Fencing time in many US Fragment Sectors poses significant challenges to the training period of competing entrepreneurs. Fencing is a game all year round, in competition every month, and in some cases the opportunity for the makers to wrap up the meeting at a distance running every weekend. In this case, the planning of a regular training program requires a close agreement between the individual’s goals, the desire to succeed, and the formation of a club or residual training program.
Normal time creates four levels of training:
- Large Macrocycles – Multi-year cycles for events that occur more often than one year; the Olympic quadrennium is an example.
- Macrocycles – one training cycle that lasts for a year (in some cases two macrocycles can be good).
- Mesocycle-number of training cycles, maximum 6, within the macrocycle.
- Microcycles – weekly training cycle.
The nature of the training cycles is reasonably tied to major competition events in the fencing year. What those major events in the competition are depends on the level and goals of the fencer. For a great athlete working to make a national team, each event in the selection process is a major event. In this athletic program the Section A2 issue is not important, and is only relevant to the level at which it operates as a training event. Real-world events vary by device and age group, but include American World Cup, World Cup, and select World Cup festivals as well as Grand Prix festivals. For the top foil fencer this is at least seven scoring events in the national scoring charts, culminating in the World Championships, an event where the fencer has to work hard. In the hand with the best fences, it is the only macrocycle, with special mesocycles for each target event.
For many fencers, however, being ready for the Junior Olympics or World Championships is a daunting task, with little success in the event. For the cadet fencer this could be two macrocycles and the Junior Olympics as one and the National World as the second. But each of these macrocycles seeks to operate at the most favorable event in the average fencer, operating at least two microscopes. The challenge is to identify, from a wide range of existing tournaments, macrocycle festivals that will serve as important preparations for sports and national festivals, and which may serve as targets in the mesocycle.
This is even more difficult with the need to achieve the right division to qualify for the desired event. For example, I coached a Canadian resident living in the United States whose goal was to fence off an event in Section 1. He received his C award at a Category 3 event, but did so too late to qualify for the Category 1 circuit tournament (C at least schedule) before returning to Canada.
What does this mean for a trainer who uses part-time training? First, the coach and fencer keeper must have a good understanding and agree on goals, and those goals should be long-term, strategic goals, supported by annual goals. The objectives drive the overall design of the training program.
Second, the coach and fencer provider must select festivals that contribute to achieving the objectives of the training program. Not all tournaments are worth the effort. Some tournaments should be completely smooth or treated only as training events for using fencer to work on specific problems (because understanding that medals or divisions are not intentional can be difficult for some athletes).
Third, sufficient time should be allowed between major tournaments to run the training program. If the fencer trains five days a week and fences off weekend competitions, you are more likely to work with a full microcycle between competitions, including rest and recovery. However, if the fencer trainer trains one or two days a week, it is very difficult to vary the length, strength, and construction of training sessions to achieve any improvement. This is true even if one of the many models of the passage of time is chosen: combination, simultaneous, skill / strength, or speed with many elements.
All of this means that both the coach and the fencer keeper must understand their goals and work together to find the best training method that meets the objectives of the competition within the reality of the club situation, current time, and fencer training capabilities. Periodic training is an intricate form of training with a proven track record of improving the performance of athletes. It is also a process that requires both the coach and the athlete to understand and be committed to its application.