To progress the student we have a number of levels that help to assess their development. These are:
The beginner. Students learn the basics of body mechanic – how to wield heavy weapons through harmony of movement and the understanding of the body, the basics principles of combat and the philosophy of arms. The emphasis is placed on control. There are seven exercises to learn – both unarmed and with sword (for safety reasons these are practised with a wooden practise sword, called a Waster). When the Scholar is ready, they may take the Free Scholar test to demonstrate their knowledge of the basis of the system and show that they are able to improvise in a controlled and safe manner. For a dedicated Scholar the progression from Scholar to Free-Scholar usually takes between one and two years.
This simply means that the Scholar has demonstrated an understanding of the philosophy of Fencing and is considered to be able to free- play safely. The emphasis is now placed on the practical application of the art of combat and the study of the other weapon forms (Sword & Dagger, Sword & Shield, Staff) whilst going deeper into the Unarmed and Sword styles. We actively encourage Students to travel to national and international events and meet like-minded martial artists.
A Free-Scholar who has proven a good knowledge of the art, science and philosophy of Fence, and has displayed and demonstrated this skill in all manner of situation. There is a time period of at least five years before a Free-Scholar can enter the Provost exams.
A teacher. One who has gained the respect and acknowledgement of his peers and has nurtured other Scholars to the rank of Provost.