Becoming a Youth Combat Marshal

Are you interested in becoming a Youth Combat Marshal?

One of the surest ways to make your kids think of the SCA as their hobby, and not just something you drag them to, is to get them involved in SCA activities that they find fun. And youth combat is fun!

You do not need to be a fighter in the SCA to be a Youth Combat Marshal. Many YC marshals are moms and dads who’ve never worn armor or swung a stick. All you need is the willingness to work with kids and adults, and some enthusiasm to impart to the youth fighters.

To run youth combat practices as part of your shire or barony’s official activities, you must follow these steps:

  1. Be a paid member of the SCA.
  2. Get approval from your local Knight Marshal and Seneschal to become your group’s YC Marshal. Have them email their acceptance to the Kingdom Youth Combat Marshal, THLord Metheus Weasel.
    • If you wish to be a Youth Marshal but not for a specific SCA group, you can be a Youth Marshal-at-Large. Just have a warranted Youth Marshal or your local group Seneschal email the Kingdom Youth Combat Marshal letting him know that they vouch for you.
  3. Email the Kingdom Youth Combat Marshal asking to become a local YC Marshal. Send him the following information:
    • SCA Name
    • Real Name
    • Address
    • Phone number
    • Email address
    • SCA membership # and expiration date
  4. Get an SCA background check.
    • After you send the info in step 3 above, the Kingdom Youth Combat Marshal will email you the background check form. Complete and mail it to the SCA Corporate office in California at the address on the form. It typically takes 4-6 weeks from the time you submit the paperwork for the SCA Corporate office to hear back. You’ll get a letter from the SCA, Inc. letting you know when your background check is approved or rejected.
  5. If you live in Pennsylvania, get the required PA clearances.
    • If you need the Federal FBI Background Check (only required for people who have lived in PA for less than 10 years) in addition to the PA state clearances, save a receipt along with your proof of completion and then fill out this form to be reimbursed for the cost of the FBI check.
    • Submit copies of the PA and FBI clearance certificates to your Regional or Kingdom Youth Marshal.
  6. Read the Kingdom Youth Combat Policies.
  7. Read the Æthelmearc Youth Marshal Handbook.
  8. Once you pass your background check (and PA clearances, if applicable), get a Marshal-in-Training (MIT) form from the Kingdom Youth Marshal and work under the guidance of a warranted youth marshal to gain experience inspecting armor and weapons, marshaling bouts and melees, and running youth authorizations. Contact THLord Methias Weasel for information on a warranted marshal near you with whom you can train, or check the list at the bottom of this page.
  9. Successfully complete a short verbal quiz which can be administered by any warranted youth marshal.
  10. After completing the steps above, submit your MIT form to the Kingdom Youth Marshal so you can be warranted.
  11. Send your SCA member number and expiration date to the Earl Marshal and ask be added to the Kingdom Roster of Marshals.
  12. Start running practices! Talk to the Kingdom Youth Marshal or your Regional Marshal about getting loaner gear.

Once you’re warranted, you can run practices and marshal tournaments. We appreciate it if local YC Marshals help out with marshaling youth combat at big events like Æthelmearc War Practice and  Pennsic, where Æthelmearc traditionally sponsors the popular Youth/Adult Tag Team Tourney. If you’re on Facebook, you might also want to join the Æthelmearc Marshals group. You must also complete quarterly reports. You can also sign up for the Æthelmearc Marshals’ Yahoo Group to receive email reminders when reports are due.

Remember to keep your SCA membership up-to-date, Send renewal information to the Earl Marshal. You must also renew your SCA background check (and PA clearances, if applicable) periodically. Check the expiration dates on all of your clearances, and make sure to begin the renewal process at least two months prior to expiration to allow time for processing.

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The Society Youth Combat Marshal’s web page has lots of articles with information on how to train youth fighters, marshal tourneys and melees, and make and inspect armor and weapons.

Running a Youth Combat program can be a lot of work, but also very rewarding. If your group has kids interested in learning how to swing a sword, and you’re willing to help them get started, please contact the Æthelmearc Kingdom Youth Marshal, THLord Metheus Weasel, for more information on how to become a youth marshal.

Updated October 4, 2018.