Juan Glasman
TEAM: Valherjes
COUNTRY: Argentina

First of all, how did you get to know the sport and what made you start training?

I got to know it through a friend, Pablo, who used to upload pictures of the trainings and the fights in which he participated. One day, asking him about it, he invited me to a training, where I met Pepe Villani and Agustín Lionti. It was a full armor training. I saw it and I automatically decided to go to the next one. I started and never stopped training since then.

What really caught me in the beginning I think it was the same as everyone else, the possibility to “play” to be a knight. I always liked everything related to Middle Ages and knights, so having the chance to be one was really seductive… Eventually, the idea of “playing” gradually vanished and transformed into taking it as the sport it is. The camaraderie and friendship between the members of the club was also very catching.

An anecdote I can remember is when I started, that I said I didn’t want to participate in the tournaments, as competing wasn’t my main goal here… And, after a year, I went to Battle of the Nations to compete for my country.

You didn’t waste your time. Why did you refuse to compete in the first place and what changed your mind?

I never was a competitive person, and I never liked fighting nor things of that nature. At first, I wanted to do it like a hobby, but I changed my mind when I participated in an exhibition and wore an armour for the first time. I simply loved it; it was love at first sight -says while laughing-. The week after that, I put on an armour again and I have never stopped since then.

Equally, nowadays I don’t participate to win, but to improve my skills, try to be the best, and specially, to have fun.

What kind of difficulties do you find in your path to be the best? Do you think that this being an amateur sport is a disadvantage?

The main difficulties are the times and places to train; the lack of tournaments through the year, as they are still few in number, compared to the ones abroad; the equipment, as in Argentina everything is made by ourselves, sometimes is hard to have enough time to make the proper training equipment or even the armors.

I think that the sport being amateur is a great disadvantage, since we don’t have any kind of help or facility to do this sport, mainly in the matters related with the international tournaments, both here in Argentina and in foreign lands.

What are your best memories from the tournaments so far?

My best memories from the tournaments, besides any epic move of a fighter, are the camaraderie and the good vibes with the other fighters and marshals, and the huge work of the squires. Every time I participate in a tournament, I find new friends.

I also like noticing how tournament after tournament the fighting style, not only mine but everyone’s, keep improving. I enjoy the talk before and after every event, the jokes between fighters, the advice from the veterans to the new fighters and everything that surrounds this sport.

But a particular memory I have is the hug with Valherjes team while I was a mercenary together with Dragones Atlánticos and Newbery, at the tournament “Copa Grifo” of this year.

How was the experience of fighting with a team you don’t train with?

It was really hard; as we had never practiced the tactics and strategies together, the role was really complicated. Neither did I know each one’s skills. Although, it was very funny, and the fighters from Dragones Atlánticos and Newbery were great people. I decided to participate with them because they were only four, so they needed one more to fulfill a team. In the end, I was lucky to find such fighters, moreover when I didn’t even know their names before.

What can you tell us about your experience at Battle of the Nations?

Battle of the Nations is something unique. This year’s location, Plaza de Toros in Barcelona, was really epic. I wasn’t sure of joining the National Team, but some members of my team insisted, so I finally did. I couldn’t help but join every category. I went to Sergio’s physical training and then to Juan Manuel’s duels training. Speaking with Juan Manuel, he told me that I was the only fighter who joined Sword and Buckler, so we decided right there that I would represent our country in that category.

We had very little training and preparation this year, but I practiced buckler duels as much as I could in my club. Luckily, Mariano Ozón invited me to train with armor and explained me a lot of things that were really useful.
Speaking about what I lived there, it is outstanding. Everything from the camp to every one of the fights being able to meet people from other countries, watching the Russians and Ukrainians fighting; it’s amazing. The fights where an intensive course, as I learned a lot with every hit. Sharing the campment with people from Spain, Mexico, Czech Republic and Brasil was crazy and funny. In the National Team we were able to get on very well.

I would recommend every fighter to participate in at least one Battle of the Nations, because it is something unique, and you learn a lot. You must not forget also all the equipment you can buy there. What Battle of the Nations left me, is the will to return and to train more.

Now that you are back from Battle of the Nations, what are your next steps?

Attending the next one? -laughs-. Now that I experienced the international fighting level, I decided to train more and focus on duels, which is one of the categories I fought at this tournament. I want to travel again and give a better spectacle, and there is no other way of doing that but training harder and with more people, specially now that I have graduated from the University. To sum up, I want to train more and help in every way I can to improve the sport in our country.

Anything else you would like to mention?

First of all, thank you for the interview, your work is great. On the other hand, to everyone else, we have to train more, organize more activities between clubs and not only fighting in tournaments, and keep improving this sport we like so much.

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