France fencing federation now recognizes lightsaber dueling as a competitive sport.
Depending on how big of a Star Wars fanatic you are, France may be your destination to live out your sci-fi fantasies. The Associated Press reports that France's fencing federation has announced that lightsaber dueling is being recognized as an official competitive sport. Now, the LED-lit replicas of the weapons used in the iconic film series by George Lucas are now of the same status as the foil, epee and sabre swords used by Olympic fencers.
The move to legitimize lightsaber duels as a competitive sport comes after France experienced an increase in interest towards lightsaber dueling by Star Wars fanatics who wanted to recreate scenes from the film. Ultimately, it led to an established set of rules and dueling etiquette being established. However, health reasons are the main cause of why the nation's fencing federation supported pushing the sport as an official sport.
“With young people today, it’s a real public health issue. They don’t do any sport and only exercise with their thumbs,” says Serge Aubailly, the fencing federation secretary general. “It’s becoming difficult to (persuade them to) do a sport that has no connection with getting out of the sofa and playing with one’s thumbs. That is why we are trying to create a bond between our discipline and modern technologies, so participating in a sport feels natural.”