128 episodes

Guy Windsor and friends discuss sword training, historical swordsmanship, research, and other topics. Guests include well-known instructors and experts in the field.

The Sword Guy Podcast theswordguy

    • Leisure
    • 5.0 • 8 Ratings

Guy Windsor and friends discuss sword training, historical swordsmanship, research, and other topics. Guests include well-known instructors and experts in the field.

    How to Teach Historical Martial Arts, with Guy Windsor

    How to Teach Historical Martial Arts, with Guy Windsor

    This episode of the podcast is a little bit different because I'm not interviewing anyone. I'm here to talk to you about how to teach. I believe that teaching historical martial arts or anything else is a skill, and as such it can be studied and taught. In other words, you're not born a good teacher, you become one through mindful practise. So the question, I guess, is how do you set about that in a systematic and useful way that will lead you to your desired result? Well, I have a course. Of course I have a course; I always have a course. I am releasing this week my course on how to teach. Now, before you just dash off and buy it, because you're just that sort of excellently supportive listener to the show, I think it would be a good idea if you listen to some excerpts and get an idea of what the course is all about and then decide whether it's really for you.

    Listen to the episode or read the transcript for exclusive extracts from the course. And to buy the course itself, you can find it at guywindsor.net/teach, where there is a 40% discount offer - only valid until Wednesday 5th of October.

    For more information about the host Guy Windsor and his work, as well as transcriptions of all the episodes, check out his website at https://swordschool.com/podcast  

    And to support the show, come join the Patrons at  https://www.patreon.com/theswordguy

    • 40 min
    From Katanas to Creating the Metaverse, with Neal Stephenson

    From Katanas to Creating the Metaverse, with Neal Stephenson

    Neal Stephenson is a best-selling author, futurist, tech geek and swordsman whose works include Cryptonomicron, Seveneves, The Diamond Age, Snow Crash. He has also co-written several other books and graphic novels which we discuss in this episode. His latest book, Termination Shock goes into depth and detail about Sikh martial arts, which he had to research during the Covid lockdowns.

    Of course, Neal’s main claim to fame is that he wrote the preface to my own Swordfighting for Writers, Game Designers and Martial Artists.

    We cover an enormously wide range of topics in this episode, from fountain pens to working with Jeff Bezos building rockets. If you want to find anything in particular, the timestamps and related links are listed below:

    [03:07] How Neal got into swords. Neal’s club in Seattle is Lonin.
    [08:12] Ellis Amdur and Japanese martial arts.
    [14:31] Bartitsu
    [17:53] Silver and McBane. Note: It was Captain John Godfrey's 1747, A Treatise Upon The Useful Science of Defence, where he said that “The Small-Sword is the Call of Honour, the Back-Sword the Call of Duty.”
    [28:50] Indian Club training
    [37:46] Sword fights in fiction and how to write one
    [43:48] Working with Charles C. Mann on Cimarronin. The Manila Galleons. We mention Da’Mon Stith and episode 23 of this podcast. For the photo of Ellis Amdur sticking an eight foot spear into Neal’s chest, see: https://swordschool.com/podcast/from-katanas-to-creating-the-metaverse-with-neal-stephenson/ 
    [52:40] Fountain pens
    [55:38] How Neal plots, writes and edits his books, and how he co-writes with another author
    [1:01:09] How Neal’s books changed culture – e.g. influenced the development of the Kindle (see Fiona image here: https://swordschool.com/podcast/from-katanas-to-creating-the-metaverse-with-neal-stephenson/ Fiona is a character in The Diamond Age. Amazon used the codename ‘Fiona’ for their Kindle project.)
    [1:03:47] Working with Jeff Bezos at Blue Origin finding better ways to power space rockets
    [1:14:05] Bullwhips
    [1:15:41] LAMINA1 and building a new open platform for metaverses
    [1:28:28] The best idea Neal hasn’t acted on yet
    [1:32:14] What Neal would do with $1 million to improve historical martial arts

    For more information about the host Guy Windsor and his work, as well as transcriptions of all the episodes, check out his website at https://swordschool.com/podcast  

    And to support the show, come join the Patrons at  https://www.patreon.com/theswordguy

    • 1 hr 37 min
    Elementary, my dear Windsor, with Dr. Ashley Polasek

    Elementary, my dear Windsor, with Dr. Ashley Polasek

    Dr. Ashley Polasek is a historical martial artist who started with Lichtenauer and now teaches Bolognese swordsmanship. She is based in South Carolina, but spends much of her time travelling for her day job working with one of the world’s most successful playwrights.   

    Ashley is an expert in Sherlock Holmes. She was a consultant on the first Enola Holmes movie and is a member of the exclusive ‘Baker Street Irregulars’. Her PhD is in adaptations of Sherlock Holmes, and it is fascinating how the character pops up in so many different versions, and yet they are all recognisably Sherlock Holmes. Even Sherlock Gnomes.

    (As she is so keen on adaptation, I’m sure Ashley won’t mind that the misquoted title of this episode, “Elementary, my dear Watson,” was never actually said by Sherlock in any of the books.)

    We also talk about how having no vision in one eye affects Ashley’s swordfighting, training to be a Ninja Warrior, women’s hips, and getting swords into schools.

    For more information about the host Guy Windsor and his work, as well as transcriptions of all the episodes, check out his website at https://swordschool.com/podcast  

    And to support the show, come join the Patrons at  https://www.patreon.com/theswordguy

    • 1 hr 40 min
    Teaching horses martial arts with the Horsemen of Eire

    Teaching horses martial arts with the Horsemen of Eire

    Alessia Pagani and Jack Gassman run Horsemen of Eire, an equestrian training school and medieval combat academy outside Wexford in Ireland. Alessia specialises in natural horsemanship and Jack takes care of the swords.

    In this episode we talk about what’s natural about ‘natural horsemanship’, and its origins in American cowboys and medieval training techniques. There is a blog post here with pictures of the single and double pillar training techniques we discuss: https://dariocaballeros.blogspot.com/2013/09/antoine-de-pluvinel-images-from.html 

    Alessia spent time living and working as a cowgirl in Arizona and she explains how Rossfechten (swordfighting on horseback) is similar to herding cattle. Teaching horses to fight is not dissimilar to teaching humans to fight, when you understand their motivations and characters. As Jack says, horses intimately understand violence and will beat the shit out of each other over “you looked at me funny”.

    We also find out why there is so much unarmoured longsword in Liechtenauer, why it helps to be a dancer, and how many plates you have to spin to run a business involving horses.

    Audiobook Bundle Special Offer!

    Don’t forget to check out my audiobook bundle for The Theory and Practice of Historical Martial Arts. This includes the ebook and the audiobook version, narrated by Kelley Costigan. You can find it at guywindsor.net/tsg22. That link will get you 20% off the list price until 15th September 2022.

    For more information about the host Guy Windsor and his work, as well as transcriptions of all the episodes, check out his website at https://swordschool.com/podcast  

    And to support the show, come join the Patrons at  https://www.patreon.com/theswordguy

    • 1 hr 39 min
    Support Vector Machines are Cool, with Kari Baker

    Support Vector Machines are Cool, with Kari Baker

    Kari Baker is a data scientist and swordswoman from Arizona who writes appallingly advanced data analysis articles for Sword STEM. In our conversation we discuss how data helped increase women’s participation in events and whether we can predict a double in tournaments.

    You can find Kari’s Sword STEM articles here: http://swordstem.com/author/kbaker/

    If you have any interesting research questions, or datasets you want to ask questions of, send them to Guy or pop over to the Sword STEM Facebook page.

     

    Audiobook Bundle Special Offer!

    As mentioned in the introduction to this episode, check out my audiobook bundle for The Theory and Practice of Historical Martial Arts. This includes the ebook and the audiobook version, narrated by Kelley Costigan. You can find it at guywindsor.net/tsg22. That link will get you 20% off the list price until 15th September 2022.

     

    For more information about the host Guy Windsor and his work, as well as transcriptions of all the episodes, check out his website at https://swordschool.com/podcast  

    And to support the show, come join the Patrons at  https://www.patreon.com/theswordguy

    • 1 hr 16 min
    Movement Matters with Katy Bowman (Episode 54 repeat)

    Movement Matters with Katy Bowman (Episode 54 repeat)

    Bestselling author, speaker, and a leader in the Movement movement, biomechanist Katy Bowman has been changing the way we move and think about our need for movement. Her eight books, including the groundbreaking “Move Your DNA” and “Movement Matters” have been translated into more than a dozen languages worldwide. Bowman teaches movement globally and speaks about sedentarism and movement ecology to academic and scientific audiences. Her work has been featured in diverse media such as the Today Show, CBC Radio One, the Seattle Times, and Good Housekeeping. One of Maria Shriver’s “Architects of Change” and an America Walks “Woman of the Walking Movement”, Katy has worked with companies like Patagonia, Nike and Google as well as a wide range of non-profits and other communities, sharing her “move more, move more body parts, move more for what you need” message.  Her movement education company, Nutritious Movement, is based in Washington State, where she lives with her family.

    In our conversation we talk about form, feet, injuries, and Jess Finley’s ‘hooky’ acromion process (it’s part of your shoulder). When you use swords, or do any other sport, the movements – or lack of – that you do all of the rest of the time when you are not doing swords create your ability to move freely and effectively with a sword in your hand. What is your body doing when it is not doing swords?

    We mention Ruth Goodman’s book, How to be a Tudor. You can find out more here: https://www.penguin.co.uk/books/287/287072/how-to-be-a-tudor/9780241973714.html and listen to our podcast episode here: https://guywindsor.net/2021/04/fire-and-cauldrons-episode44/

    If the section on barefoot shoes inspires you, check out Freet shoes https://freetbarefoot.com Use this code at checkout: THESWORDGUY10 to get 10% off- and if you do, I’ll also get a small commission. Yay!

    The author mentioned when we are talking about Finland is Robert Holdstock, the Mythago Wood series.



    We also discuss sedentary culture, what it’s doing to us and our kids, and how we might improve our environment to make movement more likely. Human movement is at an all-time low and our children are currently facing both a movement and nature deficiency, with physical, mental and environmental consequences.  The good news is, while the problem feels massive, the solution is quite simple…and fun! Katy’s forthcoming book, “Grow Wild: The Whole-Child, Whole-Family, Nature-Rich Guide to Moving More” is out in the UK on 24th June, SRP £24.99, published by Propriometrics Press; distributed by Chelsea Green Publishing.

    On Bookshop UK: https://uk.bookshop.org/books/grow-wild-the-whole-child-whole-family-nature-rich-guide-to-moving-more/9781943370160

    On amazon UK.: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Grow-Wild-Whole-Child-Whole-Family-Nature-Rich/dp/1943370168/ref=sr_1_1?crid=29X0ZIYTB1DAG&dchild=1&keywords=grow+wild+book+katy+bowman&qid=1615844073&sprefix=grow+wild%2Caps%2C225&sr=8-1

     

    Katy’s web/social media links:

    https://www.nutritiousmovement.com

    https://www.facebook.com/NutritiousMovement/

    https://www.instagram.com/nutritiousmovement/

     

    For more information about the host Guy Windsor and his work, as well as transcriptions of all the episodes, check out his website at https://swordschool.com/podcast  

    And to support the show, come join the Patrons at  https://www.patreon.com/theswordguy

    • 1 hr 43 min

Customer Reviews

5.0 out of 5
8 Ratings

8 Ratings

Mws027 ,

Eye-opening 😁

Subtly opening up the world of historical martial arts. I have learned a lot, and I have been inspired to try new things, big fan and I hope it continues

Pocad The Magnificent ,

An absolute gem!

Not just swords, but history, how to live better and even the meaning of life.

Donadqc ,

Not just swords, but always a joy

This is the one podcast that I look forward to the most each week. Always an interesting, engaging and illuminating discussion around something to do with historical martial arts and swords, but moving off into related tangents such as dogfighting in war planes, falconry, medieval fashions, video games, The Lord of The Rings, Sherlock Holmes, Star Wars, footwear, you name it! Each spoil side is an hour well spent. Listen in, you won’t regret it.

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