Practice Notes – Five Ways to Disengage

The first way to disengage is to simply loosen one’s grip so that the point drops. As soon as the blade clears the other side, close your hand and the point snaps back on-line. This works fine for short blades, but my new 45” is just too heavy to snap with just my fingers.

Really this shouldn’t be too surprising. When you perform a disengage this way you are rotating the sword at a point pretty close to the pommel.

The second way to disengage is to raise the whole hand while the blade pivots at the cross or balance point. As the blade clears, the hand drops back into position and the blade rotates up. For my long blade I found this to be surprisingly fast.

The third way I was shown today… well I don’t really understand it yet. As it was described to me, you raise the shoulder as well as the hand in order to drop the point. Like the second method, it pivots near the cross or balance point. Once the blade clears, you drop the shoulder but not the hand. This way you are not only on the other side, but on a higher line.

The fourth way is the manner of the Rose from German longsword. Your pivot point is at the balance point like the second way, but as you come up on the other side you invert the hand to that your true/long edge it up.

The fifth way occurs when you are in prima. Here you simply allow your wrist to break then straighten it out again.

Can you think of any more?

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