This was a reply to a comment but developed in to something that I thought was worth posting on the blog.
Paul wrote -It was written by someone on the subject of training...and I paraphrase here "By the age of seven a child should have seen his blood flow, and heard the sound of his bones break"-
I would suggest that any child that has reached the age of 7 without seeing their own blood or been in a situation where they could have broken a bone, are either extremely lucky or they have lived in an overly protective bubble. I know for myself and everyone I know, that by the age of 7, had seen their blood flow and a number had broken bones, I have been lucky enough to not break a bone despite having been some dodgy incidents that could have resulted in it happening. At the end of the of the day it's called growing up. Also that is hopefully something that people have done before they come to me to start training with weapons, it is certainly not something I want them to be doing in my classes. However my experience, people who have not had this kind of experience are far less aware of the dangers in their training.
So I am not saying that that HEMA training should include blood spilling and bone breaking. I've also argued that in the past, though they may have been more accepting of the potential danger involved in training, serious injury was not promoted as part of training, though of course it could happen.
Of course, we can not say for certain what exactly what they did or how exactly how they trained, yet we may find educated possibilities. I am concerned sometimes that some people are desperate to re-invent the wheel.
Neither should new materials and methods be ignored, but neither should the methods of the past. I for one welcome Guild Study Group Leader Bryan Tunstal's new synthetic weapons, as they more accurately replicate a real sword than any of the wooden wasters on the market.
Anything that reduces the risk of injury is of course welcome,yet if the possibility of injury is unacceptable, then it is perhaps time to look for a new thing to do. However should bear in mind that if a tool isn't working it may not be a fault of the tool, it might be a fault in the way we are using the tool.
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