training : unarmoured tournament : On the Unarmoured Tournament

n the Unarmoured Tournament

Introduction and Background

click to view youtube video
A short video of one of the bouts from the 2009 tournament, featuring Dan Sellars (OMSG) and Clovis Kari (AEMMA). Click to view this and other videos on the AEMMA Channel.
This tournament is designed to allow for schollers and above the opportunity to "test their mettle" against other combatants from the other schools or Academies, all the while, eliminating the "competitive" attribute such as elimination fencing, as this would cater too much to "ego" and thereby, increase the probability of injury. The core combatants participating in this tournament are those from the Guelph Chapter, AEMMA Toronto and OMSG in Ottawa. In order to control the level of intensity of the bouts, all of the combatants who have participated will at the end of the tournament, cast a secret ballot to identify the combatant who best presented the fighting art and principles, and who will be acclaimed as the "first amongst equals". This individual may also receive a prize for being voted.

Weapons employed can be arming sword, longsword or sword & buckler and are all provided by AEMMA. The weapons to be employed in the bout are determined by the combatants at the preceding their next bout.

The tournament is limited to combatants who hold the rank of scholler, or be recognized as having the equivalent by the directors of AEMMA. Combatants are instructed to conduct themselves with honour, and in the spirit of companionship and mutual respect for their opponents.

Rules of Engagement

  1. attributes of blows
  2. Blows are tallied to a total of five (5) for each bout or a maximum of three (3) minutes.
  3. Recipients are required to call their blows received.
  4. A double strike will be counted as two blows towards the tally, thus shortening the bout and therefore, reducing the opportunities to demonstrate his/her skill.
  5. A formal reset or pause required after any blow delivered and counted.

Equipment requirements

Details on equipment requirements can be found in "Scholler and above Equipment & Harness Requirements" in the AEMMA website. The page pointed out will provide links as to recommended sources of many of the equipment components. The listing below is a brief list of the core components necessary in order to participate in unarmoured fencing tournaments.

  1. 3 weapons fencing mask or better
  2. gorget
  3. rigid hand protection
  4. padded coat / gambeson
  5. jock
  6. elbow protection is also strongly recommended


References & Sources

  1. AEMMA blog. 3rd Annual Unarmoured Tournament. Last accessed November 11, 2009.
  2. David M. Cvet. Assessment and Review of Tinker Pearce Blunt Longsword Trainer. AEMMA, November 10, 2009. Last accessed November 11, 2009.
  3. J. Christoph Amberger, A Fechtschule in late 16th-Century Germany, Journal of Western Martial Art, March 2003. Last accessed November 11, 2009.
  4. Hans-Peter Hils, Johannes Liechtenauers Kunst des Langen Schwertes, University of Freiberg, Germany, 1985
  5. Schmied-Kowarzik, Jolef & Kufahl, Hans, 1894, "Fechtbuchlein". AEMMA Online Library. Last accessed November 11, 2009.
  6. Karl Wassmannsdorff, Sechs Fechtschulen der Marxbrüder und Federfechter, Germany, 1870

Copyright © 2000 Academy of European Medieval Martial Arts AEMMA
Released: July 23, 2000 / Last modified: March 02, 2010