07/01/2020- GBR Fencer

2020 FIE Rules – Summary of Changes

A full list of the rule changes can be found here. This summary is intended to highlight the most significant changes and the full text of the changes should be referred to for accuracy.


Bodywire plugs – NEW – m.29  & m.31 the bodywire has a connecting plug which must be made of a transparent material, at each end.


  • For the Junior and Cadets: 2020 Junior and Cadet World Championships (the bodywires with transparent plugs will be provided by the FIE)
  • For the seniors: Olympic Games 2020 in Tokyo (the bodywires with transparent plugs will be provided by the FIE)
  • For all fencers and competitions: compulsory from the start of the 2020-2021 season.

Sabre Blades – NEW – Application 2020-2021 Season m.2 At all three weapons, the use of maraging steel blades is obligatory. Already enforced for epee and foil this is now introduced for sabre and the FIE strongly recommended that fencers “advance the date of application”.

Epee Guard Sockets – NEW – Application 2020-2021 Season m.18.3 The socket inside the epee guard must have two separate holes in the block, so that the two wires can be passed through the block separately and then connected to the terminals.

Clothing – Zip protection – Application Jan 2020 m.25.3 (c) The fastenings of the uniform, jacket and breeches, (typically zips), must be protected by a flap sewn to cover the fastenings in the direction of the fencer’s armed arm (right handed from right to left – left handed from left to right).

Clothing – Glove Closure – Application Jan 2020 m.25 Clarification of the direction of closure of the cuff of the glove: the closure of the glove should be from the middle of the wrist upwards towards the thumb.

Name on Back of Jacket – NEW – Application: season 2020-2021 m.25.3 (h) A World Champion has the right to have his/her name and the abbreviation of his/her national federation printed in red. An Olympic Champion has the right to have his/her name and the abbreviation of his/her national federation printed in gold.


Technical Rules

t.45 (Deals with acute medical incidents occurring in the course of a bout) updated to include ‘sport trauma‘ and add ‘Only the doctor and/or medical provider on duty can determine the length of time of treatment required when a medical time-out is granted.’ – Application Jan 2020

t.50.3 provides additional instruction on the process for drawing lots to assign referees and any modification. – Application Jan 2020

t.62.6   (new) “Each time the referee consults the video, whether on his own initiative, following an appeal or at the suggestion of the video-consultant, the opinions of the referee and the video- consultant must be recorded on the match sheet.”– Application Jan 2020

t.124/t.170 Unwillingness to Fight. Rules have been updated to align with the current official interpretation. Fencers and referees are encouraged to read this carefully in full. – Application Jan 2020

t.18 The combat area of the piste is 1.50 meters wide – Application Jan 2021 The conductive safety borders, (indicated in Fig. 1, the diagram of the pistes for poules, DE, finals and semi-finals, including the pistes already having safety borders), do not form part of the piste.


NB – The BF Rules App has now been updated with the decisions of the 2019 FIE Congress. If you already have a version of the App installed, all you need to do is click on the red exclamation mark that will appear on the app main screen on the Download Rulebooks icon to download the latest files. For more information and download instructions please click here.



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