Announcing: A Change of Name & New Programming

Athena School of Arms is a Boston area group that trains Historical European Martial Arts.
Steven H
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Announcing: A Change of Name & New Programming

Postby Steven H » Mon Apr 01, 2013 9:35 am

Hello all,

We've changed the name of our school to Athena School of Arms. The name Athena was chosen because she is the goddess of Defensive War and Strategy, and Wisdom; and I think very apropos for martial arts in general.

We have set aside the German name because we are no longer just training German martial arts.

Our program now includes Highland 'Broadsword', which like the 18th century sources for the class, is based upon a foundation of smallsword and contemporary military sabre practice. I've always been fascinated by single-handed sword fighting and classical era sabre is of especial interest to me. Many years ago I founded the school on a basis of Lichtenauer longsword in no small part because sources for that weapon were more accessible to me. Further, I have kept the school's program focused on just one weapon & system for so long because of the inherent advantages of focus.

My interest in single-handed sword has led to study groups in Lichtenauer Sword & Buckler and Messer, and Meyer Dussack and Rappier. So my understanding of broadsword may be colored by Lichtenauer and Meyer background :)

But I never stopped wanting to do broadsword. With my knee injury last Fall I was in no shape to do Lichtenauer footwork or power generation, but I could do sabre and smallsword footwork. So I spent the winter reading a wide variety of sabre, broadsword and smallsword sources and practiced with my senior student Andrew.

This dovetailed well with my growing understanding of fencing theory - my introduction to Lichtenauer longsword is no longer particularly Lichtenauer specific - based in large part on the coaching methodologies of Ken Mondschein's Classical Pedagogy and Scott Brown's Permutational Analysis. Further study of the Theory aspects of Meyer's manual and various other discussions online involving a wide variety of people have all come together to form a good core of fencing theory.

As such, I'd reached a point where I felt that I could do a good job of teaching a 'Highland Broadsword' class. Something I've wanted to do for a long time. And so we grow and expand.

Cheers,
Steven Hirsch
Athena School of Arms - Longsword & Highland Broadsword
Fight with All Your Strength
Swords of Chivalry - Youth Swordsmanship in Acton, MA

Steven H
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Re: Announcing: A Change of Name & New Programming

Postby Steven H » Mon Apr 01, 2013 9:41 am

In addition to the formal program of Broadsword we have also been inching towards a program of Victorian self-defense arts i.e. Bartitsu, but not just Bartitsu. The intention is to include contemporary and earlier sources on pugilism/bare-knuckle-boxing. This program is a study group of myself and Andrew Kilgore at this time. I had hoped to be able to make the program a public class by May but it turns out that's not going to happen - due to my knee injury delaying practice and my own schedule conflicts. Hopefully, we'll have something by Fall.

Both Andrew and I have extensive backgrounds in unarmed martial arts and we both want to include unarmed in the set of fighting practice that we do. It has been too long since I've punched people, been kicked and gotten to do lot's of grappling. It's all stuff I love and with the group of people that I have now, it's finally possible for me to add these things back and do them well.

Cheers,
Athena School of Arms - Longsword & Highland Broadsword
Fight with All Your Strength
Swords of Chivalry - Youth Swordsmanship in Acton, MA

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Richard Marsden
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Re: Announcing: A Change of Name & New Programming

Postby Richard Marsden » Mon Apr 01, 2013 10:05 am

Sounds great! I love seeing ecclectic groups.

Steven H
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Re: Announcing: A Change of Name & New Programming

Postby Steven H » Mon Apr 01, 2013 10:14 am

Richard Marsden wrote:Sounds great! I love seeing ecclectic groups.

Thanks. I try not to think of the group as eclectic because I see a core of fencing theory underlying all of it. (Boxing was called fencing with fists in it's early days.)

But I guess the term is basically correct :lol:
Athena School of Arms - Longsword & Highland Broadsword
Fight with All Your Strength
Swords of Chivalry - Youth Swordsmanship in Acton, MA

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Keith P. Myers
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Re: Announcing: A Change of Name & New Programming

Postby Keith P. Myers » Sat Apr 06, 2013 9:35 am

Sounds great Steven! Have you been perusing the Bartitsu website? Lots of good stuff on there. I was working on a book on bareknuckle boxing at one point. I'd be happy to share what I've got. Craig Gemeiner has put out some excellent DVDs that would dovetail with what you want to do.
Keith P. Myers
Lifetime Member HEMA Alliance
Affiliate: Bartitsu Society & Cateran Society
Friend: Meyer Frei Fechter Guild
Rockville, Maryland

Steven H
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Re: Announcing: A Change of Name & New Programming

Postby Steven H » Sat Apr 06, 2013 10:48 am

Keith P. Myers wrote:Sounds great Steven! Have you been perusing the Bartitsu website? Lots of good stuff on there. I was working on a book on bareknuckle boxing at one point. I'd be happy to share what I've got. Craig Gemeiner has put out some excellent DVDs that would dovetail with what you want to do.

Good to know. Not sure when next I'll be down near Maryland, though.

Thanks,
Athena School of Arms - Longsword & Highland Broadsword
Fight with All Your Strength
Swords of Chivalry - Youth Swordsmanship in Acton, MA

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Alberto B.
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Re: Announcing: A Change of Name & New Programming

Postby Alberto B. » Sat Apr 06, 2013 10:48 am

Your program sounds juicy, very good stuff going on there.
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Keith P. Myers
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Re: Announcing: A Change of Name & New Programming

Postby Keith P. Myers » Fri Apr 12, 2013 2:48 pm

inching towards a program of Victorian self-defense arts i.e. Bartitsu, but not just Bartitsu. The intention is to include contemporary and earlier sources on pugilism/bare-knuckle-boxing. This program is a study group of myself and Andrew Kilgore at this time


How's this coming Steven? I've decided to do the same thing with my group. There is a large Steampunk meetup group in my area and I'm hoping some of them will be interested in some regular training. Bartitsu has been promoted with demo's and workshops at various Steampunk conventions and has gone over very well. I'd bet there are some Steampunk groups in your area when you get ready to promote your group. Anyway, it would be cool to have a Bartitsu subforum here. It would likely catch some peoples interest and produce some converts. What do you think? :)
Keith P. Myers
Lifetime Member HEMA Alliance
Affiliate: Bartitsu Society & Cateran Society
Friend: Meyer Frei Fechter Guild
Rockville, Maryland

Steven H
Posts: 667
Joined: Wed Nov 17, 2010 8:30 am

Re: Announcing: A Change of Name & New Programming

Postby Steven H » Fri Apr 12, 2013 3:17 pm

Keith P. Myers wrote:
inching towards a program of Victorian self-defense arts i.e. Bartitsu, but not just Bartitsu. The intention is to include contemporary and earlier sources on pugilism/bare-knuckle-boxing. This program is a study group of myself and Andrew Kilgore at this time


How's this coming Steven? I've decided to do the same thing with my group. There is a large Steampunk meetup group in my area and I'm hoping some of them will be interested in some regular training. Bartitsu has been promoted with demo's and workshops at various Steampunk conventions and has gone over very well. I'd bet there are some Steampunk groups in your area when you get ready to promote your group. Anyway, it would be cool to have a Bartitsu subforum here. It would likely catch some peoples interest and produce some converts. What do you think? :)

We're thinking along the same lines.
It's not coming along particularly fast right now. I had a minor set-back with my knee and some scheduling issues. I expect to make some good progress over the summer though.
Athena School of Arms - Longsword & Highland Broadsword
Fight with All Your Strength
Swords of Chivalry - Youth Swordsmanship in Acton, MA


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