The student news site of the University of Northern Iowa

Northern Iowan

The student news site of the University of Northern Iowa

Northern Iowan

The student news site of the University of Northern Iowa

Northern Iowan

En garde with UNI’s sword fighting club

Members of UNI’s Swordfighting Club prepare for battle on Lawther Field.

The University of Northern Iowa is home to many extracurricular clubs –– one of which is the university’s Swordfighting Club. Created around 2012, UNI’s sword fighting club has grown in the past 10 years to a group of 25 members.

“Our Swordfighting club has been a part of UNI for a long time. It has been a part of a national organization called Belegarth for around 10 years now,” Club Secretary Nickolas Graham said.

Held on Wednesday and Saturday afternoons in UNI’s Wellness and Recreation Center, the Swordfighting Club is one of many sword fighting clubs around the nation. Like many other organizations, the club was affected in 2020 when the COVID-19 pandemic hit causing it to struggle with getting more people involved.

“We just renewed our membership after COVID, having struggled due to lapsing membership,”  Graham said. Having renewed membership, the club grew with more members while electing brothers Nickolas and Magnus Camp as their president and vice president.  With 25 members in total, the club has grown, offering a friendly place for sword fighting.

“I think it’s unique because there’s nothing like that here at UNI. We are more here to participate, have fun, and encourage active participation from everyone.” Graham said.

The Swordfighting Club has grown by having open arms to interested newcomers. Along with sword fighting, the club branches into other related craftings areas like making armor or clothes, leatherworking and metalworking while offering a friendly environment for anyone to hang out.

“My friend Magnus and I were walking around campus after welcome week in August of last school year. Then we saw two people walking with some foam swords and we were curious so we followed them. That was how we were introduced to it. It was kind of right away we knew it sounded like a lot of fun,” Graham said.

From one small moment of interest, Graham and Camp found a club that welcomed them while allowing them to explore their interests in sword fighting with other members. With an ever-growing group, the group leaders President Camp, Vice President Camp and Secretary Graham plan for the future.

“We recently developed an Instagram, @NANBELEGORN,  where we will post more regularly with pictures of events. There is a national side of things with events nationwide that we would encourage our newbies to go to, ” Graham said.

With their growing numbers, the club  is hoping  to be able to have more on-campus events and travel to national events around the country.

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