Page 1 of 4 1234 Last
  1. #1

    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    illinois
    Posts
    3,123
    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!

    The flat of the sword

    Ok so I know this is somewhat of a dead horse topic on some HEMA forums, but I figured I would see what the opinions on here are. Now for the purposes of my question I am referring to a specific type of counter where you use the portion of the sword just above the guard while deflecting against the higher portion on your opponents sword. My question is weather or not there is any difference in taking the strike on the flat vs. the edge. I have tried it both ways and just can't really see any difference in safety or sword damage. So what's your opinions, is there any real difference or advantage for either way??

  2. #2
    Fuzzy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    London
    Posts
    1,202
    Style
    HEMA/FMA(Hiatus)
    2
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    Quote Originally Posted by Bneterasedmynam View Post
    Ok so I know this is somewhat of a dead horse topic on some HEMA forums, but I figured I would see what the opinions on here are. Now for the purposes of my question I am referring to a specific type of counter where you use the portion of the sword just above the guard while deflecting against the higher portion on your opponents sword. My question is weather or not there is any difference in taking the strike on the flat vs. the edge. I have tried it both ways and just can't really see any difference in safety or sword damage. So what's your opinions, is there any real difference or advantage for either way??
    Look at the way the hilt on a longsword/arming sword is designed, it only offers protection if you block with the edge.

    Flat parries are a thing, but IMO they're low-percentage and situational.

    My instructor has actually done a series of videos on the subject:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZeDFc2QQ-XU
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lyjeBPJVdac
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Kysxg6plugc
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s8BUJp-5CXY

  3. #3
    Cake of Doom's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    surrey, UK
    Posts
    1,024
    Style
    Cardio
    3
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    I've seen the same issue raised in the Iaido community. Some ryuha teach to block with the back of the blade, some with the flat and others that say it doesn't matter as long as you've deflected the strike. I imagine it's going to be the same with a western style sword/technique.

    Personally, I haven't 'felt' a difference no matter which part of the blade has blocked but the counters have been easier when i've managed to use the back/flat of the blade.

    But in all truth, if a dude is planning on hitting me with sharp metal I don't care what part of the sword gets in the way, just as long as it gets in the way.
    Train hard, fight easy.

  4. #4

    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Maryland, USA
    Posts
    513
    Style
    Yagyu Shinkage Ryu
    2
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    My ryuha prefers the flat of the sword or the back over deflecting with the edge, but since the thing stressed the most is survive first then kill, if all we can do is deflect with the edge, so be it.

  5. #5

    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    illinois
    Posts
    3,123
    1
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    Quote Originally Posted by Fuzzy View Post
    Look at the way the hilt on a longsword/arming sword is designed, it only offers protection if you block with the edge.

    Flat parries are a thing, but IMO they're low-percentage and situational.

    My instructor has actually done a series of videos on the subject:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZeDFc2QQ-XU
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lyjeBPJVdac
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Kysxg6plugc
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s8BUJp-5CXY
    The cross guard to me seems more like it's better for trapping than guarding the hands, at most it might protect from sliding hits during the bind. Most of the true flat parries seem to be higher off the blade done like swats. I was wondering the same thing about the direction lining up it does seem made specifically for that kind of blade position. Thanks for the videos and your response it answers my question well.

  6. #6

    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    illinois
    Posts
    3,123
    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    Quote Originally Posted by Fuzzy View Post
    Look at the way the hilt on a longsword/arming sword is designed, it only offers protection if you block with the edge.

    Flat parries are a thing, but IMO they're low-percentage and situational.

    My instructor has actually done a series of videos on the subject:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZeDFc2QQ-XU
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lyjeBPJVdac
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Kysxg6plugc
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s8BUJp-5CXY
    I wish I could upvote your post twice it's a really good response.

  7. #7
    Fuzzy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    London
    Posts
    1,202
    Style
    HEMA/FMA(Hiatus)
    2
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    To be fair Fiore teaches a thing called a rebat, which is a deflection with the back edge, but because its a longsword the back edge is basically the same as the front edge.

    Interestingly, in light of Cake of Doom's post, I was taught to block with the back of the blade in Aikido (though I've since come to understand that Aiki-ken is not well respected as sword arts go).

    I've also done some Kalis Illustrisimo at seminars and they're all about parrying with the flat - I could just never get it right.

  8. #8

    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    illinois
    Posts
    3,123
    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    It seems like a lot of the Japanese sword arts teach for back or flat, but from what I understand it has to do with the actual sword and the way katanas are made.

  9. #9
    Cake of Doom's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    surrey, UK
    Posts
    1,024
    Style
    Cardio
    1
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    Thats true to a point but I can imagine it's mostly the same for single edged weapons.

    Blocking with the blade flat (for double edged) can save you **** ton of cash on getting all the nicks worked out, same blocking with the back (single edged) can. Other than that, I haven't really found an advantage.

    I use 2 different swords for "fighting" and cutting though. If I had a single sword for both I'd probably do things differently.
    Train hard, fight easy.

  10. #10
    Cake of Doom's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    surrey, UK
    Posts
    1,024
    Style
    Cardio
    1
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    Quote Originally Posted by Fuzzy View Post
    To be fair Fiore teaches a thing called a rebat, which is a deflection with the back edge, but because its a longsword the back edge is basically the same as the front edge.

    Interestingly, in light of Cake of Doom's post, I was taught to block with the back of the blade in Aikido (though I've since come to understand that Aiki-ken is not well respected as sword arts go).

    I've also done some Kalis Illustrisimo at seminars and they're all about parrying with the flat - I could just never get it right.
    From what I've seen Akik-Ken is about the same level of sword play as the Kenjutsu taught to Ninjas. The Filipino arts or Iai/Kendo have it nailed a lot better.

    I haven't had a chance to play with any HEMA stuff yet; no local groups but it's something I wouldn't mind having a go at.
    Train hard, fight easy.

Page 1 of 4 1234 Last

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  

Log in

Log in
Single Sign On provided by vBSSO