Fencing is among the safest sports in which one can participate. Throughout the history of the club, members have experienced no serious injuries. However this has been in no little part due to the members taking the proper safety precautions when training and bouting. The guiding principle when participating in fencing, whether that be training with a coach or bouting, should be that common sense is always the best guide.
1. General Safety Procedures
1.1 The greatest number of fencing injuries are either strained muscles and ankle/knee injuries. All persons participating in both training and bouting should remember the following principles:
- Warm up thoroughly before beginning training or bouting.
- Understand the importance of correct footwork.
- Always wear indoor sports shoes which provide suitable high impact protection and good grip.
1.2 The floor of the hall can occasionally be slippery or dusty. Persons training and bouting should exercise caution. If the floor is excessively slippery or dusty, stop training and/or bouting and report the matter to a trainer.
1.3 Foils, epees and sabres are potentially dangerous weapons. Persons attending club should ensure they comply with the following:
- When carrying a weapon, always keep the point to the floor, or have the point tucked under the armpit, do not wave the weapon about.
- Never engage in irresponsible behaviour,such as; throwing weapons, or pointing a weapon at another person who is not wearing the appropriate proper protective clothing.(see below)
- When attending the club, always make sure you are aware of where other people are training or bouting and do not get in their way. This does not only mean do not walk between persons training or bouting, but also be careful when walking behind them. In other words, look before walking around the room.
1.4 Always obey the instructions of the Coaches who attend the club and officials of either the club or Sports Association. Be cognisant of advice given by members of the club in relation to safety issues.
1.5 Persons preparing to participate in training and bouting must ensure that all safety equipment they intend to wear is in good condition and that it is appropriate for training or the type of bouting in which they intend to participate (see below). If in doubt please ask a club member for their opinion.
1.6 Any member of the club seeing a person not complying with this safety policy, should point this out to the person and politely ask them to take the steps necessary to comply. In the unlikely event that the person refuses to comply, an official of the club should be advised so that an appropriate action can be taken.
2. Safety Equipment – Formal Lessons:
2.1 The student is require to wear the following safety equipment:
- Mask and glove.
2.2 Note that this is the minimum requirement and a student should wear all safety equipment
required by the coach conducting the lesson.
2.3 The coach is required to wear the following safety equipment:
- coaches padded jacket or a white fencing jacket
3. Safety Equipment – Non-electric Foil bouting:
3.1 Those participating in non-electric foil bouting are required to wear the following:
- Fencing mask
- Fencing jackets and underplastrons are required for all bouting. Fencing breeches, tracksuit pants or the equivalent are required to be worn for all foil bouts, in accordance with state level competition regulations.
- A glove of stout construction for the fencing hand.
- For women, breast protectors.
- Weapons must have a button on the tip, a finger pad, and a slight, but not excessive, downward curve in the blade. Overly stiff blades, or blades with kinks should not be used.
4. Safety Equipment – Electric Foil and all Sabre bouting:
4.1 All requirements for non-electric foil should be observed, with the following amendments:
- A proper fencing glove covering the fencers hand and wrist must be worn, in place of the glove described for non electric foil bouting.
- For electric foil, weapons must have a proper electric tip.
5. Safety Equipment – Electric Epee bouting:
5.1 All the requirements for electric foil bouting are to be observed with the following addition:
- Proper white fencing breeches are to be worn.
6. Safety Procedures – Club Competitions:
6.1 Proper clothing appropriate for the type of fencing to be conducted at the competition, as described above, is to be worn.
6.2 Obey all instructions of the referee of your bouts
6.3 The Directoire Technique in the final arbiter and court of appeal. His/her decision is final.
7. Safety Procedures – Accidents:
7.1 In the event of an accident do not panic, keep the injured person calm and contact the following:
- Any club member with first aid or medical qualifications, and or any of the club trainers.
7.2 There is a first aid kit in the club armoury bag, and also with the Club President (One will always be present at club training). Please note that small items used (eg band aids) should be replaced, and reusable items such (eg. Crepe bandages) washed and returned. If something is missing, please advise the club secretary.
Always remember, fencing is a very safe sport, provided common sense is exercised at all times.