As we enter February 2017, the club is branching out and launching a Women's Self Defence course that will run over six weeks. Given that Shoto Budo as a martial art is primarily about self defence and we have female members already, why introduce this course?
Essentially we recognise that starting a martial art can be quite intimidating, for both men and women, and progression through the grades, attending courses and is quite a time commitment. It may not be what everyone is looking for. However, the elements of our practise can benefit anyone and this new course aims to give some moves that would be useful in a self defence situation.
Therefore Emma and I have put together six lessons which focus on different types of attack, with counters for these. The moves are designed to be simple and memorable so that they can be recalled when necessary. We did not want to include some of our more complex locks - even after nine years of practice it can still take me several attempts to apply these which is not quite what we're aiming for here.
Emma has been very keen to start such a class, having trained as teenager, joined Shoto Budo when she turned 30 and now as a 1st Dan black belt, is looking to pass on some of her skills. She always encourages women to join a martial arts club but understands how daunting it can be. Commenting further, Emma added "the most common reaction I hear about when women are attacked is that they "freeze" so the idea is to give you movements that we practice so that they become natural reactions should the worst ever happen.
We've designed a 6 week course to tackle 5 different attacks and a variety of ways to defend against them". We'll hit some pads (a great stress relief!), try some moves and hopefully have some fun whilst doing it. A six week course won't make anyone a ninja but it might improve confidence, a little bit of fitness and maybe encourage people to join the club. The course is affiliated to our club so we decided to have a logo that was a variation on our triangle logo existing club logo. Many thanks to Laura Murdoch for designing this.
The first class is on 22nd February and we'll check back in here with updates on our progress. For more details, take a look at our Womens Self Defence page.
Scott has been training in Shoto Budo since 2007 and is a 1st Dan Black Belt. He is working towards his 2nd Dan grading.