Our fifth interview done in this series was with Lindsay Goodwin, who is a member of the Saskatoon Historical Fencing Society. Having sent Lindsay a list of questions she sent me back her answers to help us at the Museum, and the wider community, understand better what her group is all about.
Q: Thank you for taking the time to answer these questions Lindsay. The first thing I would like to know is what your position within your group is and how long have you been involved?
A: All of the club members are fighters first and foremost. Together we are a community of fighters who share teaching positions within the club. This encourages our members to learn firsthand from our resources and share ideas with the group in a community learning environment. I became involved with the group in 2012, when I stumbled upon their poster in one of the University of Saskatchewan hallways. I went to one of their meetings and instantly fell in love.
Q: That is fantastic! What inspired you to join the group after attending that first meeting and what is your favourite part of being involved in your group?
A: I have always had an appreciation for martial arts. Fencing gives me an opportunity to participate in a martial art, as well as shamelessly loving the medieval lifestyle. It’s also really great exercise, which is an added bonus. My favourite part is the sense of community I feel when the club meets and we all share our interest in learning and practicing these techniques. We all get along and are here to improve one another’s skills.
Q: I can definitely relate to the appeal of learning a different type of martial art that you don’t always find being taught in other places. Do you find you gain more insight into the medieval groups that you are learning the fighting styles of? If so, could you please describe an aspect of it?
A: Because our club covers a great scope of time periods we see how weapons and combat change along with the world around it. Most of our manuals are written with a particular environment in mind which reveals a great deal about how and why people employed the weapons and techniques that they did.
Q: That is extremely interesting, especially that you have enough information to recreate their techniques. Now this was the Historical Fencing Society’s second year participating the Museum’s festival. What would you say is your favourite part about being involved with the medieval festival? What would you like to see in the festival’s future?
A: The Museum has really supported us as a University club, and we are more than happy to return the favour. It’s a great opportunity for the club to demonstrate its knowledge and skill, to meet others interested in this art, and to interact with the public. Personally, I am just glad to share with others all that I have learned from medieval sword-fighting. For future festivals, it would be interesting to see a little cross club competition, since we are a fight oriented club. Additionally, we would also like to see this festival evolve to the state where we could have a medieval feast (we love to eat!).
Q: That sounds awesome, a medieval feast is definitely an experience that would be great for community members to enjoy, and is something that the Museum has been thinking about trying to take on. For my last question, is there anything that you see in your group’s future that you are excited about?
A: Hopefully we can get to a more competitive level and see the rest of the historical fencing community grow as well. More people getting involved is an exciting prospect, as new fencers only make the community better and stronger.
Q: Thank you for taking the time to answer these questions Lindsay!
For more information about the Historical Fencing Society, check out their Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/Saskatoon-Historical-Fencing-151151171625367/