Advanced Training Drills

Check out our ongoing list of advanced drills that you can try at home or at practice.
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Drawcut Wonder

In alternating pairs, have one student thrust. Parry with any off-hand tool, step through and drawcut the abdomen. Then have students engage “refused” and have one step forward and make a thrust. Defender continues with parry and drawcut.

Equipment needed: Two rapiers and full armor.

Nowhere to Run

In alternating pairs, put one student against a wall or similar barrier. Have leader make ten thrusts to various targets. Defender uses both rapier and offhand to parry. Then have, in groups of three, two attackers alternate ten thrusts (keying off each other as to when to begin)at the defender who continues as before.

Equipment needed: One Rapier and deathsticks or two rapiers and full armor. A wall or suitable barrier.

Three Musketeers

Have TWO attack ONE. Limit TWO to single point. Defender can use multiple weapons. Wounds are cumulative and a leg wound on an attacker means they’re out.

Equipment needed: Three rapiers and full armor.

Marquee Lights

Arrange class into two lines facing. Beginning at one end, have that student make an attack to the line opposite (no attack to the student directly in front of them. Cross shots only). Then have each student to the left attack when the preceding student has finished. Single point only, those attacked can defend themselves. No riposte allowed. Have students rotate.

Equipment needed: Rapier, full armor all around.


In alternating pairs have one fencer attack the other for ten seconds. Attacker cannot be killed. Defender must SURVIVE within a limited area. Then increase the time. Then have defender use defensive only tools like deathsticks, cloaks and bucklers.

Equipment needed: None all the way to full armor/weapons.

Nailed to the Floor

In alternating pairs have one fencer fight with their lead foot nailed (figuratively) to one spot. Change roles.

Equipment needed: full armor/all weapons.

Saber Duel

In pairs, have students duel with drawcuts only. No point work allowed. Then have all blocking done with offhand only.

Equipment needed: Two rapiers, full armor.

Blind Man’s Bluff

In pairs, have students duel for five to ten touches blindfolded.

Equipment needed: Full armor, Rapiers.


X’s and O’s

In pairs, have students work with single point (without any off hand) vs two off-hand defensive secondaries (subject to availability and marshal’s approval). Use good control and have an attack/time/space limit. EXAMPLE: ten thrusts/draws within half a tennis court for thirty seconds. Then have defender down. Then have attacker down.

Equipment needed: An abundant supply of secondary defensives and one Rapier, Full armor.

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