- Paperback: 192 pages
- Publisher: Tracks Publishing,U.S.; 2nd Revised edition edition (15 Nov. 2010)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1884654770
- ISBN-13: 978-1884654770
- Product Dimensions: 14 x 1.3 x 21.6 cm
- Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 657,028 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
Fencer's Start-Up: A Beginner's Guide to Fencing (Start-Up Sports) Paperback – 15 Nov 2010
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1)The author, Doug Werner, opens with the line "You've got to be kidding!" in bold type and then subjectively harps on and on about how fencing is a sport for a select few, always the underdog, etc etc. Really? I took up fencing as a unique way to stay fit and learn a skill sport at the same time. Never thought I was breaking down any social barriers or would have to sheepishly explain myself to my peer group.
2)Werner then rather hurriedly runs through the three disciplines of fencing: foil, epee and sabre. I was surprised that footwork barely rates a mention considering that it is one of the foundation techniques. This section stumbles a fair bit because the author decided to use only three diagrams,in the entire book,to help describe a technique-savvy sport like fencing. The more you read, the more you get the feeling that the book was thrown together in a day or two.
3)The book should have mercifully ended at page 100, but Werner decided to include a 22-page section about a rather obscure offshoot sport called "sport fencing." The take-home message is that Winsor Sport, one of his sponsors, is THE source for all of your "sport fencing" needs. It says so right on page 122 which looks much more like a full-page ad than an actual page of an instructional publication of any merit. Thank you for the infomercial.
4)Fencer's Start-Up really free falls in the next section which is Werner's 55-page journal of his fencing lessons. I am sure the idea sounded great at a meeting. Too bad the author's own immature,petulant temperament is the real showcase of this "copy filler." Werner unashamedly describes his fencing evenings laced with his own argument outbursts, temper tantrums, taunting of his fellow club members and even one episode where he threw his foil to the floor; causing the weapon to be damaged. (I should have expected this sort of angry conduct from an author who uses the "p word"[yes, that word] several times in a supposed professional text.) Like all martial arts, fencing requires a certain level of trust and respect amongst its participants. The author foolishly attempts to create the illusion that one can do "whatever you want" on the fencing piste and all will be forgotten. In the real world, this is 100% untrue. The instructors at the Cabrillo Academy may have put up with your behavior, Mr. Werner, but any other fencing club worth its salt would have shown you the door rather swiftly.
5)If you are thinking about fencing in the future, and I hope you are, welcome to one of the finest sports to be found. Shop around for a credible fencing school and purchase the best equipment you can afford. Do yourself a favor and do not buy this amateurish, laughable book. Put the $10 saved toward a mask and a foil instead. Fencing is an ancient sport dating back to the pyramids and is steeped in honor and tradition. Both of which will continue long after the author sells his equipment on-line and takes up yet another sporting conquest for profit.
was that during each chapter there was a line or phrase that was repeated.I don't know if that was by design or by accident. The description of the drills and the bouts are right on target.(No pun intended).