Classical Academy of Arms

A Society for Classical Fencing Instructor Training and Credentialling

Do You Want to Become a Classical Fencing Coach?

We are putting the call to action first because this is a rich website with a lot of information and you might miss the fact that the Classical Academy of Arms trains and credentials trainers to teach fencing as it was taught in the period 1880-1939.  So, if you are looking for:

  • a portable credential not based on your association with a specific instructor or program,
  • focused on the actual technique of the foil, sabre, and epee as taught by Fencing Masters of the day and documented in their writings, and
  • achievable by distance instruction and testing ...

... then please read through this site and our Instructor Development Program manual carefully, ask questions, and decide if our rigorous program is for you.

Are You A Modern Fencing Coach ...

... who wants to broaden your skill set?  Classical fencing has a rich lexicon of blade technique in all three weapons, techniques that are too complicated for the modern sport but that have significant value for training, as well as techniques that expand the fencer's understand of offense, defense, and counteroffense.  Classical fencing masters used a wide variety of teaching methods, adaptable to lessons for beginners to those for elite fencers.  And classical fencing offers a new product line for your club, program, or salle that can be attractive to fencers of all ages who fence recreationally.  Consider adding a credential in classical fencing to your modern certification.   


The Classical Academy of Arms is an organizational member of the United States Center for Coaching Excellence and is accredited by the National Committee for Accreditation of Coaching Education as a Level 5 Sports Skills and Tactics coach education program.  The Academy is recognized by the International Fencing Coaches Association as a source for training for fencing coaches.

Who We Are and What We Do

Who We Are: The Classical Academy of Arms is a membership organization of individual fencing instructors dedicated to the preservation of the techniques and values of classical fencing and to their transmission to a new generation of classical fencers. 

Philosophy:  The Classical Academy of Arms believes that fencing using classical technique has value in providing disciplined training in point and blade control and management of tempo for modern competitive fencers, in providing a framework for adult recreational fencing, in enabling serious study of historical fencing methods, and in the training of fencing coaches in the theory of the sport. 

Mission of the Academy:  The mission of the Classical Academy of Arms is to preserve the techniques and values of classical fencing and to transmit them to a new generation of classical fencers. The Academy does so by providing training and portable credentialing for individuals who teach and train athletes to fence in keeping with the practice of the classical period. 

Focus: Our focus is Classical Fencing, defined as fencing, dry or steam (without electrical scoring), with Foil, Dueling Sword (Epee), or Sabre, using the techniques taught by the contemporary Masters and the commonly accepted rules of the period 1880 through 1939.

Vision:  To serve as the center for the preservation of classical fencing technique through research and training of instructors capable of teaching period technique to recreational and competitive fencers.


  • We uphold the classical values of honor to arms and respect for the Masters.  We understand our responsibility to the Masters of the classical period to represent their teaching accurately and to keep their names and contributions to fencing alive.  
  • We believe in the importance of rigorous attention to academic standards in teaching classical fencing.  We commit to researching, documenting, understanding, and accurately teaching the use of the fencing weapons in the classical period as reflected in the record of fencing manuals and other contemporary evidence. 
  • We know that effective instruction requires the use of a full range of instructional techniques and technologies, careful planning, and disciplined execution.
  • We know that credentialing graduates of training requires a transparent and fair process with established requirements, clear and understandable metrics, and a commitment to the role of credentialing in the fencing instructor’s career.
  • We understand that the quest for excellence in training instructors in sport requires dedication to continuous learning and continuous improvement.  We demand that of ourselves, and we demand that of our students.
  • We know that better fencing results from better coaching, and we commit to conducting ourselves as professional trainers and requiring the same of our students.
  • We respect all fencers, whether recreational, competitive, or elite, for their love of fencing, and recognize that fencers in each period, whether modern, classical, or historical, are part of a continuum across 800 years of organized teaching, learning, and fighting, on the battlefield, in the duel, and as competitive athletes, from which all of us have much to learn.
  • We understand that what we do changes lives, and we embrace that responsibility.

Up to Date Information

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Salle Green LLC

The Classical Academy of Arms is one of three centers operated by Salle Green; it provides a home for Salle training programs for classical fencers, and offers a wider range of instructor credentialing and skill development services to the fencing community.  If you are interested in classical fencing and live in the metropolitan Richmond, Virginia area, please visit Salle Green's website and join us in person.

CAA Accredited

The National Committee for the Accreditation of Coaching Education (NCACE), affiliated with the United States Center for Coaching Excellence, has accredited the Classical Academy of Arms instructor development program as a Level 5 (elite level) Domain 6 (Sports Skills and Tactics) provider of coaching education.  CAA is the only provider of training for fencing coaches certified by NCACE, and the only provider of fencing coach training accredited by any educational accreditor in the United States.  NCACE accredits college and university coach education majors and minors and the coach training programs of major sports governing bodies.     

Website CE - Up to Date

The November Website Continuing Education topic on the distinctive characteristics of the one touch epee bout has been published, bringing the program up to date.  Expect the December topic the first week in December.  Remember that these topics not only help fill our annual continuing education requirements but also serve as a good review and enrichment of the basic knowledge for the oral examinations for trainer ranks.  

Website CE is Catching Up

As our members know, work on accreditation and on the 2018 summer cohort of classes has put us behind on our Website Continuing Education project - we are catching up.  The July continuing education topic is up, and August and September topics are in the works.  We expect to be fully caught up by the end of November.  Credential holders are reminded that continuing education is required to retain the credential.  For those studying for a higher rank, remember that our CE topics address information to enrich your answers to the oral examination questions.  

2018 Summer Cohort of CAA Courses

Our summer cohort of courses is well underway.  At total of 4 Classical Fencing Apprentice Instructor, 1 Classical Fencing Demonstrator, 1 Classical Fencing Instructor, 1 Classical Fencing Provost, and 1 Classical Fencing Master candidates are working on our new Moodle based courses.  Moodle is an industry standard learning management system, and transferring our teaching programs to it is a key element of our strategy to meet the requirements for domain accreditation as a center for coaching education.

New Technical Papers Page

We have started publishing a series of short articles on fencing technique using EzineArticles, an article publication website that offers wide distribution for our materials.  Our goal is to eventually develop a full encyclopedia of descriptions of classical technique, with one to three new articles appearing each month.  You can find the current list of papers on our Technical Papers page.

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