No doubt you’ve heard the statistics. According to recent figures, One out of six American women has been the victim of a rape or attempted attack in her lifetime.
No one thinks of herself as a potential victim. Many women simply want to feel more confident in a world that, it seems, consistently tries to take that confidence away.
We believe that the best way to avoid becoming a statistic may be to build self-awareness, get stronger, and learn useful defense techniques. There are several ways to do this, but we’re convinced that the regular practice of aikido can be enormously beneficial – in part because of the way it teaches deflection and control.
There are Plenty of Defense Tips You Can Use Without Knowing Anything About Aikido!
There are pages of tips out there designed to help women avoid becoming a victim. At Shin-Gane, we believe in the importance of empowering women to feel more confident in their environment. That’s why we recommend these tips for anyone who wants to feel a little more safe!
One of the simplest things you can do to feel safer is to be more aware of your environment. Look where you’re going, put the phone away, and keep track of the people around you.
Remember to protect your space
Maintain a comfort zone and react if anyone gets too close. Don’t be afraid to use your voice — or any other tools at your disposal — if you feel crowded in on or threatened. Forget being polite. Shout or fight if you feel unsafe.
Forget being polite
In addition to protecting your personal space, protect your home and your belongings. No one gets to push into your home, touch your things, slip something into your drink, or make you feel in any way uncomfortable. Again, you don’t need to be nice. You don’t need to accept help from strangers if it means ignoring your boundaries. Take ownership and defend your belongings fiercely.
Trust your instincts
If your gut tells you that a situation isn’t right, believe it. You know more than you think, so trust those funny feelings you get about a situation. Your sense of well-being should come before anyone else’s opinions of you.
Use your imagination
Prepare yourself mentally for any situation, and have a plan for getting out. You don’t need to be a martial arts expert, but you should have some idea of what you’ll do if the worst-case scenario happens – just as you would for any natural emergency.
In other words, be vigilant and awake. And develop a sense of confidence in your own power.
Aikido Gives You More: Here’s Why Women Benefit from Training in a Co-Ed Aikido Class
We’d humbly suggest that the regular practice of Aikido can give women a number of benefits, not the least of which is learning a proactive way to deflect attacks, have quicker reflexes, and maintain calm control in the case of an unwanted encounter.
Aikido isn’t like other martial arts. The goal of aikido is harmony, not combat. Instead of battling an opponent, you neutralize your opponent’s attack. With measured, flowing movements, you are able to use your opponent’s power to your advantage. This is what allows a smaller aikido practitioner to flip or toss a stronger partner with what looks like very little effort! For women who want to avoid or neutralize danger confidently – not fear it – the study of aikido can be revolutionary.
At Shin-Gane, our classes are coed. That allows women the chance to partner with men and gain insight into how they can deflect potential attacks. It also teaches women how to overcome a strength disadvantage and feel more confident in their movements.
A Few Final Thoughts …
When we at Shin-Gane think about aikido as a line of defense, we consider the advice of Morihei Ueshiba: “If your heart is large enough to envelop your adversaries, you can see right through them and avoid their attacks.” Learn to see right through the intentions of others and feel more confident in your ability to withstand any situation with the study of aikido.
Interested in learning more? Let us know, or come to one of our free introductory classes!