Lightsaber Fencing Is Now A Thing In France (HBO)

About a year ago, the French Fencing Federation (FFF) was facing an existential challenge: the number of young people interested in traditional fencing was declining, and French kids were more interested in staring at their screens than showing up to like parry a la 16th century dukes.

That’s why the FFF made a very controversial decision: to elevate lightsaber fencing — up to that point a cosplay-esque pursuit of Star Wars enthusiasts — to the same status as Olympic-level fencing.

“We already do artistic fencing,” FFF President Isabelle Lamour told VICE News. “It’s historic. So if we can have ancient fencing, why not have futuristic fencing?”

“We already do artistic fencing,” FFF President Isabelle Lamour told VICE News. “It’s historic. So if we can have ancient fencing, why not have futuristic fencing?”

“Disney is not really welcome, I’m sorry,” traditional fencer Alban Garrouste told VICE News, referring to Lucasfilms’ parent company. “Fencing is a huge part of the French identity, so I think we should stick to [its] values and historical origins.”

“Disney is not really welcome, I’m sorry,” traditional fencer Alban Garrouste told VICE News, referring to Lucasfilms’ parent company. “Fencing is a huge part of the French identity, so I think we should stick to [its] values and historical origins.”

“We’ve got everything to gain,” she said. “It doesn’t take anything away from participants in traditional fencing. It puts our discipline in the spotlight.”

Knife vs Bare Hands – A Reality Check

Two martial arts experts. One’s got a knife, the other nothing. We told the unarmed pro to fight off the guy with the blade and escape without getting cut up. Does he? See for yourself what happens. And get ready to take in a healthy dose of reality.