Benefits of Fencing
Benefits of Fencing
Though it comes from a bloody background, modern fencing is a sport of skill, intelligence and emotional control. It is now practiced in clubs around the world and training can lead to being a member of an Olympic team. Fencing was added to the modern Olympics in 1896. The New Jersey Fencing Alliance is home to several Olympians and Olympic hopefuls alike. For example, Ibtihaj Muhammad, the women’s sabre bronze medalist from the 2016 Olympic Games, formerly trained at the NJFA.
Why should your child fence?
There are many reasons why a child chose to participate in one sport or another. These are some specific items that fencing offers students that other sports may not fully encompass.
Develops hand-eye coordination, mental acuity, and muscle and emotional control
Promotes self-confidence, self-discipline and good decision making
Provides a healthy outlet for rivalry and competition
All of these attributes will help your child in everyday life outside of NJFA.
Did you know that fencers have a distinct advantage when it comes to college applications?
1 in 3 high school fencers go on to compete in college fencing. 32% of male fencers and 38% of female fencers go on to fence in college. Compare that to football (7.8%) or basketball (5.9% male, 6.3% female).
More than 30 top-tier colleges in the U.S. have an NCAA fencing team, and 100 other colleges have teams as well.
Not planning to fence in college? No problem, simply having fencing listed on the application gives you a huge boost. Schools understand that fencing teaches mental toughness and strategic thinking and that good fencers make good students. Fencing families already know that fencing translates to improved focus and better academic performance.
Graduation and retention rates are of particular interest to universities, Students who have a long history of fencing show that they are able to stay with something over a long period of time, an essential factor for colleges that are pressed to increase graduation rates.
In addition, fencing offers the option for high school students to have a wider variety of references for their college application process, rather than from just within the school environment. A key to college admission is the ability to bring strong letters of reference, something that solid fencing schools can provide.
Wondering which schools have good teams? Well, here is a helpful list that offers you great information on NCAA fencing schools.
For the best schools, even straight A’s and high SAT scores don’t guarantee acceptance. Colleges want candidates who show not only an aptitude for schoolwork but also who have balanced and well-rounded activities.
Fencing offers a powerful tool for propelling your child into their bright future.
Fencing offers students many benefits beyond being a good health and fitness routine.
Being a form of exercise, it of course builds muscle and burns calories. However, it also increases agility and flexibility much more than other sports.
This sport activates the mind. Sparing and matches are as much about strategy as ability. It requires a strong connection between mind and body, and the mind is always looking ahead to the next possible movement. It is constantly trying to solve the next possible strike.
Because of this, fencing increases focus and concentration. Both are needed in order to be successful.
It offers a wide variety of competition, from training pairs to world championships and the Olympics. There is something for everyone.
Just like many other sports, students can get scholarships if they become a high level fencer.
Because various levels train together, it gives students an opportunity to meet many different types of people, whether age, level, ability or length of time fencing.
From history to now, fencing is passionate, quick and exciting.
No matter the level or age anyone can begin and achieve a level of success.
Fencing is a dance, a duel and a sparing match all rolled into one.
The art of fencing, if you think of it, can easily be applied to life.
We understand that safety is a parent’s utmost concern when it comes to enrolling their child in a sport.
How safe is fencing?
Fencing can seem scary as a sword-wielding sport, but it is relatively safe compared to other intensive sports like football and lacrosse. In a nutshell, what makes fencing safe are two major things:
Technological innovations in the last 100 years in weapons and protective gear
Strict safety rules in clubs, in general, and at NJFA, in particular.
How technological innovation makes fencing safe
All fencers are required to wear protective clothing and masks when they train and when they compete. To make fencing safer, fencing gear companies heavily invest in the gear’s design with many technological advances in all levels of gear.
Weapons – Modern weapons are not sharp. They are blunted with either a rubber end on the training weapon or a button on the electric competition one. Also, for the last few decades, they have been manufactured from steel that bends to absorb the impact and break into halves if hard contact occurs.
Masks – All masks are made of very strong meshed steel. They are designed to withstand tremendous impact. Standard ‘cheaper’ masks sold in the United States all pass rigorous testing to sustain minimum required pressure. More expensive FIE-approved masks take the requirements to an even higher level.
Clothing – The protective clothing is made from lightweight yet strong, resilient material. Leading competitive clothing brands are made either from ballistic nylon or bullet-proof Kevlar fabric.
With proper fencing attire fencing is really safe. We at NJFA help our students regularly check their fencing gear for any signs of significant wear, tear or damage, and follow clear rules when it comes to utilizing their gear for training and competition.
How strict safety rules make fencing safe
Fencing has a strict code of etiquette. It doesn’t matter whether you watch a small local club’s bout of beginning fencers, a private lesson, a fencing sparring match, or a competition at the regional, national or international level. All around the world, you will see the same imprinted etiquette and behavior of mutual respect to each opponent and mostly the same code of conduct.
This etiquette is passed from generation to generation, across international boundaries, and it is what makes fencing so safe. It’s the nature of the sport. It is the philosophy and approach that has been set in stone and codified over the centuries and is honored by millions of fencers.
NJFA instills this tradition and etiquette in all of our athletes from their first lesson.
Parents provide an important support system for their fencer which helps them grow and succeed. Parental support is invaluable when it comes to helping fencers overcome their self-doubts and building confidence in the sport.
When attending tournaments, parents will be there to celebrate their fencer’s wins and also to console them after their losses. This is integral for helping build sportsmanlike behavior and mentalities in your child.
We encourage parents to communicate with coaches to stay updated on their child’s progress in order to best support them.
Support Your Fencer
Parents' Guide to Fencing
Written by Igor Chirashnya, you will find an enticing and illuminating book about the sport of fencing. It covers everything from introductory information to frequently asked questions. Historically fencing isn't a mainstream sport in America, but it is on the rise as more children train. This book centers around the ongoing passion and competition your children will experience as they embark on their fencing journey. Looking to develop a strong understanding and knowledge of the sport? Click on the link below.
For Parents and Fencers
This guide, written by the Co-Chairs of USFA Parent Committee, helps parents navigate different aspects of fencing. Information about different teaching styles, investing in fencing, and becoming a member in the USFA are all available in this guide.
Why You Shouldn't Take a Break from Fencing Training
Before taking a break from fencing, step back and consider these reasons not to. We can help you develop a solution that works best for you.