We began with footwork. Yay footwork the foundation of all that is fencing. Pyramid drills for advances and chasing steps. Against emphasis on stomping the foot a little for those who have a tendency to hop, jump or slide their feet. Next we did some distance control work in Posta Longa and then into a circling footwork drill to attempt to start planting ideas that footwork isn’t necessarily liner. Many people seemed to struggle with the circling footwork. The basics of moving in and our are looking cleaner across the board and performance pressure will need to be applied to certain individuals to increase their footwork speed and accuracy.
We briefly discussed invitations. What makes an invitation and how to get your partner to bite. A bit was said on how invitations and preparations can play together to nicely lay traps and create favourable engagements. Some mention of having a plan was dropped, but I figured that would be figured out quickly enough and lastly a mention of how invitations differ from point forward guards to refused guards. Then we broke up into pairs to play with invitations in a relatively controlled environment. After we brought that back in and did a quick “what worked, what didn’t” then stepped it up with a build-a-drill utilizing invitations to set up desired plays and responses.
We rounded out the evening by breaking into 3’s and working slow speed freeplay. The 3’rd person was to “observe” and ensure the participants made a concerted effort to play slowly. Good stuff all around in the freeplay. Particular notes being something work poorly at slow speed but what I saw was encouraging. There was some good movement happening by many and some nicely setup plays that came from intention rather than luck.