The Sabre Codex 3.1: The March

Intermediate comprises weeks 21 to 30 of the Sydney Sabre syllabus and is all about the attack.


March – the term for what a sabreur with priority does to put themselves in a position to finish their attack. The aim of the March is to wear through your opponent’s defences to get to the point where you can strike with impunity. It is less about rushing after/into/through your opponent as it is about systematically shredding through the bits of their defence while tiring them out. Think Roman legions, not barbarian hordes.

In this week we cover the footwork part of the March to fool your opponent into fleeing from a fake attack, counterattacking out of distance against a fake hold, or frankly giving up and allowing you to enter their defence zone for the kill. A successful March depends on the Attacker knowing the correct distance to finish and the range of the Defender for their actions. We will spend some time playing that fine line between the range that the Defender thinks they can defend at and what you know they defend at, and revisit some of the footwork techniques from earlier courses to deceive the Defender.

The focus for the week, however, will stay firmly on developing the core concept of distance control. Remember: there is nothing wrong with just advancing into an opponent who has poor distance control and hitting them. Or running them off the end of the piste. And there is a special place for people who like to stick their opponent on the back line before finishing them off with a massive feint attack. We will cover this on request.