There is no published study that analyses the temporal demands of fencing, in its six Olympic modalities in the same high-level competition. The only existing publications date back decades, with already obsolete regulations, or focus on a specific modality. The aim of this study is to carry out a chronometric analysis of elite fencing at the 2014 Fencing World Championships to determine the existence of differences between its weapons (épée, foil and sabre) and between genders. A total of 96 elite fencers (48 women) of 24 different nationalities were analysed in the final rounds (direct elimination). We undertook observational methodology based on an open and systematic process with ideographic, point and multi-dimensional design. We analysed the work time, rest time, total time, number of stops and work-to-rest ratio. The Lince software was used to record and analyse video data. The coding and recording process of the 83 fights analysed generated a matrix of 5900 records. The quality of the data was verified by checking the validity of the observation instrument and the intraobserver reliability. The mean work time (between Allez and Halte) was 17.9 ± 3.1 s for épée, 5.8 ± 2.5 s for foil and 1 .7 ± 0.4 s for sabre. The fight work-to-rest ratios recorded were 1:0.9, 1:2.6 and 1:9.2 for épée, foil and sabre respectively. The results showed significant differences (p < .05) in the work and rest times between the three fencing weapons. However, there were no differences between fencers of the same weapon according to gender.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere0285033
Pages (from-to)1-10
Number of pages10
JournalPLoS ONE
Issue number6
Early online date1 Jun 2023
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jun 2023


  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Reproducibility of Results
  • Sports
  • Weapons


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