A fencing sword is a weapon that is used in the sport called fencing. This sport is included in modern Olympics and have different types of swords or used by the fencers.
The competitive sword is used by the professional fencers while competing in a sport, while there are practitioners of fencing; Classical fencing or swordplay as a martial art as they are referred to, generally use a practice sword.
There are three types of fencing swords which can be used either in sports or general martial arts.
* Foil: This fencing sword is a light weight sword and its target is restricted to the torso. Double touches are not allowed while using Foil.
* Epee: This is a heavy thrusting weapon and the target of its strike is basically the entire body. There is no rule as to who can hit when. You can have double touches with the Epee.
* Sabre: This is a light cutting and thrusting sword. The target with a sabre is above the waistline excluding the back of the head and hands. Double touches are not allowed while using a Sabre.
The Epee sword is the heaviest of the three swords and therefore slowest. However, the modern day fencing swords are much lighter and easy to maneuver.
Initially the scoring was monitored by four judges who determined the number of touches on the fencers. But now, a modern fencing sword is electronically wired to register the touch on the fencers.
The most ancient fending sword was the foil which was used before the World War I. Thereafter, Epee was used as a more modern weapon in competitive fencing. The Epee is composed of a blade, a point, a bell guard and a handle or grip (French or pistol grip).
The shape and purpose of a fencing sword differs depending whether it is used in sport or in martial arts or by practitioners. However, the basic composition of the fencing swords remains one and the same.
Fencing swords comprises of two parts; blade and hilt. The blade is sleek, long and thin and its tip is called a point, whereas the hilt consists of guard and a grip. The guard is basically to protect the fencer’s fingers, which is shaped as a shell. It is also known as a coquille, the bell or the bellguard.
The grip is the handle of the weapon. The French grip is a traditional form of grip while the modern fencing swords have a pistol grip (the fingers wrap it like you are holding a pistol). These give a better hold to the fencer and hence they are easier to maneuver.