THE FORCE IS NOW LEGAL!
LIGHTSABER DUELING IS AN OFFICIAL SPORT…IN FRANCE
Whether you are a Star Wars fan or not, there’s something appealing about lightsabers. The weapons are so iconic that there are tons of copycat weapons in film and TV based on them. Give these toys to kids and they are bound to have a fun time with them, or at least that’s what France thinks.
In an effort to encourage young people to be active, the French Fencing Foundation has recognized Lightsaber Dueling as an official sport. It turns out that Lightsaber duels aren’t much different than Fencing duels, so the foundation figured why not.
The official rules are as follows:
“Combatants fight inside a circle marked in tape on the floor. Strikes to the head or body are worth 5 points; to the arms or legs, 3 points; on hands, 1 point. The first to 15 points wins or, if they don’t get there quickly, the high scorer after 3 minutes. If both fighters reach 10 points, the bout enters “sudden death’, where the first to land a head- or body-blow wins, a rule to encourage enterprising fighters.
Blows only count if the fighters first point the tip of their saber behind them. That rule prevents the viper-like, tip-first quick forward strikes seen in fencing. Instead, the rule encourages swishier blows that are easier for audiences to see and enjoy, and which are more evocative of the duels in “Star Wars.” Of those, the battle between Obi-Wan and Darth Maul in “The Phantom Menace’ that ends badly for the Sith despite his double-bladed lightsaber is particularly appreciated by aficionados for its swordplay.”
Since lightsaber dueling is an official sport now, official “weapons” can be crafted for use in the sport. Rather than use the cheap plastic toys meant for children, the official lightsabers are made of polycarbonate. And yes, if you pay more you can get the lightsabers with sounds and changing flashing lights. The different colors from the franchise are available as well.
The sport won’t be official long enough to make it a candidate for the Paris Olympics in 2024, but hopefully it can spread to other countries quick enough.
Check out the report from the Associated Press below: