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30-for-30 Swordplay Challenge: Week 1

Week 1 | Week 2 | Week 3 | Week 4

Jump down to Longsword Practice | Rapier Practice | Sidesword Practice

Getting Started

Welcome to 2020 and the seventh annual 30-for-30 Swordplay Challenge training resource page! Every week through January we'll be pulling together useful videos and training advice to help you set goals, stay on track, and do your 30 minutes each day in the most painless and rewarding manner possible.

Don't know about the challenge? Read all about it and join in through the Facebook group here.

On this page you'll find content applicable for beginner to advanced swordplay students. The first three videos are for people who want to get started for the first time with the Rapier, Longsword, or Sidesword. Further down on the page you'll find weekly training advice and video playlists for both solo and partner drills that you can use to guide your daily training.

We provide 4 solo and 4 partnered exercises each week. We recommend reviewing all four videos (they're short) and then picking two or three as your focus each day. Use a timer and set it for 10 or 15 minute increments. By focusing on a small set of drills over a week you'll most easily see forward progress.

Longsword Fundamentals - Getting Started
Getting Started, Grip, Posture, Descending Cuts. Learn more at https://duello.tv
Rapier Fundamentals - Introduction to the Rapier
The Italian renaissance rapier presented as a fundamental weapon of the Academie. The rapier is a weapon finely tuned to duels and affairs of honour.
Sidesword Fundamentals - Getting Started
Grip, Posture, Basic Cutting. Learn more at https://duello.tv

Use protective gear for all exercises. In many of our videos we are not wearing head, throat or body protection in order to make clear explanation more possible. You should always use protective gear when practicing these arts regardless of the exercise.


Training Advice for Week 1: How to Start Strong

Day 1: Don’t overdo it. Modest goals, regularly met, is the secret to making it through a marathon. If you want some inspiration, read how Joe Simpson made it out of a near-fatal mountaineering accident by breaking his 6-day solo glacier traverse (with a broken leg) into 15 minute micro-challenges.

Day 2: Have a training strategy. If you have a goal you are aiming to achieve, what is a small way you can take a bite out of that goal each day? Do you want to alternate days with something else for mental variety or to help parts of your body recover? Is there a natural progression of skills you can follow? Thinking about the structure of your training can make it easier to stick with, more purposeful, and more rewarding.

Day 3: Go Small. If you have a hard time sticking with things, or don’t feel 100 percent sure about 30 minutes per day, then set a training goal that is less than 30 minutes. Five minutes per day is more achievable and is a great way to set a rhythm. It’s also a way to get started on a potentially longer session.

Day 4: Plan training into your schedule. Put it on your calendar or your todo list. Set an alarm on your phone. Think about your daily energy levels and fit your training into the periods where you find it easiest to be active. Find another activity that you already do regularly and attach your new training to it. Finding time is usually about *making* time.

Day 5: Partner up with a training buddy. Accountability to all of us on the Internet is great, but a personal accountability-buddy is even stronger. Schedule your training dates with a peer who’s going to notice that you’re absent, will check in if you’re stuck, and will benefit from your support as well.

Day 6: Plan what you’re going to do in advance. This allows you to eliminate the mental work of getting started each session, and it also gives you something to look forward to in your training. Plan your whole month, or one week, or use part of each session to write out a plan for the next session.

Day 7: When In Doubt, Copy Someone Else. Use the DuelloTV videos or courses. Follow someone else’s training reports and do what they’re doing. Follow a discipline that you’ve never studied before. By imitating someone else or following their training strategy, you can often discover approaches and methods that are beyond what you might naturally come up with on your own.


Longsword Practice Week 1

Solo Exercises

Paired Exercises

Rapier Practice Week 1

Solo Exercises

Paired Exercises

Sidesword Practice Week 1

Solo Exercises

Paired Exercises

Acknowledgement of Safety and Risk

  1. Practice all exercises slowly and with control.
  2. Practice using training swords that are not sharp and are specifically made for practice.
  3. Use protective gear for all exercises. In many of our videos we are not wearing head, throat or body protection in order to make clear explanation more possible. You should always use protective gear when practicing these arts regardless of the exercise.
  4. Be aware that injuries in training are always possible. Ensure that you are practicing with care and caution at all times.
  5. DuelloTV is not responsible for any injuries that occur as a result of sword practice inspired from our videos.

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