Lightsaber duelling registered as official sport in France

first_imgShare on Messenger Star Wars lightsaber pulled from auction over authenticity issue Read more … we have a small favour to ask. More people are reading and supporting The Guardian’s independent, investigative journalism than ever before. And unlike many new organisations, we have chosen an approach that allows us to keep our journalism accessible to all, regardless of where they live or what they can afford. But we need your ongoing support to keep working as we do.The Guardian will engage with the most critical issues of our time – from the escalating climate catastrophe to widespread inequality to the influence of big tech on our lives. At a time when factual information is a necessity, we believe that each of us, around the world, deserves access to accurate reporting with integrity at its heart.Our editorial independence means we set our own agenda and voice our own opinions. Guardian journalism is free from commercial and political bias and not influenced by billionaire owners or shareholders. This means we can give a voice to those less heard, explore where others turn away, and rigorously challenge those in power.We need your support to keep delivering quality journalism, to maintain our openness and to protect our precious independence. Every reader contribution, big or small, is so valuable. Support The Guardian from as little as $1 – and it only takes a minute. Thank you. Science fiction and fantasy films Star Wars Share on Facebook “With young people today, it’s a real public health issue. They don’t do any sport and only exercise with their thumbs,” says Serge Aubailly, the federation’s secretary general. “That is why we are trying to create a bond between our discipline and modern technologies, so participating in a sport feels natural.”In the past, Zorro, Robin Hood and The Three Musketeers helped lure new practitioners to fencing. Now, Luke Skywalker, Obi-Wan Kenobi and Darth Vader are joining them.“Cape-and-sword movies have always had a big impact on our federation and its growth,” Aubailly says. “Lightsaber films have the same impact. Young people want to give it a try.”In building the sport from the ground up, French organisers have produced competition rules intended to make lightsaber duelling both competitive and easy on the eye.“We wanted it to be safe, we wanted it to be umpired and, most of all, we wanted it to produce something visual that looks like the movies, because that is what people expect,” said Michel Ortiz, organiser of a national lightsaber tournament.Combatants fight inside a circle marked in tape on the floor. Strikes to the head or body are worth five points; to the arms or legs, three points; on hands, one point. The winner is the first to reach 15 points or, if they don’t get there quickly, the fighter with the higher score after three minutes is the victor. If both fighters reach 10 points, the bout enters a “sudden death” stage, in which the first to land a head or body blow wins.Since it is still counting its practitioners only in the hundreds, lightsaber duelling has no hope of a place in the Paris Olympics in 2024. But hearing the buzz of blades may encourage others to give the sport a try.Or, as Yoda would say: “Try not. Do! Or do not. There is no try.” Europe France Since you’re here… Reuse this content news Share on Twitter Topics Share on LinkedIn Share on WhatsApp Share on Pinterest It’s now easier than ever in France to act out Star Wars fantasies. The country’s fencing federation has officially recognised lightsaber duelling as a competitive sport, granting the weapon from George Lucas’s space saga the same status as the foil, epee and sabre, the traditional blades used at the Olympics.Of course, the LED-lit, rigid polycarbonate replicas can’t slice an opponent in half. But they look and sound remarkably like the blades that Yoda and other characters wield in the blockbuster movies.The physicality of lightsaber combat is part of the reason why the French Fencing Federation is now equipping fencing clubs with lightsabers and training would-be lightsaber instructors. Like virtuous Jedi knights, the federation sees itself as combatting a Dark Side: the sedentary habits of 21st-century life. Support The Guardian Share via Emaillast_img