Although fencing doesn't share many of the historical characteristics we come to expect from "martial arts" I don't see why no one considers it one. True it has deviated from its original form to conform into the boundaries of a sport, but no less than most modern sparring rules have changed eastern "traditional" martial arts. The core idea of it being a fighting art is still there. Sure we are now limited to move fairly two dimensionally, and we now play tricks with right of way if we fence foil or saber, or we mess around with flicks that would never be possible with a more rigid blade. But Olympic tae kwon do forces its fighters to deviate far more heavily from the original art than fencing, and we still consider it a martial art. Then again fencing has always seemed more of a martial "science" and art so I don't really know. What do you guys think?