About NAFA




New Amsterdam Fencing Academy

Founded in 2001 by John Gonzalez, New Amsterdam Fencing Academy (NAFA) has been home to nationally ranked fencers and top-level instructors who have worked with thousands of children in and around New York City.

NAFA is dedicated to bringing our program, and all of its many benefits, to students who love and know fencing and to those who would otherwise never have the opportunity to experience this noble sport.

At New Amsterdam Fencing Academy, we don’t just nurture athletes. We nurture kids. We instill in our students the passion for setting a goal and working their hardest to achieve it, then reveling in the satisfaction of a job well done. We motivate them to the peak of their own physical conditioning, speed, and strength, and foster the discipline that breeds winners on and off the fencing strip.

Through specially developed games and exercises, we help our students build agility, coordination, and awareness of their own bodies in space. They gain critical athletic skills, such as a keen sense of distance and the ability to briskly change direction. Students are challenged to hit stationary or moving targets, first standing still, and then maneuvering. As their fitness, footwork, and blade-work improve, they see and experience how it all fits together on the fencing strip.

As a former New York City high school fencing champion and college fencer, I have enjoyed observing him teach fencing as well as sportsmanship.  His problem-solving lessons go well beyond the fencing mat and will serve them for a lifetime. Even in larger classes, he’s attentive to each student. He’s also creative in the warm-ups and exercises he assigns. The children learn, get great exercise and have lots of fun. He should write a book for anyone who coaches children or adults.

-Addie R., Grandmother of Bodhi, Age 7