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©2016 by San Diego Fencing Center.

FOIL

Weapon
A thrusting sword, like the epée, with a flexible rectangular blade, weighing less than one pound and with a smaller guard.

Scoring & Target
The valid target area is the torso, from the shoulders to the groin, front and back. It does not include the arms, neck, head or legs. Touches are scored similar to epée by using the tip of the blade.

Equipment
Like epée, the foil is connected by a body cord to the scoring machine. Additionally a metallic vest, called a lamé, which covers the target area, so that a valid touch will register on the scoring machine, and an electric fencing mask is being used.

 

The foil has a flexible rectangular blade, approximately 35 inches in length, weighing less than one pound. Points are scored with the tip of the blade and must land within the torso of the body.

SABRE

Weapon
The modern version of the slashing cavalry sword, similar in length and weight to the foil. The guard curves over the handle to protect the fist.

Scoring & Target
Saber is a "thrusting" weapon as well as a "cutting" weapon (using the tip as well as the side of the blade). The target area is from the waist line up, including the arms, to the top of the head, simulating the cavalry rider on a horse.​

 

Equipment
The saber fencer's uniform includes a sleeved metallic jacket (lamé) on top of the regular one, which covers the target area to register valid touches on the scoring machine. The mask is different from foil and epée with an entire metallic covering, since the head is a valid target area, too

EPEE

Weapon
The descendant of the dueling sword, epée is the heaviest of the three weapons, weighing approximately 27 ounces. It has a larger bell shaped guard and a much stiffer blade.

Scoring & Target
Touches are scored with the tip of the blade anywhere on the opponent’s body, from the top of the head to the tip of the toe. In epée the fencing strip (area where a fencing bout takes place) is metallic in order to prove when the blade touches the ground instead of the opponent (invalid point).​

 

Equipment
In addition to the regular protective gear, épée fencers use an electric body cord that connects the weapon to the scoring machine.​

A bit about Fencing

The ancestor of modern fencing originated in Spain, where several books on fencing were written. Treatise on Arms was written by Diego de Valera between 1458 and 1471 and is one of the oldest surviving manuals on western fencing shortly before dueling came under official ban by the Monarchs of the time.

Fencing is also one of the only four sports that have been present at every single Olympic Games. It is often called the physical chess as it not only a great exercise for the body but also for the mind.

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Why Should my Child start Fencing Guide