quaker fencer

kathz isn't quite my name. I may be a Quaker. If I'm a fencer I'm a bad one and I don't do sabre. If I'm a Quaker I'm a bad one - but you've worked that out already. Read on. Comment if you like. Don't expect a reply.

Location: United Kingdom

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

densitometry and fencing badly

My back is beginning to feel less painful - and I'm continuing to fence, although not well. I'm working on the assumption that if, once a week, I stand up and wave my epée around, I won't forget what I know about fencing. I'm not sure it's working.

I tend to arrive at the lesiure centre tired - that's not new. But when tiredness is allied to caution, it's hard to summon up the determination and concentration to land hits on my opponents. Even when the coach stands still, extends his arm and asks me to hit it, I have a tendency to miss. Last week he began, thoughtfully, to move his arm into the path of my blade to ensure I hit the target occasionally. I didn't find it very encouraging - I think I used to be better than that.

Meanwhile, I was referred to the more distant hospital in town for a bone densitometry scan. The staff were helpful and I didn't have to wait. However, once I'd clambered into my hospital gown and dressing gown, the process of weighing and measuring began. I seem to be more than an inch shorter, presumably as a result of the compression fracture. I had noticed that my skirts and coats seemed a little longer than before - but I hate the thought that I'm shrinking.

Then came the various scans where I lay on a couch in odd positions while the scanner moved up and down. I was reminded of trips to the shoe-shop when I was young, It was a great treat to see my footbones in the x-ray measuring machine. I couldn't interpret the scans as they appeared on the technician's computer but it was reassuring to see that, at least, none of my vertebrae had fallen out. Sometimes I feel they are on the point of detaching themselves from my spine but they all look fairly secure, so far as I can tell.

Perhaps that will give me the courage I need at fencing. A good night's sleep would help too. And I wouldn't mind finding a way to get that missing inch back - but I'm not sure that fencing in high heels is the best idea.

Meanwhile I'm glad to report that members of the club have scored a number of successes (and trophies) in tournaments - mostly in sabre, unfortunately. Perhaps some will see the light and switch to epée, even if it's just for a couple of bouts a week.

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