One of the things that seems to be lacking from fencing as a sport is the ability to watch high-level competitions on-demand. While this isn't likely to be solved in a big way for a while, there are a few resources available to watch noteworthy fencing matches and other interesting fencing content. I will be discussing one of them today: the Youtube channel of the Federation Internationale d'Escrime (FIE, i.e. International Fencing Federation).
If you want to stop reading now and go check it out, here are their playlists: https://www.youtube.com/user/FIEvideo/playlists
The FIE is the international governing body of fencing. Below it there are also national organizations for each county (the United States Fencing Association, or USFA, for us). The most visible and sometimes-broadcast competitions are definitely at the international level, and recordings of these can frequently be found on the FIE's Youtube channel. This channel is a great resource for at least a couple reasons:
1. You don't have to wait four years between Summer Olympics to watch fencing.
2. You don't need any fancy cable subscriptions to get access, just your regular ol' internet connection.
A recent example is the 2017 Foil World Cup in St Petersburg. Here is one of the videos from that playlist, embedded below. It's about a whole day's worth of fencing (almost 7 hours of video!) on one of many strips that were all going simultaneously. You should only need about 18 minutes to watch the first bout of this direct elimination round, though. It even has our very own Miles-Chamley Watson (from the USA, not from our club), who was in the 2016 Olympics!
Upcoming (and past) competition dates can be found on the FIE's website: http://fie.org/competitions . Frequently they are streamed live on Youtube, so you can catch them as they are happening! If you have a cable subscription that includes the newly founded "Olympic Channel", you can also try to catch them on TV. That's a discussion for later, though. Until next time, go watch some fencing!