As a martial artist I’ve had a lot of exposure to different ways of looking at self defence. One of the things I’ve found interesting lately is the rise of this movement called ‘slut-walk’. At one end of that spectrum are people who believe that, if you’re not wearing a full body covering, then you deserve whatever happens to you. At the other end are folks who think they should have the right to walk down the street in a bikini without any unwanted attention. It made me put some serious thought into self defence, and to what degree we are each responsible for our own safety and well-being.
I think the important thing to remember is that, once a criminal act has been committed against someone, it’s the fault of the criminal. There is no such thing as an outfit you could wear that would give someone the right to commit an assault against you. The sad reality is that assault takes place on a regular basis, to people at all ends of that spectrum.
However, there are simple things we can each do to take charge of our own safety and well-being, and lessen the odds that a criminal would select us as a target.
This fall I’m putting my self defence and teaching experience to use in my community by offering a free, no-nonsense, women only self defence course. I’ll be teaching once a month, at the Metropolitan United Church in downtown Toronto. Classes are 2.5 hours long, on Saturday mornings and they are 100% free to attend.
The course is basic, and practical, and requires no prior knowledge of self defence. There is no minimum fitness level. It has been developed from 15 years of martial arts experience, with the input of my own Sensei, and a York Region Police Officer.
If you’re in the GTA, and this is something you might be interested in, you can email me at Toronto.Self.Defence@gmail.com, or check us out on Facebook!
This morning I held my first session – it was such an excellent experience. Photos of the morning are below :)