I am retired and a former epee fencer at CCNY Varsity and USFA. I have achieved the rank of A and have competed in National tournament.
Fencing is a great sport any place. It is one of the oldest competitive sport and one of the first to be included in the modern Olympiad. Recently, with the current COVID-19 quarantine and shut down of athletic clubs, I have been exploring other options to practice the sport of fencing. With modern technology, it is possible to do fencing outdoors.
- Aug. 2020
What is Needed?
Fencing is generally an indoor sports. It requires a strip of 1.5 m by 14 m size. It needs an electrical outlet to plug the scoring system and lights. It also needs reels to connect the fencer to the scoring machine. That being said, it is one of the safest sports around. The weapon is harmless. It is made of flexible steel and has no sharp edges or points.
In order to adapt to fence outdoors, a different set of equipment would be ideal. It is not cheap but it is doable.
Here is what I came up with.
- PC Laptop running Windows
- VSM scoring system (software/hardware interface)
- EnPointe wireless system
- 2 epee body cords
The complete system cost around $1200.
There are a few considerations when fencing outdoors. First is the floor surface. It needs to be flat and with some traction. A grass lawn would not make a good surface. Next, is to have uniform lighting. Direct sun light would not be good, due to glare and heat... A shady spot under a large tree or under some yawning would be ideal.
In our case, we located a spot on the campus of CCNY in Harlem NYC. The Quad is at the center of a few Gothic style buildings. It is shady and open and have stone benches around.
A small group of members decided to get a jump start on the re-opening of athletics. We are meeting every Sunday morning on the campus of CCNY located at 139 street and Convent Ave. in Manhattan NYC. We have two wireless system setup with strips marked up with chalk. We are practicing the sport we love while wearing face masks and keeping social distancing. It is a great experience. If you are in the neighborhood, come watch and learn and get a few pointers.
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.
© 2020 Jack Lee