From the Foreword by Neal Stephenson: "Whether you are a writer or game-maker seeking the kind of information I sought while writing The Baroque Cycle, or just a general reader with an interest in the arts to which Guy Windsor has dedicated his career, you should find much that is rewarding in these pages." This book is a collection of essays and articles, about half of which have been adapted from Guy's successful blog, at guywindsor.com, the rest have never been published before. It is in eight sections: "What is Historical Swordsmanship?" covers some aspects of researching and recreating the Art. "Martial Essentials" covers some of the less-well-understood aspects of what martial arts are and how they work. "Lessons from the Art" covers some of the wider real-world benefits of training, especially dealing with questions of mistakes, risk, and fear. "Swords" describes the main classifications of the weapons we use, and includes discussion of appropriate training tools. "Fighting" includes historical examples of duels, and discussions about the nature of real violence. "Writing Swordfights" is about how swords and swordfights should be represented in fiction, with examples of fights done both well and badly. "Gaming" is a discussion of the ways in which swordsmanship can be adapted for game design purpose. "Training" includes key insights into how we train swordsmanship."
“Useful, helpful, absorbing, entertaining. Whether you are interested in weaponry or, like me, researching details for a novel, this is the book for you.” - Helen Hollick Your search for a book that will feed your passion for and deepen your knowledge of swordsmanship ends here. Guy Windsor’s Swordfighting offers insight into this magnificent historical European martial art: you will find answers to your burning questions about swordsmanship, its theory and practice. This carefully crafted book provides essential information on diverse topics with piercing clarity. “Whether you are a writer or game-maker seeking the kind of information I sought while writing The Baroque Cycle, or just a general reader with an interest in the arts to which Guy Windsor has dedicated his career, you should find much that is rewarding in these pages.” - Neal Stephenson, New York Times bestselling and multi-award-winning author Made up of a selection of Guy’s essays and articles, with a great deal of brand new material, this engaging and revealing book makes this complex subject accessible, enabling you to deep-dive into — - Benefits of training - Types of weapons - Sword fighting principles - Historical accuracy If you are an actor, writer or games designer creating or writing fight scenes, this book provides cutting-edge research on our European martial arts heritage. You will also discover the dos and don’ts of producing a stunningly realistic sword fight. Swordfighting is not a training manual. For technical instruction on specific swordsmanship styles, pick up The Medieval Longsword and The Duellist's Companion.
"Benefit from the experience of one of the most accomplished experts in the field. A must-read for beginners and advanced practitioners alike." - Roland Warzecha, DIMICATOR The warriors, knights and duellists of old depended on their skill at arms for their lives. You can learn their techniques and tactics too. From renowned swordsman and teacher Guy Windsor comes an indispensable resource for anyone interested in martial arts, swordsmanship, and history. Through this book Guy will teach you how to train your mind and body to become an expert in historical martial arts. It includes the seven principles of mastery, considers the ethics of martial arts, and goes into detail about the process of recreating historical martial arts from written sources. On the practical side, Guy explains how to develop your skills, and lays out the path for students to become teachers, covering the basics of safe training, looking after your body, and even starting your own training group and teaching basic classes. An accessible, motivating read that includes many suggestions for further study, including courses, books and other resources, this book sets out to answer every question about historical martial arts you may have. Note that this is not a training manual for a specific style: it provides the foundations for every style. Your journey starts here. You decide where it ends.
“Guy has the rare talent of making this material accessible” -Neal Stephenson (from his Foreword to Swordfighting) “Guy Windsor's greatest gift to WMA/HEMA is his marvellous ability to translate period language into a meaningful experience for modern WMA/HEMA practitioners and he has once more shown his ability to do exactly that.” - Adam (review of Veni Vadi Vici) NOTE: THIS EDITION DOES NOT INCLUDE A FACSIMILE OF THE MANUSCRIPT From the late fifteenth century comes a detailed manuscript on knightly combat, written by Philippo Vadi. Dedicated to one of the most famous Italian condottiere of the age, Guidobaldo, Duke of Urbino, this book covers the theory of combat with the longsword, as well as dozens of techniques of the sword, the spear, the pollax, and the dagger. The Art of Sword Fighting in Earnest includes a detailed introduction, setting Vadi and his combat style in their historical context, a complete translation of the manuscript, and a detailed commentary from the perspective of the practising martial artist. Please note it does not include a facsimile of the manuscript, but that may be downloaded from a link provided in the text. This volume is the second edition of Dr. Windsor’s earlier work, Veni Vadi Vici, updating the translation and the introduction. This is essential reading for any practitioner of knightly combat, academic historian, or enthusiast for the quattrocento period of Italian history.
In From Medieval Manuscript to Modern Practice, renowned historical swordsman Guy Windsor demystifies one of the greatest martial arts books of all time, Fiore dei Liberi's Il Fior di Battaglia (The Flower of Battle). In the late 14th century dei Liberi, an Italian knightly combat master, wrote Il Fior di Battaglia (The Flower of Battle). This magnificent, illustrated manuscript described how to fight on foot and on horseback, in armour and without, with sword, spear, pollax, dagger, or with no weapon at all. Windsor spent the last twenty years studying Fiore's work and creating a modern practice of historical swordsmanship from it. In this book, Windsor takes you through all of Fiore's longsword techniques on foot without armour. Each technique (or “play”) is shown with the drawing from the treatise, Windsor's transcription and translation of the text, his commentary on how it fits into the system and works in practice, and a link to a video of the technique in action. The book also contains a detailed introduction describing Fiore's life and times, and extensive discussion of the contexts in which Fiore's art belongs. From Medieval Manuscript to Modern Practice is essential reading for all martial artists and historians of the medieval and early Renaissance.
Take your skills and knowledge from absolute beginner to experienced fencer with the Complete Rapier Workbook, Guy Windsor’s training method based on his interpretation of Ridolfo Capoferro’s 1610 rapier treatise, The Great Representation of the Art and Practice of Fencing. This workbook format includes extracts and images from Capoferro’s book (and others), with clear explanations, step-by-step instructions, and a link to a video clip of every action, technique, and drill. This workbook is in four parts: Part 1: Beginners: how to warm up safely, how to stand and step, how to hold the sword, and the fundamental blade-on-blade actions teaching you how to safely approach your partner, get control of their sword, and hit them: and what to do when they try the same thing on you! Part 2: Completing the Basics: covering all the important actions of the system, from the scannatura (“the slaughtering" to the scanso della vita (“the avoidance of the waist”). Part 3: Developing your Skills: now that you know the techniques and tactics, you can learn to actually apply them at speed. This section lays out a clear and practical way to cross the gap between “I know this” to “I can do this”. Part 4: Sword and Dagger and Sword and Cape adds the most commonly used off-hand weapons, the dagger, and the cape, beginning with basic guards and actions, and including drills to build up your proficiency with them
Everyone wants to add years to their life. But everyone needs… to add life to their years. One of the world’s foremost experts in historical swordfighting and martial arts systems, Dr. Guy Windsor wants to teach you how to maximize your personal development and live up to your true potential – in training, in martial arts, and in life – even when training solo. Using simple, straightforward, and (above all) achievable principles of action, Dr. Windsor can help you establish a solid foundation for mechanics and training in your own martial arts practices, as well as teaching you best practices to achieve excellence in life. Whether you are searching for ways to improve your combat and martial arts training, hope to increase your physical fitness, or simply want to find a better mindset for living life, The Windsor Method is for you. Join Dr. Windsor as he teaches you how to… … use mental imagery to improve your training effectiveness … find greater health as you progress … understand the importance of and best way to set goals … improve yourself even when dealing with physical or psychological impediments … and more! With profound insight, unparalleled expertise, and good-old-fashioned common sense, Dr. Windsor is the perfect guide for your journey of self-improvement. Whether you are a master of the martial arts trying to add that last critical iota to your skills, or a beginner who has never thrown a punch or picked up a sword, The Windsor Method: The Principles of Solo Training will help you find – and master – the hidden potential within… Dr. Guy Windsor invites you to harness the power of your mind, body, and soul to create maximum results with minimum fuss. Take action, find satisfaction, and get results with the proven principles of The Windsor Method – tap the link, and get your copy now!
When this coronavirus, SARS-CoV-19, emerged at the beginning of 2020, I didn’t worry too much about it, because I recognised it as being outside my area of control. There was nothing for me to do, so I just ignored it. Then bit by bit things started to change—the twin threats of death by plague and economic ruin came front and center into our collective awareness. As lockdown progressed it was soon obvious that many of my students were struggling. Things they depended on for their physical, mental, and economic health were simply gone. I realised that I had to focus on my core mission, which is to help my students. Normally, that means help them with their sword problems, but the whole point of practising swordsmanship is to improve your quality of life. And not all the help they needed was directly sword related. Then I thought of the things that were working for me: the mental postures learned from swordsmanship training, that were easing my way through lockdown with minimal stress. I started blogging these ideas as they came up, between March and June 2020, and before long was getting requests from readers to create a book of them. So here it is. Guy’s Lockdown Survival Guide, or, Swords in the Time of Corona. Some of the advice here is lockdown-specific, but most of it is applicable to all sorts of crises. I hope you find it useful.
This book builds on the foundation laid in The Medieval Longsword, and teaches you how to train Fiore dei Liberi’s Art of Arms, as shown in his 1410 manuscript ll Fior di Battaglia. Renowned swordsman and author Guy Windsor explains three of the longsword forms that are used every day in The School of European Swordsmanship: The Cutting Drill, The Farfalla di Ferro, and The Longsword Syllabus Form. Each form is explained step by step and application by application, with abundant photographs and images from Fiore’s manuscript. Guy takes you through each step first as a pair drill, then as part of the form, then as a starting point for further training, or for further research into Il Fior di Battaglia. Within these pages you will find in-depth instructions and analysis, dozens of tips for how to improve your skills, and enough material for years of study.
Armizare: the Medieval Italian Martial Art Do you want to learn authentic medieval Italian martial arts and knightly combat? With a training partner, some simple equipment, and this innovative workbook, you can. Incorporating over 40 video clips, text instruction, and many images, this workbook is the most up-to-date way to learn the ancient art of Armizare. Armizare is the Italian word for the Art of Arms, as taught by Fiore dei Liberi in his extraordinary treatise The Flower of Battle, written in about 1400. It is challenging to learn directly from the manuscript, so let the acclaimed and respected researcher, practitioner and teacher Dr. Guy Windsor make it easier for you with this workbook. Everybody learns differently, so there are options presented at various points in the workbook, allowing you to choose what to practise next, based on your interests. There are many paths up the mountain, and with this workbook you get to choose your own. The video clips include instruction for both right and left handers. The printed workbooks include abundant space for writing notes, and are available for both right and left-handers. The workbook is organised into eight classes, for you to take at your own pace. Every movement and technique is clearly described, with images from Fiore’s manuscript, and links to video clips showing you the technique in action. Join Guy as he teaches you… Unarmed techniques The four guards of abrazare (wrestling) The first six plays of abrazare The four steps (footwork) The three turns (footwork) With the Dagger The four blows of the dagger Disarms against forehand, backhand, and rising dagger thrusts Counters to the disarms Arm locks and counters How to fall safely A basic takedown/throw With the Longsword Six ways to hold the longsword The seven blows of the longsword How to parry and strike How to counter the parry with a pommel strike How to counter the pommel strike The exchange of thrusts Breaking the thrusts Training on the pell And above all you will learn how to train safely and effectively. Guy has spent the last 20+ years developing his approach to learning and teaching historical martial arts, so you are in safe and expert hands. Begin your journey into historical martial arts today with this ground-breaking Armizare workbook.