creating healthier places in which to learn

WITS Featured Fitness Partner


New Amsterdam Fencing


John Gonzalez, New Amsterdam Fencing Academy (NAFA)


Founded in 2001 by John Gonzalez, New Amsterdam Fencing Academy (NAFA) is 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 their 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-which is where WITS comes in! 

Over the years NAFA has been involved with many different programs, from preschools to competitive high school teams, public schools and private schools. By partnering with WITS, NAFA is able to achieve its goal to reach more students who may never have heard of fencing before, but who can reap great benefits from learning this unique discipline. NAFA coaches are truly excited about the opportunity to join with the WITS Coaches to bring their unique approach to fencing to more New York City kids this year. 

New Amsterdam Fencing Academy doesn’t just nurture athletes; they nurture all kids regardless of athletic ability. They instill in young learners the passion for setting a goal and working their hardest to achieve it. NAFA motivates students to reach the peak of their own physical conditioning and fosters the discipline, physical coordination, and decision-making that breeds winners on and off the fencing strip. Through specially developed games and exercises, NAFA helps 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. As their fitness, footwork, and blade-work improve, they see and experience how it all fits together. 

Like WITS, NAFA teaches more than just fencing. Their coaches are role models who help students to develop life skills and encourage building character just as much as strength and sport skills.