Tim Weidmayer collects medals again in DM – SWR Sport

Tim Widmaier of Weil der Stadt is one of the best wheelchair fencers in Germany. At Böblingen, he once again demonstrated that he has the fastest arms and the most flexible upper body.

Repost, feint, batota, coupe – technique and speed are also essential when fencing a wheelchair. Tim Widmaier of Weil der Stadt is one of the best players in Germany. He is a German multiple champion and a member of the national team. Wheelchair fencing is his passion and he is particularly fond of epee: “The magic of epee is that it is a very tactical game. You can imagine it like chess – you always have to know: what is your opponent going to do next?” Widmaier explains.















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Wheelchair fencers need fast arms and flexible upper bodies

Before the fight, the lengths of the various opponents’ arms are measured. Then the space between the wheelchairs was adjusted and fixed with a metal brace. Depending on your upper body movement, you fight in Class A, B, or C.

In addition, it is essential that fencers and wheelchairs wear a seat belt so that they do not fall out when bending forward and backward quickly – or fall completely with the wheelchair. Dribbling into a wheelchair fence is only possible with the upper body. This makes this sport challenging and exciting at the same time. Quick reflexes are one thing, good tactics quite another. “I used to be a striker and now I’m more of a defender,” says Widmaier. “Because if I attack, it will be answered in a classic way.”

2019: Weidmayer, three-time German champion

Tim Widmayr was born prematurely. As a result of his premature birth, the 32-year-old has limitations in fine motor skills and sense of balance. He lives largely independently and works in the quality department of an automobile manufacturer.



Wheelchair fencer Tim Widmayer in his apartment.


SWR



SWR


Training is usually done five times a week. Fencing, strength training, physical therapy – he takes all this on himself, because sports have always been important to him. “I used to swim, but then I got bored. Then I wanted to try wheelchair sport and came across fencing by chance.” In this sport, he was very successful, for example, at the German Championships in 2019: he won the titles in saber, tin foil, and epi.

Bonn / Mannheim

Fencer Mark Perelmann (second from left) with his team at the German Championships 2021 (Photo: SWR, Exclusive: Mark Perelmann)

Mark Perelmann is a German fencer with Ukrainian roots. But since the Russian attack on Ukraine, he has had other concerns than medals and trophies.
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Refugees from Ukraine in a training group

Since the war of Russian aggression in Ukraine, the training set around the national team and Tim Widmayer has changed: Alexander Bondar, the federal coach for wheelchair fencing, himself a native of Ukraine, takes care of Ukrainian wheelchair fencing with the entire team who has found housing in Germany. Since their arrival in Germany, they have been training in Rostock and Böblingen.

Some of them were spectators of the German Championships, but they could not participate themselves yet, and had to be members of a club in Germany for at least a year. For Alexander Bondar, it was, of course, for the whole team to support the Ukrainian athletes. Especially since there are medalists from the Paralympic Games in Tokyo, and they can also use their athletic skills to push German athletes into training, says national team coach Alexander Bondar: “The Ukrainian team is one of the leaders in wheelchair fencing and of course, Bondar said in an interview with SWR We benefit from good opponents as well as from very exciting fights.”















Tim Widmaier wins medals again in the DM

Under the eyes of some Ukrainian wheelchair fencers, Tim Widmayr took the podium again this year in the German championships – it wasn’t enough for the title: he won a bronze in chips and even a silver in a saber.

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