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Swordplay Training Blog Articles, News, and Updates

Ready, Willing, and Able: Changing Your Training Behaviour

To achieve any goal outside of your current path requires behavioural change, whether that is the goal of simply learning something new, achieving a particular martial goal, or making a change for your health.

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News & Updates

MayForFree: don’t pay until June

A special offer for a whole month of free access to everything DTV has to offer! Sign up for a Scholars or Masters Club subscription between May 1-7 and you won’t pay until June.

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Maintenance Days at the End of March

Just a brief note to say that DuelloTV will be in and out of action between March 30 and April 1, 2017 as we perform a big switchover of our membership software. Thanks for your patience during this time.

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30-for-30 Swordplay Challenge 2017

Practice 30 minutes of swordplay per day for 30 days starting January 2nd until January 31st. This can include your current training or be in addition to it. Join us on Facebook today!

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Log in with a Masters Club membership to read all 188 training blog articles.

Choosing the Right Rapier for You

This article, cribbed from my forthcoming “Introduction to the Italian Rapier” book, looks at the range of historical rapiers and my opinion on how to best select a modern reproduction.


Collaborative vs Competitive Practice Environments

The story says that through competition you are always being pushed by the people below you and challenged by the people above you. That may be true, but the question is: is it the most effective way to learn and grow your practice?


SKIL: A model for learning martial forms

Having a form that you can practice without a training partner provides structure for improving and maintaining your martial ability when training solo, and allows you to explore and enjoy the internal side of the art that is not about competition or self-defense.


WMAW 2017 Report

Hosted by the Chicago Swordplay Guild, this is one of North America’s oldest European swordplay and martial arts events. The weekend features workshops, social activities, a feast, and copious amounts of free sparring and sharing between attendees.


What I Love About the Rapier

Considering the number of things that I have taken up, loved, and then put away over time, it’s quite remarkable that the rapier still holds my interest today. It is a weapon that has truly transformed me, as a martial artist, for the better in every discipline I practice.


Why Do We Fight?

It’s a beautiful thing that we live in a time when fighting can be whatever we want it to be.


What is part of Historical European Martial Arts (HEMA)?

HEMA is a broad term that includes potentially thousands of martial arts, disciplines, and practices. I thought it would be interesting to break down the term and some of what is potentially included within it.


Conversations on Binding at the Sword

My student asked a question about the nature of longsword fencing as it is often seen now in tournaments and in many videos online: “Why don’t we see more play at the bind?”


Notes from a Fencing Student, circa 1657

Nearly everything we work with today is written by instructors for a consumer audience. These notes provide an invaluable alternate view into the historical systems of fencing we study now. They are surprisingly readable for a modern audience and remind me of both notes I have taken and things that I say in class to my long-term students.


Vancouver Martial Challenge 2017 Report

At the end of July we hosted the Vancouver Martial Challenge at Academie Duello in Vancouver, and it was a tremendous weekend of inter-disciplinary sparring and camaraderie.


The Benefits of Interdisciplinary Study

The benefit of practicing a martial system that includes multiple disciplines is that this learning from alternate perspectives is baked in. It is also part of what separates sport from art.


How to Get Started in HEMA: Find a Group

If you can practice with other folks, in person, that is really the best way to learn a martial art. HEMA groups predominantly fall into a few categories: Sparring practices, study groups, and schools.


Dimensions of Mastering the Art

Our goal is to help people find the path of mastery. To develop an understanding of the art on a deep and fundamental level in multiple dimensions and to explore those dimensions in as useful and effective a manner as possible.


Dealing with Criticism

Putting yourself out into the world is a surefire way to invite criticism. All who *do* encounter those who detract. Yet is there really any other way one would want to be in the world?


Taped Up, Braced Up, and Strapped Down: Training Through Injury

I have broken some fingers in intense bouting, separated a shoulder while doing armoured combat, and have certainly had my share of sprains and strains. That being said it has been a relatively healthy career thanks to a lot of care and attention. Yet, even with that, injuries happen. What to do with your training when they do?


Tumbling Down the “Why” Hole

Like getting caught into a conversation with the pedantic child who always asks “why?”, down the why-hole lies madness.


Pursue Your Art Your Way

For each goal, each set of values, each person, there is a different art to explore and practice.


Growing HEMA in Istanbul

Istanbul is a city steeped in both European and Asian history. Every site you visit reveals layer upon layer of history that goes back at least 2000 years. This makes Istanbul both an interesting and fitting place for the study of Western martial arts.


An Amazing Swordplay Weekend in Italy

A little more than a week ago I was arriving in Italy to the sala of Roberto Gotti for a special gathering of swordsmen called Giocatore. This was a weekend of martial encounters across disciplines, opportunities to share knowledge, and time to immerse oneself in study and camaraderie.

And much more! Log in with a Masters Club membership to read all 188 training blog articles.