We’re happy to announce that the ruleset for the new version of the IFHEMA Cup is finished.
It will then be tested this week during the HEMAC Dijon 2023 and modifications will be made if necessary with the help and feedback of the participants.

You can find the ruleset directly on the IFHEMA website:


On behalf of the Executive Committee of the IFHEMA,

Marine Beaumel
IFHEMA Competition Coordinator

Call for Participation


All HEMA competition enthousiasts, take note!!

The International Federation of Historical European Martial Arts (IFHEMA) relaunches its international tournament.

Thanks to an agreement struck last year between IFHEMA and DTE Dijon, the IFHEMA Cup will be held in Dijon biannually during HEMAC Dijon from 2024 onwards. This year (2023), IFHEMA is setting up a test event where the new format of its IFHEMA cup will be tried out during HEMAC Dijon XX. The first edition of the new IFHEMA Cup will be curated by the French HEMA Federation.

We are reshaping the concept of national teams that was first applied during the IFHEMA Cup 2015. Mixed teams will be selected by each national member federation, wishing to contribute. The number of each gender per team should be 30% or higher. Fighters will have the option to fight either in mixed or in their own gender category (opt in/opt out). Rule sets will be variable within an IFHEMA Tournament Framework.

For the test event this year (2023), we will need volunteers, fighters, and staff, to help us see what needs to be improved, changed and/or reworked.

Volunteer fighters in this test event DO NOT need to be sent by their federations.

The test event will take half a day and be longsword only for now. We need maximum 40 fighters and about 16 staff volunteers. The number of women per team should be 30% or higher. Each team will be composed of 5 people (ideally, 3/2).

We intend to test several ways of judging and scoring for technicality, not for hits only. To participate in the test event standard tournament equipment will required (details will follow in the document specifying the rule set). Fighters will have the option to fight either in mixed or in their own gender category (opt in/opt out). You can sign-up as a pre-made team or as an individual fighter. Individual fighters will be assigned to a team later. All HEMAC Dijon participants are welcome to subscribe, even from non-IFHEMA member countries! In case there are more candidates than places, people will be selected on a ‘first sign, first come’-basis.

If you are interested in participating please sign-up using the following link:


or contact Marine Beaumel at

[email protected]

if you have any questions. The rule set, planning and the precise date will be communicated soon.

Programme for the IFHEMA — MAM Symposium and IFHEMA General Assembly
December 3th – 4th 2022.

We will have four great HEMA collections presented from a cross-cultural point of view: Gotti, Corble, Mokken & Valle.

On Sunday in the morning we’ll have a Round Table on future projects: a large exhibition in the Belgian Royal Library) and a discussion on the future of culture/research/competition cooperations in the HEMA Community, with a formal announcement of the cooperation between IFHEMA and DTE/HEMAC Dijon for the new style IFHEMA Cup!In the afternoon, the ninth IFHEMA General Assembly will take place.We plan to stream the Symposium to the general public, so stay tuned for the next updates and links to our YouTube page!

  • Second Call for Contributions

            Extended deadline: September 15th, 2022 !!

On the occasion of the International Federation of Historical European Martial Arts’s ninth General Assembly, and to celebrate the cooperation agreement signed between the Museum of Martial Arts (MAM) and IFHEMA, a symposium is organised in Brescia, Italy, 3-4 December 2022. The collections of the MAM constitute the largest single private collection of HEMA-related source-material in the world, and the goal of the cooperation is to render these collections more accessible to both the HEMA and the academic community.

The Symposium will be held at Brescia, December 3-4th, 2022, and will take place on the site of the museum.

The corpus of texts known as Fight Books spans at least five centuries (XIV-XVIII) and deals with the art of individual combat in all its intricacies and manifestations as practiced in Europe during the given period. Assuming that the readership of these texts consists primarily of people practicing fighting themselves, and since fighting is practiced everywhere and in all layers of society, this corpus is characterized by its potential to cross boundaries. This essential feature is manifest on at least three levels: 1) even when dedicated to specific social strata,  the corpus of Fight Books seems to permeate different social classes; 2) the phenomena of translation, linguistic borrowing and intertextual referencing are a typical feature of the corpus; 3) Especially in the Renaissance the overlap between different ‘arts’ and ‘sciences’ in both sources and practitioners is striking, and testifies to the changing relation between ‘art’ and ‘science’ in general over that period. Our corpus is a valuable but still underestimated witness to that cultural transformation process.

In a nutshell, stressing the intellectual richness and the cultural pluriformity of the Fight Book corpus will shed new light on what can be considered as “European cultural heritage”.

Based on this observation, the symposium aims at stressing the linguistic and intercultural interactions and exchanges within the corpus. It therefore focuses on multilingual sources, contemporary translations, commentaries and re-interpretations, as well as adaptations developed to counter, integrate or disseminate a given fighting system or master.

Topics may include

  • multilingual sources
  • translations and cultural adaptations
  • counter systems in a different cultural/linguistic context
  • educational strategies
  • cultural shifts related to social mobility
  • interdisciplinarity between arts and the idea of the “uomo universale”

Proposals should include a title, an abstract (200 words max.) and a brief biografical note, and send to [email protected] before September, 15th, 2022.

Contributions in different European languages are welcomed. Contributors are expected to provide an English translation of their abstracts, and to ensure the linguistic accessibility of their contribution for their target audience.

Presentations will be videorecorded and made available afterwards. Publication of accepted contributions on different platforms will be arranged. Updates on this follow when available.

The event welcomes contributions by members of academic community, as well as by independent researchers and HEMA practitioners.

For informall inquiries, contact the Curators:

Karin Verelst ([email protected])

Roberto Gotti ([email protected])

Scientific Committee                                                 Organising Committee

Karin Verelst             Roberto Gotti                         Filipe Martins

Myriam Vogelaar      Hélène Leblanc                    Roger Norling

Daniel Jacquet           Manuel Valle Ortiz               Jacopo Penso

Olivier Dupuis           An Smets                               Moreno Dei Ricci

Dierk Hagedorn        Roger Norling                        Laura Boschetti


Dear fencing friends!, it is our pleasure to announce the “HEMA goes Public” event.

Last year, the project “HEMA in the Park” was launched for the first time in Austria and neighbouring countries (e.g. Germany, Hungary and Swizerland) to make our sword fencing known to the public.

This year it is called “HEMA goes Public” and should grow worldwide.

Anyone who wants to take part is cordially invited to do so. Find a park of your choice, fence and have fun and inform the spectators what you are doing.


IFHEMA is deeply saddened by the ongoing military escalation in Ukraine. As an international and pan-European sports- and cultural organisation, it strongly condemns all violations of international law. We call on those with political responsibility to reach a peaceful solution through negotiation, not through violence and war. IFHEMA supports all initiatives within the HEMA community that seek to support refugees from the conflict, which are intended to alleviate the suffering of war.


The Executive Committee

Brussels, September 21, 2021

Dear Members,

The Autumn Equinox is a good moment to welcome you all into the new IFHEMA working year 2021-2022, in what we all hope(d) to become the ‘post-pandemic period’. Sadly, the future appears still to be full of uncertainties: Corona is far from just over, many HEMA organisations struggle to make sense of their present and their future situation. IFHEMA tirelessly continues to work with its partners to (re)build our community in the face of this adversity, in the first place by establishing a schedule for a few important initiatives and activities that may help provide HEMAists around the world some grip & positive perspective for the year to come. Let me give you a short overview.

  1. IFHEMA Cup
  2. GA08 (our next General Assembly)
  3. Cooperation and activities

The most urgent of these is the upcoming IFHEMA Cup. Many of you wonder whether it will happen. There are still some uncertainties, but chances are good that it will take place. As soon as we get full confirmation of this edition’s host and co-organiser, our German member federation DDHF, a large scale information campaign will be launched. But in order to allow you to start already with preparations, the key points to note follow below.


  1. IFHEMA Cup

IFHEMA attaches really great importance to the IFHEMA Cup 2021. It will be the first important international event to take place since the start of the Corona pandemic. We got a strong mandate from the last General Assembly to develop a new format for organising a national teams based HEMA-competition, starting from a solidly XXI-century gender-inclusive philosophy, as well as from the idea that technicality in fighting should be rewarded on an equal par with scoring hits. With our German member federation DDHF, who generously hosts the Cup 21, we have been working out this format, on which more details will follow soon.
But because of the ongoing Corona situation, it is not yet completely sure that the event can go ahead, due to quick evolution of the application of Corona safety criteria in Munich, Bavaria’s capital, our Cup venue. Bavaria recently relaxed its criteria considerably, but the planning of the use of the city’s sports hall is still subject to negotiation by DDHF with the city council. Our German member federation is doing everything it can to secure the date chosen as closely as possible to the date determined by the 2020 General Assembly: either the weekend of 27-28 November or the weekend of 3-4 december 2021. The likelihood that the Cup will go ahead is thus very high, but not yet completely certain. That certainty should be reached at the
latest by the end of this month. A Plan B in case of last minute cancellation of the event pending ad hoc Corona emergencies by the local or national authorities is to postpone the Cup to 2022.
IFHEMA decided to provide (limited) financial support to the international judging team set up by DDHF in cooperation with Austria and Hungary. We are also trying to support members who face real difficulties to participate, by keeping participation fees and/or the prices of accommodation as low as possible.

Cup format: basic outline
DDHF has done a fantastic job in developing a basic concept that includes all the crucial elements required by the GA07 mandate. Fruitful mutual debate and in depth preparatory experimentation on their side has led to a pioneering new, inclusive “people fight people” concept, that opens up tantalising possibilities and can prove pioneering as a potential benchmark for national team competitions in fight sports worldwide in the years to come.

More specifics on the Rule Set, gear requirements, practicalities etc. will follow over the coming weeks through the Cup organiser, DDHF.

The basic features of the Cup format are:


  • a single team of 5 per country, 3 male, 2 female participants
  • method of composition of teams is an internal member affair, but should be fair and transparent
  • teams fight teams, not individuals, and will be classified and rewarded as such
  • there is no a priori gender separation, but individual athletes can opt in or opt out for ‘mixed’ or not in their individual fights. Fights will be composed accordingly by the competition organiser
  • display of technical competence in fighting is rewarded on the same par as scoring hits


  • a single team of 4 per country, 2 male, 2 female participants
  • method of composition of teams is an internal member affair, but should be fair and transparent
  • teams fight teams, not individuals, and will be classified and rewarded as such
  • there is no a priori gender separation, but individual athletes can opt in or opt out for ‘mixed’ or not in their individual fights. Fights will be composed accordingly
  • display of technical competence in fighting is rewarded on the same par as scoring hits

More details concerning rules are worked out presently. An international team of judges is being prepared by DDHF in cooperation with our Austrian and Hungarian member federations, to be able to implement the system in a well-prepared, competent manner. Details on format & rules will be communicated asap through a web page prepared by DDHF dedicated to the Cup, as well as through direct instructions to the Team Captains.
We are also preparing jointly a draft for a more general framework that might become the basis for future IFHEMA Cup organisers. This evidently will be subject to further discussion with our members on the basis of what we learn from our experiences this year.

Appropriately enough, given that IFHEMA is a country-based organisation, the IFHEMA Cup will thus be more akin to — if you indulge me in the tennis comparison — the HEMA “Davis Cup” than to Wimbledon.
It is in any case going to be something entirely new and tantalising! I therefore call our members to start preparations for composing their teams, and confirm to our Secretariat their will to participate and the name and email address of their Team Captains. This list will be communicated to the DDHF, which from then on will communicate with you directly. The contact person on the organisers’ side is Thomas Bögle, DDHF’s Vice-President, who will stay in touch with the participating teams through the unique channel of the respective Team Captains. The Secretariat will reach out to you soon to coordinate the collection of their names.


  • Confirm ASAP your Federations’ intention to participate in the IFHEMA Cup 2021
  • Assign a national Team Captain
  • Communicate both your intention and the name + email address of your Captain to the IFHEMA Secretariat. This list of names + contact details will be passed on ASAP by the Secretariat the DDHF, this years’ Cup host and organiser
  • Communicate directly with the organiser’s coordinator of the CUP 2021 for instructions (Thomas Bögle, Vice-President of DDHF)
  • Compose your teams
  1. Coming Working Year and General Assembly 2021-2022

A second point, on which more information will follow soon, are the plans for the coming Working Year, apart from the IFHEMA Cup. The first important point is the General Assembly. We shall start the revision process of IFHEMA’s By-Laws. The idea is to accommodate the membership criteria of IFHEMA to countries with more than one representative HEMA structure, rather than just one, as was requested by GA07.
Also, the decision process on some points should become less burocratic. The idea is not to vote on a change of By-Laws already this year, but to have an in-depth discussion about specific proposals, so as to see clearly the advantages and disadvantages of the different approaches. The goal is to come with a final proposal for voting to the GA of 2022.

A third point is cooperation. IFHEMA is setting up with Roger Norling’s HROARR and with Roberto Gotti’s museum. Partners like those can help spread information and communication in the first case, and be a support for activities in the second area define in our By-Laws: cultural heritage. The plan is to set up a major cultural event in 2022 with the Gotti museum as a partner.

A fourth and final point is the Code of Conduct Commission. That has been somewhat delayed, but the plan is to get it back on track with a view to a draft proposal for the 2022 GA.

IFHEMA is determined to help bring new post-Corona perspective to the HEMA community by working as concretely as possible with and for its members. We count on your enthusiastic cooperation, and look forward to seeing you all in Munich for a splashy competitive IFHEMA Cup in a festive glow!

Sincerely yours,

Karin Verelst

Dear friends,

Due to a enquiry from one of our member federations whose subject is mentioned above, we are to inform that, regarding “competitors’ licences”, IFHEMA issues no such documents, nor prescribes anything in this regard.
In case of need, please contact your national federation.


This is the major HEMA event in Greece that will be held in 2019. Lectures, workshops and tournaments.

Find the Hellenic Federation of HEMA Facebook page here https://www.facebook.com/hemathlon

Visit Website https://hemathlon.com/