Q: Is equipment provided? What do I need to buy?
Students should wear shorts, sweatpants or leggings (no jeans); sneakers with shoe laces; and a tee shirt. For Beginners, all fencing equipment can be borrowed from our club for no charge. We recommend students purchase their own equipment once they start intermediate classes or want to do competitions.
Q: Why are kids private lessons only 20 minutes?
Fencing is a specific kind of sport where we use many muscles that we don’t use in everyday activities. Therefore, it’s very hard for students to handle lessons longer than 20 minutes especially for a beginner. Proper fencing position requires you to keep your knees bent and that is challenging. Even the best athletes usually don’t take longer than 1-hour lessons.
Q: Why should I start with private lessons instead of group lessons?
Since you can start fencing any time of the season, we constantly add fencers to existing group classes and therefore students who are new will not be on the same page as other fencers. It is very important to get proper basics and that requires a lot of personal attention from the coach. The only two situations where a coach can teach basics is either private lesson or in a group lesson where all the students started learning at the same time. Otherwise, the coach has to explain basics to a new student while other students are neglected or the coach will focus on more advanced students and then beginners will not get proper basics. We feel it is absolutely necessary for fencers to learn fencing position, how to properly hold the weapon, make correct touches, and do a basic attack. After that students can join the group class and won’t feel behind or left out. This helps the coaches to do their work better and helps our fencers to progress faster.
Q: Can Adults fence at NYFA?
Yes! We have members ranging in ages from 6 to 70+. Adults can start private lessons at any time or can form an adult group class if there are 2 or more students. Adults with at least 1 year of competitive experience may join our Advanced competition classes with coach’s permission, and can participate in Open bouting, Footwork and Conditioning classes.
Do you have more questions? Contact us for more answers!
how much would it cost and how long would it take for an adult with a small amount of experience to achieve a decent level of mastery?
Hi Benny, That’s a common question for beginners, but there’s no way to honestly answer without evaluating the student first. As with any other activity, it really depends on each individual’s ability and circumstances, and a “decent level of mastery” is a very subjective term. In general, a healthy combination of training to start would be one group class and and one private lesson a week at minimum. More realistically, it takes double this amount to make good progress, but how fast you advance can depend on many factors, both physical and mental. A coach can give an opinion but not before he or she gets to see you in action. Be wary if anyone claims they can guarantee a result. If interested, try one of our adult beginner introductory packages and we’ll be happy to help you discover your potential.