If the world of Star Wars exists, professional training schools would be sprouting about, churning out new Jedi knights each year. One school that fits the bill is The Saber Authority, an academy dedicated to bridging Star Wars fantasy with combat.
This is not one of those amateurish cos-play or make-believe choreography fan clubs. Rather, the combat skills taught in the academy can be effectively and practically adopted to real life, self defense situations.
Started in November 2014 by entrepreneurs Reza Emmanuel and Kong Ming Jie, The Saber Authority has positioned itself as truly one-of-a-kind in Singapore, rapidly gaining a cult following here (the youngest trainee in their academy is 4 years old!). Unlike an interest group, The Saber Authority is a serious business providing lessons dealing with actual combat and selling only top quality, high-powered durable light sabers that can withstand blows. Single-blade, dual-blade or customised types – these light sabers are available in different neon light colours of your liking.
“We had run some programs in flash light self-defense before. Though our videos on YouTube were very popular, we decided to swing this idea to the opposite direction, from functional to fantasy, so that was how The Saber Authority came about,” explained Reza, a professional trainer in martial arts and close quarters combat training. “We were looking more towards sword play, hence these light sabers can duel and really take a hard hit, acting as perfect substitutes for serious weapons,” added Ming Jie, whose background in distribution helped him source these light sabers.
Though combat with light sabers may sound harmless, they are no child’s play since they require serious user responsibility, proper training and careful handling. The duo allowed me to try sparring with one of their light sabers under the blanket of the dark at an area under the train tracks where trainings typically take place. Oblivious to the rumbling tracks, I got hooked within seconds by the usage of the light saber as Reza engaged me in a duel and coached me with the necessary step-by-step skills. Whether it’s a random swing, a slide or a full-knock impact, the saber produces those recognizable distinct iconic sounds that synchronize accordingly to each movement, making you feel that you are truly in Galactic Empire. I’ll be honest that I’m not a Star Wars fan, but boy, it was so COOL to leave proud bright trails in the darkness!
After a good duel, I could feel my arms and legs ache, and my waist line awakening from its century sleep. As the first female to participate in their training, I highly recommend ladies not to overlook this fun and fitness as a “boys-and-men-only” arena. Not only does it effectively target weight loss and tone the body, you’ll also be thankful to be equipped with tangible combat skills in the face of adversity.
Though many Star Wars movie fans dream of imitating those infamous high kicks and swift somersaults, Reza bluntly pointed out: “Not many of the dueling scenes are functional in reality. What we hope is to bring a more realistic approach to sword dueling in a fun, play format using light sabers.” Since their first class in January this year, participants have reportedly enjoyed the experience as much as the rewarding social bonding that accompanies it. For 1 session per week for a span of a few months, you can progress up into a fast-moving, alert-thinking pro through dedicated practice. No prior experience in martial arts is needed in order to qualify (phew!).
With the highly anticipated, upcoming year-end movie, Star Wars: Episode VII – The Force Awakens, The Saber Authority is already busying themselves with expansion plans while handling growing class registrations and light saber sales. So what are you waiting for? Don’t just remain a make-belief closet Jedi, now you can be a real one too!
You can participate in the next light saber self defense class at http://www.thesaberauthority.com/