Archive for Fencing Masters

10 Questions with Sergei Golubitsky

Posted in 10 Questions with tags , , , , , , , , on May 13, 2011 by Combative Corner

Sergei Golubitsky is considered by many to be “The Best Foil Fencer in the World.”  It is certain that we will remain one of the best fencers of the 20th century, winning 3 straight world championships in Men’s Foil.  Sergei is a Ukrainian fencer with other notable achievements such as: writing an autobiography called Fencing Is My Life, helped to design fencing blades for the company Leon Paul, and is currently coaching his wife, Caroline (another champion in the sport.  Read a transcript of an audio interview with her : here ).  Fencing.Net did an interview with Sergei back in 2004 that is worth a look (here).  Besides Sergei’s biography (the best since Nadi’s, On Fencing), there is a dvd available in which he breaks down his performance from 3 world champion bouts (product review).  Now…. Sergei Golubitsky gives us 10 answers  –

What events in your life brought you to fencing?
My father was a fencer and foil coach. Besides I was going to the movies and watched many musketeer films (Zorro of course!).  On 31st of March 1980 my dad took me with him and after, when I was back home, talking to my mom, I decided to give my dad the news, that I was gonna fence.
What year (in your opinion) did you feel like you were at your peak?
1997 – World Champ for the first time (in individuals) and 1999, I became World Champ third year in the row, I won the World Cup.
What was your memory of the 2000 Olympics?
I was rather sad and unhappy. That didn´t help me at all for my fencing. I had private reasons for that.
—-(follow up to same question)— You placed fifth in the world! Were there no “pleasant” moments?
Almost none.
What was your training regime like?
It was different at different stages of life and age groups
What characteristic do you think make a top fencer?
Intelligence, ability to adapt quickly, ability to read oppontnt´s intention, ability to anticipate, hard worker, feeling of tempo, talent.
Are there any particular names that you follow in fencing today?
Caroline Golubitsky (my wife)
Is there, or has there ever been, anything that you did NOT like about fencing?
Non competent referee, sold referee, no fair play.
When you were competing, was there anything you did that (you felt) gave you “a competitive edge.” (i.e. meditation, music, exercise, etc?)
No, not really.
Can you tell us anything about designing your signature blade (i.e. what makes it different from others, what input you had on the process, etc)?
Leon Paul was making blades and giving them to me, in order to test and approve them.  They made necessary improvements to my requests up to the moment.   I was happy with the product.
How are you spending your time these days?
At the moment I´m training my wife for Olympics and travelling with her.  It looks like in the future I might work in the US.

10 Questions with Tim Morehouse

Posted in 10 Questions, Fencing, Fighters, Swordsmanship, Weapons with tags , , , , , , , , on February 28, 2011 by Combative Corner

Tim Morehouse is an Olympic Silver medalist in fencing (Beijing Games 2008) and a National Champion (2010, Atlanta, GA).  He has achieved a lot since getting graduating from Brandeis University including: Masters degree in Education, the number one ranked US Men’s Saber Fencer (2009-2010) steadily climbing the ranks to within the top 15 in the world.  The CombativeCorner has been eager to learn about this guy, and luckily we did.  Look to find all in his upcoming book, due out in Spring 2012.  Click on the image above to visit his website.

How did you know you wanted to be a fencer?

I didn’t! I didn’t even know what fencing was when I first went to the tryouts at my middle school, but it was one of the few options for being on a team at my school, so I went to check it out and fell in love!

What was your biggest challenge when you first started?

My first semester of fencing I actually got a C! I had a hard time focusing and paying attention for long periods of time when I was younger so fencing really helped me to improve my focus an discipline, but focusing was also my biggest challenge at the start.

What is your favorite weapon and why?

Saber. I have fenced it since I was 14. I started in foil, but I always use to look over at the people practicing saber and wanted to do that one instead so I made the switch to saber. It if fast, dynamic and a lot of fun.

What is the greatest thrill of your career thusfar?

Winning Olympic Silver Medal in 2008 Beijing Olympics, my National Championship in 2010 and becoming a first team all-American in 2000 while representing my school Brandeis University

What athlete has inspired you the most and why?

Jackie Robinson was a big inspiration for me. I wrote a book report on him when I was in 4th grade and the character he showed helping to overcome the color barrier in Major League Baseball was unbelievable. He faced so many challenges and overcame all of them.

What is your favorite film to watch (that has fencing) and what about it makes it your favorite?

The favorite fencing thing I’ve watched is the Modern American family fencing episode and it is HILLARIOUS! The son on the show is a dominating epee fencer at his club and his family is so proud, but he wants to retire before the gold since he has to fence a girl…I don’t want to give away the whole episode! They just did the whole episode so well, had me dying of laughter!

What would Tim Morehouse have become (you think) had fencing not been a part of your life?

I’m not sure. I really enjoy acting and have done a lot of classes in high school and was missing one credit to be a theater minor in college. I was never able to do any plays because fencing always took priority.

What goes through your mind before you begin a bout?

I’m thinking about what action I’m about to execute and also telling myself to “come to my baseline” mental place. I always want to be fencing from a familiar and strong mental place. Never get too high and never get too low.

What ritualistic, superstitious, or mental preparation do you do pre-competition? In other words, how do you get prepared?

The night before I like to relax and watch TV shows. On long trips, I’ll usually bring a season of something. I also will write notes to myself the night before about things I want to make sure I do the next day when I compete. I have a very regimented warm up routine involving mental and physical warm up as well. Not too many superstitions.

What passions does Tim Morehouse have off the strip?

I enjoy doing things that are challenging and that help people. I was a teacher for 3 years with Teach For America and worked another 4 years on staff training teachers to work in inner-city schools so I would say that education is my biggest passion. I also enjoy blogging, doing a bit of stand-up comedy every once in a while, meeting great new people and planning events.

Bonus Question:

If Tim Morehouse was a superhero, what power would he have and what weapon (if any) would he have and why?

The power to help people believe in themselves more. (including myself!) I think you can link back most successes to having confidence and belief in what you’re doing. Imagine what kind of world we could live in, if more people pursued their passions and ideas 100% and weren’t afraid to play it safe.

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