Take a swing at this medieval combat sport in Arizona
MESA, Ariz. - In Arizona, there are more knights in shining armor than you might think - and they're ready to compete.
Helmet? Check. Gloves? Check. It's a sport with a lot of pads - let's call it medieval football.
At Armored Academy of Arizona, they teach Buhurt, a martial art based on early medieval tournament combat.
The main show is 5 on 5 teams, and you're out if you fall.
"The object is to get the other team on the ground, and you can do it with trips, throws or pain compliance," said Rick Thom with Armored Academy.
Rick is pretty good at it. He says his years or martial arts training are crucial, as it requires a combination of mobility and strength.
"It's all historically accurate," said Matt Aaron with Armored Academy.
The armor can take a while to put on, and they say safety is paramount when you swing 6-foot-long iron swords at each other.
"You're very safe in the armor and when you train outside the armor, we take great pains to make sure you're safe," said Thom. "So you're not getting hurt, but you get to really exert you get the adrenaline dump…all the anxiety, all that stress melts away."
The gear can weigh about 65 to 85 pounds. It may not have the following of football or the viewership of the Super Bowl, but Rick says the sport to growing dramatically and there's somewhere to compete every weekend.
"It's the biggest secret in America as far as sports goes," Thom said.
But he's hoping the secret's out, because they're ready to go medieval on Arizona.
Want to fight in the ring? They're located near Dobson and Guadalupe in Mesa. Check them out here: https://armoredacademy.com/
More Arizona headlines
- All hands on deck: Scottsdale PD steps up enforcement during WM Phoenix Open
- Super Bowl Experience kicks off in downtown Phoenix, reaching new and long time sports fans
- How a homeless encampment grew on private property with Arizonans living out of cars and RVs