Self Defence

Caitlin Axelby from Westport Campus provides us with an overview of the self-defence class that she attended this week, with several of her year 11 and 12 peers.

On Wednesday, Westport Campus teacher Bianca Kahler held a one hour self-defence class to teach year 11 and 12 girls how to get away and defend themselves against a potential attacker. She showed us various techniques using simple holds, pressure points and your own force to get yourself out of a dangerous situation. We were shown how to best use our own strength and size to defend and protect ourselves, by applying techniques such as the gooseneck hand hold and ear clapping to distract an attacker.

Why I did this lesson?

I decided to participate in this activity to see what skills I could use if ever I am in a dangerous situation. I was honestly expecting just to learn a few very basic steps, but in fact what we learnt was about the technique and positioning of your body and finding balance. Seeing that is was simple coordination, gave me confidence in my ability to pursue each technique thoroughly and effectively. I assisted Bianca in giving a demo to the other girls and even by doing this, I gained the impression that if an attacker was to come at me and I fought back relentlessly, they would back off as it wouldn’t be worth the risk for them.

What I gained from the experience?

I gained confidence in defending myself especially considering that the last time I had ever been taught self-defence was in year 7, which now has faded in my memory. I now feel that the moves and techniques I learnt will stick with me forever, as it was a very small, safe and controlled environment with one on one teaching and learning. I also learnt that by having just those 5 or 6 different techniques could someday save my life, whereas if I had not known these and been attacked I would be a very easy and vulnerable target.

Would I do it again and encourage others?

Absolutely! Being a young girl without any knowledge of self-defence puts you at a very vulnerable and unwanted disadvantage. I would recommend every girl to participate as you never know what lies ahead of you, even if you’re just walking home from work or going to the beach. It’s a much safer alternative than just telling yourself ‘I’ll just scream’ or ‘I’ll be fine’ when it comes to your safety and your life. It is a massive eye opener and a lesson you should never miss out on.