Submitted by Heather Howe
What We All Need to Know About Self-Defence.
When I talk with women about self-defence, one of the most common questions I get is “Can I do it? I’m not very strong.” Most of us have not been raised to see ourselves as strong or powerful. We’ve grown up believing we are too weak to successfully defend ourselves against a bigger, stronger attacker. We’ve been told to rely on the men in our lives to defend us, for example, to make sure we have a man with us if we are going to be out after dark.
We’re given bad information about self-defence. Look at what we see in the movies and on TV: when women run away they trip or run into a dead-end alleyway. They pound ineffectively on a huge attacker’s chest as he overpowers them. They either get killed or they wait for a man to rescue them. Or they’re Cat Woman, defending themselves with super-human powers that we can never hope to have. Neither portrayal is realistic and both are harmful.