With the removal of the last pieces of the COVID rules at the beginning of April 2022, the government has signalled that we must “learn to live” with COVID. In practise, this means that the club can effectively return to normal although we do continue to ask for your cooperation with the rules below.

Rules for coming to the club

  • You do not need to book a place at a session. Please just come along!
  • We recommend that you continue to wear a face mask whilst not fencing since the sports hall can get crowded, and ventilation is not brilliant even when the doors are open. The school continues to require their staff and pupils to wear masks whilst moving around and ask that we consider complying with this requirement.
  • Sanitiser and wipes will remain available. Particular attention is required if you’re going to use club masks or gloves that you clean and sanitise before/after.

Return to Fencing – Your Thoughts

Thank you to everyone who took some time to complete the survey that we posted last week to understand your thoughts about returning to fencing. I wanted to give you an overview of everyone’s opinion because this informs the way that the club will begin to operate again. We’ve been working on a risk assessment for club sessions, and will be sharing it with the school this week to make sure that we’re all happy. I will also make a post here with that once we’ve finalised a couple of small details.

What people are planning or hoping to do

The majority (78%) of you are planning to return to training as soon as you can, or will wait until the social distancing rules are relaxed a little further.

78% of respondents would like to return as soon as they can, and the remainder will wait a little longer to see how things pan out.

In addition, 87% of you would like to return at a similar level of commitment/frequency, with a small number feeling that other commitments would mean they could come less-often.

Fears or concerns about returning to club

Many of the respondents to the survey expressed concern about catching COVID-19 from club kit, or lack of proper social distancing. There were also concern regarding whether it would be safe to resume fencing, and how we would manage club sessions (warm-up, fighting, lessons) and the extra requirements that the new rules will call for.


The vast majority of respondents to this survey stated that they had their own kit, which makes managing the club kit somewhat easier than it could have been. We have a plan to allocate club equipment to members who don’t have their own and will detail how this will work later. We’ve also been thinking about how to handle the electric boxes and weapons and have a strategy for this too. I will publish this once the risk assessment is agreed with the school.

Face masks have been mentioned as a way to reduce the spread of the virus, but there has also been evidence published in the July 2020 edition of The Sword (page 26) which suggests that they are risky to wear during fights because they prevent efficient breathing. The club is going to ask you to wear masks where possible, and we will be issuing guidance on this soon. The majority of respondents were willing to provide a mask themselves, so this will be the option that we will choose.

80% of respondents were prepared to provide their own facemark, and 93% were willing to wear a mask in the sports hall when appropriate.

What we hope to offer

There are many aspects to a regular club session, and unsurprisingly, there was a lot of variation in what you’d all like to see. From the responses, we will aim to provide warm-up and footwork exercises, fighting/sparring on the electric equipment, and lessons in some form. These may all need to be modified to take account of the new rules, and we will be able to tell you more about this soon.

What you’re looking forward to

Everyone’s looking forward to getting back to fencing again, meeting our friends and doing some training. Like you, I can’t wait to be back in the fencing hall doing some sparring and footwork practice.