for support from Dyson

+ Reply to Thread

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts