Kingdom of Meridies Youth Rapier
Program Plastic Foil Experiment
Guidelines for Experimentation
with “Aramis” brand Plastic Foils in the Society for Creative
1. PURPOSE OF THE EXPERIMENT
To determine the feasibility and
safety of allowing the use of “Aramis” brand plastic foils for the
training of youth rapier fighters in the SCA, specifically between the
ages of 7 years old and 13 years old, inclusive. Emphasis will be
placed on training, good technique, and imparting the proper attitudes
of sportsmanship and fair play in the participants. Competition, while
an important part of SCA combat, should be secondary to these goals
when working with young rapier fighters.
Any questions regarding these
rules or the experiment in general should be addressed to the Kingdom
Youth Rapier Marshal in Charge of the Experiment.
2. WEAPON SPECIFICATIONS
Length: Overall: 38
inches; Front of bell/guard to tip: 32.5 inches
Tip: Comes with large,
soft rubber “button” attached. This tip is acceptable for use “as is,”
or can be taped in a manner similar to regular SCA rapiers. Other tips
(blunts, etc.) are not acceptable tip substitutes.
Note: The Nasycon “Aramis” foil is the only
acceptable weapon for use in this experiment. Other blades or
weapons (plastic or otherwise) do not
fall within the purview of this experiment, and may not be used in
conjunction with the Aramis foils or this experiment within the
confines of the SCA. Aramis foils cannot be used against any other
legal SCA blade type or weapon (boffer swords, rapier daggers, etc.),
unless exception is explicitly made within these rules.
3. PARENTAL CONSENT,
WAIVERS AND INVOLVEMENT
Parents/legal guardians must, at the minimum, read and
understand the Rules for Youth Rapier Combat in Meridies and the
written guidelines of this experiment. Further, the parent/legal
guardian must ensure that their minor follows the rules for this
Other: Weapon can be
purchased either wired or dry (not wired). Wired weapons have a sensor
in their tip and battery in their handle, and “buzz” when a touch is
scored. Dry foils have no wire or sensor installed. Either weapon is
acceptable for the experiment, although it should be noted that the
auditory “cue” offered by the buzzer will likely make it easier for
some (younger) fighters to learn to properly acknowledge blows.
A. Parents/Legal Guardians are to understand that this
is a contact activity and that injuries may occur. The parent or legal guardian must properly
fill out a SCA/Meridian Minors Waiver of Informed Consent or Meridian
Minors Authorization Form to be kept on file with the YRM.
B. At least one parent/legal guardian must be present
at all times while the minor is engaged in combat activities. For 7-13
year olds, the parent/guardian must be in visual and vocal range of the
list or practice area.
C. Parents/legal guardians are responsible for their
minor’s safety, with the Youth Rapier Marshal guiding the
Parents/legal guardians shall behave in a courteous and responsible manner at all times, and shall
encourage the same behavior in their minor. This includes, but is not limited to,
not “heckling” the marshal or combatants, accepting the decision of the
marshal (or at least politely disputing that decision through the
proper channels, etc).
4. RULES OF THE LIST AND
A. All participants will observe
the Rules of the List as laid out by the SCA, Inc. and
Conventions of Combat in the Meridian Rapier Rules.
B. Melee combat is not permitted
for experiment participants.
C. Only Youth Rapier Marshals
approved for participation in this experiment by the KRM or KYRM
may spar with or train Youth Plastic Foil experiment
participants. Parents/Legal Guardians are encouraged to become
Youth Rapier Marshals.
D. No Youth Rapier activities will occur
except under the observation of at least two unrelated adults,
one of which must be a warranted Youth Rapier Marshal authorized
for the Plastic Foil Experiment.
5. AGE BRACKETS
A. There are three age brackets
within this experiment:
B. Members of the different
brackets may train and spar together under the supervision of a
duly warranted marshal for this experiment. Combatants in
one age bracket should not compete against members of another
bracket in tournaments unless specifically allowed by the Youth
Rapier Marshal In charge. Individual abilities and
size should be taken into consideration.
6. USE OF WEAPONS AND PARRYING DEVICES
- Bracket 1
includes participants 7 through 8 years of age.
- Bracket 2
includes participants 9 through 10 years of age
- Bracket 3
includes participants 11 through 13 years of age.
- Blows are struck solely by
thrusting with the point of the blade. No draw, push or tip
cuts will be allowed.
- Chopping, hacking or
slashing blows are never permitted.
- The use of daggers or
combat with two swords (case) is not allowed.
- Fighters in Bracket 1 may
only fight single sword (no parrying devices).
- Parrying devices may be
used to move, deflect or immobilize an Opponent’s weapon or parrying
device, so long as such use does not endanger the safety of the
- Only combatants who have
reached the appropriate age and been trained in the use of Secondary
Items may use off-hand parrying devices in tournaments or active
combat. Marshals can require the combatants to display familiarity with
the device(s) in question before allowing the fighter to use the
device(s) in a tournament.
- Striking an opponent with
any part of the weapon or parrying device not approved for that purpose
7. ACKNOWLEDGEMENT OF BLOWS
In judging blows, all combatants are assumed to be wearing
common civil attire of the period. For purposes of this experiment,
blows will be counted if they touch and can be felt by the
combatants. The honorable calling of blows should be stressed as
a major educational goal for Youth Rapier. All participants should be
aware that wired foils may buzz on contact with weapons, parry devices,
clothing, or other invalid targets.
A. The entire body is a legal
- Blade grabbing and
“fleeting contact” are not allowed.
B. A valid blow to
the: head, neck, or torso shall be judged incapacitating, rendering the
fighter incapable of further combat.
D. A good blow to the leg will
disable the leg. The fencer must remain in
place and fight either sitting or kneeling.
8. WEAPONS AND PARRYING DEVICES
C. A good blow to the
arm (down to and including the hand) will disable the arm. The fencer
must continue the bout using the other hand. If both arms are disabled,
the opponent is incapable of continuing the bout and the combatant wins.
B. All equipment must be able to safely deal with
C. Equipment that is likely to cause injury or damage
other equipment is prohibited
D. Combatants in Bracket 1 cannot use parrying devices.
E. Projectile weapons are not allowed.
A. Sharp points, edges
or corners are not allowed anywhere on the equipment.
A. The Nasycon “Aramis” plastic foil is the only
blade legal for use in
F. All weapons
and parrying devices must be inspected and approved
by the youth rapier marshal in charge prior to use in combat
B. Weapons or Blades may not be altered, modified or
8.3 Parrying Devices
this experiment. The blade
may be either “wired” (have a buzzer) or “dry” (no buzzer).
i. Bucklers must be constructed of light weight
materials, such as plastic, aluminum or wood.
ii. Buckler edges must be soft
or padded. Padding can consist of foam,
tubing or leather. Pipe foam padding is
B. Batons and scabbards
i. Batons and scabbards can be
constructed of either:
ii. Lightweight rigid materials
resistant to breakage and
splintering. Such materials must be
duct, fiberglass or
equivalent taped along their length
and tip of the parrying device.
C. Semi-rigid materials,
such as “pool noodles”, tightly rolled and taped pipe foam padding, and
the like. Semi-rigid materials must be wrapped in either duct or
strapping tape to prevent shredding during combat.
D. Non-Rigid Parrying Devices
Non-rigid parrying devices
must meet the standards set forth in the Rules for Rapier Combat of the
E. All parrying devices must be inspected and
approved by the youth
rapier marshal in charge prior to use in combat or
9. PROTECTIVE EQUIPMENT
The following are minimum protective standards for the
may “armor up” to a higher
protective standard if they so desire, as long as these additions do
not interfere with blow calling.
9.1 General Coverage
No skin shall be bared on the combatant’s limbs or torso.
There shall be sufficient overlap between separate pieces of protective
clothing such that, regardless of the fighter’s stance, minimum
coverage for that body area will be maintained.
9.2 Head and Neck
A. The front and top of the head must be covered by
rigid material to below the jaw line and behind the ears. Standard
12-kg fencing masks are known to meet this standard and may be used
later in the Heavy Rapier divisions. Pre 12-kg Standard fencing
masks (if they are in good overall condition) and Plastic fencing masks
made by Zivkovic Modern Fencing Equipment, Inc. may also be used.
(Parents should be advised that these masks will not be allowed in the
Heavy Rapier divisions.) Modification of masks to appear like a helm or
reduce modern appearance is encouraged. Metal Rapier helms are not
allowed in the experiment.
B. Masks must be secured to the fighter so that they
cannot be easily dislodged or removed during combat. The combination of
snug fit and the spring-tongue in a conventional fencing mask is NOT
sufficient, by itself, to secure the mask to the fighter. Excessively
large, loose or ill-fitting masks should be carefully inspected by the
marshal and will be rejected if a safe and secure fit cannot be
achieved with sufficient padding, strapping, etc.
C. The back of the head does not
need to be covered.
9.4 Torso, Arms and Legs
A. Male fighters must
wear a youth athletic cup or other equivalent rigid groin protection.
Female fighters should protect the groin area with extra layers of
clothing or equivalent groin padding.
A. The entire torso,
arms and legs must be covered in abrasion-resistant material.
B. Hands shall be
protected by gloves of abrasion-resistant material that overlap any
All protective equipment must be inspected and approved by
the youth rapier marshal in charge prior to use in combat or training.
C. Feet shall be
protected by boots or shoes, comprised of at least
To become authorized, completion of the Youth Rapier Class,
the four required practices, and parental consent to become authorized
is required. No formal authorization testing for participation in the
experiment is necessary at this time. The Youth Rapier Authorization
Form should be completed and mailed to the Kingdom Authorization Deputy
as indicated on the Meridian Minors Rapier Authorization Form.
A. Marshals wishing to take part in this experiment
must apply to their Kingdom Rapier Marshal, or the appropriate deputy.
Marshals taking part must be Warranted Youth Rapier Marshals, and
should be familiar with working with young fighters. ALL MARSHALS
MUST PASS BACKGROUND CHECKS TO BEGIN THIS PROGRAM.
B. Marshals must
remember that the primary goals of this is experiment are:
To provide youths (7-13) with new activity
Safety of all parties involved
Education and training of the combatants in rapier combat
A focus on fair play and good sportsmanship
12. EDUCATIONAL GOALS
Preparation for adult rapier combat
- Learn to acknowledge blows
(i.e. be able to tell when they hit or have been hit)
- Learn the basic elements of
- Learn to obey the commands
of the marshal
- Learn how and when to call Hold
- Fair play and sportsmanship
- Become familiar with proper
- Be able to enact wounds
- Learn basic, proper rapier
- Learn and obey the rules of
- Fair play and sportsmanship
- Become familiar with other
combat combinations (parrying devices)
- Reinforce previous lessons
and skill sets
- Learn proper care of their
- Continue practicing with
rapier accoutrements (buckler, etc)
- Prepare the fencer for the
next level of fighting with metal rapiers blades
Appendix 1: Plastic Foil
The following suppliers carry the
Nasycon “Aramis” plastic foil and will ship to the United States and
Canada. Their inclusion here is in no way an endorsement of any of the
suppliers listed. The foils supplied are identical.
Leon Paul USA
Zivkovic Modern Fencing
Equipment (781) 235-3324
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