Po­si­tion­ing your lance is ev­ery­thing

All About History - - HOW TO WIN A JOUST -

The joust de­vel­oped out of an ear­lier type of com­bat be­tween spear­men on horses. They wielded their spears in their hands and to gain con­trol, they be­gan to couch their spears un­der their arm – it’s from this that the lance evolved. As lances grew longer and heav­ier, aim­ing the point be­came harder. The weight of the lance could be car­ried on the leg or the sad­dle, or even on a hook built into your ar­mour.

The ideal was to lower your lance grace­fully as you ap­proached the cen­tre of the tilt (or ride) but in the heat of bout this could be­come dif­fi­cult. One of the is­sues iden­ti­fied by King Duarte in his writ­ing about jousts is that knights some­times closed their eyes at the mo­ment of col­li­sion. Other writ­ers of­fered a so­lu­tion – it is eas­ier to keep the eyes open un­til the last mo­ment if you keep your mouth open.

“The ideal was to lower your lance grace­fully as you ap­proached the cen­tre of the tilt (or ride) but in the heat of bout this could be­come dif­fi­cult”

Con­trol­ling a lance took years of train­ing

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