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Three weapons, 20 minutes each. It's a fast-paced whirlwind drilling tour through our core disciplines.
Specially formulated for this year’s 30-for-30, the Three Weapons Drilling course is just that. In one hour we’ll be handling the three core weapons of our discipline—longsword, rapier, sidesword—and working with them to develop strength, dexterity and confidence.
Not only will you work through different drills and weapons, you’ll learn how to structure your own drilling time, whether that be solo or with a partner. With this knowledge you can then go to the vast DTV library of drills and continue to construct your own drilling sessions. Power to you!
Start time is the start time! As much as I’m physically able (knock, knock), we want to pack a lot into this hour, so start time is exactly 6:00pm PST. Anticipate the changeover to rapier around 6:20, and sidesword around 6:40, give or take. I welcome you to work with me for just one weapon or stay for all three (or stay for the BIG practice: warmup, all three weapons and a stretching cooldown).
Don’t have one or more of these weapons? Use a substitute: my preference is a 30-inch piece of steel pipe (3/4 inch diameter) with some tape on one end for grip. You could also use a dowel, hold whatever sword you have in one or two hands, or even grab a nearby umbrella!
Equipment used: I have a mechanical arm that points a blade at me (my “friend”) so that I can position my blade against it in different kinds of ways. You could point a dowel at yourself that sticks out of the couch cushions, or any other way of imagining an opposing blade. I’ll also have high, middle and low targets on a pole that will serve for some target variety. All of this gear is optional, of course. Use your DIY whatever, or your vast imagination to attack epic targets of your choosing!
A note about warmup and physical readiness. I am not running much of a warmup at the beginning of this class. Take what extra time you may need ahead of class to be able to move freely and sometimes quickly/explosively without risk of injury. Some of us (like me!) need more than a few minutes to warmup, while some require less. I’ll start the session about 15 minutes early, and you can follow my extended warmup or do one of your own.
Same goes for cooldown and stretching. Once the hour is done and we salute out, I’ll hang around a while longer to do about 10 minutes of stretching, then take any questions and give additional student feedback as requested.
Greg has been studying swordfighting since 2006, and is the director of Swordfight Canada, a school in the northern Rocky Mountains of British Columbia.