4 "Don'ts" That Could Save Your Life | The Women's Defense Company

8/04/2014

Take Control


This year a conversation began on the tail of a horrific mass murder targeting young females. That conversation was #YesAllWomen. As I read through the confessions of women across the globe, I was reminded of my own vulnerability. Ten years ago I felt that vulnerability keenly, and in an effort to protect myself I signed up for self defense classes. That quickly turned into a year of martial arts that served to both humble me, and grow my confidence by leaps and bounds. After a year, I became distracted with life and moved on, but the lessons I learned stuck with me. When a local friend told me of a class she took at The Women's Defense Company, I was immediately excited. #YesAllWomen should take classes that will empower them and instill techniques that could save her life. I knew I had to do a review and share with you a taste of what you will gain. Here are my....






4 "Don'ts" that Could Save Your Life
lessons from 
The Women's Defense Company
At The Women's Defense Company, the writing is on the wall. Literally.
I wasn't exactly sure what to expect from the Abduction Response Tactics class I signed up for. There was a lot to learn. The class was truly empowering from the beginning until the final simulation experience, starting with some numbers that frankly outraged me. 

1. Don't Panic - Get Mad
If knowledge is power then let these numbers empower you:
  • 1 in every 3 women will be victims of sexual assault. 
  • 80% of sexual assaults occur before the age of 25. 
  • Most attacks are by someone you know. 
  • 60 -90% of attacks are never reported. 
  • 97% of rapists never spend a day in jail. 
For many women these numbers are frightening. How could they not be? I loved that The Women's Defense Company's owner/instructor Chris Oklevitch told us to use those numbers. Don't panic, get angry! If those numbers were the same for men, you would see an army of men stand up to take those attackers down. In the same way, these classes aim to strengthen women's confidence and teach them they can be more than a victim. Looking around the room the writing was literally on the wall. "Fight Back!" 

2. Don't Act or Look Like a Victim
Possessing an extensive background in law enforcement will give you an in depth knowledge to the criminal mind. For this reason I trusted Chris when he gave us detailed insight as to what scumbags think. He told us that just like in nature, predators prey on the weak. Those who look like easy targets, usually are. Therefore, the first mode of defense for every woman is to avoid looking like a victim. Here are a few good practices to improve your odds, there are so many more... but you'll have to take the class to find out. 
  • Be Alert
  • Trust Your Instincts (if something seems fishy, it probably is)
  • Have your keys ready (see more info on their Keychain Defense Class on the web)
  • Keep your hands above your waist when talking to a stranger (it's more assertive, and easier to defend yourself)
  • Don't let your desire to be polite be detrimental to your own safety. (criminals will test their victims so speak up)


3. Don't Just Run - Attack Your Attacker
You might think that running to safety would be your best option in the event of an attack, but under the tutelage of The Women's Defense Company I learned that simple escape may not be as easy as it seems. If you could break loose, who is to say you would out run your assailant? Instead you could be caught in the same critical situation, this time out of breathe and zapped of strength. This is why we were taught to stand our ground, and make our will and presence known by verbalizing our power while employing self defense techniques that would render our attacker unable to pursue us, or at least completely change his mind about his choice of victim. In the last hour, we got a chance to test those skills during a live simulation practice. This was by far the most challenging part of the class. For the majority of your time you are learning self defense techniques in an environment created for your comfort. The simulation finale does just the opposite, they switch it up putting you out of your comfort zone and challenge you to use what you learned. Two different versions of this simulation will either have you exhausted... or if you are like me, ready for battle. 

Preparing for the Simulation

4. Don't Let Your Fear Hold You Back
For many of the women like myself who took the class, past experiences had the potential to bring emotions to the forefront. This is normal, and something each of us had to deal with at our own pace. I was encouraged by the incredible kindness the instructors held, and their message to the students to try your best, but do only what you felt you could do. We were told often, "This class is for you. Do what you can." In fact they have a long list of amazing classes I'm looking forward to returning to. The Girl's Night Out class was featured on my latest news segment, and is a perfect three hour class focusing on key chain defense tactics. It's a perfect way to get started, and bond with your besties. As a parent I'm also interested in the Children's Defense class which helps parents open up the dialogue with kids about strangers.

Don't go alone! Bring a friend for more fun!
Lastly, I will say how impressed I was with their Free Lifetime Return Policy. Once you take a class, you are welcome to come back and take it again or practice during a simulation to keep your skills fresh. Amazing! Don't be a victim, boost your confidence and empower yourself by signing up at the Women's Defense Company.

Until then...

Enjoy the Journey!

xo- Amy West

www.amywesttravel.com 

See more images from my class on facebook here.


P.S. As I was writing this blog I happened across this article about "Running While Female". I couldn't help but relate with the writer, and know that so many women have totally been there. How much more confident would she have been, with the support of an organization like the Women's Defense Company?

Also, if you carry a firearm or have thought about doing so, you should check out my husbands blog over at Elevation Expeditions. Very enlightening!

Watch me discuss 5 Creative Girl's Night Out destinations including the Women's Defense Company.

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Copyright © Amy West Travel. All rights reserved. Photography by Journey Productions Media.

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