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USFCA San Francisco Revised Regional Clinic     Mar 26, 2020 - Mar 29, 2020
Halberstadt Fencers' Club: San Francisco, CA Masters Rob Handelman, and Peter Burchard, are hosting a 4 day three weapon, USFCA Training Program and certification seminar in San Francisco, on the dates of March 26-29, 2020
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   Map to 621 South Van Ness Avenue San Francisco CA 94110
posted 09/17/2018
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USFCA San Francisco Regional Coaches Clinic 2020
March 26-29 2020

Unfortunately, due to the Corona virus we have had to adjust the clinic to the normal 4 day event as all international coaches are unable to acquire visas. Please note the new dates are from Thursday until Sunday.

Fencing Masters Peter Burchard and Robert Handelman invite all level coaches to join us at Halberstadt Fencers Club in San Francisco for the West Coast Regional USFCA Coaches’ Clinic. Maitre Connie Louie will assist in sabre and sports psychology.

The location is at: Halberstadt Fencers Club, 621 South Van Ness St. S.F., CA 94110
This USFCA coach’s clinic is planned for 4 days the weekend after the March 2020 NAC, from Thursday March 26 until Sunday March 29, 2020. Testing and certification for Prevots will be on Sunday afternoon and on Saturday for Moniteurs. There are many reasonable AirB&B available in the area around the club if you reserve early. Plan ahead so you can attend this exciting and comprehensive 4 day long training!

For those interested, we will instruct and prepare the coach to take the USFCA Moniteur/Prévôt/Master practical exams. Exams must be scheduled well in advance with the organizers. Exam slots are limited and given out in the order that the registration payment and exam requests are received. This is one of a few USFCA locations equipped to offer the highest level certification for Prévôt and Fencing Master exams. Our Master and Prévôt exam schedule fills up fast. Please note: Testing is optional and many coaches take the clinic and do not test.

See below costs if the coach wishes to participate in the certification testing.
If the coach wants to be certified as a Moniteur, Prévôt or Master the coach must:
• Join USFCA $75
• Take a written test $25 for Moniteur or $50 for Prévôt. Please note: If a coach passes the Prévôt written test it is good for all levels: Moniteur, Prévôt and Master exams.
• The practical test cost per weapon is - $50 Moniteur, $150 Prévôt, and $200 for Master.
• We will inform the coach which test we believe they are ready to take. If ready for the practical Prévôt or Master they do not have to do the practical test for the lower level Moniteur.
• Written and practical test fees are only paid online at the USFCA website and if you just wish to attend the clinic you are not required to test.

For Master the coach would need an approved and completed thesis, approved presentation, or present a video that helps further the knowledge base of fencing or add to the teaching of fencing (not a video giving a lesson to a fencer). The thesis and the topic or video (has to be professional with good sound and visuals), and must be approved well before the clinic. Please contact the USFCA Certification Accreditation Board (CAB) with your topic, and they will give you a board to review and accept the work. Gil Pezza or David Sierra

Fees for 3.5 days of the clinic (Thursday to Sunday morning):
Deadline for regular payment is March 10, 2020
Full Clinic: USFCA Members: $370
Non-Members: $420

After March 10, 2020 (& at door) add $30: USFCA Members: $400 Non-Members: $450
One day rate (Thursday or Friday): Members: $175 Non-members: $200

When you preregister, please send your name, certification level, weapons you wish to work on at the clinic, and whether you intend to test or not, if you will test please note the level of the test and specific weapon.

Please send and make out the check for registration fees to:
Rob Handelman, Maître d’Armes
747 4th Ave
San Francisco, CA 94118
Phone: (415) 846-2443 Email:

Information on the presenters, and travel & hotel information, is available - email:

Clinic Goals
This is a working clinic and very little time will be spent on lecture and watching. The lead coaches will demonstrate and the attending coaches will practice the actions immediately afterwards.

When possible the coaches will be videotaped while working on elite fencing techniques in the lessons. For example, the coach will be given two or three simple actions and taught step by step how to make an Option lesson that is challenging for any level student. During the practice sessions, if coaches have a strong background in Option lessons, the instructors will help the coaches integrate changes of distance, timing, hand and blade orientation, footwork, hand and foot coordination both correctly and purposefully incorrectly executed, foreseen and unforeseen actions, student initiative and varied tactical situations. All this will help to refine their cues and work on speed, perfect distance, shorter reaction time and rapid tempo change.

The first level coaches will also give individual lessons with simple options and concentrate on teaching lessons in group settings. The instructors will have the level one coaches work with young fencers in individual or group classes and time permitting we will also videotape.

Outline of some of the Material that will be covered:

Day one
Group class structure and Learning Styles – lesson plan
Fencing Fitness
Group warm-up (functional warm-up)
Group footwork
Footwork variations on advances, retreats, lunges, return on guard, half steps, distance gaining footwork, changes of tempo and direction actions, fleche, and flunge, etc.
Technique Instruction for group class
Paired drills and coach demonstration techniques
On Guard, Grip, Lines
The Invitation versus on Guard Position
Absence of Blade
Developmental stages of Fencing
Fencing fundamentals – distance, timing, tempo, speed, taking the initiative, tradecraft
The individual lesson general concepts of adaptation to age, logical progressions, sound biomechanics, correct execution, coordination, realistic cues, timing and distance, attack into the preparation, and coaching correction critiques
Coach’s position, body and blade, footwork
Presentation of target – cues defined, types
Coaches hand reactions
Coach initiated
Teaching Coaching distances
Simple attacks – direct, indirect, high and low line, flick
Simple parries (lateral, diagonal, circular, semi-circular, ceding, beat, opposition)

Day 2
Absence of blade with disengage, coupé
Simple counter attacks
Student initiated actions
Coach returning the student to on guard
Lesson logical action sequences
Coach varies reactions
Counter ripostes
Attack into the preparation
Active parries – prise de fer in defense
Composed attacks
Attaques au fer – beat, pressure
Prises de Fer (Opposition, Croise, Lie, Envelopment)
Circular parries
Composed ripostes
Defense against the remise
Evasions (inquartata, pasata soto)
Defense by distance
In-fighting – foil and epee
Second Intention
False attacks
Counter time with various ripostes
Point in line
Strip coaching – observation skills, coaching men vs. women
Bout analysis

Day 3
Lesson concepts for young fencers
Counter Attacks – stop hit, opposition, angulated, dérobement
Teaching Lessons – tactical wheel, opponent’ reactions outside the wheel, offensive, defensive, counter offensive, video feedback
Components of the lesson – seasonal approach
Bouting forms and drills
Advanced lessons
Drilling methods – no reaction, simple reaction, choice reaction (serial/random), surprise, switching, unforeseen
Warm-up lessons for competition
Parts of the option lesson
Option lesson offense
Option lesson defense

Exam prep
•explanation of format and procedure
•compose lessons for exam level desired
1. lesson performance
2. lesson critique
3. lesson video feedback

Day 4

Lesson tactics – definition, tactical sense, interleaving, tactical styles, types of attacks and when to use them
o lesson performance
o lesson critique
o lesson video

Exams of all levels and weapons