In the second of the series, Rebel tries out the unusual sport, Fencing!
In a bid to highlight the amount of great sports on campus, Rebel Editors Lois and Jason are trying out a new Just Play activity each week.
We will be trying as many as possible (so you don’t have to) and bringing you our recommendations. Look out for short reviews, pictures of us making fools of ourselves and some of Essex’s more obscure sports!
What you need to know
Fencing was surprisingly difficult. I think we may have been a little naive in our approach, we were thinking more of the Instas and Boomerangs we’d take and were getting really excited at the prospect of wearing the necessary clothing, that we hadn’t imagined how intense it might get.
To be honest, our only point of reference to the sport was the gripping scene in the Parent’s Trap where the twins fight till they both end up in a pool of water, so that tells you how unprepared we were for the realities of fencing.
After getting dressed, we headed back upstairs to start learning the basic moves needed, like how to stand en garde, how to step forward and back, and eventually, how to thrust and block. There were a range of moves to become acquainted with, even at beginner level but its easy to pick them up and advance to the next stage of fighting. What starts off as fun between you and your partner quickly becomes a proper fight a few minutes in.
We were in a fairly large group, around twelve novice fencers along with our instructors, who were ridiculously talented, very accommodating and professional in their teaching style.
Key things to note:
– It’s not an easy sport (even as a Just Play)
– The outfits are cool, but they get really hot as the session progresses.
– The instructors are talented (as are the university students as well, which is always a plus)
Best Part: Feeling like Lindsay Lohan in the fencing scene from the Parent Trap
Worst Part: Being very conscious of your own mortality for an hour.
Out of 10
Keep an eye out for our next instalment in the brand new ‘Rebel tries…’ series, coming soon.