Competitions & Guide to Competing
Leon Paul Junior Series; a nationwide circuit of regular regional/local competitions - entry level competing! For U.9/U.11/U13/U.15 (age category is determined by how old you are as of 1st Jan, i.e. if still ten on 1st Jan 2014 then student is in U.11's for all of 2014 even once they've turned 11.
TFS generally advocates that fencers travel to competitions and do them as a group, especially the first one!
Generally there are the following competitions annually:
- Newham u.12/u.14 & c
- Millfield LPJS
- Manchester LPJS
- Bristol LPJS
- Chichester EFC u.14
- British Schools Team Championships
- London Team Foil LPJS
- London Region Qualifiers for BYC
- Durham LPJS
- Newham u.12/u.14 & c
- Sheffield B.Y.C British Youth Championships
- Herfordshire E.Y.C English Youth Championships
- Edinburgh LPJS
- Cardiff LPJS
- Newham B.R.C British Ranking Circuit
- Newcastle LPJS
- Newham u.12 & c
- London Leonpaul Centre BRC
- Manchester E.F.C European Fencing Confederation Cadet International
- Camden London LPJS
- Newham u.12 & c
- Hertfordshire LPJS
(These dates differ every year and are approximates, therefore please be sure to check theLeon Paul Junior series website as well as Newhamswords website, and the Britishfencing.com events calendar. Entry is online and you need have Britishfencing licence / association membership )
If your child is doing well at LPJS in U.11/U.13 and achieving L8 then they will do well at nationals such as the EYC and BYC (see below) because London has the top clubs.
The LYC (London Youth Championships) is a once a year event for which the age category is different to normal (U.10/12/14/16). It is normally early March and is a qualifying event for the BYC (British Youth Championship), which are early May. Accordingly to reach quarter final/medal zone in BYC is highly prestigious, although LYC in itself is a very tough competition because London has a much stronger field than other regions.
The EYC (England Youth Championships) is again once a year, held in age category (U.11/U.13/U.15). There is no qualifying round and a last 4 placing in U.13 or U.15 guarantees selection for England squad. Held end of June.
All 'open' (senior) events are listed on the calendar page of the British fencing website, but the ones we are concerned with are the BRC (British Ranking Circuit) events. These are split into cadet (U.17) and Junior (U.20) categories and are the next step up for serious fencers after LPJS. Very strong performance in EYC, BYC and BRC leads to selection for overseas trips representing England / GB.
European Fencing Confederation
The ECC (European Cadet Circuit) is for the most able students. Normally only fencers approved by the BFA (British Fencing Association) enter these travelling in a chaperoned group. Fencers may still enter if they haven't been selected by the national federation (BFA) but they do so independently - this is only available for the strongest fencers. The EFC also lists a number of competitions that are not ECC ranking events and are an alternative way to gain early exposure to international competing. There is only one ECC ranking event that is held in the UK for foil... the 'Manchester Cadet International'.
Serious competing for those aiming at squads requires travel outside of London 4 to 5 times per year, LPJS we only do locally! If aiming for cadet selection then it is good to try and do all events as they operate a system whereby the more you go, the more points you are awarded (subject to planning well and according to the calibre of competition entries that year). This is so the federation can assess both the commitment and consistency of a fencer's performance. Generally the 'season' for both LPJS and BRC Cadets is September - March.
Students should wear blue tracksuit bottoms, daps or plimsolls if they don't have fencing shoes, and white t.shirt. recommended kit for those purchasing is as follows
- Masks ~ Allstar Universal. For those wishing to coloured masks are permitted. also available from Allstar.
- Weapon ~ Leon Paul. For those U.13 a size 3 blade and for those 14yrs and older a size 5 blade. As well as size also specify Pistol grip electric foil when you contact the armourer. The above 2 items are recommended as all fencers should have their own weapons if competing or seriously interested. Masks are good purchase as head size doesn't alter.
- Whites ~ Jacket and Breeches: the basic and the Balaton range are excellent value from PBT suppliers.
- Shoes ~ there are two recommended. Adidas En Guard, available from all suppliers, or, PBT silverstar and PBT fortuna are both excellent.
- Electric Jacket ~ the lame recommended is the basic model from PBT, white or silver only please.
- Socks ~ Long white socks can be purchased from all suppliers
- Glove ~ fencing glove can be any colour. PBT, Allstar & LeonPaul have a range of gloves. A glove is also quite a personal addition and is relatively inexpensive.
In all cases speak to coach before buying kit.
Our recommended supplier is LeonPaul who make the best.
Kit is supplied by the club but anyone serious should buy their own, as it is cleaner, and weapons and masks and gloves are highly personal items. If students breaks foil then the custom is to replace at their cost. Taking care of kit is very important. Whites should be laundered on a cold wash, and always hung to dry, never dry in the machine. The fibres have a technical specification so please do not dry in sunlight.
For your membership fencing license, results, news and competition calendar.
Recommended viewing for all students and parents
A range of movies about fencing provided by YouTube.