Rules and grades


Black Boar has four levels: Scholar, Free Scholar, Provost, Instructor


Anybody who is accepted into the School and has paid their annual membership fees is considered a Scholar.

Free Scholar

To progress to Free Scholar a student must be approved in two weapons. This would usually take up to six months for each weapon, although students are approved when the instructor thinks they are ready, taking into account factors such as previous experience, rather than to a strict timetable. Approval is based upon a formal assessment process to include closely supervised free fencing and is based upon the ability to put into practice the school styles and to fence within the schools expected safety standards.

A Free Scholar is entitled to engage in freeplay at the school.


To progress to Provost, a Free Scholar must have completed study of at least two weapons to approved freeplay status, and begun their own study of styles outwith the standard curriculum. In addition, as they will be expected to undertake supervision of freeplay and assist or lead classes, they must have demonstrated a suitability for such tasks by passing an internal instructor process. External accreditation where appropriate is reccomended for Provosts.


To progress to Instructor, a Provost is expected to show a full understanding of at least one style, and usually more, to a level where they can teach without supervision and have done so for a minimum of one year within the school. At this level, the Instructor would be expected to have passed an internal and appropriate national accreditation process.

The rules of the salle

The aim of these rules are fairly simple, to allow everybody who comes to Black Boar to have the best opportunity to improve their swordsmanship and to keep everybody safe.

  1. Students will always treat each other and the instructor with respect.
  2. Students shall always follow the class instructor's or supervising provost's instructions.
  3. When the instructor is addressing the class, other conversations shall end.
  4. Students will not improvise or move on to 'the next thing' during drill.
  5. All training weapons should be completely blunt, free from burrs and rust and in good working order.
  6. Always ask before borrowing equipment and always return it in the condition it was first taken.
  7. On the cry of 'Halt' all swordplay, of whatever form, shall stop instantly.
  8. No sharp weapons will EVER be used in the salle.
  9. No student shall engage in free fencing in or out of the salle until they have been approved to do so, unless directly supervised by the instructor or provost within a lesson.
  10. No student shall teach other students in or out of the salle until they have been approved by the school.
  11. No free fencing shall take place in the salle unless an instructor, provost or class supervisor is present to supervise.
  12. Students will always take their fellow students safety as their primary concern.
  13. Blows, thrusts or any other attack shall be made with control, and without endangering the recipient.
  14. Masks should always be worn during paired drill or freeplay.
  15. Appropriate additional protective equipment, suitable to the style, shall always be worn during drill and freeplay.

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