Thumbing

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Green arrow correct, Red Arrow NO!

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Thumbing & Digging

Thumbing is a term that describes a technique that is used to check courtesy padding or the striking surface of a weapon to see if it has broken down and is unsafe. Thumbing a piece of foam can be dangerous to the weapon. The purpose of thumbing is to make sure the core is not poking through the foam or the foam has not broken down to where the core is not padded well enough to be safe when light pressure is placed on the padding.

Some places you will often want to thumb a weapon : Any courtesy padding, tips of swords, pommels, and javelin hafts. Additionally you might want to thumb the striking surface of an arrow or javelin.

Proper Thumbing

Often referred to as the flat of your thumb the crease on the bottom side (or palm side) of your thumb is the proper location to ‘’’thumb’’’ a weapons padding. See the green arrow in the image. When thumbing a weapon do not use the tips of your fingers, if possible avoid contact with the weapon and the last segment of you fingers.

Wrong Thumbing or Digging

Many new weapons checkers will use the tip of their thumb; this often called ‘’’digging’’’. This is wrong, and any Event coordinator that sees a Weapons Checker ‘’’digging’’’ should remove the Weapons Checker from weapons check and reprimand them. Anyone can find the core to a foam-padded weapon if they dig deep enough into the foam with the end of their thumb or fingers. Even worse is the amount of focused pressure on the foam will often pre-maturely break down the foam in that area causing damage to an otherwise safe weapon. Needless to day ‘’’digging’’’ will often make and enemy out of a weapons checker and the weapon owner.

The only time ‘’’digging’’’ may be acceptable would be with a Class 5 weapon, or Rock. Because they have no core a weapons checker may wish to dig as deep as possible to make sure there is no core.

Rule of Thumb

Is an ancient law that stated a husband could beat his wife with as stick as hard and as much as he wanted as long as it was no larger than the diameter of his thumb. Luckily in Belegarth there is no rule of thumb. In this sport, if you and your spouse play, you can both beat each other with any weapons of any diameter as long as it is considered well padded and safe to use.

Wikipedia page on the origin of the phrase

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