Tacomans looking to better themselves in mind, body and spirit may want to check out the Metro Tacoma Fencing Club to dive head first into a sport that is not only physically engaging, but a mental challenge as well.
“Its an explosive stop-start sport with periods of high activity mixed with times of recovery,” said Metro Tacoma Fencing Club Vice President Angela Sienda. “It’s good for your body and your mind. They often call it physical chess – there’s logic, strategy and tactic before you do the movements. It’s a lot about really setting up your attack and there’s a lot of thought involved, but also there’s the physical part.”
The Club has been around since 1999 when several smaller groups got together to form it. As a result, the club is open to nearly any age group, from 7-year-old kids to senior citizens. Not only that, but the club offers beginning classes for people new to the sport and a competitive side for those more advanced.
While beginning classes are offered, Sienda warns that fencing is a serious sport and it takes a lot of work to become competitive. But the physical rewards pay off, as the sport gives you a near full body workout.
“It’s a high intensity sport so you really have to have good endurance. It works upper body and lower body for advancing and reaching, and it builds your core. If your core is strong you’ll be able to move quicker, as you need to move your center of gravity down. We have a number of people that have lost a lot of weight in fencing. You don’t realize you’re working out because you’re thinking about different things.”
The Metro Tacoma Fencing club is a popular club in the area, allowing for a lot of social interaction with people of all ages, whether it’s deep strategy or just bonding over a shared hobby.
“What’s nice about fencing is you have an interaction of all different ages. There’s that social part of it, talking about it or strategizing with other members. It’s a social component that’s really a part of it; probably the most important thing is your connecting with other people,” Sienda said.
The social aspect combines with the mental and physical training to form a hobby that’s truly healthy on multiple levels.
“With fencing you’re constantly growing. It keeps you engaged. It’s an excellent exercise that works your whole body. It also challenges your mind because it’s a sport where you’re never in it by yourself. I think it just makes you a stronger person, and it teaches you how to problem solve,” Sienda said.
The Metro Tacoma Fencing Club is open most evenings. Check https://metrotacoma.wordpress.com/home/schedule for a complete schedule for everything from lessons to competitions. The Club is willing to give a free demonstration to any Tacoma Weekly reader who stops by at 1106 S. 15th St. For more information call (253) 830-4127.