RDF to Host Annual Equinox Epee Tournament

We’re gearing up for our big annual tournament – Equinox Epee – on Saturday, March 24 at Valley Southwoods Freshman High School in West Des Moines. If you’re an epee fencer, sign up today: https://askfred.net/Events/moreInfo.php?tournament_id=38662! We have events for Y10, Y12, Y14, D & Under classifications, and an open (ages 13+, any classification) category.

If you’re not a fencer or you know a fencer, this is a good chance to see what we spend all this time training for! As usual, it’s free to come watch.

Thanks to the great support we had last year, we’ve been able to make some upgrades to this year’s event: bigger gym with hardwood floors and bleachers so we can have more strips than last year, a grounded strip, another new scoring box, and more professional referees!

Events Scheduled for Saturday, March 24:
9:00 AM – Mixed Epee
12:00 PM – D & Under Mixed Epee

12:00 PM – Y10 Mixed Epee (Unsanctioned)
1:00 PM – Y12 Mixed Epee (Unsanctioned)
2:00 PM – Y14 Mixed Epee

Holiday Hours

2017-2018 Holiday Hours

Normal practice as scheduled Tuesday, Dec. 26. We’re closed Wednesday, Dec. 27, Saturday, Dec. 30, and Tuesday, Jan. 2, and there is no Youth Practice on Thursday, Dec. 28. Regular schedule resumes Wednesday, Jan. 3, 2018. Happy Holidays, everyone!

2017 Summer Camp & Coaching Workshop

We had a great time hosting our first summer day camp for fencers ages 8-14 (who have some fencing experience), led by Guest Coach Gary Copeland from Northern Colorado Fencers. It was great to see everyone working so hard and improving their skills!

Following the kids’ camp, Gary led a small 2-day coaching workshop focused on individual lessons. In addition to RDF coaches Kevin and Sarah, we had two coaches join us from the Lincoln Fencing Club. We really appreciate Gary’s instruction and feedback and we’re looking forward to helping our students be more successful!

Spring 2017 Beginner Youth Fencing Registration Now Available

Registration is open for our next Beginner Youth Fencing class, which will meet Tuesday evenings 5:30-6:30, April 4-May 9. Have fun, make friends, learn a new sport!

Our 6-week kids’ beginner class is designed so that children ages 8-12 can build up some basic skills before practicing with the more experienced kids. Beginner kids learn safety, terminology, rules, and basic actions through games, drills, and practice matches (“bouting” in fencerspeak). We follow a similar structure to the regular Youth Epee practice: we start with footwork, focusing on balance and coordination, then we put on our gear and work on basic actions, with a focus on mechanics and technique, and we usually finish with practice matches where we try to apply the skills we just worked on.

Cost is $60. All equipment is provided. Students should wear comfortable athletic clothes, specifically pants that allow full range of motion (no shorts!) and close-toed shoes.



RDF to Host Equinox Epee Tournament

We’re hosting our annual Equinox Epee Tournament on Sunday, March 19, 2017 at Hillside Elementary in West Des Moines, so if you’ve been wanting to see what a tournament is all about or come cheer on your friends, it’s free to watch! Registration for fencers is open, too: https://askfred.net/Events/moreInfo.php?tournament_id=35861.

Times listed on the schedule are close of registration – fencing will begin about 15 minutes afterwards:

9:00 AM – Mixed Epee
12:00 PM – D & Under Mixed Epee
12:00 PM – Y10 Mixed Epee
1:00 PM – Y12 Mixed Epee
2:00 PM – Y14 Mixed Epee

This venue doesn’t have a lot of seating, so bringing a camping chair is a good idea if you have one!

2015 Equinox Epee D & Under medalists

Thank you, Coach Dorothea!

As many of our fencers know, Coach Dorothea’s last day at practice – before moving to Virginia to start her new job – was Thursday. Dorothea has put in a lot of hard work and waited very patiently for this (non-fencing) career opportunity, and we’re so glad she’s been a part of RDF in the mean time. We especially appreciate her help in growing our youth program! We’ve certainly learned a lot from her, and we will miss her cheerful, enthusiastic presence both on and off the strip. Thank you, Dorothea!


Richmond NAC

December NAC in Richmond

RDF fencer Sarah traveled to Richmond, VA to compete at the December North American Cup. This time, US Fencing was experimenting with a new 2-day format for Division 1, designed to mimic the format used for international (FIE) tournaments. The top 62-seeded athletes received an automatic bye into Day 2 of the event, and everyone else (including Sarah), had to fence to determine the rest of the competitors. Sarah made the 75% cut to Day 2 (anyone who didn’t make the cut was automatically entered in Division 1A, also on Monday) and ended 94 of 130. Of course, when you start out as last seed, the only place to go is up!

Final results available here.

Training Weekend

RDF hosted an invitational training weekend for competitive fencers in the Midwest last weekend. We were joined by fencers from the Iowa City Fencing Center, the Twin Cities Fencing Club, Lincoln Fencing Club, and Salle Auriol Seattle (which is not so much Midwest, but we’ll make an exception for our friend Yuly). We enjoyed getting to fence a lot of challenging bouts and the video feedback session afterwards. Thanks to everyone who came out to practice with us!

Charlie (right, from RDF) counter-attacks as he retreats from Azaline’s (TCFC) low-line attack.

Fall 2016 Schedule

We’re back to a full schedule for the fall!
(effective Sept. 6-Dec. 31, 2016)
5:30-6:30 – Beginner Youth Fencing* (Sept. 6-Oct. 11)
5:30-6:30 – Youth Epee* (continuing)
6:30-7:00 – Conditioning
7:00-9:00 – Competitive Epee
5:30-6:30 – Private Lessons**
6:30-7:00 – Footwork
7:00-8:30 – Competitive Epee
7:00-8:00 – 13 & up Beginner Epee
5:30-6:30 – Youth Epee (continuing)
6:30-7:00 – Conditioning
7:00-9:00 – Competitive Epee

Saturday: (when everyone isn’t at a tournament)
8:15-9:00 am: Conditioning
9:00-10:00 am: Competitive Epee

No class Thursday, Nov. 24 and Saturday, Nov. 26 (Thanksgiving), Saturday, Dec. 24 (Christmas Eve), Saturday, Dec. 31 (New Year’s Eve).

*Beginner Youth Fencing and Youth Epee classes will run at the same time on different sides of the room. 

**Talk to your coach about private lessons. While we have used Competitive Epee practice time for lessons in the past (and will probably continue to do so as needed), we are trying out a dedicated block of time in our schedule this fall to improve availability and consistency.