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Foil

Foil



The foil was introduced in France in the year 1653 by Charles Besnard as a non-lethal training weapon for the developing smallsword.  True Masters of the art of fencing consider the foil as the training tool for all beginning fencers and only allow other weapons to be used once the foil has been mastered.  The French Foil is the most recognized, but Spain, Italy and Germany also developed their own foil grips to fit their hand contours and schools of fence.  Orthopedic, commonly known as pistol grips, were first introduced in the early 20th Century to accommodate fencers with nerve damage or loss of fingers as a result of war and accidents.  They also became popular with aging fencers suffering from arthritis.  Classic fencers use the true grips, such as the French grip, as they can be used by either hand. Foil when used in the classic styles is art in action, a ballet of blades that is style and grace with the sole purpose of hitting without being hit..  Electric foil fencing is a  game of timing and speed with no regard for reality of a pointed weapon.