Rules And Policies

Training Space Rules

  • No outdoor shoes may be worn on the raised training floor; non-marking indoor shoes or bare feet only
  • Students must remove all necklaces, rings, and other loose jewelry prior to entering the training floor; it is strongly recommended that visible piercings be removed for wrestling and other close contact training
  • The student lounge and training floor are for use by Valkyrie WMAA students only; friends, family, and spectators are welcome in our reception area
  • Students may use the training floor for individual practice when classes are not in session; they must give priority to private lessons during this time, and follow any instructions from school staff
  • All student equipment, including safety gear, personal weapons, and water bottles/snacks, must be kept in the designated storage areas on the east wall of the training floor, or in the cubbies and shelves in the student lounge
  • All school equipment, including training swords, must be put back in designated storage areas after use; if safety gear is damp, please have an instructor help you find space to dry it out before putting it in storage
  • Prior to beginning sparring with a new weapon, students must receive a safety orientation and be cleared to fight by an instructor; fighters must follow Valkyrie WMAA sparring safety rules at all times, and must follow all staff instructions during sparring
  • No student may participate in training or sparring while under the influence of drugs or alcohol
  • Anyone who engages in discriminatory or harassing behaviour will be removed from class and may also lose future training privileges; this includes -- but is not limited to -- discrimination based on race, gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, ethnic or religious background, and ability, as well as verbal, physical, and sexual harassment

Valkyrie WMAA is a safe and welcoming space for everyone, and all of our staff and students are expected to abide by the above rules. If you see something that makes you feel uncomfortable or unsafe, or have any questions about our policies, please speak to Courtney, Kaja, or your instructor.

Sparring Rules

All students must receive a safety orientation and be cleared to fight by an instructor prior to sparring with each new weapon. During sparring, all fighters must follow our General Sparring Guidelines, wear adequate safety gear, and fight at the appropriate Sparring Level for all participants. Fighters are expected to take responsibility for their own safety and the safety of their training partners, and to obey all instructions from Valkyrie WMAA staff during sparring.

General Sparring Guidelines

Our bouts are fought on an honour system in which each fighter is responsible for announcing any hits that they receive. Hits should be announced either with a loud, “Hit!”, or with a clear gesture indicating which part of the body was struck. After a single hit, fighters reset to their starting positions, and a new pass begins. A bout is usually made up of multiple passes.

A fighter should always strike with the minimum amount of force required to complete an action. Cuts and thrusts targeting the body should strike their target with a light impact (a noticeable touch) that does not cause bruising or shove the target out of position. To ensure this, a fencer should aim to just make contact with the body, rather than to drive through it to an imaginary target behind/beside the opponent. Cuts targeting the sword should displace the weapon enough to grant the fencer an additional tempo for attack, without intentionally hurting the opponent’s wrist or knocking the sword out of their hand. This is best accomplished by aiming strikes to the sword, rather than beyond it.

If a fencer’s attack has too much force, it must be “broken” at the moment of contact to reduce its impact. Thrusts can be broken by relaxing the elbow of the sword arm and allowing it to bend, absorbing the impact of the blow. Cuts are broken by relaxing the elbow and wrist of the sword arm, and gently drawing the sword along the target back towards the fencer.

A high level of awareness and dexterity is required to fight safely. If a fencer is losing focus due to fatigue or stress, or if their sword arm is so tired that they cannot control the direction or force of their blows, they should immediately end the bout.

Sparring Levels

Fighters may choose to spar at any level equal to or below the lower-ranked fighter’s current level. Level is determined by fighting proficiency, and students may advance through sparring levels following an assessment by one of our senior instructors.

  1. Touch Fight: all hits are called, and acknowledged by both parties; no striking or grappling
  2. Precision Fight: all hits are called, but fighters may indicate and dismiss non-lethal blows; no striking or grappling
  3. Close Contact Indicated Fight: fighters may initiate strikes, grapples, and disarms, without completion; no contact is allowed with strikes, and grapples and disarms end at first contact; only simple defensive actions are allowed to close contact techniques, with the pass ending after a single defense
  4. Close Contact Completion Fight: fighters may land strikes and apply locks or disarms as needed to demonstrate their control over their opponent; limited exchanges are allowed at close contact

Privacy Policy

Your privacy is important to us. All information collected by Valkyrie WMAA is collected and used in accordance with the principles laid out in the Canadian Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act.

What information does Valkyrie WMAA collect?

When you register for classes and complete a waiver, you voluntarily supply us with your full name and contact details (including address, phone number, and email), your birthdate, and a brief review of your medical history as it relates to your ability to participate in classes. You may also voluntarily provide us with your name, contact details, and other personal information during email correspondence or in conversation with our staff.

We also use cookies to automatically collect information about how you interact with our website. This may include a record of pages visited, time spent on page, how you reached our website (including search terms used), and the geographic origin of your IP address. This information is viewed in aggregated statistics in WordPress and Google Analytics for the purpose of improving our website's usability and accessibility, and is not tied to individual users in our records.

On-line payments are processed securely through third-party providers (Chase Paymentech and Paypal), and we do not store your full credit card number anywhere in our records. If you attach a credit or debit card to your student account in ZenPlanner (our attendance and membership tracking software), we will gain the ability to process transactions that you authorize. ZenPlanner also stores the cardholder name, card type, expiry date, and last 4 digits of any card you link to your account, as well as your attendance and the current status of your membership and billing. You may access this information at any time through the student portal.

While performing our in-class assessments, we collect information on your athletic performance and fitness, and how it changes over time. This information is linked only to your name in our records, and is used for pedagogical purposes only. You may request access to these records at any time.

Who is my information shared with?

All contact information is used by approved staff only for the purpose of completing your registration, and keeping you informed about school events or important changes. We will never sell this information to a third party.

Your medical information may be shared with health and emergency care personnel in the event of an emergency, if it is required for you to received adequate care for an injury, illness, or allergic reaction. Your medical information will not be shared with anyone outside of Valkyrie WMAA who is not directly involved in your emergency care, and it will never be sold.

Assessment performance metrics may be aggregated and discussed in an anonymized format on our blog, Box Wrestle Fence, as part of a broader examination of our methods and our students' progress. If you don't want your personal results to be used in this way, please inform us, and we will be happy to exclude them from any such presentations.

How is my information stored? For how long?

Paper copies of your waiver and registration form are stored securely in our school's office, and will be destroyed after you have been absent from our classes for 1 full year. Sensitive details, including legal name, medical conditions or histories (e.g. pregnancy, gender transition), and family status will be kept in hardcopy only, in a locked file.

Student contact details, membership details, billing details, performance records and assessment results are stored in ZenPlanner fitness business software, and are accessible only to our instructors and administrative staff. You may request copies of these records at any time, and they will be erased after 2 consecutive years of absence. ZenPlanner's privacy policy can be viewed here.

Who can I contact for more information, or to request records?

Please direct any records or privacy-related enquiries to Courtney Rice at courtney@valkyriemartialarts.com.

Cancellation and Refund Policy

Credit Packages

All credit packages purchased with a lump-sum payment may be cancelled within 45 days of purchase. Credit packages purchased on an installment plan may be cancelled at any point during the payment period. A cancellation fee may apply. The cancellation fee and refund, if any, will be determined by the number of credits used minus any payments made, at the following rates:

  • 0-7 credits used: $40 each
  • 8-23 credits used: $37.50 each
  • 24-47 credits used: $35 each
  • 48-95 credits used: $30 each

Example 1: 48 Credits purchased for $1,440. 30 credits were used. The rate per credit is $35, for a total of $1,050. A refund will be issued for $390.

Example 2: 96 Credits purchased on an installment plan of $200/month. 52 credits were used over 5 months. The rate per credit is $30 each, for a total of $1,560. Payments totaling $1,000 have been received. A cancellation fee of $560 will be charged.

Workshops and Events

Attendance at a workshop or other event may be cancelled for a full refund up to two business days before the event. Attendees who provide fewer than two days' notice will receive a 50% refund. No-shows (registered attendees who do not contact us to cancel, and fail to attend the event) will not receive a refund.

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