Academy of Arms

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ACADEMY OF ARMS FENCING CLASSES IN LOS ANGELES AREA

Youth Classes

Our general classes are for adults, but youth training is provided via private instruction. If you have a child who is well behaved and passionate about historical fencing, please email us for details about youth instruction.

Group Classes

We can arrange a group sword class for a single event (corporate retreat, birthday party etc) or a class taught on an ongoing basis. Fees vary by location, time, and size of group. Please email us for details about group classes.

Knightly Virtues Class

If you or your group is interested in medieval history, we offer a discussion-oriented, 5-hour class on chivalry and the knightly virtues. This is not a martial arts class and does not involve weapons.

Private Instruction

Private weapon instruction is available from the school founder, Shay Roberts. Private instruction is understandably more expensive than our general classes and not all students can be accepted. We are looking for disciplined individuals of any age with a genuine passion for the art. You do not have to be brilliant or athletic, but you must be reliable and capable of taking direction. We can also accommodate you if you have a friend, spouse or child who wants to train with you. Fees vary by location, time, day, and number of students. Please email us for details about Private Instruction.

Techniques Class (Tues 8-10pm, Sun. 10am-12pm)

Description: Learn the highly effective longsword techniques preserved in the manuscripts of the Medieval German Masters.  After 1-2 years of training, you have the option to use these techniques in a competitive bouting environment, though this is not required.  Students in the Techniques Class train primarily with the longsword, but are also invited to attend introductory workshops on the following weapons: dagger, grappling, spear, pollaxe, halfsword, sickle, messer, sword and buckler, and short staff. Students use plastic training weapons at this level.

Prerequisite: none. Adults only.

Program: both Recreational and Historical.

Tactics Class (Sun. 12pm-2pm)

Description: Learn the tactics needed to become a more effective fighter.  The focus is on how and when to apply techniques, or combinations of techniques, to seize and hold the initiative in a duel.  We do extensive contact work and bouting using primarily the longsword, but other weapons are also explored.

Prerequisite: none.  Six-twelve months of the Techniques class is recommended.  If you join the Tactics class prior to that experience, there may be some exercises in which you will need to be an observer rather than a participant. Adults only.

Program: both Recreational and Historical.

Academics Class (Thur 8-10pm, Sun. 10am-12pm)

Description: A more in-depth look at the ten weapons in our system: longsword, dagger, grappling, spear, pollaxe, halfsword, sickle, messer, sword and buckler, and short staff.  Students will also learn medieval history and culture; the spelling, pronunciation and definitions of all of our vocabulary words; the knightly virtues; how to lead and teach; how to fall safely; and how to cut practice targets with a sharp sword.  This class is more academically-oriented than the Techniques Class and students will take a variety of tests. Students begin with plastic training weapons, advance to blunt steel, and eventually do limited work with sharps.

Prerequisite: passing the Apprentice test and earning the rank of Apprentice.  For most people, this will mean taking the Techniques class for 1-2 years prior to testing for Apprentice. Adults only.

Program: Historical.

R&D Class (Sun. 10am-12pm)

Description: This is an opportunity for experienced students to work on challenging research problems and create original interpretations of techniques for the weapons that most interest them.

Prerequisite: passing the Scholar test and earning the rank of Scholar.  For most people, this will mean taking the Academics class for 2-3 years prior to testing for Scholar. Adults only.

Program: Historical.

Recreational Program

Designed for busy people who struggle for free time to pursue their interests.  A good choice if your career, family, or college life is your primary focus but you would still like to pursue a martial art.  This is a non-academic track so there are no tests or ranks.  The focus is on the weapons, with minimal time spent on medieval history and culture.  Recreational students will experience all ten of the AoA weapons and have the opportunity to participate in competitive bouting if they so choose.

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Historical Program

An immersive program for students with the time to pursue a deeper study of the weapons, history and culture of the Middle Ages.  This program uses a more traditional academic approach so there are a number of tests.  Participants move up the ranks as they conquer new challenges that sharpen both the body and mind.  Historical students learn additional techniques for each of the ten AoA weapons, breakfalling, and cutting with sharp swords.  Historical students also have the opportunity to participate in competitive bouting if they so choose.

 

AoA Diagram of Classes

The adult evening classes are in the studio. The Sunday adult classes are at Verdugo Park.

Academy of Arms, outside wind


Regular Adult Class Membership

Dues are $40 per month.  You are invited to attend one evening class each week, and/or the Sunday classes.  A good option for people with erratic schedules because it gives you two different opportunities to attend each week.  Also a good option for students who have the free time and want the challenge of training twice per week.


Discount Adult Class Membership

Dues are $20 per month.  You attend only Sunday classes.  A good option for those on a budget or those who can't attend evening classes.

 

AoA students are free to switch programs or membership types at any time.


Click here find out how to join.

Click here to watch demonstration videos.

Dr. Forgeng and AoA at the 2011 Tournament of the Phoenix
Dr. Forgeng and AoA at the 2011 Tournament of the Phoenix. Photo by Amanda Mielke.

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