Classical Academy of Arms

A Society for Classical Fencing Trainer Education, Development, Credentialing, and Support


To give candidates for credentialing the greatest opportunity for success, the Academy has established the following prerequisites for participating in its credentialing courses.



Candidates for credentialing must be able to read and write in the English language.  Depending on the School the individual will use as the basis for further study, the ability to read the language of that school may be desirable.

Computer literacy, including the ability to communicate by e-mail and to use voice and video communications applications such as Zoom and Skype, to conduct Internet research using search engines, and to locate and use scholarly articles and period sources, is necessary.

Candidates must have one or more students available as training partners in the appropriate weapon:

  • Classical Fencing Apprentice Instructor - foil
  • Classical Fencing Demonstrator - foil
  • Classical Fencing Instructor - foil
  • Classical Fencing Provost - foil and either epee or sabre
  • Classical Fencing Master - foil, sabre, and epee

Candidates must have a facility in which they can train.

Candidates must have the ability to schedule time for study, for practice teaching, and for examinations adequate to meet the requirements for examinations.  Candidates must be willing and able to commit to regular weekly participation in study and teaching over the course of one or more years of work.

Candidates must have the capability to record and post videos of their teaching for review by their assigned trainer and mentor.

Prior training in sports first aid to national guidelines is desirable. 

Training in youth and athlete protection to national standards for sports coaches is required but may be completed during the credentialing course.

Insurance normally required of fencing coaches in the candidate’s country is required.

Students and candidates must be able to read English language text, to understand and learn the material taught, to safely complete training, and to communicate clearly with their students and examination panels.  Where possible we will make all reasonable accommodations to facilitate meeting these requirements. 

NOTE: We reserve the right to exclude from training courses anyone who disrupts the orderly running of the course, who poses a threat to the safety of other students, who is unwilling to abide by the Academy’s code of ethics, or who intends to put the knowledge taught and skills learned to a criminal or violent purpose.


Candidates for credentialing must meet the following age requirements.  All credential holders under age 18 must work under the supervision of a credentialed classical fencing trainer (Classical Fencing Demonstrator or higher):

  • Classical Fencing Apprentice Instructor - minimum age 13
  • Classical Fencing Demonstrator - minimum age 18
  • Classical Fencing Instructor - minimum age 18
  • Classical Fencing Provost - minimum age 18
  • Classical Fencing Master - minimum age 21

Note that these minimum ages are absolute minimums for exceptional candidates and that candidates have the experience, maturity, and judgment that would be expected of adult trainers in any sport.


Candidates for Classical Fencing Apprentice Instructor (a pre-professional class assistant credential) should be engaged in an active classical fencing program, have demonstrated the potential to teach to the supervisor of that program, and be able to work toward credentialing goals in a self-directed manner.

Candidates for Classical Fencing Demonstrator (a class assistant credential) should have at least one year of engagement in an active classical fencing program and technical command of the skills taught in Ranks 1 through 3 in the Classical Academy of Arms Skill Development Program with a focus on foil being preferable.  To the greatest extent possible their experience should be based on an identified School of the classical period as taught according to the texts and other evidence of the period.


Candidates for Classical Fencing Instructor, Classical Fencing Provost, or Classical Fencing Master must have completed the requirements for the previous credential.


Previous experience with classical fencing is desirable, but not mandatory.  However, the candidate must commit to teaching and using classical technique to meet requirements throughout the duration of the credentialing program.

Grants of credentialing by reciprocity, including as the basis for seeking higher credentials, may be made to holders of the ranks of Aide Moniteur, Animateur, Moniteur, Prevot, and Maitre bestowed by national academies of arms or by the Academie d’Armes Internationale or the International Fencing Coaches Association subject to conditions requiring adequate knowledge of the context and practice of classical fencing.  Reciprocity for credentials granted by national governing bodies of amateur fencing may be made under the same conditions if the Academy can establish equivalency of skill sets.

Because of the nature and extent of this credentialing program, grants of reciprocity require a coach who is well and broadly educated not only in the history and technique of fencing, but also in modern education, sports science, and coach development principles.  It should not be expected to be an automatic award.