In early modern Europe, duels were a very real and common practice. Two individuals wishing to settle a conflict could engage in a one-on-one battle with set rules adhering to a code of honor. Using matched swords as weapons, these 18th and 19th Century men fought, not necessarily to kill one another, but to gain honor by the very act of being willing to risk one’s life for honor itself. In these times, honor was so valued - and duels considered such a noble act - that duels themselves reserved exclusively for nobility.
SLC Fencing: Best Way to Settle a Feud — Photo courtesy of Frog and Onion
Though the days of dueling have long past, the art of fencing still remains. Called Olympic fencing (so as to distinguish it from duel fencing), this sport embraces the art of of the sport while eliminating its mortal risks. An excellent spectator sport and participant activity at once, fencing requires great agility, fitness and skill. And though watching it can be extremely exciting, participating is even better.
Luckily for Utah, Salt Lake City has a fencing club of its own. Headed by United States Fencing Coaches Association-certified coach, Reas Shanahan, this club has been winning recognition from local press. Taking home City Weekly’s 2012 prize for “Best Way to Settle a Duel” in in the Active Life Category, SLC Fencing offers instruction in all three Olympic fencing weapons: foil, sabre and Epee. If you’re interested in exploring a totally new sport, take a trip to South Salt Lake and check out this award-winning facility.