The BYU-Idaho fencing club meets every week for students that are interested in learning the sport.
Tyler Hendrickson, a sophomore studying physics and one of the managers and instructors for the club, said that one common response from the fencers was that they enjoyed the strategy that was involved.
“Fencing requires a lot of thinking. It’s been called physical chess; you need to outmaneuver and outthink your opponent,” Hendrickson said. “It’s the balance between mental stamina and fortitude and physical stamina and fortitude that really attracted me to this [sport].”
J.T. Williams, a sophomore studying biology, explained fencing strategy.
“There’s different moves and different countermoves, so you need to be really fast on the spot. It’s not just stabbing someone or just jumping around; you actually need to think about where they’re going to go and how you are going to block. It’s reacting and reacting fast,” Williams said.
Several BYU-I fencers say they enjoy the individual aspect of the contest, along with the strategy.
“It’s not like a lot of other sports where you have a whole team against another team. In fencing, you have something to work towards, there’s a great team dynamic still, you’re all working together but you don’t have to focus on what everybody else is doing, it’s just you and your opponent,” said Ben Talbot, a sophomore studying computer engineering.
Kara Wheat, a junior studying art, said that fencers also come to enjoy the atmosphere.
“I enjoy the environment and all the people that I get to meet here, because when you say there’s a fencing club you’re not going to get the usual people that you get with [other sports], so there are some really interesting people that you meet,” Wheat said. “There’s a lot of nerds, a lot of different walks of life, a lot of different majors.”
Hendrickson said that he hopes that students who are considering trying out fencing will not hesitate to come to the activities.
“We have a beginner class every time we meet. Come on by. We provide all the equipment, and you will be in a gro of people who have never fenced before, and it’s really fun to learn,” Hendrickson said.
Meetings are held Tuesdays from 7-9 p.m. and Saturdays from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. in the Hart Auxiliary Gym. Equipment is splied and all experience levels are welcome.