Planning new stuff
With all the practical things sorted I can now start thinking ahead and plan new Rencounter events. The first thing I want to do is to hold a krav maga introduction course for ladies only, hoping to introduce more women to the awesomeness that is Krav Maga.
I held a six week self-defence course in February/March for a small group of ladies, and we had a good atmosphere which was different from the regular classes (which are good to, but different). Now I’d like to try a more compact course on a weekend, which might suit some people better.
The way we train in the ladies-only courses is the same as in a regular krav maga class, but we tend to work on some additional techniques that are particularly useful for women, such as dealing with hair grabs, or attempts to grab and pull/lift (we practice these in the regular classes to, just later on). We also discuss some issues that are more relevant for women, such as self-defence with high heels, long nails, tight skirts etc.
I always feel bad for limiting events based on gender, but the experience that I’ve had myself and heard from others, is that women generally find it more difficult to start in a mixed krav maga class, and there tends to be a more men than women who do krav maga, a lot more in some places.
Krav maga can seem intimidating to those who are new to it, and women are generally smaller in size and have less muscle mass than men. This is an additional reason why women should learn krav maga, because it is designed for fighting opponents who are larger or stronger than you. But being smaller also means that the first classes can feel more scary for girls than for guys. Some women also have past experiences that make mixed classes more challenging. My personal impression is that more women are also held back because they feel self-conscious or lack confidence when they are new to krav, but that is only my subjective and very unscientific observation.
This usually passes after a few classes however, so what has worked really well for me and in other krav maga clubs, is to have an introductory course that is ladies-only, where women can get comfortable with the form of training that we do in krav maga. After that, most are happy and even eager to join the mixed classes to train with larger and stronger opponents. So having ladies-only courses or classes makes krav maga more accessible to more people. And at the moment I’m the only female krav maga instructor in the country, so I can offer something that is actually unique in Scotland, since it is truly a ladies-only course.
I don’t want to keep all the fun for the ladies though, so I’m also hoping to do a limited summer course/class that will be open for everyone. More brainstorming is needed for that one though, but I’ll have to be quick about it, to get it started before the festival madness takes over in the city.