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#231257 - 02/16/06 04:10 PM Re: Boffering, safe sword fighting. [Re: VladtheImpaler]
Charles Mahan Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 06/14/04
Posts: 2502
Loc: Denton, Tx, USA

The only thing that will completely function like a real sword is a real sword, and we're not going to swing those at each other several days of the week, are we?

That's what I use 8 to 9 hours a week in class.
Iaido - Breaking down bad habits, and building new ones.

#231258 - 02/16/06 04:19 PM Re: Boffering, safe sword fighting. [Re: KarlHTKDSTUDENT]
cxt Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 09/11/03
Posts: 5843
Loc: USA

Fun is fun, and I an glad that you have found something you enjoy.

But its not much good for learning sword arts.

Not bagging on you or your practice--like I said, glad you found something that you enjoy.

Its just not a good way to learn sword skills.
I did battle with ignorance today.......and ignorance won. Huey.

#231259 - 02/16/06 05:44 PM Re: Boffering, safe sword fighting. [Re: VladtheImpaler]
Yunsung Offline

Registered: 12/20/04
Posts: 111
Loc: Bossier City, LA, USA

I used to do a lot of boffer fighting in my medieval group (Society for Creative Anachronism.) Sure, there are some people that do it that aren't very good, but to say it's not swordsmanship on any level is incorrect and disrespectful. I have fought and trained with many people with boffer and rattan weapons that were excellent fighters and could easily hold their own against practioners of other sword-fighting arts. Many of the people that fight and teach fighting in the SCA are trained in classical European swordfighting, and although boffer fighting is much different than wielding an edged weapon, don't discount it as meaningless.

I'm sure they do quite well against other SCA practicioners. But exactly what classical European art are their leaders studying? I don't believe they've studied I.33, which is the primary source for sword and shield fighting. Nor have they studied Liectenhauer or Fiore di Liberi (even though there are very few longsword practicioners among their ranks). The SCA members I have spoken to tend to rehash the old myth of strength and heavy swords winning the day, even though this is clearly not the case. The SCA tends to focus mainly on recreating certain aspects of medieval culture, unfortunately, for the most part this re-creation does not extend to the martial aspects. The best quote on the SCA comes from John Clements, and it is simply put - "The SCA is what it is."

It is not accurate training in medieval swordsmanship, and the more intelligent members don't claim it to be such.

The SCA group in my area practices the art of smacking cardboard shields with rattan - as talented at it as they are, it's not swordsmanship.

Edited by Yunsung (02/16/06 05:47 PM)
Justice is only useful when power is useless.-Socrates, the Republic

#231260 - 02/16/06 05:57 PM Re: Boffering, safe sword fighting. [Re: VladtheImpaler]
SethWoodworth Offline

Registered: 11/24/05
Posts: 34
Loc: Washington, USA

I prefer the rattan weapons because it's a more accurate simulation of real swords, however I think you can still get a lot out of boffer if done correctly.
And as to the similarity to real swords, I always try to make my boffer or rattan weapons as similar to real swords as I can in terms of weight and size, but I acknowledge that there is a difference. The only thing that will completely function like a real sword is a real sword, and we're not going to swing those at each other several days of the week, are we?

Yes, I do swing a sword several times a week.

Rattan and boffer bounce when they strike each other, that's why SCA combat is different from Western Martial Arts, although there can be some cross over.

A *real* sword should have a taper in width and a distal taper. So while your rattan might weigh the same as a real sword the same length, it doesn't have the same 'moment of inertia' as the real thing. And moment of inertia is a very important concept.
All the best, Seth Woodworth

#231261 - 02/16/06 08:54 PM Re: Boffering, safe sword fighting. [Re: SethWoodworth]

Registered: 11/07/05
Posts: 55
for all of you who say it's no way to learn a sword art, it isn't. I never said to quit your current practice and do this, in fact I don't even use boffering to train in a sword art. The only thing I use boffer swords for is to get a couple of friends over in my basement and beat each other up. In no way does it represent realistic combat, there is just not enough similarities between a boffer and a real sword. Im just saying it's alot of fun and that it's an easy thing to do if you wanted to try.
A true warrior wins the battle before it begins.

#231262 - 02/17/06 03:30 PM Re: Boffering, safe sword fighting. [Re: KarlHTKDSTUDENT]
Joss Offline

Registered: 01/18/06
Posts: 567

Great you and your friends have found something fun to do and don't pay any attention to those here who see it differently. You came here in good cheer to share, and have been treated poorly. I don't know why people do that.

But, if your life is long, there will be many times that you'll see people belittle others for no reason. This could be a good lesson to you about not doing so yourself.

#231263 - 02/17/06 08:19 PM Re: Boffering, safe sword fighting. [Re: Joss]
mercierarmory Offline

Registered: 09/26/05
Posts: 44
Loc: Lincoln, Nebraska
You have it wrong Joss.

We are not here to rain on his parade and tell him to do stop doing something he enjoys. What we are saying is that what he is doing is not swordfighting. We are trying to help lead him on a path to learn historical technique and put his passion to use. Boffer fighting is basically a harmless way to beat eachother up. There is no "martial art" involved and thats one reason it puts such a bad taste in peoples mouths and is made fun of in some circles. We were trying to show him that there are plenty of avenues to take if he wants to further his interest in western martial arts.


#231264 - 02/18/06 02:53 PM Re: Boffering, safe sword fighting. [Re: mercierarmory]
JoelM Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 07/26/04
Posts: 6355
Loc: Georgia, USA
*Grabs mercier, Joss, Charles, Karl, and Vlad

Sways back and forth, singing "Kum-ba-yah!!"

Hits them all with a boffer and runs off.*

We should all take ourselves seriously...and then crumple that image up and toss it out the window.

#231265 - 02/18/06 04:14 PM Re: Boffering, safe sword fighting. [Re: JoelM]
SethWoodworth Offline

Registered: 11/24/05
Posts: 34
Loc: Washington, USA
I was quoting Vlad I think. I have nothing against boffer for the sake of boffer. Heck, I think I might still have a half dozen or so boffers sitting round somewhere. It's fun!
All the best, Seth Woodworth

#231266 - 02/24/06 01:37 AM Re: Boffering, safe sword fighting. [Re: Charles Mahan]
Subedei Offline

Registered: 12/23/04
Posts: 479
Well if you can afford good armor and a little control there's just no reason not to use metal blunts. The simple fact is that no matter how well balanced a simulator is it just isn't going to represent live steel correctly. The only way to really practice authentically is to get a metal sword in your hands.

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