Advice for Shorter Fencers

Keith Farrell teaching a lesson at TaurHEMAchia 2017. Photo by Andrea Boschetti, 2017.

Shorter fencers have many difficulties and disadvantages compared to taller fencers who have more reach. I know this all too well myself! I’m five foot six, or around 167 cm in height, and most of my opponents are taller than me – it is not so common for me to find a sparring partner who is my size or smaller.

As I have learned how to fence in a functional and effective fashion despite my size, I have written some of my thoughts into articles for this website. Hopefully my experience and ideas can help other short fencers learn to perform more successfully.

I wrote a summary of my philosophy for training and teaching, that I plan to keep updated and relevant as I write further articles on more topics. It is probably worth reading as well as the following individual articles.

General advice for sparring

Unhelpful advice 3: Myths of the short person in martial arts

Unhelpful advice 4: More myths of the short person in martial arts

Unhelpful advice 5: Yet more myths of the short person in martial arts

Go for the legs!

The problem of attribute fencing

Sparring is not always the best training method to become better at sparring

5 ways to train the Abzug (and to avoid an afterblow)

Video tutorials on cutting mechanics

2018: Cutting mechanics with the longsword: Oberhaw

Sparring videos with commentary

2018: Sparring with Federico Malagutti at Borgosesia

Choosing your training sword

Buying your first feder from Regenyei Armoury

General advice for the long-term

Training for the future