Fresno man is a knight who fights in shining armor: ‘It’s every little boy’s dream’

Fresno man is a knight who fights in shining armor: ‘It’s every little boy’s dream’

FRESNO, Calif. (KSEE/KGPE) – A Fresno man who describes himself as a nurse by day and a knight by night is leading a double life in two different periods of time.

Isaac Ellis from Fresno is a nurse who is also a member of the Order of the Gauntlet and Rose, which is “a group of nobles, warriors, and friends to both organize and sponsor chivalrous tournaments.” Alongside other members of the order, Isaac Ellis takes part in the sport of Buhurt: Medieval-style full-contact combat.

“Buhurt is significantly more widespread…most states have a team if not several teams,” said Ellis.

Ellis says his family has a history in martial arts – but he has been more drawn towards musical theater. Joining the Order of the Gauntlet and Rose happened by chance after a caroling gig fell through.

“So I had a whole bunch of time that I had already gotten off to do caroling,” said Ellis. “I was like ‘Screw it. Why don’t I punch people in the face instead?’ So then looked online, found out what it was called, and decided to check and see if there was a group near me.”

He found the Order of the Gauntlet and Roase and says he immediately found his place among the club’s members.

“The welcome to the group was insane. I felt like I clicked with these people right off the bat. It’s a group of nerds, we’re automatically throwing jokes – but not what you would think of when you think of the most nerdy people that you know of.”

Ellis says donning a custom-made suit of armor has given him a feeling of confidence that takes him back to childhood.

“It’s every little boy’s dream, you know? Everyone wants to be a knight. When you get the suit that has been crafted for you, to your measurements and it fits you like a glove, there’s nothing like it.”

Isaac Ellis holding his helmet.
Isaac Ellis holding his helmet.

Each member of the club has custom-made suits made by blacksmiths. Ellis says it is all well made with thick steel. real think steel.

“Not toys, even though you see us play with them frequently.”

Not every member of the Order of The Gauntlet and Rose competes on the Buhurt team, but those that do take part in real fights. Ellis says making sure all weapons and armor are up to code is extremely important.

“Looking at our helmets – these things are like 15 to 20 pounds of steel and padding and ultimate protection for your cranium.”

Ellis says, despite what his grandmother would say about the fights, Buhurt is as safe as it can be for armored combat sports.

While Ellis competes, he says not everyone will want to. For those who do not want to fight, there are other ways for people to get involved if they are interested as competitors, spectators, and even marshals – which he says the sport desperately needs.

Since joining the sport, Isaac has competed with the Order, as well as a Sacramento Buhurt group called War Pigs.

Meanwhile, Isaac has attracted a substantial following on social media after sharing his Buhurt experience online. He continues to document his Buhurt experience on TikTok and Instagram.

For the latest news, weather, sports, and streaming video, head to | KSEE24 and CBS47.