Katja Poppenhaeger (Medieval Combat Group):
Flow drills for fun and profit – a longsword and messer workshop
Katja Poppenhaeger became interested in HEMA in 2015 and started studying the longsword at Athena School of Arms near Boston. She moved to Belfast later that year and has been training at Medieval Combat Group Belfast since then, with longsword and messer being her main weapon systems. She became a certified HEMA Ireland instructor for German longsword and messer in 2017.
In this workshop Katja will introduce the participants to flow drills as training tools. Flow drills can be used to anchor techniques in the muscle memory, to train making quick decisions, or just to have some fun and get a good workout. In this workshop the focus will be on flow drills for two training partners, starting from very simple drills and continuously adding more complexity by adding more techniques into the drill. Participants will start out with the longsword, and after everyone has mastered the drills and some of the variations, the same drills will be used to train with the messer. Participants should ideally have some experience with the longsword; messer experience is optional. The sources used for the techniques will be Ringeck (for longsword) and Lecküchner (for messer). Katja is a bilingual speaker (German/English), so while the workshop will be held in English, she is available for on-the-spot translations to German.
Reinis Rinka (HEMA Riga):
Rapier and Dagger (cancelled)
Reinis Rinka’s workshop will teach early 17th century Venetian rapier and dagger according to Nicoletto Giganti. In Giganti’s time the dagger was a very common accompaniment to the rapier, possibly even more common than the rapier alone.
It will be a fundamentals workshop focusing on how to defend with the dagger safely and attack with the rapier.
Lauren Ireland and Christopher Halpin (York School of Defence):
The Inn-Play: or Cornish Hugg Wrestler
The first true English wrestling manuscript was published in 1727. In this workshop we will explore this fascinating and somewhat eclectic system of unarmed fighting and delve into the various throws, locks, and bizarre ways to torture your opponent.
To take part you will need a spirit of adventure and a big smile. Groin protection is recommended for the gentlemen.
Paul Becker (In Motu):
Zufechten – Entering a Fight
Aimed at: Fencers who are at least training the essentials and have learned about the main strikes and stabbing as well as basic forms of displacements being able to perform them autonomously.
Content: The “Zufechten”, the act of entering a fight marks every fight’s beginning and demands a deep understanding of strategy, tactics, tempo, timing and footwork. In this workshop I want to demonstrate and explicate these factors on the basis of selected exercises and relate them to each other. For this I will point out some basic principles that we find in various sources.
We will cover several training methods, from VENÜ/4-Phase-Method over lessons up to realistic combat exercises for freeplay, making the established didactic way from easy to difficult and from known to unknown.
Required equipment: Weapon simulator of your style (saber, epee, messer, stick, sword, longsword), fencing mask with back-of-the-head protection, gloves.
For increasingly intense exercises (e.g. lessons): Fencing jacket 350 N or above, throat protection.
Petra Westveer (Zward & Steen):
Hengen and Winden – the core of Liechtenauer’s longsword system
Hie merke / das dy winden / ſint dy rechte kunſt / vnd grūtfeſte alles fechtens / des ſŵtes / aus den alle ander gefechte vnd ſtöcke kom̄ē
Nuremberg Hausbuch (MS 3227a), 1389∼1494
It is not a coincidence that Zwei Hengen and Winden are the final chapters in the manuscripts that describe fencing with the (long)sword according to Liechtenauer. These chapters are the summary of the principles that are the core of the entire system. All of the Stücken as written before, are only examples of specific situations where these principles are applied in a certain way.
In the workshop we are going to use this approach to fencing. We will find solutions for the problem presented in a given fencing situation, just by winding into the most appropriate Hengen, and combining this with one of the Drei Wunder: Haw, Stich, Schnitt. We will find out if these solutions do indeed lead us to the familiar Stücken as they are described and named in the manuscripts.
Gear requirements: protective gear suitable for controlled drills with cutting and thrusting.
Mandatory: fencing mask. Recommended: back of head protection, throat guard, chest protection (plastic protector or jacket), light gloves, groin protection.
Training weapon: preferably a feder. Nylon or wood longsword simulator or steel blunts are also OK, but are best paired with a similar weapon in drills. When using steel blunts, the recommended protection becomes mandatory (except groin protection).
Roger Norling (Göteborgs Frifäktargille):
Joachim Meÿer halbe Stange – “catch him in his own techniques” (quarterstaff)
This is a very content-rich workshop that goes through the core components of posture, footwork, body and weapon mechanics, as well as some of the techniques that are demonstrated in Joachim Meyer’s fencing treatise of 1570. It tries to build a solid foundation, including dynamic exercises for timing of body and weapon, so that the student can continue exploring this wonderful art with a good understanding of the complexity and broadness of it all.
There are no formal requirements on knowledge, but a fencing mask and a durable 180…210 cm oak or ash staff are required; staffs will be provided in limited numbers. Drinking water must also be brought.