New parents / fencers

So, you have signed your child up for your first competition, what do you do now?

Step 1. Gather your equipment

Check with your club about borrowing equipment to use at the competition and make sure you get it in advance, it is much less stressful if you know you have everything you need. Check the equipment list later in the booklet available to download for a full list.

Step 2. Competition day

  • Everyone should eat a good breakfast, fencers and parents. Even when there is food available at the competition, a fencer needs a good store of energy and a parent may not get time to eat while helping their child.
    Plan your journey to arrive at least 40 minutes before the check-in desk closes. Note the advertised check-in time is the latest time you must arrive by.
  • Arrive at the competition and follow the signs to the check-in desk. It is important to let the organiser know that you are here.
    Find your coach if they are there and ask them about warming up. They may suggest waiting for a little and if you are lucky, they will give you a one 2 one blade session as well but there is not always time to do this.

Step 3. The Tournament begins

  • Listen for the organiser calling your age group and category. It should be something like, “Under 12 Boys, Piste 4 and 5”. This means that all male under 12 fencers should go to piste 4 and 5. A piste is the fencing strip and there will be numbers on the walls indicating where the designated piste is.
  • Check with the referee at the pistes announced to see which one you are on. Once you have found your referee and piste, tell him your name and he will want to check some of your equipment. He will almost certainly ask to see your under jacket (called a plastron). He is checking the badge shows the plastron is of the correct safety standard.
  • Now the fencing begins, wait at the ends of the piste, ready to fence when the referee says it is your turn. You will fence everyone in your group (called a poule). Do not leave without asking the referee first; check with the referee that it is okay to do so.
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