Kieren Smith has been studying HEMA in various forms (primarily German longsword) since 2006, initially under the European Historical Combat Guild in Liverpool. Eventually the distance became difficult to manage regularly and so he moved onto studying independently - Visiting events and instructors around the country to expand his experience and knowledge, expanding his knowledge in longsword and studying anything unusual or obscure he could get his hands on.
In 2013 he founded the group Wisdom of Medieval Defence in Newcastle-under-Lyme with a small group of students, and regularly teaches german longsword, messer and sword and buckler, with everything from naval cutlass, sickle and dagger appearing occasionally. He is currently working on crafting an affordable scythe simulator to allow practise and teaching of scythe.
Kieren places a strong focus in good biomechanics as part of his teaching, vitally important as his group includes students with physical disabilities and severe mobility problems - so his training includes adapting HEMA techniques to with with his students physical capabilities as well as studying the historical techniques as documented.
Kieren teaches continually at Wisdom of Medieval Defence, for students of widely varying physical capabilities.
He has also delivered workshops at:
- AHA Loch Lomond
HEMA Disciplines Studied
- 14th-16th century German longsword
(main sources: Ringeck, Talhoffer and Mair)
- 15th century German sword and buckler
(main sources: Talhoffer)
- 15th century German messer
(main source: Talhoffer)
- 15th century German armoured combat (for duelling)
(main sources: Talhoffer and Ringeck)
- 15th century dagger
(main source: Fiore and Talhoffer)
- 16th century sickle
(main source: Mair)
- Tomahawk and long knife
(modern reconstruction based on available books and teachers)
- Klingon Batl'leth
(artificial reconstruction based heavily on German longsword sources)