Frequently Asked Questions

What is HEMA?

HEMA stands for Historical European Martial Arts, and is an umbrella term for any system of martial arts that was developed and used in Europe in the past. Contrary to popular belief, martial arts were not only developed in the Eastern world, and in fact there are many historical manuals from medieval and Renaissance Europe documenting how to fight with the weapons of the time. Modern HEMA seeks to interpret these manuals, recreate the systems they describe, and put them to the test through sparring and competition.

Where should I begin?

Before you start buying gear or swinging swords in your backyard, we encourage you to come to our introductory class on Tuesdays. There we can teach you the fundamentals and also help steer you in the right direction based on what you're looking to get out of HEMA.

What do I need to bring to class?

Wear clothes you can comfortably move in and bring water. We can provide the swords and safety equipment.

Do you teach my favorite weapon? And if not, why not?

Right now, our club's main focus is on longsword. It is the most popular weapon in the HEMA community by a wide margin, which means there is a wealth of resources to help teach and practice it.

However, that doesn't mean that we aren’t interested in other weapons, or wouldn't practice with them when given the opportunity. Let us know what you're interested in, and chances are we'll know someone you can fight with. In the meantime our fundamentals class on Tuesdays is meant to be a general introduction to HEMA and should help you in whatever system you choose to pursue.

Do you teach children or minors?

Unfortunately, for insurance reasons, we do not currently offer children's classes. If you are between the ages of 16 and 18 you may participate, but only if accompanied by a parent or guardian.