This article was originally posted on Encased in Steel on 6th May 2016. It has been edited and improved for posting here.
In martial arts, broadly speaking, there are two types of training exercise: those where you have a specific goal to accomplish, and those where you do not.
It is my belief that exercises without a specific and achievable goal are only useful for experienced practitioners who have already learned how to learn from play. For beginners who have not yet learned this skill, all exercises must have a well-defined goal to strive towards.
This article was originally posted on Encased in Steel on 10th June 2016. It has been edited and improved for posting here.
We all have different motivations behind our practice of HEMA, and we also tend to have slightly different understandings of what HEMA is exactly, what all it covers and describes, and what it excludes. Rather than try to answer the question of “what is HEMA?”, this article will look at what I personally understand to be HEMA, and where I draw my lines.
For some years now, I have been mulling over the decision I made about six years ago to take a break from karate in order to study historical fencing in more depth. I didn’t have the time or the finances to study both disciplines at the same time, so I had to prioritise one or the other.
With fourteen years experience of karate, and with my black belt, I decided to retire (temporarily, I hope!) from that art. My reasoning was that I should be able to return to it fairly easily at any point in time, and I expected to mature as a martial artist by broadening my studies.