A Chivalric Venture!
Armored combat is perhaps the most visible and well-known aspects of the SCA. We don armor, pick up swords and shields, and engage each other in unchoreographed combat. The number of combatants can range from one-on-one, to melees with dozens of warriors, to large scale wars with hundreds of fighters. We hold tournaments that showcase individual prowess and events that give us all a chance to come together and fight as units of friends.
Our rules for combat depend on a core understanding of honor and chivalry. There are no judges, so it is up to each fighter to recognize and acknowledge when they have been struck with a killing or disabling blow. If you are struck with a stout blow to the head or body, that is considered a “killing blow.” A solid strike to the arm or leg disables the use of that limb. The competition is fierce, but safe.
Weapons and Armor
[Borrowed from the SCA Newcomer’s Portal which also has great information and resources available.]
The weapons used in our armored combat activities are largely made out of rattan, a grass that looks and feels very much like bamboo but has a solid core. Rattan is a safe alternative to wood for our recreated weapons because if a weapon breaks, it shears along the grass instead of splintering. We also have other types of weapons such as axes and maces that use rubber and foam to create a safe replica of the weapon that looks like the original but is much safer to use.
Our armor is designed to provide covered to important joints and organs so that our combat activities can be both thrilling and safe. Both the Society and the individual kingdoms have a set of minimum standards for this armor, but as a general rule, armored combatants must have sufficient protection for their head and neck, their joints (wrists, elbows, shoulders, and knees), their hands, and their kidneys and groin. Armor can be customized to reflect the period of combat the individual prefers to study, from full suits of armor made of plate metal to shirts of chainmail links to scales and belts of hardened leather. We also use shields made from wood or metal that help to protect us.
We have loaner armor, swords, and shields available for you to try it out. Contact the Knight Marshal for more information, or just come out to one of our weekly practices.