Sport vs. Sport: What Happens When a Tai Chi Master Takes on a Fencer?


There are some amazing parallels across sports and perhaps none is more fascinating than Tai Chi and fencing. In this incredible video, a Tai Chi Master takes on a fencer using only his skills of evasion to avoid a fencers lunges.

What happens when the “defenseless” Tai Chi Master Mr. Wang tries to dodge the fencers blade is pretty incredible!

Check out the video below:

Excited to announce that I will be Speaking at Ted X Columbia on March 29, 2014 (10am-3pm)

Excited to announce that I will be Speaking at Ted X Columbia on March 29, 2014 (10am-3pm)

Tim Morehouse to Speak to Crowd of 400 at TEDxColumbiaCollege Spring Conference

Olympic Silver Medalist Fencer Tim Morehouse will be speaking at the second annual TEDxColumbiaCollege Spring Conference on March 29, 2014. His talk will focus on how he overcame the odds in his Olympic journey and how he is applying those same lessons in his new mission to bring the sport of fencing to millions of children throughout the country.

Also participating will be figure skater Sasha Cohen, artist Lucien Smith, and journalist/entrepreneur Shane Snow, as well as many other thought leaders from a wide cross-section of fields and disciplines, each of whom has made a commitment to something bigger than the self. Examining the question of “Why Commit?” the speakers will all be reflecting on the active engagement that entails dedication to an idea, art form, institution, even another human being. “Why commit?” challenges us to articulate exactly what keeps us going, to find a meaningful path forward, and to make sense of the world and people around us.

Saturday, March 29, 2014
10:00 AM to 3:00 PM

Low Library, Columbia University
116th St and Broadway
New York, NY 10027

To purchase tickets for TEDxColumbiaCollege, visit

About Tim Morehouse
Olympic Fencer Tim Morehouse is a Silver Medalist and three-time Olympic Team member, as well as an entrepreneur, business consultant, speaker, TV host and author. Dedicated to spreading the power of his sport, Morehouse has spearheaded the growth and development of fencing in the USA through his non-profit foundation, Fencing in the Schools, and innovative tech startup, Morehouse Revolution. Between his school assemblies, national TV appearances and speaking engagements, Morehouse has been able to uplift and educate hundreds of thousands of children and adults nationwide. For more information about Tim Morehouse, visit or

About TEDx
TED is an annual event where the world’s leading thinkers and doers are invited to share what they are most passionate about. “TED” stands for Technology, Entertainment, Design — three broad subject areas that are, collectively, shaping our future. In the spirit of ideas worth spreading, TEDx is a program of local, independently organized events that bring people together to share in a TED-like experience. At TEDxColumbiaCollege and other TEDx events, TEDTalks video and live speakers combine to spark deep discussion and connection in a small group.

Performance Tip of the Week: Be a Good Coach To Yourself


Positive (or let’s say productive) self-talk is a really important part of succeeding in sports and in life. It might sound like a cheesy thing but how you “coach” yourself especially in pressure filled or tough situations is critical to success.

As an example, two phrases I often use to “coach” myself through tough situations when competing or just generally in life are “It Is what It Is” and “Focus on what you can Control Tim!” (you can obviously supplement your own name here if you ever want to use the second phrase! lol)

My natural inclination when something crappy happens is like anyones: I get upset! But how much I let that moment distract or “own” me can be the difference between victory and defeat or a good or bad performance.

Bad or unlucky things happen to EVERYONE. Your equipment might not arrive at the tournament. You might do well in your seeding matches but then draw a really tough opponent anyway and of course there will always be “bad” calls. You can pick any sport you want, we’ve all witnessed an athlete get upset at a bad call and then get taken way off his/her game even many plays later. This scenario happens outside of sports just as much!

“Why is this happening to me?!?!?!” is a pretty natural phrase to pop into your head at bad moments. This is a totally normal reaction but also why it is important to plan for these situations. As soon as I go “why is this happening to me!?!?!” I take a deep breath and call upon my inner “coach” and say “It is What it Is”. Which means to me, a bad thing just happened, there is nothing I can do to go back in time to change it, I just need to accept it and “Focus on what you can control Tim!”

Being able to rapidly accept unfortunate circumstances, especially those you can’t control, and often times they can be VERY unfortunate is what it takes to win in the long run. You can’t get caught up in the short term “losses” or pitfalls and let those compound into even greater defeat.

Being a productive “coach” to yourself is one great way to help yourself overcome challenges and to put yourself in the best possible mental state to win. There is no right or wrong way to do this but it does take setting the goal, practice and experimentation like anything else to get good at it.

Learning about yourself and finding the right triggers or buttons to push to keep yourself in a focused and productive state of mind is HUGE. They are the kind of internal mental victories that precede consistent external victory and quality performance on the field of play.

Be the best coach you can be to yourself if you want to succeed in the long term!

Here is a little question/exercise (feel free to post here or just do it for yourself)

–> Do you currently have some strategies for getting yourself focused or re-centered in a productive mental state when negative or distracting things happen? Yes/No. If Yes, what are they?

–> (this is a great activity) If no, try to identify some times when you get stuck or distracted by negative things happening and start to try to catch yourself (a big step here!) and then to proactively “coach” yourself out of those unproductive moods. And, write down phrases or things you say yourself that start to have an impact so you don’t forget them!


Tim Morehouse is an Olympic Silver Medalist in the Sport of Fencing, Founder of Fencing in the Schools the largest introductory fencing program in the country, performance coach and Author of American Fencer: Modern Lessons from an Ancient Sport.

To Bring Tim to Speak at your company e-mail:

The Complex Work to Get to Simplicity i.e. Thoughts from My Journey to Revolutionize the Sport of Fencing


I’m on a red eye flight back from Palo Alto, California to NYC where I’ve spent the past few days working with IDEO to wrap up our current round of work to revolutionize the equipment system of fencing.  This is my 3rd trip out to work with them over the past few months.   Flights always seem to rev up my visionary, strategic and practical thinking processes all the same time. In the future when I tell the story of how we revolutionized fencing more than half the transformational big ideas will have occurred on planes. lol

So a small insight into the balance I’m trying to find in regards to revolutionizing the sport on the equipment front.

THE MISSION/GOAL around the equipment is to make the sport more enjoyable and accessible for fencers, spectators and people who want try it and to do this by…

#1 Reducing costs
#2 Simplifying and making the equipment more user friendly
#3 Making the sport more aesthetically and experientially pleasing (more “WOW!” factor) to it
#4 Making the sport easier to understand and referee

In conjunction with: 
#5 (this is a big one) do all of #1-#4 while also creating change that will allow the sport to seamlessly transition from the current equipment system to a new system AND that the new system will continue to allow for progress and innovation on top of itself as new technology becomes available. 

Simple right? lol (The irony being the best solutions are generally always simple ones but with complex thinking required to get to the simplicity)   Thus the title of my post today.   The best fencers (or best anything really) are simple, but it is a complex problem to get to simplicity.   

It has been incredibly exhilarating, inspiring and challenging to engage in this mission and many folks have come before to try and improve the equipment only to fall short.     The equipment system in fencing hasn’t been change in 70 years so we have a long road ahead on many fronts and many things to figure out and discover but I do know that this is exactly where I’m meant to be.  

Ok, back to thinking and plotting on my red eye flight from San Fran to NYC. Thanks for being a part of this journey. I can’t wait to unveil all this work I’ve been doing with IDEO in Palo Alto. #IDEO #Morehouse #TheRevolutionIsComing #RallytotheFlag

A to Z Performance Coaching Tip of the Day: Long Term Success Requires Turning “Losses” into Victories


Being successful in fencing and outside of fencing all starts with how you think about things. Your mindsets and values.

One of the most critical mindsets I have always had was this idea that no matter what happened in a match (or life), win or lose, I was going to take a lesson from the situation to make myself stronger in the long run.

I have always felt that if I could take something positive out of every situation, no matter how dire, that it could still be considered a victory and thus there has never really been been a point where I “lose”.  My mindset is that if I can turn a defeat into a lesson that will ultimately help me in the long then that experience can be counted as a victory (even if it is a small one) on the road to my big goals.

Don’t get me wrong, losing a match or dealing with tough situations is never easy and I’m not saying those things aren’t painful in the moment.   Nor am I saying that you should be satisfied with not getting wins, but if you are going to go for big things, such as the Olympics, you are going to spend years experiencing both winning AND losing and if you don’t develop and build your ability to cope with the losing in a positive way then you are likely to get frustrated and give up.

I’ve seen it happen time and time again. When people lose they often don’t want to think about it but I’ve found one of the most important things I can do is figure out what I can take from a “loss” to get better. I can say honestly that I’ve learned some of my most valuable life and fencing lessons in the “down” times.

Tim Morehouse is an Olympic Silver Medalist in the Sport of Fencing, A to Z performance coach and Author of American Fencer: Modern Lessons from an Ancient Sport.