Australian Sword Festival
April 24 - 25, 2024 at Sydney University.

This is the online registration information for the Australian Sword Festival. It will be on Saturday 24th and Sunday 25th April. Paper registration brochures are available on request. Don't wait too long in case the venue fills beyond our ability to accept further registrations.

Teachers and Styles Offered

Chinese Jian and Miaodao. The teacher will be Sifu Scott Rodell Director of Great River Taoist Center. He is a very experienced teacher of Chinese swordsmanship, author of several books and worldwide travelling seminar teacher. More information on Scott Rodell.

Highlander Broadsword and English Longsword. The teacher of these styles will be Paul Wagner, Vice President of Stoccata School of Defense, highly experienced in at least twelve European weapons styles, international seminar teacher and author of numerous books. Read more about Paul Wagner.

Italian Rapier amd Bolognese Sword. The teacher is Richard Cullinan. Richard first studied fencing under Peter Linich, Maestro di Scherma. He is the principal instructor of Italian fencing at Stoccata School of Defence, and is Australia's leading researcher of Italian historical fencing systems.

Japanese Shihan Andrew Beattie is the head instructor of Bujinkan Sydney Metro Dojos, classified as Japan trained. Studying in Japan with Soke, Nagato and other Shihan every year since, Andrew was the first person in the World to pass Godan test (5th Dan) in the New Hombu at it's opening. He also works in the film industry as a stunt performer.More about Andrew.

Registration Cost

$120 early registration (paid in full before 1 Feb. 2024.
$135 normal registration (paid after Jan 31, 2024.

This is a very low cost but we would rather cover our expenses by keeping it low and accessible to more students.

Venue: UPDATED INFORMATION -Sydney University HK Ward Gymnasium for the Saturday and Sports and Aquatic Centre for the Sunday. We will be using the indoor basketball courts, although we may be outside on the first day if the weather is right for it. Information about how to get there will be supplied to those who need it, upon registration. It is accessible by train.

Sydney University Sports and Aquatic CentreDarlington Rd
Darlington NSW 2008
(02) 9351 4978

Follow this link for directions to the venue.

Expected Program

9am Rego
930 Greeting
10-12 SCOTT jian; RICHARD rapier
21-1 Lunch
1-3 PAUL broadsword; Andrew - Japanese
3-330 Afternoon tea
330-5 Free Fencing
6pm Dinner out

9-11 PAUL longsword; RICHARD Bolognese
11-1 SCOTT miaodao; Andrew - Japanese
1-2 Lunch
2-4 Demos / Free fencing

This will be clarified towards the date. Students will need to make four choices out of the eight classes.

Accommodation and Food

Students attending the Australian Sword Festival will need to arrange their own accommodation in Sydney. As a guide, Bondi Beach, where some of us have already decided to stay, is about an hour by bus, train, and a short walk, from the venue.

There are many eating venues at Sydney University and in the nearby streets. Students can buy food at one of those or bring your own lunchboxes. On the Saturday night we plan to go out to dinner together, so you'll need some money for that.

Choosing Styles

Students will need to choose four out of the eight classes, since two of them will be running at the same time during each session. There is usually a one handed and two handed style to choose between.

Obviously no one is going to learn a whole system in a two hour session. You'll learn a few of the basic cuts, some of the main principles and possibly a drill or two in that time. You will learn sword grip and stances for the style, as well as some deflection skills.


You will need head and face protection for most styles. Minumum equipment is a fencing mask and a good thick pair of gloves, such as lacrosse or cricket. If you have better equipment, bring it.

All students will need a training sword. Bring a shinai as minimum equipment. If you have a wooden training sword such as these, or a bokken, bring it. There may be a few spares around but no one should rely on that.

The free fencing sessions at the Australian Sword Festival will probably require more equipment. As a general rule, the harder and faster you want to bout, the better your equipment ought to be. A gambeson is a really good idea. Bring one if you have it.

Protection for forearms, shins, knees and elbows is suggested. Child sized cricket shinpads are great for the forearms if you are looking for something easy. Elbow and knee guards are easily available in plastic versions but feel free to bring your favourite reenactment gear if you like.

Since we will be on the basketball court, sports shoes are the best option for your feet.

What you need to know

  • The seminar is full participation. You come to be involved, training, not watching. Wear comfortable, loose clothing.
  • If you participate in sparring sessions, you will probably get bruised.
  • Come a little early to stretch before training sessions.
  • There may be books, DVDs and t shirts for sale.
  • Bring water and snacks with you.
  • Come with an attitude of willingness to listen and learn, no matter how experienced you are.
  • The sword seminars are for everyone from beginner to advanced. People learn at different speeds. Come to learn what you can. Don't worry about how fast or slow anyone else learns. Come and enjoy it.

Taijiquan Seminars

While we have Scott Rodell in Australia for the Chinese Styles at the Sword Festival, he will also be teaching Taijiquan emptyhand in the Yangjia Michuan style. These seminars will be held from the 17th - 20th of April, 2024. The taijiquan seminars will be held in Katoomba, Blue Mountains.

Children's Sword Seminar

While it is expected that some teenagers will register for the Australian Sword Festival and they are welcome to do so, it is not the place for younger children. There will be an all day Children's Swordsmanship Seminar in the Blue Mountains on April 21st, 2024. Scott Rodell will be teaching jian.

Children already participating in the fundraising for these events will be attending free of charge. Otherwise, bring $30 for the day, as well as your own food.

Equipment will be supplied for those who do not have their own. The Children's Swordsmanship Seminar is open to all children aged 6 - 18 years.

For more information, use the Contact Form, or phone Linda Heenan (02) 47826593

Australian Sword Festival Registration Form

To print this form, select it and choose "print selection" or copy and paste it into a word processor to print. If you prefer a paper copy, request one from Linda using the Contact Us form. Please remember to leave a mailing address if you choose this option.

I would like to register for the Australian Sword Festival (select choice)

Earlybird ( paid in full before February 1, 2024)
Cost $120

Normal ( paid after January 31, 2024)Cost $135

Indicate which apply:
Please mail me ……... brochures for my friends.
Please mail me ……... posters to put up in my area.
Please send me a Taijiquan Seminar brochure as well.

Mail the Australian Sword Festival registration form to:
Linda Heenan, PO Box 7329 Leura, NSW 2780

Or fill in, sign, scan and email it to:, Paypal is accepted at that email address. Personal cheques made out to Linda Heenan, or bank cheque, or postal order, are also acceptable. Ask for bank details for online deposits.

There is a Paypal button below if you choose this option for payment of your Australian Sword Festival registration. Please be sure to leave your name and contact details if paying by Paypal, so we can keep track of who has paid.


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Important Notice: Only you are responsible for yourself and for those with whom you train. Neither the seminar leader nor the host is accountable for your actions. If you hurt yourself or others during this seminar, or if you are hurt by others, you are to blame and must accept the responsibility.

Statement of Release of Liability:
I, the undersigned, knowingly & without duress, do voluntarily submit this form to the Taijiquan Seminars / Australian Sword Festival. I understand that training in martial arts can be stressful on the body & that there is a possible danger of injury & do hereby assume all risk of personal, physical & mental disabilities, injuries or losses for myself, my heirs, personal representatives & assignees. Therefore, I hereby release the Seminar Instructors, Organizers, Sponsors, Hosts & all related members from all claims, actions, suits, controversies, claims at law or in equity by reason of matter, cause or thing what so ever, that may here after sustain. I also understand that there is a risk of injury in all training & I assume full responsibility for my/my child’s actions, during and in connection with said Taijiquan Seminars / Australian Sword Festival. I fully understand that any medical treatment given to me/my child will be of the first-aid type only, & I consent to such emergency treatment if deemed necessary. I further consent that any photos furnished by me, or any photos/video taken of me in connection with the Taijiquan Seminar or Australian Sword Festival can be used for publicity, promotion, or television, & I waive all compensation in regards thereto.



This Australian sword festival is over. Contact us for information of future events of this kind.

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