One of the oldest forms of weapon based combat, fencing, can trace its origins back to Spain. The sport evolved from swordsmanship that was used for both duelling and self-defence, with some of the popular fiction at the time helping expand the public’s imagination for the art.
In the modern day there are three forms of fencing that are observed: the foil, the epee, and the sabre. Typically the duellists attempt to score points through making contact their opponent. Fencing was one of the first sports that was played during the modern day Olympic Games. Due to the different requirements and levels of skill across the three different types of fencing swords, most fencers will choose to specialise in the use one sword only, although most will have learned the basics of all three types.
Fencing is currently governed by the Federation Internationale d’Escrime, which is currently based in Lausanne, Switzerland. The organisation is comprised of 145 national federations, each of which is recognised by its nation’s state Olympic Committee as the only representative of Olympic-style fencing in that particular country. The FIE is responsible for the maintaining of the rules of fencing.