Instructions for Tournament Staff

Dress code

All tournament staff is expected to look representative and proper. We kindly ask everyone to wear black trousers or skirt and a white shirt or blouse, preferably also a black vest and a black tie or bow-tie. We recommend comfortable shoes, such as training shoes, preferably black, but not necessarily. Calls below can also be made in Swedish depending on the staff and fencers on the mat.

Tournament Manager

  • Overlook the general tournament organization and schedule.
  • Ensure similar judgement on all mats.
  • Liaison between referees and fencers, coaches and audience.
  • Check gear and competition licence of the fencers. This can be done by the referees as well or together with the referees.
    • Check also that jackets and trousers are 350 N+.


  • The tournament manager can ask the referees to do, or assist with, the gear check. See above.
  • Gather the fencers before the fencing starts and quickly go through how referee wants the fencers to behave and also answer questions. Possibly do gear check on their own or together with the tournament manager.
  • When the match starts check that everyone is ready:
    • ”Table ready?” or ”Secretariat ready?”
    • ”Judge ready?”
    • Facing the fencers one at a time: ”Are you ready”?
    • ”Fight” or ”Fence”
  • Break fight after judges call ”Point” or after observing a valid hit (the referee does not need to call ”Point”).
    • ”Break” – after one afterblow attack.
    • Separate fencers.
    • Ask for judgement by calling ”Judge”.
    • Decide upon the score after considering the recommendation by the judge. Make a very short explanation of the decision to the fencers. Call the points to the secretariat.
  • Break fight when time is up or after the exchange after the Timer has called ”Last exchange”. If the fencers are passive in the last exchange the referee can stop the match.
  • Ensure safety of the fencers and break wrestling situations that do not lead to dominance quickly.
  • If there is a reason to warn a fencer (e.g., uncontrolled fencing, striking to forbidden targets, such as the spine, the back of the head and the hamstrings, behaving in an unsportsmanlike behaviour or striking after ”Break”) the referee should do that. The usual procedure is point reduction at the second warning, lost match at the third warning and disqualification from competition at the fourth warning. The referee can decide how severe the reason for the warning was and decide the punishment accordingly. Unless the reason for warning is dangerous behaviour the referee does not need to break an exchange to give a warning, but should do it after the exchange.
  • If a fencer asks for time-out the referee stops the match (if ongoing) and calls ”Time-out” to the timer.
    • After a time-out check that everyone is ready, like when starting a match.


  • The judge is positioned on the opposite side of the mat to the referee. Move along the side of the mat to get a good view of what is happening.
  • When a fencer hits the other or lands a scoring technique (e.g. pushing the other fencer out of the mat or gaining dominance in a grappling situation) call ”Point”. Only the first valid hit by a fencer should score.
  • Register if the fencer who was first hit manages to land a strike in return. There is one chance to attack. That attack can be together with a step, but not after a step.
  • When the reference calls ”Judge” indicate using the flags what happened.
    • When considering what happened keep the flags pointing downward.
    • If the judge could not see any scoring technique hold the flags crossed in front of the body.
    • Mark the score of the hit by holding the flags to indicate the hits: horizontally outwards to the side for 1 point and vertically upwards for 2 points.
    • The judge can signal a low-quality hit by wawing the flags (crossing-uncrossing) in front of the legs (approximately at knee height).


There will be one person in the secretariat. The secretariat is responsible for registering the score and starting/stopping time (time is not important) during matches, i.e. running the HEMA CM software:

  • Start the time when the referee starts the match (calls ”Fence” or ”Fight”).
  • Stop the time if the referee calls ”Time-out” and start it again when the referee starts the match again.
  • Before each match call the names and colours of the fencers and also call the names and colours of the fencers on deck (having next match).
  • When the referee calls the score of the respective fencers the score keeper should call back the resulting score. E.g., if the referee calls ”two points red”, call ”two points red” back, if the referee calls ”two points red, one point blue”, call ”one point red” back (both scores are registered in the software and only the difference will be added to the score).

Duelling competition staff

There are referees and a secretariat designated for the duelling competition. The referee should check gear and competition cards before a match, especially the first match of the fencers. The referee helps judging the duel. A hit is considered valid if two out of three (the two fencers and the referee) cosiders it valid. The referee should stop the fight if needed.

The referees should be ready to jump in as spare judges in the competition running in parallel. If there are no designated referees available for the duelling competition the fencers should find a referee on their own. If the referee needs to leave earlier (e.g., in order to get ready for competing) they can do that.

The secretariat in the duelling competition should register (in an Excel spreadsheet) the matches (names of the fencers and score (1 point if not getting hit, 0 points if getting hit)).

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