The student newspaper of, by, and for Ames High School.

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The student newspaper of, by, and for Ames High School.

The WEB

The student newspaper of, by, and for Ames High School.

The WEB

SwordfightingYeah, it’s cool

Every Friday after school, a group of students gather in the church across the street for a weekly meeting of the Swords Club. It originated as the Ege Inanc Fan Club, with senior Jacob Canfield as its only member and the president of the fan club. Canfield then started to bring “swords” and the fan club became known as what is now the Swords Club. The rules are very simple: hit your opponent with the sword. If you’re hit on the torso, you “die”. If you’re hit on the arm you lose the arm. If you’re hit on the leg you drop to one knee and “lose” the leg, or hop. If you lose two limbs you “die”. Head shots are not allowed and hands and feet don’t count. If you are the one standing in the end, you win. The swords are made with PVC or bamboo cores with pool noodles slid over it, sealed with duct tape. Even though some people may think that it is dangerous to be hitting others with PVC, Canfield hasn’t had a problem with it yet. Despite being an ill-supervised club, sword fighting has yet to cause an injury. “The pool noodle is an excellent shock absorber,” he said. “It hurts a LOT less than something like paintball. It’s a shock that you can feel, but it can’t break bones. I don’t think anyone’s ever been bruised, even. As long as you keep the padding from shredding and replace bad swords, you’re fine”. Everyone agrees that the best fighter in the Swords Club currently is senior Jimmy Elliot. With 200 pounds of muscle and the ability to move very quickly, he is usually the last man standing in a battle, even if it is 10 people against him. “I guess I got good from sword fighting a lot and I was able to make really good strategies,” Elliot said. “I don’t even have to try any more, and they won’t even let me have a fair fight.” Although Elliot doesn’t get fair competition, his skills as a fighter still make him almost unbeatable. “We’ll often do team battles; whichever team has Jimmy wins, as a rule,” Canfield said. “He wins as long as he can move around. The only way to really beat Jimmy is to try to tie him down.” When passers-by see the club meet, people have many different opinions. “I think it’s kind of weird,” sophomore Will Kresse said. “If they’re fighting with swords, they could at least be like real men and use real ones.” Even though it is not recognized as a sport, the members recognize it as a definite form of sport. “It’s definitely athletic; we’re getting excellent exercise,” Canfield said. “We fight one another in one on one and in team battles, and it definitely encourages teamwork.” And sure, it could be viewed as a very violent activity, but as Canfield said, “it is no more violent than football or wrestling.”

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