Star Wars Fans Rejoice... Lightsabre Duelling Is Now An Official Sport In France
Life-affirming news for wannabe Jedi masters across the world. Or at least those living in France.
For on Monday, February 18, the French Fencing Federation officially recognised lightsabre duelling as a competitive sport.
And not before time, we say.
Let’s face it, who amongst us hasn’t walked around the house pretending to slice through Stormtroopers while making the unmistakeable rumbling sound that the lightsabres have made uniquely their own since Star Wars came into our lives in 1977?
Now, the ultimate fantasy for several generations of Star Wars fans is becoming reality, as fencing clubs in France are set to provide lightsabre lessons by fully certified instructors. And with real (or as real as can be in our galaxy) lightsabres.
While the federation’s certification is well and good, surely the most exciting part of this development will be discovering just how much the lightsabres will look (and sound) like those wielded by Darth Vader, Obi Wan Kenobi and Luke Skywalker?
According to reports, the more expensive sabres look uncannily like the ones George Lucas envisioned all those years ago and, crucially, are equipped with chips that allow them to emit the famous sound when twirled around.
The French Fencing Federation was convinced the level of physical exertion that a three-minute lightsabre duel will demand from participants is enough to grant it the status of an official sport.
And we thank them for their Yoda-like wisdom.
This now opens the thrilling possibilities of other sporting bodies certifying activities from that galaxy far, far away.
In particular, we look forward to pod-racing – The Phantom Menace’s one saving grace - being recognised in years to come by another French-based organisation, the FIA, motorsport’s governing body.
Until then, we expect memberships in fencing clubs to skyrocket as Star Wars fanatics sign up for those lightsabre tutorials. May the course be with you.