Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Vet Clinic

Sunday I am heading to vet clinic. Yep...a clinic just for vets.

How this came about: A couple of weeks ago I saw on Facebook that Coach Ron Miller (Known to most everyone simply as "Coach".) was heading to a clinic somewhere in North Carolina. It was unannounced and as it turns out, a spur of the moment sort of thing. I asked his wife (Again via Facebook) where the clinic was. She responded later in the day and Coach (Out of the goodness of his heart) decided he wanted to have a vet clinic....for free. I am often surprised by the kindness of others. He said he wanted to "connect with my training partner and I".

Any knowledge concerning vet fencing is near and dear to my heart. It is a hard subject to broach. In some ways we are just like younger fencers and in some ways we are not. It becomes an even more complex subject when you think of three weapons; different age categories; training and physical strengths and weaknesses.

When I was in my forties, I ran and could bench press over 300 pounds. (The guys I worked out with were much stronger than me.) My point is that that a forty vet is going to be a lot different than a sixty vet. (I will be able to fence vet 60 this year, should I attend any National events.) My legs are still strong, but I have a bad knee and my flexibility is all but gone. Plus I am carrying a lot more weight. (I could say that I am going to loose the weight, but I doubt I would loose enough to make much of difference and it would not stay off long.) The point I am trying to make is that there are vet sixty fencers that are physically like vet forty fencers and vet fifty fencers that are like thirty year old fencers. Then look at a group of vet fencers and see were they compete. Is it mostly local events against younger fencers or are they at every national event? NOW....If you were having a clinic for vet fencers, how in the world could you make it meaningful to all the different kinds of vets that will be there. I do not see how it is possible, but I am about to find out.

I don't think there is an expert in the needs of vet fencers. I could be wrong. I am often amazed that my young coach (Brian Toomey) notes tactics used by vet fencers and pays such attention to them. He has a gift for tactics and sees things that are invisible to me.

(Odd off topic note: I remember my coach and I having a beer in a bar in Virgina. He told the waitress that he was my fencing coach. I saw a glimmer of doubt in her eyes when she looked at the two of us together. Between the two of us, I look like the gray haired fencing master. Never judge a book.... Okay....back to topic.)

Coach Miller has a doctorate in Exercise Science, Higher Education, Guidance and Psychology. Coach is "Maitre d' Armes," and is 66 years old. (A vet himself.) If anyone can deal with a vet fencer clinic of mixed fencers, it should be him. But what a hard topic!

1 comment:

cobalt said...

Thanks Jim!

Yeah... one of the better openers I've done. Good times were had at that bar.

That tactics gift can be used in many different ways...lol