I found this rack of “Fencing Masks” down at the local hall where my son sometimes practices his achery.
The Mask, including a bib which protects the neck. The mask can usually support 12 kg on the metal mesh, 350 newtons of penetration resistance on the bib, however FIE regulation masks must withstand much more, 25 kg on the mesh and 1600 newtons on the bib. Some modern masks have a see-through visor in the front of the mask. These can be used at high level competitions (World Championships etc.).Fencing is a family of sports and activities that feature armed combat involving cutting, stabbing, or bludgeoning weapons that are directly manipulated by hand, rather than shot, thrown or positioned. Examples include swords, knives, pikes, bayonets, batons, clubs, and similar weapons. In contemporary common usage, fencing tends to refer specifically to European schools of swordsmanship and to the modern Olympic sport that has evolved out of them.
Fencing is one of the four sports which has been featured at every modern Olympic Games. Currently, three types of weapon are used in Olympic fencing:
Foil — a light thrusting weapon; the valid target is restricted to the torso, the chest, shoulders, and back; double touches are not allowed (see priority rules below). This weapon follows the rule of “right of way”
Épée — a heavy thrusting weapon; the valid target area covers the entire body; double touches are allowed. There is no “right of way”
Sabre — a light cutting and thrusting weapon; the valid target area is the saddle line, which is from one side of the fencer’s hip to the other, and up, this also includes the head. The target area does not include the hands. This weapon follows “right of way” The saber is also used for training because of its light weight.
The word fence was originally a shortening of the Middle English defens, which came from an Italian word, defensio, in origin a Latin word. The first known use of defens in reference to English swordsmanship is in William Shakespeare’s Merry Wives of Windsor: “Alas sir, I cannot fence.”