My Story on a Fencing Strip

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My eyes only followed the two figures, donned in white, squat-walking back, forth, extend, stab. I watched as the fencers calculated their every movement with precision and speed. What do the arm movements of the ref mean? How do I know when someone scored a point? Ow. That looked like it hurt. Did it hurt? Although my knowledge was limited, fencing in its rawest form would not only spark my passion for the sport, but also mold my mindset on facing challenges in the years to come. As a sophomore, I tried out for the varsity team on a whim, attempting to escape the comfort zone I’d locked myself within. Others saw a clueless little girl gazing at a sport she didn’t understand anything about (which was certainly true), but what I saw intrigued me enough to make me want to try. In retrospect, the lessons I learned from my teammates when I started fencing rooted themselves within my character and haven’t left since.

“You can lunge a lot farther than that. Don’t underestimate yourself!”

It was through fencing that I first discovered the importance of self-confidence, particularly in athletic mentality. It took months of practice before I could fence a bout without feeling the weight of judgmental eyes towering over me. As I cheered...

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