Learn about the fencing sport at Texas Tech University. This blog will cover topics such as the history of fencing, the benefits of fencing, and the fencing program at Texas Tech.
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Texas Tech offers a variety of fencing equipment and training to help students get the most out of their fencing experience. The Fencing Sport at Texas Tech has something for everyone, from beginner to experienced fencer. We offer group classes, private lessons, and open fencing to help students learn and enjoy the sport of fencing.
What is fencing?
Fencing is a sport that has been around for centuries, and it is still popular today. It is a combat sport that involves two opponents using swords to score points by hitting each other. There are three different sword types that are used in fencing: the foil, the epee, and the sabre. Fencing is categorized as an individual and team sport, and it is often included in the Olympic Games.
Texas Tech has a fencing team that competes in both individual and team events. The team practices regularly and competes in tournaments throughout the year. If you are interested in joining the team, or if you just want to learn more about fencing, please contact the coach for more information.
How did fencing come to Texas Tech?
In the 1920s, a group of interested students started an intramural fencing program. There was no team as such, but delighted in meeting to fence one another. This enthusiastic crew included such notables as Professor E.C. Franklin and John B. Collier, both of whom were members of the faculty at Texas Tech. In fact, it was Professor Franklin who donated the first set of equipment to the fledgling program. The group held their bouts in the old gymnasium, which was located where Sadler Hall now stands.
In those early days, there were three types of fencing – foil, epee, and sabre – but only foil was practiced at Texas Tech. Foil is a light thrusting weapon with a blunted tip and a flexible rectangular hand-guard; it is the kind of fencing you are most likely to see in movies or on television. In those early years, most bouts were private encounters between two fencers; however, occasionally larger meetings were held with teams drawn from various campus organizations such as the fraternities or residence halls.
The modern era of intercollegiate athletics began at Texas Tech in 1925 with the hires of two key personnel – head football coach Pete Cawthon and athletic director Hance Bowman. Under their leadership, intramural sports gave way to intercollegiate play and Texas Tech fielded its first varsity teams. It wasn’t until 1927 that women’s intercollegiate athletics got underway at Texas Tech; however, once started, women’s sports grew rapidly on campus. Fencing was added to the list of women’s sports in 1929 with Mrs. Ethel Hutson serving as coach. The team practiced in evenings so that Mrs. Hutson could continue her full-time duties as head librarian during the day
What are the benefits of fencing?
There are many benefits to fencing, both mental and physical. Fencing is often described as “chess with swords” because it is a highly strategic sport that requires mental agility and critical thinking. Fencers must be quick on their feet and have excellent hand-eye coordination. Fencing also provides a great cardiovascular workout and can be very intense physically.