Roger Norling, GHFS, MFFG, HEMAC

Instructor: Roger Norling

Country: Sweden

Clubs: Gothenburg Historical Fencing School, Meyer Frei Fechter Guild

Contact[email protected]

Bio: Roger is a member of Gothenburg Historical Fencing School since 2008 and leads a weekly class on Joachim Meÿer's Halben Stangen based on research done starting in 2009. He also leads a weekly study group in Meÿer's dagger. Due to his contributions to the HEMA community he was approved as a member of the Historical European Martial Arts Coalition in 2011. He was also invited as a member by the the Meyer Freifechter Guild in 2013.

He is deeply dedicated to HEMA and is responsible for the site, a neutral meeting ground for the HEMA community which provides resources on manuals, clubs and equipment as well as writes articles and reviews related to HEMA.


Roger teaching Meyer dusack in Bruges, Belgium

Currently he is involved in a research project studying the whole of Joachim Meÿer’s 1570 treatise and works with both the staff, the longsword, the dussack and the dagger, using the same systematic method he applied to his quarterstaff research for which he is most known.

Roger is also working on an extensive series of articles, called The Onion - Basics of European Longsword, revolving around Joachim Meyer's longsword fencing, occassionally reflected against other masters like Sigmund Ringeck, George Silver & Myamoto Musashi. This series of articles is the foundation for the longsword workshop he teaches.

He usually teaches at 4-5 events per year and has taught about 30 workshops at some 20 events and training weekends in Europe and the USA, primarily focusing on 16th cent fencing master Joachim Meÿer's quarterstaff, longsword and dusack, all based on the research and training done in the GHFS class and commonly together with training partners and friends like Mattias Moberg and Robert Molin of GHFS and Kevin Maurer & Chris Vanslambrouck of the MFFG.

In 2015 he will be teaching in Italy, Germany & the USA, among others. 2016 already has two events booked for Belgium and Austria, and he will likely also be teaching in the Czech Republic.


Research methods and tools for understanding combat manuals

This workshop contains a lecture on a method to use for working with the sources and then direct application of the same in workshop format. While it works with any material, it is in this case applied to Joachim Meyer's dagger.

There are no requirements on knowledge, but a fencing mask, forearm guard, some form of dagger or stick the length of the forearm and pen & paper is required. Read more

The Onion: Basics of European Longsword

This workshop is based on the article series that accompany it and which can be find on It as a content-rich workshop that focuses on flow, with continous strikes and parries, but also posture, footwork and specific techniques.

There are no formal requirements on knowledge, but a fencing mask and a longsword, as well as bringing drinking water is required. Read more

Joachim Meÿer - The Dussack in motion

The dusack has been a largely misunderstood and underappreciated weapon. It was a weapon of war, a proto-sabre, and popular all the way from Italy and Southern Germany and Austria, all the way up to the Nordic countries and Scotland. It was a cutting weapon mainly, even if it can be used for thrusting too, and in Joachim Meyer's case, he uses it to teach all single-hand weapons. This workshop goes through the core of posture, balance, footwork, striking combinations & timing.

There are no formal requirements on knowledge, but a fencing mask, a dusack, short sabre, messer or 70-90cm stick is required, as well as bringing drinking water. Read more

Joachim Meÿer Halben Stangen - “Catch him in his own techniques" (Quarterstaff)

This is a very content-rich workshop that goes through the core components of posture, footwork, body & weapon mechanics, as well as all of the techniques that are demonstrated in Joachim Meyer's fencing treatise of 1570. It tries to build a solid foundation, including dynamic exercises for timing of body and weapon, so that the student can continue exploring this wonderful art with a good understanding of the complexity and broadness of it all.

There are no formal requirements on knowledge, but a fencing mask and a durable 180-210cm oak or ash staff  is required and should preferably be provided by the organizer. Drinking water must also be brought. Read more

Free Fencing for sparring with dangerous techniques

Sometimes you need to train with methods that allow you to use even the most dangerous techniques in a system. How can we minimize the risks when doing so, without losing a martial intent and speed & power in the training?

This group of exercises is built around the concept of Free Fencing, where the purpose of Free Fencing is to learn through experience, not necessarily to win.

Some sparring experience is good, but not required. However, it is preferably if the students come in pairs with partners they are used to and know well. A sparring weapon and suitable protection is required. Read more


Research methods and tools for understanding combat manuals

This lecture revolves around the topics of context and properties of things and discusses methods to use for working with the sources, both on a macro and a micro level. It examplifies the topics using examples from the combat treatises

It can also be combined with a workshop where the method is applied. While it works with any material, it is in this case applied to Joachim Meyer's dagger.

The lecture can be adjusted between 1.5-2.5 hours. Read more

Events instructed at:

Western Martial Arts Workshop (WMAW) 2015. Racine, USA. Meyer Longsword & Dusack, assisted by Chris Vanslambrouck of the MFFG, Lecture on Research Methods and Tools for Understanding Combat Manuals.

Also assisted Roberto Gotti and Robert Rutherford in their workshops on Marozzo and Meyer Rappier respectively.

Donnerschlag 2015. Karlsruhe, Germany. Meyer Quarterstaff & Dusack.

Meyer Convivium 2015. Sant' Angelo Romano, Italy. Meyer Quarterstaff & Research methods examplified w. dagger

Hemac Florentia 2015, AIMA. Florence, Italy. Meyer Longsword w. Robert Molin of GHFS

Terzo allenamento aperto con gli Appesi 2015, Sala d'Arme dell'Appeso. Asola, Italy. Meyer Quarterstaff, longsword & dagger w. Mattias Moberg of GHFS.

Swordfish 2014, Gothenburg SwedenMeyer Dusack & Longsword w. Robert Molin and Mattias Moberg of GHFS.

Donnerschlag 2014, Karlsruhe, Germany. Meyer Longsword.

Meyer Annual Symposium 2014, Lincoln Illinois, USA. Meyer Longsword.

HEMAC Florentia 2014, Italy. Meyer Quarterstaff & Dusack w. Mattias Moberg of GHFS

Swordfish 2013, Gothenburg Sweden. Meyer Quarterstaff w. Mattias Moberg of GHFS

Western Martial Arts Workshop 2013, Racine Wisconsin, USA. Meyer Quarterstaff & Longsword w. Chris Vanslambrouck of MFFG

Fechtschule York 2013, York England. Meyer Dusack, Longsword & Quarterstaff w. Mattias Moberg of GHFS

Meyer Annual Symposium 2013, Lincoln Illinois, USA. Meyer Quarterstaff

Dreynevent 2013, Vienna, Austria. Meyer Quarterstaff

Swordfish 2012, Gothenburg, Sweden. Meyer Quarterstaff w. Mattias Moberg & Erik Sternå of GHFS

Fightcamp 2012, Birmingham, UK. Meyer Quarterstaff & Longsword w. Magnus Hagelberg of SKHFS

SKUNKS 2012, Rybnik, Poland. Meyer Quarterstaff w. Mattias Moberg of GHFS

Meyer Weekend Workshop 2012 for the Hallebardiers/St Michielsgilde in Brugge, Belgium. Meyer Quarterstaff w. Kevin Maurer of the MFFG

Swordfish 2011, Sweden. Meyer Quarterstaff w. Mattias Moberg of GHFS

Kungskrabba 2011, Sweden. Meyer Quarterstaff

Contact: [email protected]


"Your workshop blew me away!

I very much enjoyed the Staff workshop, one of the best HEMA workshops I've seen!"

"I usually do not judge workshops of an HEMA event, because I only attend a few. But I would like to recommend to everybody: if you ever have the chance to attend a staff workshop with Roger Norling on Joachim Meyer, then do so."

"Roger, brilliant sessions. Thank you! It is always a pleasure to be in your classes, I have to process the information now and practice what you and Mattias showed us. Brilliant!!"

"Roger has an amazing depth of knowledge and an uncanny ability to present it!"

"Thanks for the impressive demonstration and competent explanation of polearms on the Dreynevent. I enjoyed your workshop very much. I think, I will never shovel snow again without respect for the shovel and remembering your instructions!"

"Thanks very much for the great introduction into the nice mechanics of the staff. Enjoyed your lessons very much!"

"Thanks for an exemplary workshop (J.Meyer) which made me very curious! I hope to be able to participate actively next time.

… believable and looking like how I envision Meyer would be doing it himself."

"Excellent didactics!"

"Roger showed very impressingly, how powerfully you can use a simply pole and how dangerous it would be in a hand, which knows, how to use it. Respect! It was much fun, to exercise in this course!"

"This class was really great!!! Cool exercises and everything was explained in a clear way. Cool techniques that gave me a basis to work on in my training!"

"Very nice class. I liked Rogers style of demonstration the techniques and the explanation very much. Roger has a great knowledge in my eyes, and has good body movement, stability, and power when executing some of the Stücke. I was glad to have the opportunity to train with him two times (beginners and advanced class), which helped me to understand the mechanics behind the staff much better."

"This three hour workshop was a real highlight, not just because I think Meyer has left us a brilliant, elegant and powerful system of staff-fighting, but because Roger’s pedagogy was equally brilliant. Ably assisted by new friend, fellow Illinoisan and brother-at-arms Chris Vanslambrouck of the Meyer Freifechter, from the moment he began his warm-up, everything Roger taught was designed to initiate students in the body mechanics and broad motions of the art. The Gothenburg Historical Fencing School is known for its physicality and conditioning, and Roger brought this to his teaching: the first hour of the class would have been a fantastic stand-alone class in relating warm-ups and conditioning to your martial arts practice. Fortunately, there was two more hours of solo and paired work and people got a great work out, exposure to an art most of them had never seen before and I suspect an eye-opener as to the power of the humble staff…"

"Interesting, with good ideas and interpretations!"

"Very good! Roger seemed to be sprung from Meyer's treatise, only the the clothing seemed to be missing. Roger's classes were the most interesting workshops for me during this event."

"I very much liked the structure of his two workshops, giving rather more practice time and repetitions for the basic stances and techniques in the beginners' class and whetting my appetite for staff/polearm fencing with a short repetition of the basics (good idea!) and a wider overview on many different techniques in the advanced class."

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