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En Guard! No sitting on the fence for young actors

Published: February 6, 2017

Cornwall College St Austell 16-18

Acting students in Cornwall have been given the opportunity to learn the fascinating sport of epee, or fencing as it’s more commonly known, to add to the diversity of their résumés.

Headed by former top international epeeist, World Cup finalist and now lead epee coach, Kenichi Yamamoto, the lessons took place in the Keay theatre at Cornwall College St Austell.

Taliah Hooper who is studying for an Extended Diploma in Acting said the sessions were “really great fun”.

“It was eye opening to see how the electronic tagging equipment works within the Olympics,” she continued.

“It’s quite an active sport and a good form of exercise that I actually enjoy. It also gives us a chance to try something out, get a taste for a new sport and see if it’s something that you could pursue further.”

Cornwall College St Austell Sports Coordinator Svenya Haffenden, said the sessions were set up for the performing arts students following a conversation with their tutor on how to get them physically active whilst linking in an activity specific to their course.

“Spaces were also opened up to the general student body following a focus group with the students at the start of the academic year,” she continued.

“With Truro Fencing Club’s satellite club being local to St Austell, sessions were set up on a Tuesday afternoon. The students were quick to pick up the basics and it was great to see them all enjoying an alternative sporting opportunity.

The coaching courses were secured using funds through Sportivate, an initiative aimed at changing the behaviour of young people, maintaining their involvement and keeping them in long term participation.

The delivery of Sportivate will contribute towards Cornwall’s Physical Activity Strategy to get 50,000 more people more active by 2020.

The Fencing sessions are just one of a number of sporting opportunities that have been available to the students thanks to Sportivate. Other sessions have included ballet, rugby and bubble football.

Truro Fencing club manager, Louise Bond-Williams said; “We have a satellite club in St Austell which runs every Friday evening at Carclaze School, every week. The students who attended the sessions are very welcome to come along, especially after they’ve had finished the six-week Sportivate course.”

For further information about Fencing or to join the club email trurofencingclub@gmail.com

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