The first Women’s Self Defence Seminar was a success. A bit nerve wracking trying to organise it and leading up to the event as we didn’t know how it would be received but all went well on the day.

The seminar’s success wasn’t measured by the 25 or so wonderful women that supported by coming along (which is no mean feat in our little city) and spending an hour on their busy week to attend the seminar.

Success wasn’t measured by the peals of laughter echoing through our martial arts school when participants didn’t get the technique on the first go but achieved it on their second try with the accompanying -AHAH! moment. Nope.

Success if a funny measure and I don’t think my measure of success is the same as other people or school owners out there.

Maybe it’s because I have a daughter and a wife? My wife had been encouraging me to run a Women’s Self Defence seminar for a little while now. At that time I was under the impression that women’s personal safety was a topic that was done to death and well understood by the community. This was definitely not the case and I was humbled by the feedback from the women that attended the seminar

Success in my mind was the women that came up to me at the conclusion of the seminar asking for more information about personal safety. The questions and that they wanted to know more – how little they understood or thought they understood. That there was more to personal safety that they needed to arm themselves with. That was great! I wanted them to be more aware and in turn make others more aware.

During the course of the seminar during presenting one particular bad situation, there were nods from a good number of participants when they were asked if they were taught to “punch or kick the groin” or “attack vital targets”. This supposedly guaranteed that they could disarm, disable and knockout an assailant.

I’m sure this was taught to them by a very credible 100th dan martial arts instructor somewhere but isn’t it a bit scary that women would be armed with such a uni-dimensional form of personal safety?

Jiu-jitsu isn’t the only answer and it definitely is NOT a comfortable martial art. But it’s not trying to be. If you combine a solid personal safety strategy, tactics and techniques based on leverage then that has to lend itself to a better outcome.

Aren’t there motivational posters plastered on gyms and cafe walls that says growth occurs outside of your comfort zone? Maybe they have a point. Maybe to grow means to simply educate and become more aware. Onwards and upwards until our next women’s self defence seminar!

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