Make criminals fear you!
We all love Ohio University but we recognize it's hurting. Everyone last years remember those back to back emails from OUPD about rapes occuring on campus. It's so disheartening to hear these events happening on our campus. We protest and speak out with rallies and flyers and that's all and good but there is another step everyone should take. That step is training in self defense.
A couple Fridays ago I got the chance to take a Krav Maga class put on by #SpeakUp. I was apprehensive to go at first not because I never trained in Krav Maga, but because I thought it was just for women. There's something ironic there probably, or maybe it's just my apprehension of being the odd one out in the room. Turns out I was the only guy in the room, except for the instructor but it felt very welcoming.
According to wikipedia: "Krav Maga is a military self-defence and fighting system developed for the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) and Israeli security forces derived from a combination of techniques sourced from boxing, wrestling, aikido, judo and karate, along with realistic fight training." In my free time during high school I took Krav Maga classes for fun and soon became proficient at it. What I love about Krav Maga is that there's no rules. And what I mean by that is when I talk with normal people who have been in a fight they always critique me in saying things like: "You can't kick them below the belt." Arguing that in every fight there are rules and that we must be civil in our conflicts. That's great in an ideal world but realistically your attacker doesn't care about rules. A prominent quote from my instructor at the #SpeakUp event still lingers in my mind.
"The predator (attacker) chooses the place and the time of their attack." I think the understanding for most people in the class was that this class was to help introduce us to the idea of survival. In an actual fight, it's not about winning it's just about survivng and I think that's not only a powerful message for me but for people who do not want to become victims of sexual assault or any kind of assault for that matter. Or even people who have been victims and want to gain that power back.
The class was a good two hours of us going over basic stuff like strikes and kicks. My partner and I were naturals in Krav Maga so it was much easier to get back into the swings and things. Ever since I started college I dropped off Krav Maga training. Not because I didn't want to practice it again but just because there's nothing here in Athens for self-defense. Which is very shocking with how danger still looms over Athens. Now sure, a recent Post article states that crime is down in Athens but looking at the infographic they showed, it displayed Rape crimes at a high. As a guy, I am obviously not the target for 97% of these crimes. I have the luxury of walking home from work at 4 a.m. not worrying about anything coming out to get me (Well maybe except the cops since I am a different shade than most). But I have a lot of female friends who hate walking at night and I understand why. So it baffles me that there aren't any courses offered like the one put on b #SpeakUp.
My instructor provided all of us with his business card and explained how he has classes on Monday evenings. The only problem, it's forty-five minutes away from campus. I was talking to a friend I made at the event and she and I agreed that we needed more courses like this offered at OU. The main problem it seems is that a lot of established programs have rented out a lot of the places where events like this can take place. Seems like a lot of them don't want to give up their spot.
I, for one think that there is a way to bring Krav Maga to campus. I do need a hobby outside of sitting in my dorm on weekends with an uncleanly roommate and starting a program like this might be the way. Krav Maga has always been that happy accident hobby for me. Going to the #SpeakUp event was a refreshing way to spend my Friday night and I hope more opportunities like these are featured in the future.