The Weapons

Last but certainly not least, is the weapon of your choice. Within each discipline, there is much choice for a weapon, including size, weight, flexibility, and durability.


The foil used by fencers today is the modern version of the original practice weapon used by nobility to train for duels.  It all evolved…

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While a special version of the foil was developed for practice, another type of sword was created for duelling. The blade had a triangular cross-section,…

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Sabre is the fastest and most aggressive of the weapons, though still requires cunning and tactics. Unlike Epée and foil, points are scored through a…

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Strap Rules

Normal Tongue Masks

For Masks with normal tongues, you will be required to use a strap that doubles over like in the photo. This is applicable in all competitions and is encouraged at a club level.

An advantage that this system has is the adjustability coupled with addressing some safety concerns. Traditional elastic is subject to stretching an no longer functioning as intended. This system is easier to replace frayed elastic from excessive use.

Leon Paul Dome Mask

For Leon Paul masks with a dome back, you are required to have 2 safety systems securing the mask to your head. You require both the overlapping elastic strap which has both of the same benefits as mentioned previously.

The other system that you need is a second strap that affixes to the bib of the mask. Leon Paul sell a proprietary strap with magnetic ends that allow you to easily strap up and remove with one hand.


Not a helmet. Made from a steel mesh and kevlar bib, a mask protects your face, head and neck from being hit by a fencing weapon.

There are 3 different types of masks depending on what weapon you choose to fence. There are a couple of key difference to note about these.


The foil mask has an insulated mesh with a metallic lame that covers 3/4 of the bib. This is because the neck is valid target in foil where the head up neck are not. When any part other than the lame is hit, a non-valid light will display.


The sabre mask has an un-insulated mesh with a full lame of the bib. The entire head and neck are a valid target. The blade of the sabre is conductive so when the mask is a hit, a on target (coloured) light will register.


The epee mask is fully insulated with no lame material on it at all. The whole body is target in epee, including the feet. This means that the electronics on the weapon work different from foil or sabre. Both of these weapons work by conducting on a lame (un-insulated surface) to register a valid hit on target).

Fencing Equipment

Fencing typically requires a lot of personal gear in order to keep you safe whilst you have fun. Most clubs, HVFC included, have a large selection of gear that you can borrow until you are ready to purchase your own.

Protective gear comes with different ratings, 350N or 800N. 350N is sufficient for training and most local tournaments, but 800N is usually required for national and international competitions. Fencing gear is traditionally white, though more colours are beginning to join the ranks. However, black cannot be worn by fencers, as this is reserved for coaches.
For more info on safety and buying guide, click here.


Not a helmet. Made from a steel mesh and kevlar bib, a mask protects your face, head and neck from being…

Keep reading

Foil, Sabre & Epee Masks

The Weapons

Last but certainly not least, is the weapon of your choice. Within each discipline, there is much choice for a…

Keep reading


This is the outer layer of protection. A jacket is made from strong materials designed to absorb the strength of a hit, and prevent sharp objects (such as broken swords) from penetrating.


This is worn under the jacket to provide a second layer of protection on the sword-arm side of your body, where you are hit most often.

Chest Protector

This is a hard, plastic covering worn under the jacket and plastron to help reduce the impact of a hit.


This is only worn on the sword-hand, to protect your fingers and hand from fast moving weapons.


Made of a similar material to a jacket, breeches protect your legs and waist from weapons. However, they usually stop just below the knee, so a complemented with a pair of long socks.


This is a metallic weave vest (foil and sabre only), used to conduct a current through your opponent’s sword to determine when a point has been scored.

Body/head wire:

These are used to connect your weapon and lamé to a centralised scoring box so that the referee knows when a point has been scored.