Recommended Equipment List

The club will seek to provide beginner equipment, however we recommend that committed students acquire their own kit as soon as possible. Start with groin guard, masks, gloves, practice weapon (in order of priority).

Last edit: 03/09/22

Author: James Normansell

Edits: Sascha Semmler

I’ll try to keep this document as up to date as possible. Most things have a cheap beginners option and a more expensive tournament/advanced option. When you’re about to buy something (whether it’s on the list or not) please speak to someone about it first. I’m always up for gear chat and am happy to give advice on sizing/quality/value for money etc.

If you have things you think should be added please leave a comment here or send me a message.

Note from Sascha: I can help with adding extra padding to masks, professionally sewn and tailored. Please reach out. This for students only, as there is no commercially viable option on the market, and scrum caps may not always be suitable.

Groin protector

Get one from any sports shop at approx. £10

One that is worn in direct contact is best so it doesn’t slip around.

Avoid gel cups and choose a hard material - either thick plastic or steel.


Allstar Coaches (tournament) £156:

Get this one for tournament fencing, the mesh quality is the best on the UK market. Note you’ll also want some extra padding, ie rugby scrum cap (get from ebay) or sew in some foam inserts. Also needs an overlay + back of head

Red Dragon (beginner) £69: Perfectly adequate for friendly sparring.

You will eventually want to replace it over time if you’re doing tournaments, but they offer good sizing options and are reliable. The fabric banding around the mask will eventually tear from repeated contact and will need to be taped back in place - this is fine and cosmetic only, but can be avoided with an overlay.

Overlay/Back of Head protection

Spes Trinity £66.50

Full mask overlay, maximum protection but can get hot for some people

Spes Unity £64.55 Top and back of head protection.

Slightly less protection but more freedom and less hot

Red Dragon from the Knightshop offers equivalent models at a lower price. These are slightly less well-fitting. Buy a size larger.


Red Dragon Gorget £20

Fine for careful club sparring/drilling. Isn’t rigid enough to deal with very heavy thrusts at tournament intensity. Also doesn’t cover back of neck.

Lightweight Gorget £50-132

Good UK option for rigid plastic gorget, covers back of neck and has clavicle option.


Hard low-profile gorget. Lower price but lacks back of neck protection


SPES AP £171

Available in mens/womens cuts.

Spes provides frequent updates to their jackets. Most models are suitable. If you are a beginner, for longsword avoid officer’s or light jackets, since there is less padding.

Red Dragon from the Knightshop offers equivalent models at a lower price. These are alright for the price but have no padding over the spine, we recommend to avoid them even thought hey are in common use.

Chest protector

Masterguard £36

Not mandatory, but good for taking the sting out of thrusts to the chest


Sparring Gloves SG Fechtschule Gdansk £147

Recommended. Go for the mittens. Either get the hourglass cuff (and pair with forearms and elbows) or get extended cuff with just elbows

Spes Heavies £181

Slightly stronger than the SGs, but much more restrictive

Red dragons £59

Fine for foams/synthetics/sabre/rapier. Just not steel longsword. Have durability issues and may wear out very quickly. MUST be worn with fingertip protectors firmly glued or taped in place for synthetic longsword!


Spes elbow £18.92


Riot surplus forearms <£15 Ebay

Not pretty, but perfectly adequate

SPES Light Forearm Overlays £35

Low profile, good if you have the hourglass cuff mittens


Spes Locust/hussar/Officer pants £80-100

Recommended, excellent overall protection.

Spes Skirt £66

Decent padding where it covers, leaves gaps at the leg. Ideally you need leggings or something underneath to cover exposed skin.

Riot surplus thighs <£15 Ebay

Leaves gaps, not great but ok for careful club sparring


Ideally you want something that also covers the sides of the knee. Shin Guards from other sports are acceptable

Riot surplus knees <£15

Decent but cheap option, sometimes lacks side of knee coverage

Spes Knee + Shin guard

Red dragon Knee + Shin guard


Sigi £272.27

Easily the best feder on the market. Super springy and forgiving in the thrust. I recommend the concept schilt with either regular or shorty length.

Regenyei Medium £170.28 Cheaper option.

Get the medium flex, back folded tip. The standard “strong” flex is too stiff.

Jo staff £18

Jo staffs make a nice cheap option as a longsword solo trainer. Bonus points for not scaring your neighbours.


Kvetun Easton £224.60

Current best sabre. Nice and flexible


approx. £24