The purpose of this page is to provide guidance on GBR Weapon Strategy. 

What is the GBR Weapon Strategy?
The GBR Weapon Strategy is a document to provide guidance and to set overall goals for each of the six weapons and to develop plans to achieve them .

On this page:

  • To Achieve Success Qualify First
  • The Underlying Principle of the Weapon Strategy
  • The Underlying Principles of the Athlete Need – To Achieve Success
  • Golden Thread of Athlete Development
  • Strategic Aims Across Six Weapons
  • Short Term Goals – World Class Ready


To Achieve Success Qualify First

3 ways to qualify for the Olympics as a Team,  as an Individual, via the Zonals.

  • Team
    Ranked in the top four worldwide or the top zonal team after the qualifying period. This requires a number of fencer capable of competing at World Level in the qualification period.
  • Individual
    Qualified as part of the Team qualification or the top two zonal fencers after the qualified team fencers and other fencers that would represent a country that has qualified have been taken out of the ranking after the qualifying period has finished.
  • Zonals
    Each country without any athletes already qualified can enter a zonal competition. A competition where the winning fencer achieves an Olympic qualification place. It normally requires a strong poules and winning 4 Direct Elimination fights.


The Underlying Principle of the Weapon Strategy

  • High Performance Culture & Standards
    High Performance Sport is sport at its highest level of competition. It is under pinned by the High Performance Culture components (Leadership, engaged staff, continuous improvement and open to change) We must challenge ourselves and our culture to make fencers as effective as possible in achieving their goals.
  • Attention to the Detail
    The attention to detail is to continually improve training efficiency and competitive performance. We must help all coaches and fencer operate with greater thoroughness and accuracy. ”What if”
  • Evidence based and Professional Judgement
    Using a balanced approach between data (informed) and evidence, analytics and going with what the staff think and feel based on their knowledge and prior experience.
  • Effective & Transparent Communication
    Increasing the levels of information to who needs to know, to explain the why and to listen to more of what fencers are saying, developing the feedback process (loop).


The Underlying Principle of Athlete Need – To Achieve Success 

  • Time on Task
    The fencer has to maximise their time, between preparation, training and competing. It requires a hyper focused approach on the activities to maximise development and performance rewards.
  • Appropriate Competition
    The fencers time on task should be complimented by the right competition and the right window of opportunity to achieve the maximum gains either performance development and or ranking position.
  • Fencing Experience
    Over the development and performance pathway the fencers need to gain the experience that will sustain performance at the highest level. (World Level Game understanding and intuitive decision making) They need clarity of technical and tactical competencies (GBR Style) and guidance on what they need to know and to expect (Curriculum).
  • With in mind – medals and more
    The training and competing to become world class must include the Better People – Better Fencers paradigm.


Golden Threads of Athlete Development

  • Transitions – U23
    Athletes constantly moving through the pathway hitting the standard at each tier building the right skills from the pathway standards.
  • Strategic Competition Planning (Plans A,B,C)
    Athletes following a tier competition plan, to develop competition experiences which enhances learning and accelerates athlete progression.
  • Training and Competition Standards (Result Expectations)
    Athletes hitting training and competitions standards.
  • Athlete Assessment Review
    Athletes individual 6 monthly meetings following a framework of review and goal setting based on the athlete assessment.


Strategic Aims Across Six Weapons

  1. Building a greater depth of ranking athletes in all senior weapons
  2. U23 Squad functions and teams qualifies for U23 Europeans  year on year
  3. Suitable Squad attends University Games operating every two years
  4. Junior – European and World Full Qualification and target results met


Short Team Goals – World Class Ready

Goals Impacts on Weapon Strategy
To have a cohort of athletes suitable for UK Sport Academy Programme Funding by 2024 (medal by 2032) Focus on the younger athletes (say they are medaling age 28-32 in 2032, 17-21 now)
To have a World Class Ready Performance System Allocation of resources – focusing on process, policy and procedure.
To have a healthy pipeline of athletes capable of academy standard Focus on the transitions U20 – Seniors

U23 and National Teams. Expectations of performance behaviours lower down pipeline.

To have identified a small cohort with Olympic potential 2028/2032 The opportunities to show potential to be afforded

Last Updated: 01/08/2023


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