On Wednesday nights, I attend a HEMA class with a group called Forte Swordplay, which is Historical European Martial Arts. This means I train to learn how to use a longsword, sword and buckler, messer, a rondel dagger and a little bit of grappling. Whilst driving home, I had a bit of a train of thought…
Groups like this that preserve history keep the human identity alive in a way. Now, I don’t mean groups in regards to violence, I mean things that are considered an art like combat is. Painting, music, indigenous religion and the like. It helps us remember who we were as a species, and it’s amazing how our bodies forget what our ancestors did so readily.
Of course, I don’t mean they were just born knowing how to do these things, that notion would be silly. For me, longsword fighting is a peek into the past more than a way to defend myself. It’s almost scary how unaware of my body I am, but fightig with a sword requires your body to be in complete harmony. Talk about difficult. The brain can understand someone else’s movements perfectly without difficulty but try to mimic the movement and this is where you realize that your brain is not as powerful as you’d like! It’s very frustrating but is a very fruitful thing once you get it. I recommend this hobby to anyone interested! Do a Google search, there’s bound to be a HEMA club near you.
Stay Metal \m/