Thursday, February 12, 2009

Active Self Defense - Awareness

Last night (Wednesday Evening) we had our first Active Self Defense class. I have to say it was a great experience. First of all I want to thank all of you who participated last night. We had a great turnout. I want to thank Grant for graciously allowing himself be manhandled and contorted into very uncomfortable positions for our learning experience. Since it was our first evening we had introductions and covered some basic aspects of self defense, mainly that it is about education prevention and lastly when every other recourse is exhausted, implementation.

We discussed and shared why taking a self defense class is necessary (thanks Danielle B. for sharing about your experience on the subway) and why its important that when you walk alone, you walk with "intention"(thanks Danielle Z. for showing us what leisurely walking is and how it differs from walking with intention). Later on in the class we made mention that many of us walk around unconscious and Meera pointed out something very important, turn off your ipods or any other listening devices when walking home alone or in an area you are unfamiliar with. When you don't, you immediately place yourself in a position to be followed without your being able to hear if you are being followed.

Later on we worked on escaping a wrist grab (remember "answer the phone") and Ning pointed out what would happen if the assailant had long arms. She made the experience very realistic by promptly turning the tables on me, the "attacker" and making me the victim. Thanks Ning, keeping me on my toes!

We also discussed some other techniques and situations but most importantly using your common sense and listening to your intuition. Lastly we ended with some basic understanding of bio-mechanics - how the body works and how we can use that knowledge to our advantage.

I want to thank everyone who attended (Grant, Sarah, Nitin (and Naya), Meera, Lynne, Susan, Danielle B. and Danielle Z. and Ning for sharing of themselves and participating in making our neighborhood safer.

I look forward to each week of sharing with you and learning as you learn.

A special thanks goes to St. Marks Church (who donated the space) and Tammy who was instrumental in us getting the space.

Most importantly I want to acknowledge my wife, Dolly who made the forms, set up the table, and made it possible for me to focus on the other aspects of the class knowing that the details would be taken care of.

If you have any comments, suggestions, ideas, or thoughts please feel free to share them here with me and everyone else.

strong spirit-strong mind-strong body

Sensei Orlando

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