October 17, 2021 Breaking News, Latest News, and Videos

Punching, Kicking & Breaking Arms: Learning Self Defense In A Safe Place:

Tuesday – one hour of weight training. Thursday – three hours of Naam Yoga. Friday – one hour of weight training. Walk Zoey every day for at least a half-hour. I am finally incorporating exercise permanently into my life. One New Year’s resolution down – many others to go.  

On Saturday, I tried something I had never done before: Kung Fu. I didn’t even know what it was until that day.

I was invited by the owner of The School of Martial Arts (right on the border of Santa Monica on Bundy and Santa Monica Blvd.) to check out a class. He read one of my columns, and thought that Tai Kwan Do would be beneficial to my readers – and me.

I walked in the spacious studio – wood floors with lots of windows and light, accented in dark and light bamboo. Sophisticated, calming, and professional. A Tai Chi class was in session, with a few minutes remaining.  

I’ve taken Tai Chi before – it is an ancient Chinese exercise system aimed at improving the health of the body and mind through balancing the body’s energy, or chi. It consists of a series of slow, fluid movements that are more graceful than they are aggressive and is based around a form of martial arts.

The class ended, the studio emptied out, and three strong-looking guys lumbered in, took a small bow and found their places to stand. Then there was me. I too, took a bow before entering the studio, and trotted to the end of the row of guys. Oh s—t, I thought. What did I get myself into?

It turns out that the session was a self-defense class, an adaptation of Kung Fu, designed for adults. Two guys had yellow belts on, one guy had a white belt, and I was wearing a yoga outfit. Stuck out like a sore thumb. But I was game. We started out on our knees, bowing. We then did simple some warm-up exercises. Pretty easy so far.

Then the fun really began. We first worked on some self-defense skills if someone tried to punch you. It was kind of a dance, where steps were slowly, deliberately choreographed. We gracefully stepped out of the way of the punch, and stepped into several self-defense moves – punching the attacker’s throat, poking out his eyes, kicking his groin, and then his kneecaps. I was beginning to really like this!

We also practiced a technique used when someone tries to grab you. First it’s a grab of his wrist with one hand, then using your second hand for more leverage, then bending back his wrist to stop him – cold.  

A second iteration of this was someone grabbing you and having a knife. The wrist grab technique is used – then you pivot your foot, tuck his elbow under your arm and “break” his arm – and take the knife from his hand. That was my favorite one. I am going to practice this with my husband, Larry.

We also did some mild grappling on the ground, meaning, if someone is on top of you, there is a way to move your lower body to push him off of you. Could have used this move when I was in my 20s!  

Other exercises followed, and the hour flew by. Learned some cool moves and got an amazing work out! After the class I spoke with owner Sifu Ryan Scott, a cute young guy from Michigan, who’s been studying Martial Arts since he was eight years old.

Moving west to get relief from the cold weather, Sifu’s successful studio has been in business for two years. He personally teaches every class. When I asked if this training would be useful to women over 50, he enthusiastically shook his head yes.

Sifu went on to explain that for women 40 and older, this “moving meditation” session provides a safe environment in which to develop a strong body and mind, have better balance, coordination and concentration, as well as learning the art of self-defense. And it’s easy on the body!    

I’ll be back. It was fun. After the class, I felt a sense of power and strength. Look out Larry! I’m going to practice on you!  

For more information, go to www.schoolofma.com.

Hot Flash Universe is the go-to source for women over 40 seeking insight into the hottest, most current trends, products, and issues. Topics are approached with candor, intellect, and a healthy dose of humor.

Barbara Bishop is President of Santa Monica-based BBPR, Inc. For comments or suggestions, email Barbara.bishop@bbprinc.com.

in News
Related Posts

Santa Monica’s 100 Homes Initiative Moves Forward

October 16, 2021

October 16, 2021

City seeks public participation in new HUD-funded program By Dolores Quintana The City of Santa Monica is moving forward with...

Former Mesa PD Chief to Lead Santa Monica Police Department

October 15, 2021

October 15, 2021

Ramon Batista selected as Santa Monica’s first Latino police chief By Sam Catanzaro Ramon Batista, Jr., the former police chief...

Closing Celebration for Hispanic Heritage Month Today

October 14, 2021

October 14, 2021

This Friday, October 15, the Santa Monica community is invited to a closing ceremony for Santa Monica’s first Hispanic Heritage...

Three SMC Professors Receive First-Ever Michelson Intellectual Property Educator of Excellence Award

October 13, 2021

October 13, 2021

The Michelson Institute for Intellectual Property (Michelson  IP) is proud to award three Santa Monica College faculty members with the...

An Interview with Zach Rash, CEO of Coco Food Robotic Delivery

October 11, 2021

October 11, 2021

Coco Delivery, is a completely contactless food delivery service that uses human piloted robots to deliver meals from the restaurant...

Message From Santa Monica’s New City Manager David White

October 11, 2021

October 11, 2021

To the Santa Monica Community – it is with tremendous excitement that today I begin my first day as your...

Three Santa Monica College Faculty Receive Michelson IP Educator Award: Santa Monica Beat – October 11, 2021

October 11, 2021

October 11, 2021

Local news and culture in under 5 minutes. * City Council Set To Approve Plan For 9 Thousand New Housing...

U.S Secretary of Veterans Affairs Visits Veterans Encampment Outside VA

October 11, 2021

October 11, 2021

On Wednesday, the Secretary of U.S. Veterans Affairs and Mark Takano visited the veterans homeless encampment along san vicente blvd....

Mid-Century Ocean Avenue Apartments Sell for $70 Million

October 9, 2021

October 9, 2021

Westside Real Estate Scene October 11, 2021 By Dolores Quintana As reported by the Santa Monica Lookout, a mid-century apartment...

Santa Monica Police Release Sketch of Suspects Wanted for Ocean Park Shooting

October 7, 2021

October 7, 2021

Santa Monica police have released sketches of two men wanted in connection to a recent shooting.  According to the Santa...

Hotels, Liquor Stores to be Allowed on Third Street Promenade

October 7, 2021

October 7, 2021

Santa Monica City Council approves temporary zoning changes for Promenade By Dolores Quintana and Sam Catanzaro Hotels and liquor stores...

Santa Monica Selects Joseph Lawrence as Interim City Attorney

October 7, 2021

October 7, 2021

Search for permanent City Attorney to begin soon By Sam Catanzaro At its meeting last week, the Santa Monica City...

Santa Monica Sues Real Estate Firm for Converting Rent-Controlled Units Into Vacation Rentals

October 7, 2021

October 7, 2021

City of Santa Monica files complaint against NMS Properties Corporation  By Sam Catanzaro Santa Monica is suing a real estate...

Santa Monica College to Hold Glass Pumpkin Sales This Weekend

October 5, 2021

October 5, 2021

Help Support SMC Art Department, Santa Monica Public Library, Palisades-Malibu YMCA By Staff Writer Santa Monica College will hold two...

Party Bus Driver Flees Following Santa Monica Crash That Injured Multiple People

October 5, 2021

October 5, 2021

SMPD investigating October 3 incident By Sam Catanzaro Santa Monica police are searching for the driver of a party bus...