Do I need armor to get started?
Nope! Armor isn’t necessary to become a member. We actually prefer for new members to hold off on purchasing armor when first getting started. We’d like to make sure you get the quality equipment from reputable armorsmiths. We also think you should take some time to try on some different armor owned by existing members. You should also do a bit of research to which types of armor are most functional for ACW combat (or your chosen fighting style), what is aesthetically pleasing to you, and whether or not it will pass historical accuracy requirements at the international level.
How do I get started?
If you're ready to join you can click the "ACW" link in the top navigation and sign up.
I don’t have any sports or athletic experience. Can I still join?
The Blood Eagles of the ACW is made up of all types of people with varying levels of skill, fitness, and commitment. We have fighters who are lawyers, teachers, active military, firefighters, tradesmen and women, armorsmiths, college students, programmers, you name it. Some fighters have a background in organized sports or martial arts. Others do not. Some pursue armored combat to the highest level of our sport (Team USA and the IMCF Championship). And yet others prefer only local, conference, or national events. The Blood Eagles are here to give you the structure and support you need. The rest is up to you!
How do I train for armored combat?
The Blood Eagles are full of knowledgeable members willing to share training regimen with new fighters/chapters. If you are new to sports, any number of workout or training regimens would be good to pursue such as crossfit, strength training, Olympic lifting, etc. Be sure to consult with your doctor before beginning any new physically/mentally demanding training regimen.
What skills should I practice?
Start with what’s known as “soft kit” practices – regular workout clothing and possibly some padded martial arts gear. Start learning the various take-down and grappling techniques as well as proper weapon strikes. Use foam boffer swords and shields to get used to the movements. Build a pell (something you hit that resembles a human target). These can be made out of a few sturdy pieces of wood and some tires. If you’re a part of an existing chapter, the senior members may be inclined to loan you their steel kit on a limited basis for steel kit practices.
What armor and weapons can I use?
Be sure to read all armor and weapon specifications, regulations, and guidelines outlined in the Armored Combat League Rule set located HERE. Armor and weapons must meet specific guidelines for use in the Armored Combat League. Rules can be found covering topics like rounded edges, weight and thickness requirements, illegal weapons and armor, and more. Please remember: armor and weapons used in our sport are usually custom built for this sport. Do not grab your katana from the basement and start swinging it at your chapter mates. This is a quick way to shrink your chapter, hurt someone, and/or end up in jail!
How do I buy armor?
Between your chapter leadership, your regional commander, and the league’s social media outlets, you will be able to find trusted armorers, other fighters looking to sell their old kits, and other information and guidance on creating some of your own pieces. Armor can be expensive. The league will help make sure you get the right gear and at a good price. Consider crowdfunding campaigns or chapter fundraisers to offset the cost of armor.
Is this really that safe?
Yes! Armor really does work! We have also implemented a number of rules for armor coverage and thickness as well as striking/grappling rules to prevent injury. But make no mistake, you WILL get beat up, banged up, bruised, and battered. It’s your responsibility to look after each other and to make sure we all go home with a smile. Tis but a flesh wound!
Am I covered by Armor Combat League insurance?
Good question! If you have purchased an Armored Combat League membership and reside in the USA, you are covered by our insurance from the date that we receive payment through the last day of the season (typically April 30th). Prior to any practices, events, promotional gigs, or any other event or activity in which you intend to promote and fight under the ACW ruleset, you MUST fill out the ACW Waiver form and securely file it. This insurance covers your and the league in the event that someone is injured. The waiver can be downloaded HERE. If there are any questions, you can contact your Regional Commander.
What do I do if someone gets injured during practice or at an event?
If it is an emergency, call 911 or your local emergency responders. For non-life threatening injuries, call for medical assistance and seek treatment right away. Fill out an injury report form, located HERE. Fill this form out within 24 hours of the incident and submit the form to the ACW at firstname.lastname@example.org. Contact your regional commander to update them on the incident and injured party(ies).