Self Defence FOR WOMEN vs. WOMEN ONLY Self Defence
Women have many reasons for wanting to learn self defence. Some see it as a way to get in shape that has the added benefit of learning to protect yourself, some, sadly, come after having been abused or assaulted and are looking to restore their confidence and prevent future assaults. Often there is a lot of apprehension over joining a self defence class ranging from self consciousness over body shape/fitness level, anxiety over finding oneself in a room full of men who love MMA and just like to fight, to fear of being triggered in class and getting emotional in public.
Whatever the case, women naturally want to learn self defence in a comfortable and safe environment. Many women believe that the best way to do this is to join women only classes. It is understandable but, if the goal is truly to learn self defence, this strategy will fail. It may be initially more comfortable but training against only people who are similar in build, weight, height and, most importantly, strength, will leave you not prepared. It’s a generalization but most women in women only classes are being careful not to hold too tight, punch too hard, etc. This is actually doing everyone a disservice. Reality is, someone attacking you is going to use all their strength. Many places offer women only self defence programs because there is a demand but the truth is you do not really learn to defend yourself in these classes.
The philosophy of IDF Krav Maga School is that, in order to react appropriately and quickly in dangerous situations, you need to have been exposed to simulated attacks that reflect reality. A woman may be attacked by another woman and you should train for this but, more likely, it will be a man. One of the reasons people get seriously injured when they are attacked is that they don’t react quickly because they are often in shock. If you’ve trained only against women and are assaulted by a 6ft tall strong man, chances are you will be terrified and not react as quickly as necessary (or worse, not react at all). You’ll also find that defending against a 6ft tall strong man is not that same as a woman your size (or even larger). Even if the strengths are the same, if you’ve only trained with other women, you’ll be less prepared when a man attacks. Especially for those who are training because of a prior assault by a man, the first time they are confronted physically by one should be in the classroom. If this happens in the street, it could be very dangerous.
While women often feel very vulnerable, statistically, men are more likely to be assaulted in their lifetime and, those who have been, often feel a lot of shame and embarrassment when coming to a self defence class. They too are self conscious of their age, weight, and fitness level. Some are also dealing with the after effects of childhood physical and sexual abuse.
Our classes are all about learning to defend yourself and are designed to teach adults of ANY age, ANY fitness level, from ANY background. Many students (both men and women) come from vulnerable backgrounds and home situations. We strive to create a safe space for everyone to REALLY learn to defend and protect themselves. Small students training with larger ones, young with old, strong with weak. The techniques we teach, combined with having practiced with people of all shapes, sizes, and sexes, leaves you with the ability to truly defend yourself.
Classes are small, ensuring techniques are learned and perfected, and simulated trainings are supervised and safe (with a focus on realism). All class participants have their own reasons for being enrolled but everyone is focused on learning to protect themselves and ensuring they and their classmates are getting as much value out of the classes as possible.