Parry and thrust

04 Apr 2017

Fencing – the art and sport of fighting with swords – is as much about mental strength as it is about physical ability. “You’ve got to learn how to read people, understand the signals your opponent is giving off and act accordingly,” says Year 10 student Eden Pidgeon.

Eden won bronze medals in both the U15 and Cadet (U17) mixed foil competitions at the 2017 Fencing Mid-South Championships, held in Christchurch on Saturday 25 and Sunday 26 March.

There are three different weapons used in fencing: the epée, the sabre, and the foil. Eden uses the foil. “I like the mobility you get with using a long, bendy blade. It’s lighter, you can move faster, and when you make a hit the blade bends, so the impact doesn’t jolt back through your body.”

A keen fencer since he was 10 years old, Eden says he first took it up because he was interested in sword fighting and weaponry. Now he appreciates both its mental and physical benefits and enjoys honing his skills in training and at events.

Fencing is offered as a Saturday activity at College.