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The Agonistics Code
A Modern Code Duello
© 2013 James LaFond
Modern Agonistics fighters do use a number of competitive formats borrowed from FMA [Filipino Martial Arts] and fencing, particularly when competing with practitioners from those arts. It is now January 2013 and we have an Agon tentatively planned for May. In that light I would like to suggest, that rather than using a tournament format and borrowed rules, that we just hold it as a challenge meet; with an MC who will call on fighters from junior to senior to make challenges. This is in keeping with the dueling tradition of the Western World exemplified by the Code Duello.
Keep in mind that our freestyle bout rules and round-robin meet formats are compromises to encourage the participation of FMA fighters.
As we are an informal network I suggest we dispense with much of the aristocratic pretenses of the old dueling code, and use a method that keeps the spirit alive and reflects our modern mores, or lack-there-of.
The Agon
An Agon will be conducted as a challenge meet. The fighters will register with the MC, indicating their age and years of experience. A fighter’s age plus years of experience will determine his seniority.
Example: Brett will be 18 and has been weapon fighting for 7 years, resulting in a seniority of 25.
The MC will call upon fighters to make challenges from least to most senior. Challenge rounds will continue until no one levels a challenge, and then the Agon shall end.
All challenges are to be fought with rattan sticks or wasters.
Steel weapons are reserved for demonstrations and shaped hardwood and synthetic blunts are just as dangerous.
Challenges may be of the following type:
1. Blade: duels begin with a salute
2. Stick: bouts begin with a tap up
When a challenge has been made the challenged fighter will then choose the format
from the stick or blade list.
Before any bout or duel the fighters must select someone present to act as a moderator; settling disputes and calling for a halt if a fighter is in danger.
1. Symmetrical duel with wasters or stick-as-blade from among the selection available
2. Stick & Dagger duel
1. Single-stick Submission
2. Stick Boxing [double-stick]
3. Stick & Dagger duel
Dueling Rules
Duels are decided by the best of three clean lethal or disabling strokes.
A stroke is clean if the duelist has not taken a disabling or lethal counter within a beat.
No protective gear is presumed when considering stroke effects.
Single-stick Submission
The stick is just regarded as an accessory to the violent act. All techniques are permitted. The bout ends when a fighter submits or is unable to continue. Gear is voluntary.
Lethal or disabling strokes to protected areas must be acknowledged. The rule is: if it hurts with light gear it would get the job done with no gear; and if you can feel it with heavy gear it would get the job done in the absence of protection.
The nuances of the gear at hand should be discussed ahead of time.
Stick Boxing
Only stick striking and clinching is permitted.
The only non-weapon tactics permitted are checking, clinching, sweeping and disarming.
No strikes or submission holds with hands, feet, elbows, knees, etc.
The bout ends when one fighter is completely disarmed or when he submits due to attrition or acknowledgement of a disabling head shot.
Hand-shots taken while wearing heavy gloves should be acknowledged as potentially disabling [two power shots should do it].
Record Keeping
If a third party is present and would like to record results this would be nice.
Personal Note
I was recently challenged at a school I coach at and was moved to compose and post this code largely as a guideline for my own behavior when present there. I hope it finds acceptance among my agonistic friends.
I will not be making any challenges at our upcoming Agon, and will accept all challenges until further notice.
-James, 1/1/2013
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Charles Meisling     Jan 3, 2013

Just be ready old man.
Adam Swinder     Jan 8, 2013

I'm going to post this to my weapons group, so that they know what's up.
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