Women, Make an IMPACT: Do You Know Self-Defense? Here's Why You Should! by Kathy Ast

6 years ago

Women, Make an IMPACT: Do You Know Self-Defense? Here's Why You Should!

In 8th grade, my friend Dan thought it would be funny to sneak up behind me and scare me. Instead of running, I lifted my arm and swung back, hitting Dan in the face. He was bleeding and sheepishly said, “I wouldn’t want to meet you in a dark alley!” Not knowing what’s coming is one thing, but what happens if someone starts messing with you with their words first?

I took the Chicago-based IMPACT self-defense class in my 20s. It was spread across two weekends – six hours a day for four days (I believe it’s spread over one weekend now). The reason for the long hours is to ingrain the teachings and techniques into your mind and body so they will come automatically if you are threatened, even 10 years later.

On our first day of class, our padded attackers were unable to join us, which was the best thing for me – a meek woman who had not yet found her voice. We spent the whole day on defense using only our voices. I learned to say “stop” and “back off” instead of just laughing when I felt uncomfortable. If boundary violations continued, my voice got louder. I found my voice and power!

“Training progresses from setting verbal boundaries to responding to a physical assault.” – Impact Chicago

Learn more at ImpactChicago.org

Photo: IMPACT Chicago Facebook

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Elisa Schmitz
"I learned to say 'stop' and 'back off' instead of just laughing when I felt uncomfortable." I think this is so key, Kathy Ast-Kutzbach . Women need to use their voices and be heard. I remember you telling me about this program. I would love to take it, as well as my daughters. Thank you for sharing this!
Kathy Ast
Thank you, Elis! It was key for me. I hope you & your daughters get to take this class! It's a wonderful space to support other women and be supported by men there to help too!
This is empowering. 🙌

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