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Colt Reeves





Joined: 09 Mar 2009

Posts: 466

PostPosted: Thu 19 Mar, 2009 7:12 pm    Post subject: Online Resources for Learning Sword Techniques         Reply with quote

Having got myself a couple of decent swords, I'm looking for some online resources demonstrating sword techniques. In particular, I'm looking for two-handed techniques, such as that used in the Liechtenauer style, and some Norse-like shield/sword techniques.

Today I went through the short list shown here: http://www.myArmoury.com/feature_arms_gls.html, as well as a limited form of the supposed Norse fighting techniques here: http://www.hurstwic.org/history/articles/manu...hnique.htm (Kind of hard to do these without a shield though.)

The two above resources are more or less what I'm looking for. I have found a variety of things on YouTube, but I hate pausing and grainy videos. This, along with the fact that I'm a newbie when it comes to swords, means I very much favor the descriptions and pictures that I can study as slowly as I please. Also, living in a small town means no, I don't have access to any sort of Western martial arts school. Heck, I'm lucky there's a couple of Tae Kwon Do schools around...

So, does anyone have any recommendations?
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Craig Johnson
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PostPosted: Thu 19 Mar, 2009 7:47 pm    Post subject: WMA how to begin.         Reply with quote

Hi Colt,

Excellent adventure you have set yourself. I would suggest start small and work on the basics. If you have had any martial or organized sport training before you will know some of how important this is. The article by Bill Grandy that you linked to is a great way to start. If you are on your own or have just one practice partner, keep it simple. Do not feel like you have to get it all right away, but rather begin with the simplest of things and build slowly with a great deal of practice. This can seem tedious at the beginning but as you move forward it will pay huge as you develop as a swords man.

I would say foot work, no sword in hand and do it till you can not see straight. If you have other training and feel you are understanding the foot work then adding other things can be started as well. But if you are just beginning a physical training regime and have decide to do sword play you can not practice the basics to much. Literally if you can mentally keep the focus a couple of weeks to months of footwork practice will gain you huge benefits.

Next I would add simple striking practice. Concentrate on control, ease of action and form. There are great clues in the writing on these things and it may seem very basic but the better one is at it and the ability to control the small details will again allow one the best chance to develop well. This can be incorporated with the four wards. Literally if you practice just what I have stated already for a year you would do well.

I know this can seem simple and repetitive but once the above is mastered to a great degree the rest will come along on a foundation few have developed.

This will also allow you to plan some travel and get to a school or workshop that is close enough to make the trip feasible for you. This will greatly enhance your abilities and understanding as to learn these skills from books and articles only is difficult as the nuances and ability to observe from the outside is crucial to much of the understanding of western martial arts.

If you let us know what region you are in we can suggest places and events to part take in that will help you on your way.

Good luck

Craig
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Colt Reeves





Joined: 09 Mar 2009

Posts: 466

PostPosted: Thu 19 Mar, 2009 8:36 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Well, I'd like to say that my Tae Kwon Do training allows me to do the footwork perfectly, but the truth is I was always rather sloppy... (Still, I imagine anyone watching might be amused by how easily I did the footwork and simultaneously mangled a sword-stroke.) I also need to improve my upper-body strength, so with your advice I think I will try and do both, throwing in a "warm-up" bout of footwork and then grabbing the sword. Footwork is great, but if I can't handle the sword it only helps me turn around and run.

By the way, the thing I found most interesting with the two-hand sword-play is how intuitive it is. I was leveraging sticks when I was little and the only example of sword-fighting I'd ever seen was The Princess Bride. As another incentive to using two-handers, the above-mentioned lack of upper-body strength means I suck at handling a single-hander much over a pound and a half.


Edit: I'm right smack-dab on the border between Illinois and Indiana, in the US of A. As far as I know the only martial arts in the area is: One Tae Kwon Do school and a Tae Kwon Do/Jiu-Jitsu school in town (I am making plans to enroll in the combination one), and several other Eastern martial arts schools within a couple hours drive, although just Karate, Judo, and more Tae Kwon Do I believe. We probably have a couple of boxing schools around, but I'd prefer to focus on other things.

Double Edit: I forgot to mention that a Ren Faire type thing does take place once a year, but the main martial arts that actually take place is some jousting and a pretty good Samurai demo.
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F. Carl Holz




Location: someplace out on the water (and probably not able to access my PM)
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PostPosted: Thu 19 Mar, 2009 8:47 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

TKD foot work is a little different. It is a good place to start though. Just make sure you get a good example of what the footwork should look like, preferably something in a video format. Fraid I don't have any specific examples in mind tho...
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Craig Johnson
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Location: Minneapolis, MN, USA
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PostPosted: Fri 20 Mar, 2009 6:43 am    Post subject: Lucky         Reply with quote

Colt

You are actually quite lucky you are close to at least two great places to study. I would get a hold of Allen Reed at the Gallowglass Academy. He runs excellent classes and workshops and would be a great place to get some help. The Chicago Swordplay Guild which has one of the longest standing programs around and is a very good place to study. I am sure there are probably some in Indiana that practice as well I am just not sure where they would be.

Also while I know you would prefer books and written material to work from I would check out the vids by this group. Very well done and will allow you to see some of the blade actions that will help you in moving the sword.
The Real Gladiatores

But nothing will help you more than being able to study with someone for even an afternoon to get you started.

Best
Craig
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Jean Thibodeau




Location: Montreal,Quebec,Canada
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PostPosted: Fri 20 Mar, 2009 9:05 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

You might look at these guys' You Tube clips:
http://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=m...=&aq=f

You can easily give up your freedom. You have to fight hard to get it back!
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Douglas S





Joined: 18 Feb 2004

Posts: 177

PostPosted: Fri 20 Mar, 2009 2:57 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Colt, you might have heard people say that it's "impossible" to learn martial arts from a video or book. As a documentation professional, I suspect that it depends on the quality of the video or book. Happy

If you can tell us where you live approximately, there are many WMA schools opening every day; perhaps one of us can point you toward some personal instruction, which is really the best way to go about this.

I am not sure what kind of swords you've latched onto or what style of swordplay that you expect to learn. One work that emphasises principles of swordplay and is thus relatively suitable for any sword is George Silver's Brief Instructions Upon My Paradoxes of Defence. Although the title says "Brief" it is wordy in the worst Elizabethan manner. Stephen Hand has an excellent instructional book on this.
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