information for new membersInformation about joining the MSU Fencing Club
How to Join
In order to join, all you need to do is fill out our sign up survey or drop in during one of our practices. This semester, we are starting practice with a new member open house on Thursday September 9th from 8-9 PM at IM West Gym #1. The following week , practice will be held from 8-10 pm, Monday – Friday at the same location. Be sure you sign up for your free IM West membership to be able to get into the building!
We are a great club for both casual and serious members – you are free to choose which days you come to practice. The best time for new fencers to join us is at the start of a new semester, but you are welcome to join our fencing club at any time throughout the year.
If you want to join us for the Fall 2021 semester, be sure to sign up below so we can add you to our email list and contact you with upcoming practice and social event information.
What to bring
All you need is gym clothes, a water bottle, a mask, and yourself. For the first few weeks, a group of new fencers will get the chance to borrow gear from our armory and fence (this gear will be sanitized directly after practice) each day; afterwards, new fencers will have a “fitting day” where they can check-out the gear they would like to borrow for the rest of the semester. They can also buy their own via our annual gear order. Normal gym attire is acceptable. Epeeists should wear long pants or knickers with long socks while fencing due to the full-body target area of the weapon. Additionally, IM West water is pretty disgusting so bringing enough water to last you through the practice is highly recommended.
For the safety of our club, it is MANDATORY that you wear a mask during practice! We will give time for mask breaks and have extras in our armory. Getting yourself a sports mask for easy breathing and signing up for Spartan Spit is also encouraged 🙂
What to Expect
1. Sign our waiver.
Fencing is a safe sport, but it is also a contact sport and sometimes accidents happen. Signing our waiver tells us that you are sufficiently healthy enough to participate in this activity and accepting the risk of accidents and injuries that may happen out of participation. You are also agreeing to protect the health and safety of those around you by wearing a mask to practice, respecting university COVID guidelines, and staying home if you feel sick.
2. A quick introduction to the basics of the sport: the weapons, footwork, and how to hold a blade.
Your first day, one of our members will give you a fencing 101 rundown and all the knowledge you will need to get started with the sport. If you are already familiar with fencing, you can immediately join the squad with the weapon(s) that you specialize in.
3. For the first few weeks, get a chance to gear up and try all three weapons
During the first few weeks, you will have the chance to suit up and get a feel for which fencing style and squad you like the best. After gearless practice from 8:00 – 9:00 PM each night, a group of 7 new fencers will be able to borrow gear from our armory for 9:00 – 10:00 PM geared-up practice (different people will be chosen each day so you will have multiple chances to fence!).
4. After a few weeks, get fitted with your own gear and merge with returning fencers
After a few weeks, we will have a “fitting day” where new fencers can check-out the gear they would like to borrow for the rest of the semester. This gear will be tagged with your name and kept in our armory for you to use. After fitting day, we will shift to a more open format where all newbies and returners combine and do geared-up fencing from 8:00 pm – 10:00 pm.
5. Once you know you’re going to stay, join the virtual roster.
We are a club that loves to gain new members to participate in and learn the sport of fencing together. After joining our roster you will officially be a member of the MSU Fencing family. Once you have an idea of which discipline is the best for you, you can join your squad(s) of choice.
Dues are $60 a semester. However, new members only need to pay $10 at the start of the semester and the rest of the amount at the end or when they are confident they want to stay with the club. Paying dues allows us to provide everyone the opportunity to learn the sport, we use dues to provide members with gear and the chance to travel for competitions.
Some members are interested in competing. If you are a new fencer, you absolutely can still compete – we have tournaments for all different levels of fencers and the newbie tournament will be perfect for you. For those interested in earning ratings, we have groups who travel for USFA tournaments you may join. Overall, our travelling team is a healthy mix of fencers who started their career in freshman year and those who have been fencing long before college – both groups have performed greatly at tournaments. Do not hesitate to participate in a competition, going to these meets is the best way to learn the sport and always a ton of fun!