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Gracie News

Self Defense for Women: What I Wish You Knew

March 25, 2016

New Blog Written By CTC Student in China

His forearm is across my neck; I can feel his entire body weight crushing down on my throat making it hard to breathe. I'm underneath a man twice my size; my legs are wrapped tightly around his waist linked behind his back but he's definitely got me pinned. What do I do?

One month ago my answer would've been to accept defeat. There's no way out. He is going to do whatever he wants with me. I have always been a strong woman who believes I am capable of achieving virtually anything that a man can (I even believe that I can do a "man's job" better than most men). The one major area of weakness that I never wanted to acknowledge is my petite stature and diminutive muscular situation; believe it or not, most men are physically stronger than me.

As a sailboat captain I have learned to overcome these weaknesses by using ropes and pulleys to assist with any tasks that require more strength than I have, often muttering "work smarter, not harder" when I successfully complete a seemingly strenuous task without a bead of sweat. But what happens if I'm in a life-threatening situation and I can't hoist my attacker up the mast using the main sheet? This is something that I always just pushed out of my mind. That is, until now.

Today marks 1 month into my intensive training course learning Gracie Jiu Jitsu here in Dali, China. I now feel that I have the groundwork for all the skills I will need to successfully defend myself from an attacker, even one who is on top of me in the worst possible place trying to strangle me. I will spend two more months perfecting these skills and by the time I leave, I will have the confidence (and muscle memory) to defend myself from the majority of attackers I may encounter in my life....
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