PDA

View Full Version : Western Circle of Swordfighters



Tyrsmann
8/30/2007 11:46pm,
The Western Circle of Swordfighters, so what do you guys think of them.
http://www.westerncircle.org/start.html

As far as I know their nothing like the SCA nor do they even claim to be reenactors.
They just claim to be a bunch of sword geeks who like to like actually fight with their stuff.
They seem to derive some of their terminology from Japanese aswell.

Maybe some of you folks have actually encountered them.

JustaFighter
8/31/2007 12:17am,
Well...If it's how you get your kicks then more power to you. IMO though, I think it's a waiste of time and money, but that's just me.

MCHill
3/29/2013 8:23am,
Well...If it's how you get your kicks then more power to you. IMO though, I think it's a waiste of time and money, but that's just me.


As a former member of the Western Circle of Swordfighters, I definitely did not find it to be a waste of time and money. I hold rank in multiple traditional martial arts including kyudo, arnis and Kung Fu.

Although I enjoyed kendo, the Western Circle was an opportunity for full contact swordfighting employing european weaponry. I have a particular fondness for the hand and a half spanish bastard sword and this forum allowed a, relatively, safe opportunity to train and test my skill against other dedicated fighters.

If you have ever visited the Higgins in Worcester, you can peruse their extensive collection of german swordfighting manuals written in the 16th century. Quite a lot of information is publicly available about medieval european fighting styles, but very few forums allow you to practice them.

This is not the SCA, steel (blunt obviously) is allowed and encouraged in to advanced members, including myself. Full contact is pretty much mandatory. Skill and control are essential.

I enjoyed it and if I still lived in California, I would still be doing it. Without access, I'll continue to study Kung Fu, but I do miss it.

- Micaela

Eudemic
3/31/2013 10:49am,
As a former member of the Western Circle of Swordfighters, . . .Although I enjoyed kendo, the Western Circle was an opportunity for full contact swordfighting employing european weaponry. I have a particular fondness for the hand and a half spanish bastard sword and this forum allowed a, relatively, safe opportunity to train and test my skill against other dedicated fighters.
- Micaela

Okay, I know this is a necro, but I really have to ask if you've actually studied any of those manuals you mentioned and if you meant that they had original treatises/fetchbucher, or if you meant modern translations?

I feel like you haven't actually taken the time to study the materials you mentioned because of how you described your weapon of choice, but would rather discuss it with you than draw my conclusions from virtually nothing.

(. . .I just watched the sparring vid on the Western Circle website, and was. . . less than impressed. That was not something to be called 'full-contact', and generally displayed horrible technique. The combat video had a higher level of intensity, but was still as theatrical as it was combative and also showed very little technical skill/understanding.)

Eudemic
3/31/2013 6:19pm,
I just finished watching all of the videos connected to the Western Circle website, and reading what was available regarding their curriculum, their rules for fighting, and their rank-requirements.

I don't see much[any] connection to any of the european fighting traditions, and am not qualified to talk about the asiatic influences (however, based on the common use of japanese terms, I'm prepared to say they applied techniques/styles from that area to the use of european weapons.)

As I said previously the fighting appears theatrical and technically sloppy, and is no more full-contact than SCA bouting would be without padded weapons.
-The stances were fairly static, with very little movement.
-The "guards" used were limited in scope, and only shown before/after engagement.
-The foot-work was linear, with very little circling or moving off-line.
-Poor body-mechanics, timing, and targeting in attack and counter-attack.
-Near constant edge-on-edge contact and parrying.

It's hard to say just from the reading and videos, but it also seemed like the fighters were either ignorant of or ignoring concepts relating to initiative and momentum.

(I apologize to any Western Circle swordfighters for any offense you might take to this, it's not personal, but I stand by what I'm saying. If you want to become effective swordsmen please study more, drill your techniques better, and actually engage in full-contact play occasionally.)

MCHill
4/01/2013 6:40am,
Yes, modern translations as I don't read german.

Yes, I've seen the videos and would not recommend the ones posted as they are less than impressive.

Yes, the stance is very static and I have huge problems with it and that's an ongoing debate, I prefer others, although I have seen it used effectively.

The only way to review it is to see it in person, otherwise you're just going to have to take my word for it. I was an active member for over 5 years. It was interesting and challenging and I collected some spectacular bruises.

Rock Ape
4/01/2013 9:50am,
Moved from MABS despite it being posted before the revision of the forum policy.

Eudemic
4/01/2013 10:55am,
Yes, the stance is very static and I have huge problems with it and that's an ongoing debate, I prefer others, although I have seen it used effectively.

I also noticed that in most of the fighting shown the combatants either stood in something that looked like 'Long-Point' or something that looked like 'Tail' almost every time. Would you be able to explain that? It's not a problem (and I'm really glad they weren't just fighting off their shoulders like so many other people), but just seemed kind of odd in its own way.

Thank you for being so willing to respond.

Bneterasedmynam
4/02/2013 9:54am,
Can someone link the vid??, the site comes up as 404.

Eudemic
4/02/2013 11:37am,
It's all right here. . .

http://www.westerncircle.org/