Sword Fighting Classes at Baer Swords

At Baer Swords, one of the first things our students learn is how to defend themselves effectively in combat, both physically and mentally. Defense allows one to stand in battle and wait for the opponent to make an opening, then strike them safely and walk away from the exchange. Our one-handed and two-handed weapon classes will teach students how to apply specific techniques related to swordplay using principles such as face your problems, table legs, and earth and sun. These principles—from the Principles of Combat—teach proper stance and handling for sword fighting and provide conditioning for the mind, giving greater control in combat.

One-Handed Weapons

One-Handed weapons were very useful in close quarters, especially in a formation battle in which there was very little room to maneuver. The lighter one-handed weapons like rapiers, daggers, and sabers were usually favored in duels and street fighting. One of the main advantages of using one-handed weapons over two-handed was that they could be carried in one hand and paired with a shield in the other. During our one-handed sword fighting lessons, we will teach the techniques and principles that are most effective for this style of combat.

Two-Handed Weapons

Two-Handed weapons are the largest of the hand-held weapons and have been popularized throughout history.  Two-Handed weapons

were far more suited to battlefield combat. These larger weapons were a force to be reckoned with on the battlefield but were costly to make.  However, the power that these weapons offered, both physically and psychologically, was well worth the cost of making them.

The two-handed weapons used in our sword fighting classes will vary and include long sword, staff, and spear. Grappling with and without weapons is also covered at regular intervals in the two-handed weapons classes. The one-handed weapons used will also vary and include broadsword, saber, and rapier as well as dagger and sword and shield.

Gaining Self-Confidence

Through these classes, students not only improve rapidly in ability to wield a sword effectively, they also gain self-confidence and self-control, improved coordination and concentration, and a workout that is unique from any other.

Classes begin with warm up movements meant to improve reaction times and spatial awareness. The core of each class incorporates the tenets of combat and principles as they relate to the weapon of the class through breaking into drilling groups to hone the lesson.  These groups practice defense, offense, and movement at all different skill levels. The last half hour is always devoted to sparring.  From the very first class, students have a sword in hand, practicing the application of the skills learned in the drills to actual combat.