Why we don’t teach women’s self defence

why-we-dont-teach-womens-self-defenceThere is no such thing as ‘women’s self defence’. There, we’ve said it.

But it’s a scary world out there you say? ‘Self defence’ is conventionally used to describe what you should do when physically assaulted. This includes all the things you do to ensure you are not in a situation where you can be assaulted in the first place. You’re probably doing all that already, as the current debate in the wake of the tragic death of Eurydice Dixon has highlighted.

Sure, we want society to change through awareness and education. And women just want to get on with their lives. However, the current reality is not a safe place for women. So what do you do if you’ve applied appropriate social skills and safety strategies, you’ve done all the right things, and still someone intends you serious harm?

When you have no other option, we want you to know that you have the ability to take effective, decisive action: to proactively injure one or more aggressors, in a targeted way, until you are certain that they can no longer harm you.

This goes beyond the conventional mindset of ‘self defence’. You are no longer trying to stop the hand that grabs you, or fend off the box cutter threatening your face – defensive wounds tend to be found on corpses. Instead, you use the tool of violence yourself to ensure your own safety. This is confronting, but it does not make you ‘bad’. You can use a chisel to create a sculpture or destroy one. The chisel has no inherent morality, it’s the motivation that matters.

Combat sports have separate divisions for women and men, different weight classes and lots and lots of rules. Survival doesn’t. When your life is at stake, it all comes down to physics. The universe doesn’t first check in with you to see if you’re male or female, fit or fat, before you can be powerful. It’s true that the average male is bigger and stronger than the average female. However, that doesn’t matter when as little as 5 kg of your mass can generate enough force to break the largest bone in the human body. Not to mention an eye, throat or groin. No matter your size, your age, your gender, your fitness level, you can stop a much larger assailant in their tracks.

We believe the concept of “women‘s self defence” disrespects and disempowers women. And that every time we treat a woman as delicate, less powerful or less capable, we are contributing to her attempted murder.

Our Atemi-jutsu Live Training weekend teaches you to use the tool of violence to save your own life or the life of someone you care about. You acquire essential understanding and practical skills that empower you and make you effective. You will not only feel safer but, more importantly, be safer.

We can give you what you need for your survival in two days. We promise.

In the coming months we’ll be running weekends in Brisbane and Sydney. Please contact us to find out more.

words: Melanie Lindenthal and Andrew Sunter

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