Fundamental Rules: The Observances

Fundamental Rules: The Observances

Teamwork requires guidelines. It’s easy to join a team but the challenge lies in being a part of the team. SaberCraft goes beyond just having weekend warriors that get together for class. We build a family environment and we want everyone to be a part of it. But unfortunately, many folks have very high expectations but are not willing to do their part to support their fellows in class. At SaberCraft, we take a modern approach to what are the Eight Limbs of Yoga. Yoga goes beyond touching your toes and actually builds a model of how to live life – happily. To start with, we have 10 basic rules which are The Restraints & The Observances which are considered the first of 2 limbs of the 8 limbs. Consider them chapters in the manual of being a better individual. These Observances, listed below, from the Eight Limbs of Yoga are done by the individual to demonstrate to the other members, your strength and commitment to safety, progress and discipline to the art of saber-wielding. By abiding by them, the group will thank you for it. Below we also have examples of how to approach this in a practical manner and why we ask our members to abide by this. 

  • Cleanliness
    Cleanliness means that you have taken the time out to prepare your costume, sash and sabers. When attending Cons or public events, we are asked many times to come in costume. Many times, these public events will follow in immediate succession which may not give you the opportunity to clean a particular costume or ready a blade by proper tightening & switching out batteries. Know that your appearance represents us as a group and that you should be mindful of the image that you are conveying to the public and to those in class. It’s important to practice proper hygiene and have your costume or clothes on the day of practice be clean and presentable. Have your blade tightened and your batteries charged with backups immediately available. If you cannot switch batteries, have a back-up fully charged blade ready to go. Apparel should not be offensive to the general public.  Be on top of your gear as it represents you and we want you to look your sharpest.
    How this is enforced: If you attend a public event and your costume smells funny, severely wrinkled and unpresentable, we will let you know and ask that you do not perform.
  • Contentment
    Contentment deals with that internal voice that continually says, “If only…”. “That cosplay contest was great….if only I could have gotten first place.” “That performance was great…if only I didn’t mess up the last 3/4 combination.” “I would have had a great time in class…if only I got to practice with this person instead of that person.” Life is a gift and we share the present. Contentment is the most important feeling you need to cultivate to truly take-in the beauty of the life you live. By removing the words “If only” and accepting what is real, what has happened and cherishing that – then you can truly live in the moment and not sweat the small stuff but rather accept the big picture that is your wonderful life. Remind others as well to be content with what they have for it can go away in a fleeting moment. Most importantly, be content with what others deliver. If you work with someone that frustrates you, don’t focus on changing them – focus on how best to help them to achieve a point where both your and their expectations meet.
    How this is enforced: If you are a debbie-downer about everything, you will be asked less to participate as it will bring the morale of the group down.
    This will happen naturally as others in the group will tend to flock around others who make them feel good. So do your part and help lift people up.
  • Discipline & Devotion
    Your practice is what makes you a safe participant in Saber Combat. Without continual devotion to your practice, your abilities in this sport will suffer. By continually practicing with others, both large and small, you develop your skill set, build a repertoire with others and learn how to use and modify your training dependent on partner and scenario. Not everyone is built the same. Not everyone swings the same. There will always be folks who barely put force into their swings to those that will smash every time they make contact with their sabers. With continual practice, you get to learn everyone’s specific approach and style making you more proficient with each practice. What’s most important is that when a group is working together for an event, practice is an absolute necessity and cannot compromise proper practice and safety for convenience.
    How this is enforced: If you are practicing for an upcoming event, participants who miss 30% of practice time will be asked to not perform. Commit only to what you can – not what you think you can.
  • Self-Study
    Now that you understand how committed we are the practice of our sport, it’s important that with your training comes continual self-study. What that means is that you not only put in the time to practice but you also put in the time to review your own work. A lot of this has to do with watching footage of your performances and using that to guide and improve your work. It also goes beyond just clashing sabers and looking at the group as a whole and contributing to it. It’s looking at the whole and seeing how each and every one of us contributes to the community and nurturing that. Many folks will get so caught up in what they’re learning that they forget why they chose to learn it in the first place. Why did you seek us out and start attending? What was your goal in learning Saber Combat? Are you still abiding by that desire? Has something changed? These are questions you should always be asking yourself to ensure you’re on the right path. Without this continual questioning, you may follow a long road to nowhere rather than to one that leads you to a goal you have in mind. What’s important is that you remember that goal. You nurture and modify that goal with time. In addition, consider how you can always be better. How your gear can always improve. How your costume can always be enhanced.
    How this is enforced: Self-doubt is what will cause you to perform badly. This can only be enforced by yourself. You can’t improve anyone else’s discipline other than your own. Focus on your skill-set.
  • Surrender
    When all is said and done, understanding that you are part of a whole group is what’s most important. Our ability to let things go will allow you to adapt to any personality conflicts, self-doubt, along with worries and fears you may have just before a performance in front of thousands of people. When we are doing a performance that could be televised on TV or visiting a hospital for children and your emotions are getting the better of you, remember the inner hero that you have inside of you. Cultivate the strength of that hero and bring them forward – walking as them. Sometimes there will be conflicts and opinions may differ in the group. Sometimes, we will rehearse for a performance for months and at the last minute, your role may be cut because of a time-schedule change that’s beyond our control. When things like this happen, you must be flexible enough to roll with those punches rather than releasing your frustration to members of the group. We’ve all been there. We know what it’s like. So what’s important is that we work with the group to understand that the group is not here to support us. We’re here to contribute to others outside the group and we work together in that goal to make it happen. Our goal is to make others feel great and feel like heroes. In turn, we promise, by providing this service to others – you will become the hero.

    How this is enforced: Anxiety and external stress can get the better of you. Leave it at the door. When you come into class and light your saber, be your finest.

Be sure that you have familiarized yourself with The Restraints as the living a life by the code of both may provide you a better quality of life. For sure, you will be a better team player knowing that the rest of the team is abiding by these rules.

The Eight Limbs of Yoga is a path written thousands of years ago and it is a guide to the path of proper meditation and one-ness with the universe. These guides are a part of that journey to make us better to one another.

Posted by mcjadmin in Curriculum, General, Knights
Are we a Costuming Club?

Are we a Costuming Club?

We are not a costuming club of any sort.

It’s easy to see the association in our photos with us and a famous science-fiction series out there because of the glowing sticks we’re using. Our organization is not any sort of costuming/performance club. There are many incredible Star Wars based clubs out there to begin with – but rest assured, we have nothing to do with that. Below are a list of difference that set us apart from fan-based clubs out there.


– The BIG Difference: We do NOT do performances. Though we may have participated in non-paid performances in the past, we no longer do any performances in any capacity. We will conduct teaching workshops that are absent of any particular genre and are focused strictly on wellness. Any event we participate in are free and all participants are volunteers. Many of our students build friendships here that go beyond the classroom. Many folks are part of the local Renaissance Festival as well and we dress up for events like that. The idea is that our system is a means of choreographing for any type of saber/staff-related fight – genre-free.

We teach yoga, fitness and empowerment and utilize an LED stunt saber. We focus on the sport of combat choreography and do not incorporate any form of fantasy-specific genre in our competitions.

– We incorporate a modern day approach to the 8 Limbs of Yoga (all of them – not just the postures) into the training and to how we conduct class. We’re not just talking about stretching or doing Downward Dog. Essentially we’re talking about the a modern approach to the Restraints, the Observations and everything that leads to Yoga/Union. Lead instruction is provided by a Yoga Alliance certified RYT 200 Yoga Instructor.

– We use a combat choreography system focused on making the fight like a dance of saber play. We utilize the Temporal Choreography System and expand on it by utilizing patterns and forms of various martial arts. Some have their own target system that’s focused on hitting your opponent. Our combat choreography system is built to choreograph fights. Our form is not meant to hit someone but rather make it look like you’re trying to hit them.

– We love costuming outside of class as our personal interests but our focus is clashing LED sabers and making it look and feel incredible. If you happen to love cosplay or larping and would like to gain a skill that you can incorporate with your cosplay then we have what you are looking for. We do not allow costumes in class in any capacity but rather request that you wear sport/fitness apparel.

– We incorporate guided Meditation into our practice.

– We have a form of sparring in the upper ranks but they are non-armoured and are specifically focused on forms.

– Documentation. All our lessons and various screen fights are notated so once you understand the notation, you can learn the choreographies.

– We use a standard dance 8-count in many of our choreographies

– Our classes have lessons plans and there is a curriculum. In other words, you’re NOT coming to a class and learning something random…..ever. Every class ties into every class, there is a curriculum built out and we approach topics seasonally.

– We run various levels of class simultaneously (broken-out) rather than everyone learning the same lesson.

– We meet regularly at set times (Saturdays at 10am). Rain or shine as we meet indoors.

– We charge for classes because our operation is conducted indoors in an air conditioned, safe environment and requires a stellar sound system as many choreographies have audio associated with them. We do NOT meet in parks unless it’s an informal gathering.

– We end every class with an “immersive experience” that must be conducted in a controlled environment.

– We have insurance

– We have a belt ranking system that you go up in

Can you learn how to fight with a saber similar to what you may see in the movies? Of course you can! But the system is not built on any genre terms that you’ll find in other clubs like “Dulon” or “Makashi” or other words that are tied to the SW universe. Everything’s in English. We are not associated to any film series or genre. Our system is self-built from the ground-up.

It’s about being YOU. It’s about a Saturday afternoon, hanging out with friends, taking time to meditate with each other, learn a lesson, move together, enter into a dance and channel that into acting, movement and mindfulness.

These classes are to teach how to use a prop and build a system of integrated movement choreographies. What does that mean? That means 30 people in a room swinging sticks and nobody getting hurt. We have a different approach to fitness and well-being. Here, the LED stunt saber lights the way in our path to health in both body and mind.

Still not sure? Read more about why this is the class for you. To learn more about us, visit us at one of our Fundamentals classes.

Posted by mcjadmin in General
Fundamental Rules: The Restraints

Fundamental Rules: The Restraints

Yoga is a core element to SaberCraft. Yoga goes beyond touching your toes. Yoga is an established system of rules and postures to provide a better lifestyle. SaberCraft goes beyond LED stunt-sabers to provide an environment for students to feel safe and grow. in order to provide this environment, our Knights and participants must adhere to the following rules which are part of the Yoga philosophy.

The Restraints:

These restraints are what we practice to work best as a group. They are pretty much 5 rules of what not to do: 

  • Rule #1: Do not harm
    Safety is the most important part of our work. We are not here to spar with each other and potentially hit someone. Harming others results potentially in being removed from the program. If you compromise safety and injure someone, you will be kicked out.
  • Rule #2: Do not lie
    Beyond the occasional white lie, lying should avoided – most importantly involving practice. If a student is working with another on a choreography and there is work to be practiced and it’s not being done then the student should not lie about their inability to practice. By lying, a student may endanger another. Honesty is extremely important between participants. The same applies to strikes. Striking should be honest. The focus is to clash sabers or provide that appearance. If one is attacking there is a three-fold goal:

    • Do not injure your opponent
    • Make contact with your opponent’s saber
    • Be honest with their strikes and intentions.
  • Rule #3: Do not steal
    Stealing is not acceptable in any way. This goes beyond the theft of anything physical. Theft can also be applied to our encounters and fellowship. Don’t steal another’s “thunder” as the saying goes. Examples of theft:

    • If a fellow participant is involved in another activity and you steal their time involving something outside of class.
    • If a student is working on something for a requirement and you steal their time to work on a choreography that is outside of their level or will impact their current work.
    • If a student is feeling particularly positive and you come and willingly take them to a negative place. We are to create an environment where everyone feels welcomed and we must respect why each and every participant is here. This is not a group-therapy session. This is not a space to provide emotional support nor babysitting.
  • Rule #4: Do not waste
    In the same effort of not stealing, we should adhere to not wasting. By wasting we mean:

    • Taking up class time to discuss things that are not relavent to class. We have 120 minutes to be effective. By taking time in class to distract members eats up time that they’ve allocated to waking up and driving to Downtown Miami for class.
    • Signing the group up for ineffective means of getting leads or giving back. We believe in doing public performances, but the idea should be that if folks are taking time to practice and dress up for an activity – there should a be a pay-off. Our focus on events is to expose the community to SaberCraft and what we’ve learned. Pay-off does not have to be monetary but should be in overall fellowship with the group. There should be some good to come out of it for the group. Considering our student’s time, no event should take place during class time as that would split the group.
    • Everyone’s time is precious, let’s avoid burn-out which happens when we sign-up for more than we can chew.
    • If you have volunteered for something, see it through. Do not volunteer hastily for any responsibility or duty and then voluntarily choose to fail. It lets the team down, others will have to pick up for it. Respect for everyone is vital to the development of our community.
  • Do not hoard
    Theft, lying and wasting inevitably lead to hoarding. Hoarding can happen when one wants all the attention and credit. When one rises above the team and makes their goals the priority rather than taking the team and it’s members into consideration.

    • Taking credit for someone else’s work
    • Focusing on being in the limelight at a performance or class.
    • Hoarding happens when one believes in exclusivity. It is the mentality of “Us vs Them”. Thinking that involves the mindset that “This is “my” team and I don’t want a particular person/group from joining.” Everyone is welcomed and the work is to be shared by everyone.
    • Hoarding happens when one believes that they should be the only member that role plays a particular character or role.
    • Hoarding involves putting students against each other by the creation of faux teams that distracts the students from their responsibilities and makes them feel unwelcome.

What is really important in all of this is understanding others. Not everyone is a comedian or has a knack for comedy. We all believe that we can be really funny, but what’s funny for someone can be offensive for others. What’s important is how you react to how others receive your comments or intentions. Have fun – but do it responsibly. This is not a space to divide but rather to lift.

As Knights we need to take our practice to the highest levels. Knights are responsible to keep a high level of respect and safety as the environment of the class. Once we lose respect for each other, the team falls apart. Once safety is compromised, then the very foundation of our group will fall apart. As Knights, the responsibility is on us to provide a space for others including ourselves to feel like they can grow. A space where they can rise above everything and elevate.

With these restraints in mind we begin our journey together as a team. Ready to learn how this will improve you as a member of the team, let’s move on to The Observances.

The Observances

Posted by mcjadmin in Curriculum, General, Knights
What Saber should I buy or bring?

What Saber should I buy or bring?

This is usually everyone’s first question. Bring any saber that is a stunt-combat saber. Most Ultra Sabers, VadersVault, SaberForge, Park Sabers and most other Custom Combat Stunt Sabers work for our classes. What does not work are replica sabers such as Master Replicas or any saber that’s meant more as decorative prop rather than utility prop.

Your saber will be inspected by any of our senior students before you are allowed to bring it into the class environment. We have many Ultra Sabers on hand in case you need one for class.

What to buy for your First Saber

If you plan on doing combat choreography, expect your stunt saber to break. Several times. It’s natural that these things will happen because of the various nature of the forces of the strikes and even dropping the saber repeatedly. Keep in mind that wiring can become loose, battery packs will break, bulbs may burst and sabers may bend. So when it comes to buying your saber, here’s a plan to follow:


Saber #1: The Stunt Saber

If the first thing that comes to mind is, “I can barely afford one saber; forget two!” then we suggest purchasing only Saber #1. Saber #1 should be your go to saber. This is your training saber and may even be your performance saber. This is a saber that you intend on getting scratched, dinged and banged up quite often. This is the one you bring to class, that you may leave in your trunk, that if it broke, it wouldn’t break your heart. You should spend about $90 at Ultra Sabers and pick up one for yourself. If you’re 5’5 or above, we suggest an Initiate v4. If you are shorter than that, we suggest an Initiate v2. Simply because of size and weight. When you are doing saber spins or have to do quick grip changes, it’s when the little details of the saber will either work with you or against you. The blade MUST be a Heavy-Grade or Ultra-Edge Heavy-Grade blade.

Saber #2: The Prize Saber

Saber #2 should be your prize. This is where you spend the big bucks and buy a beautiful saber that you will take with you to Cons. That you will accessorize for your photos to join Saber Guild, the Rebel Legion or the 501st Legion. This is NOT the saber you want to bring to every class or to the park to practice with.

Ideally, most folks should start with a standard Stunt Saber that costs between $75 and $100 USD.

Granted, we try to build an environment where you don’t have random people trying to hit your blade as hard as they can but you will run into that – especially at Cons and performances. Be prepared and buy wisely.

Once you have your saber, come by class and give it a whirl. We’ll be waiting for you.

Posted by mcjadmin in General
Why we use LED stunt sabers

Why we use LED stunt sabers

There’s a variety of reasons why a saber choreography class may use an LED saber. As we combine aspects of saber choreography along with Yoga, Movement, Meditation, and Dance, we utilize the LED saber because it helps us in a variety of ways starting with the “hero” or “villain” we picture inside ourselves. It gives us a chance to connect with that inner child that was obsessed with being the hero/villain of their own personal story.

We all still harbor the hero within our hearts. Without sounding too poetic, it is also known as Anchoring in Neuro-linguistic programming. By utilizing an object and putting yourself in a mind space for it, it induces one to go into a certain mind-set or state of consciousness. An easy way to look at this would be every single time a fireman grabs his jacket and hat. When they grab it and put it on they get themselves ready in their mind for the challenge that comes ahead. The same can be said for the police officer putting on his badge.

In addition to that, we have a variety of reasons why we use LED Sabers:

  • Safety – By utilizing an LED saber, classes tend to be safer. We do not use heavy foam sabers or blunt weapons. There are no blades. The LED sabers tend to have a slight flexibility to them as well so in some cases they give away.
  • Brilliance – As we are swinging the Sabers, student can easily see them coming because of their Brilliance. Brilliance, once we dim the lights and put up the music you need to be able to clearly see where each person is in class. Because the LED saber is so brilliant one can look around the room and see exactly where each student is.
  • Glow-stick – Part of being in Miami and part of what we do is establishing a connection to the music. With an LED stick one can then go into a dance performance very similar to how it would be done at a rave or at an EDM concert.
  • Elegance – the LED saber is in a is an gorgeous prop. The sleek aluminum, the brilliant lights, the cool touch, the weight, and many other details really make the LED saber the choice tool for SaberCraft. Note: we do not use sounds related to sabers as they tend to be extremely distracting in class environments.
  • Lightweight – Weighing less than a pound they provide a very versatile tool.
  • Variety – There are a variety of hilt and colors available. Because of that one can express themselves however they see fit in our classes. This goes beyond what color is deemed “good” or if a color is deemed “evil”. It’s simply colors – Colors and connections.

So as you can see, there is a variety of reasons why one would use an LED saber for this type of class.

What’s the difference between an LED Stunt Saber and a Lightsaber?

Simple, a lightsaber is a fictitious weapon from the Star Wars saga that can cut through most things in the galaxy and it was powered by the Force through crystals. An LED Stunt Saber is a real manufactured saber for saber-hobbyists and martial artists. It is usually powered by batteries and cannot cut through anything as it a blunt item.

SaberCraft has the largest selection of LED Sabers available to the public for any class in the Southeast US.

Come by if you’re interested in learning more.

Posted by mcjadmin in General

Community Building & Forging the Future

This weekend we had our BeltCraft Workshop Day 2 where we had a little shindig while producing our first 19 belts for “SaberCraft: First Class”. This is the result. Truly a great time. Our group is not just about combat choreography. It’s about being a part of something bigger.

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Posted by mcjadmin in Event, General
BeltCraft: Redefining Ranks

BeltCraft: Redefining Ranks

We pride ourselves on community building. Saber enthusiasts like to partake beyond learning just how to choreography combat. We pride ourselves in knowledge in the Lore of what we study as well as partaking in public events – such as empowering folks in the community by teaching them the ways of the saber, making appearances at local businesses to help out in a community event or pulling in together for members in need.

MCK belt: one's unique lightsaber

MCK belt

Building Your Self

As a Knight, you move up in ranks based upon skills you learn in class, performances you do in public and contributions you make both to the class and the saber community. With that in mind, we have established a series of Belt-making Workshops, whereby you attend a night with friends in SaberCraft and you work together to create the belts used by yourself and others. You help forge the belts of the system and leave a mark in every belt that is distributed.

A New Belt

As the ranking system has 4 belts representing the different levels of the Knight, these belts are fashioned in a similar manner. Not mass-reproduced. Each one hand-crafted. The belts are modeled as simple unbleached cloth with a number of stripes across representing the rank. Knights are encouraged to wear their belt at cosplay events to demonstrate their pride in the organization and what we do. It’s also a symbol to reflect the time and dedication spent by the Knight. Rather than use mass-produced stiff martial arts belts, we pride ourselves in building our unique system to stand apart from all other systems out there. We pride ourselves in empowering our members in contributing to the team and helping it grow.

We also encourage the development of a “Public-Belt” or “Con-Belt”. These are unique belts that are crafted to suit your particular cos-play design. If you are working on another character-type, say of a completely different genre, style or alignment and choose dark colors to represent your rank in the Knights, you can choose the color & fabric of your belt and by participating in Belt-Making sessions, you bring the materials and it is thrown in the queue to be created that night. Best of all, the belt will be built to be updated with additional stripes as you go up in ranks.

BeltCraft Workshops

Yearly, SaberCraft schedules two-nights whereby members can come over to a volunteer’s house and we spend the night working as a team on constructing the belts. You do not need to know how to sew as there are many steps involving their creation including:

  • Measuring and marking
  • Cutting and crimping
  • Actual sewing
  • Set up and spooling
  • Materials gathering

Everyone involved will cover 1 step and continue to do that step for the entire portion of the evening (2-3 hours) while we enjoy each other’s company and share some food and refreshments. It’s an evening of fellowship where we enjoy each other’s company and help build the future of development and the future of the organization. Attend one day or attend both days. RSVP today.

Update: See the Results of our belts.

BeltCraft Day 1: JEDI Belts created

BeltCraft Day 1: Belts created

Next BeltCraft Workshops:

  • Day 1: Thu, June 16, 2016: 7:30pm – 10:00pm;
  • Day 2: Sat, June 18, 2016: 11am – 1:30pm

Not a Knight yet? Don’t delay and join today.

Posted by mcjadmin in General, Knights
Chicas Poderosas: Empowering Women with Sabers

Chicas Poderosas: Empowering Women with Sabers

We teamed up with Chicas Poderosas FIU, Univision Noticias and Fusion, & Bárbara Corbellini Duarte for having us as part of a wonderful event supporting empowering women in media and technology. Learn more about this wonderful group at:

From Univision Chicas Poderosas. Posted by Alfred L Smith on 4/15/2016 (56 items)

Generated by Facebook Photo Fetcher 2

Posted by mcjadmin in Event, General
Is this class for me? Yes!

Is this class for me? Yes!

We decided to open a saber-based chapter here back in 2015 and slowly it’s gained momentum until last year when kicked it into gear and started our official classes. Why saber based – because we are not solely based on just LED Sabers. There’s way more to this. So what do we cover in these classes and why would it apply to you. SaberCraft is about the following:

  • Dancing – learning pre-rehearsed forms with the sabers, expressing one-self in a dance with others
  • Stage Combat – not real combat, Everything is rehearsed for staged performances, shows or an organized form of LARPing
  • Discipline – completing routines over and over to attend a zen-state-of-mind
  • Acting – rehearsed and improve acting and building self-confidence in front of others
  • Yoga –  increased stretching, complimenting your daily workouts, building balance and truly understanding your body
  • Meditation – building gratitude in your life and learning to quiet the senses to explore our inner self
  • Imagination – exploring your creativity – costuming, photography, expression
  • Empowerment – getting more physically fit and building self-confidence personally and in front of others
  • Family – meeting like minded individuals who are interested in saber combat and looking for partners to practice with

Our classes are for people who want to have fun! Geeks, freaks, actors, moms, dads, kids or anyone who wants to truly feel empowered. People who want to find the hero inside themselves and step up in character. Folks who love to use their imagination and are interested in hanging out with other saberists, actors, cosplay players, and Con-attendees.

We are not teaching a “Martial Arts” nor “Fencing” class. We are teaching how to clash sabers and make it look good! There is no need to buy gear like a helmet or gloves. The best part about is that because you’re not bashing each other on the head, this is not an all-boys club. Our classes are equally 50% women and 50% men breaking any taboo or “norm”.

Swinging sticks recklessly will end up with someone getting hit in the head or worse. Rather than just swinging wildly, we teach you how to duel with others in a systematic way that makes it more competitive as it binds you and your partner to specific combination of moves.

Most actual fights in real life end in 2 moves. Staged Combat choreography tells a story. It is what lures us in when we watch a movie that has duelists. We want to see the spins. We want to see the drama and the split second hits. That’s what this class is about. It’s for students looking to play out a beautiful scene that tells a narrative and told through words, movement and the drama all while using a system.

Posted by mcjadmin in General