As I stated below, I got a new waster from Hollow Earth Swordworks–a side sword trainer, as it happens.
So, with some time on my hands, I went below and proceeded to beat my pell. *Ahem*… if you are unclear on what I mean, please follow the link (and get your mind out of the gutter 😛 ). In this case, the pell is one of my mobile heavy bags, the type that have a base that fills with some heavy substance, such as sand or water.
Immediately after I had gotten the waster and brought it home, I had wondered if having the index finger over the cross guard would inhibit the power and/or accuracy of my cuts. Oh, nooooo, indeedy, it did not. If anything, it increased the accuracy and didn’t seem to affect power at all.
Now, I wasn’t going full tilt (so to speak), but the cuts were hard, fast, and powerful. If I ever get a pressure meter it would be interesting to whack at it with both grips (hammer and finger-over-gruard). But for now, I’ll just be practicing both ways.
But man, it is fast! And quick to manipulate–the point goes just where you want it, almost without thinking. Funnily enough, I pulled it out briefly at Mary Wash Fencing Club practice Sunday and without even trying, hit the suspended-golf-ball-on-a-string target with a thrust and lunge. Huhn, maybe that’s why I hit it–I didn’t really expect to that easily…
Also, being one-handed, and the blade just slightly shorter than my longsword, I was easily able to keep from battering my downstairs walls and ceiling… mostly. 🙂
Much more easy to handle in confined space, but yet with plenty of reach. And I found it quite usable to wrap my off-hand on the pommel for two-hand work, as well.
I played with simple cuts and thrusts, combinations, moulinets, etc. Even half-swording. Great fun. And picked up my old sabre mask as a buckler for a while. As usual, when I get a chance to have targeted free play with something for a few minutes, it teaches me very quickly what makes sense, and how it wants to be most effectively used. Neat. Now I reaaallly want a buckler.
Light, fast, and powerful. What more could you want? I had my doubts at first, but now I understand why this was such a popular sword form, for so many years. Just makes sense.