“You need to hold the foil as if you were using it to paint a picture”. This phrase stands by one of the many basic steps of fencing and reflects the elegance of the sport. It might have escaped your attention, but Sacueni has a Fencing Club, brought to life by the one and only Csilla Rupárcsics. She is the instructor of the sessions, which take place in the local Sports Centre, three times per week.

For now, around ten children are lucky enough to experience the fabulous sport that is fencing. As anything else in this world, the task of conducting training sessions and maintaining the club alive and well is really complex. Starting with the fact that fencing is a sport that requires a lot of equipment, Csilla depends on private donations to keep the activities going. Her determination is astonishing, if it was not for her devotion and perseverance Sacueni would not have this invaluable asset. Recognition and focus need to be put in such activities as they help the community in countless ways.

Fencing is considered to be the physical version of chess. Concentration, speed, strategy and cleverness are key to be successful. It involves two fencers, facing each other, whose goal is to touch the opponent’s body with the tip of the foil, épée or sabre (the various kinds of weapons composing the three existing types of fencing). Entranced in a myriad of back and forth movements, one is left witnessing an elegant dance which draws in on far more than just physicality. Children involved in this sport, or any kind of sport in that matter, develop physical literacy, which refers to the know-how, confidence and motivation to enjoy sport throughout life. Enrolling children in sports from early ages will set the roots for them to remain physically active and healthy.

Furthermore, fencing supplies key motor skills like agility, balance and coordination. The sessions conducted by Csilla include a full-body workout, increasing fitness, speed, strength and timing. On a mental scope, as mentioned before, this sport has to do with strategy, thus analysis, tactics, psychological control and mental awareness are crucial. The tactical complexity is enormous, emphasizing on the agility, alertness and endurance of the fencer. By the same token, children learn to deal with pressure and relieve stress, working through the ability to observe others and understand strategy. Last but certainly not least, it helps develop problem solving skills and cope with success as well as defeat and fortify their confidence. Signing up children in the Fencing Club will benefit their upbringing, giving them savvy motivation, commitment, cooperation, leadership, discipline, self-awareness, teamwork, sportsmanship, time management and communication abilities.

Moreover, the relationships and friendships built in training sessions produce a tightly knitted network of support for the kids that will always accompany them. Extracurricular activities can enhance children’s competences and help students develop life skills. It pushes them out of their comfort zones, further increasing their capacities in various fields, improving integrity and determination while boosting their desire to excel in a non-toxic way.

Above all, it puts children in a position in which they can have fun. Fencing lessons are a fantastic opportunity to explore hidden talents and foster confidence among participants. These lessons build on the utterly needed sense of belonging among children worldwide. Sacuenians must come together as a community to encourage schools and local institutions to promote and support inclusive programmes for extracurricular sport, such as the Fencing Club. This goes far beyond sport and physical activity, it is about giving children the chance to be part of a group, to be part of a family. It is the best chance to give kids the opportunity to belong.