Had a great crowd tonight as Jon brought his brother, David, along and Amy and Lorna brought along a friend of theirs, Emma.
After some footwork practice to get warmed up, we did some cutting drills.
1: Defence strokes from Oberhut to Alber, changing off between B-F line and the H-D line. Start by cutting from Oberhut to Langort with a step, then following through to Alber; gather for the next step while lifting the sword to Oberhut on the other side for the next cut. The final aim is to string these cuts together in a fluid motion with correct stepping.
2: Oberhau and Unterhau, changing off between B-F line and H-D line. Cut from Oberhut to Alber (with step) as before. Then cut to Ochs with an Unterhau along the same line. From Ochs make transition to Oberhut on the other side, via a feigned thrust, e.g. from Ochs on right, thrust forwards, drop tip towards the left before swinging it up for the cut, keeping the hilt high. Follow on with another Oberhau to Alber, then Unterhau back to Ochs. Again, the aim is to make the cuts with correct stepping, smoothly swapping between the two lines.
3: Unfinished cuts. Unfinished cuts end near Langort. Meyer uses them as faints, the Bolognese authors favour them because of their defensive capability, their useful to unarmoured fencers because we have pull our cuts. We did the first drill from Meyer's book on the Dussack.
Stand in Oberhut with left foot forward and cut into Langort with a passing step (reversing stance). Cut up into Ochs with a gathering step and then down into Langort with a step on the right foot, then once more for a total of three cuts. Again, the aim is to smoothly connect the cuts while employing correct footwork.
In the meantime, David (i.e. Don William) worked with Amy and Emma on Meyer basics.
We then looked at another Meyer device: the Hip cut (Hüffthauw). We tried the simpler example of fainting a thrust to the face, then completing a Mittelhau to side.
Finally, David (Don William, that is) and I had a bit of sparring practice. Yay!