Most people (myself included), may believe self-defence is a quick lesson into the correct technique, and outlining when it may be appropriate, to drop kick someone in the face… I was very quickly corrected.
Self defence is not just about the movements you make, not even is it about dodging a hand as it reaches for your phone! It is much, much more.
Self defence is about not making yourself a target by walking, like a zombie, phone glued to your face, not looking where you are going or looking at what or who is around. Obviously it’s not possible to perceive every threat that may occur before it does, but being aware of, and alert to your surroundings will definitely help!
The class had an even mix of students in attendance, and a great mix of sports showed up. This is something really beneficial in a self defence class, as it gives you the opportunity to practice basic moves with lots of different people – especially when you are not familiar with them, as you can make a more realistic encounter with a stranger.
The first thing we learnt about was how to escape a simple hand grip without agitating the attacker, and simultaneously putting a good measure of distance between the two of you. We split into random pairs and tried it out. It was easy to learn and surprisingly effective, even against people about double or triple my strength. We continued this procedure of watching a demo, trialing the move, and then returning to the group to discuss effectiveness and uses. Every move we were taught was designed to calm a pressured situation, and not agitate the attacker.
After 5 minutes, I looked at the clock and 75 minutes had actually passed. The time FLEW and I feel I learnt so much in a short amount of time. My walk home from the SU, was spent looking at potential dangers that I had never noticed before, and establishing a safe place I could go to if I needed it. I kept my phone in my pocket and quite enjoyed the quietness of my walk.
The self defence class was run by a qualified instructor brought into the university specifically to teach us. They will be running a 10 week course for students to get to grips with self defence – all organised by NTU Sport in support of the New Year, New Me campaign.
All joking aside, taking this class was the best decision I could make. The only comparison I could make to it, would be revision for an exam, something maybe we are tired of, but still see how essential it is. Self defence is practicing and revising for real life, not just for an exam, and I don’t know what could be more important.
The SU is putting on FREE self defence classes every Tuesday 9-10pm in the City fitness suite (downstairs by reception), open to all ages and genders!
Give it a go and let us know what you think!!
By Rachel Ward (Sports Exec: Marketing & Communications)