Mal-sun Marletto has dedicated decades to the sport of fencing. A passion of hers since the age of 10, Mal-Sun has not only competed in five countries, but she's also a World Cup competitor and Connecticut Women’s Champion in foil, épée, and saber. At Farmington Valley Fencing Academy, where she is both owner and head coach, Mal-sun draws on her vast experience and US Fencing Coaches Association–certification to instruct students of all ages and skill levels. She designed a variety of programs and membership packages that include instruction in foil, saber, and épée, and include additional perks such as discounts on equipment and gear.
Tom Bacha’s fist and feet are like a force field made of whip-quick cobras. The martial artist holds a second-degree black belt in tae kwon do, an Expert Series instructor certification from Krav Maga Worldwide, and a Brazilian jujitsu teaching certification from Best Way Jiu-Jitsu. At Connecticut Krav Maga, he and five other certified instructors draw on their kick-punching prowess to pass on Imi Lichtenfeld’s legendary martial art, krav maga, used by the Israeli Defense Force and the US Marines. Designed around the instinctual ways people defend themselves, the method gets quick-learned into students’ muscle memory, teaching students to fend off surprise attacks or disarm opponents carrying knives, guns, or prosthetic limbs.
Candlewood Fencing Center's 6,000-square-foot facility gives fledgling fencers and seasoned pros the tools they need to develop their skill with sabers, foils, and épées. Seventeen lunge workout stations allow students to hone attacks, and three electronic speed stations train reflexes to parry an incoming thrust or jury summons. The center is equipped with solid wood floors that are built with bounce, making lessons and sparring practice easy on students' joints.