ABOUT THE VERMONT FENCING ALLIANCE

Update as of 3/23/22: Registration is now open for beginner classes starting in early April. If you are interested in joining this spring, please contact Viveka to get on our email list. Classes will be offered at Charlotte Central School and at a location in Middlebury tba (either Mary Hogan School or Bridge School). We are proud that we successfully returned to indoor fencing this winter with no known cases of covid transmission. Our club includes older fencers, parents of preschoolers, people with higher risk of severe covid or who live with those at risk. Fencing is a face-to-face sport where you are exercising for a prolonged period in the same limited space as your training partner. Therefore, we choose to err on the side of caution when it comes to covid safety measures. Please note up front that participation in the VFA requires full vaccination for covid for all ages (exemption for medical reasons considered with a doctor's note). At present, all fencers are required to wear face coverings, including under the fencing mask while fencing. While that requirement may change over the course of the spring if community transmission falls to low enough levels, you should for now expect to wear a mask and be willing to do so.

We offer an active program of recreational fencing and competitive training for people age 9 through adult. Our activities include foil and epee classes at all levels, occasional beginning sabre classes, open fencing, a regional league for friendly competition, and travel to meets throughout New England and beyond. Whether you want to go for the gold, or just try a little swashbuckling for fun and exercise, the VFA warmly welcomes beginners.

Our Competitive Squad program is open by invitation to experienced fencers ages 13 through adult. Competitive Squad members train together and support eachother in the pursuit of their fencing goals, while serving the club as a core group of motivated and enthusiastic athletes. The success of the program can be measured by the medals the athletes bring home, but more importantly, by the fun they have and the lessons they learn about dedication, leadership, sportsmanship and teamwork.

Head coach Viveka Fox, a former all-Ivy fencer and North Atlantic womens foil champion, has over 45 years of fencing experience. She is the founder and past president of the USFA Green Mountain Division, and a nationally certified referee. She is a USFCA accredited Moniteur (instructor). In 2019, Viveka qualified to represent the US in age 50-60 womens foil at Veteran World Championships for the second time. She believes that fencing is not just another sport, but is a creative way of thinking and moving that links us to the past and allows us to express ourselves as individuals. She is a great believer in and supporter of lifelong athletes and grassroots fencing. When not fencing, she plays in the New England roots music band Atlantic Crossing, the Celtic band Frost and Fire, and tries to spend as much time as possible outdoors.

Watch VFA coach Viveka Fox, and teen competitive fencers in a local "Going for the Gold" segment from August, 2016:
www.mynbc5.com/article/go-for-the-gold-nbc-5s-abby-isaacs-takes-a-stab-at-fencing/3039121

Listen to coach Viveka Fox talk about fencing on Vermont Public Radio's Vermont Edition in July, 2014:
www.digital.vpr.net/post/summer-school-how-fence

Listen to VFA fencers and others talk about why they love fencing on the nationally broadcast NPR program "Only a Game". This segment was produced by North Country Public Radio's Brian Mann at the 2011 Ticonderoga Challenge Outdoor Epee Tournament. Check it out on-line: http://onlyagame.wbur.org/2011/06/04/epee

Fencing for young children: Fencing has complex rules (not intuitive) and requires a high degree of hand-eye and body coordination. Our classes are fast paced, and geared for older children, teens and adults. We would rather have children wait until they are old enough to have a successful experience in our classes than to have them give up in frustration. Our minimum age for students is 9. There is no upper age limit for fencing-we have club members who are over 60 years old, and really enjoy our adult beginner students! If you have children who are interested in fencing but too young to join the VFA, you can cultivate their interest by bringing them to observe a class and/or watch a tournament. Spectators are welcome at all of our activities free of charge.

See Schedule for details on classes and practices in Middlebury and Charlotte.

For more information on other Green Mountain Division member clubs, go to www.gmdfencing.org

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