Barry Adkins, head coach for White Crane Martial Arts speaks with student Lindsey Christian-Hack. (Photo submitted)

Women’s only self-defence seminar in Sorrento aims to empower

Course prompted by concerned parents who said their daughters were being bullied

After several requests from worried parents, Sorrento will be hosting an all-women’s self-defence seminar.

Offered by the Lion’s Roar Boxing and Kickboxing Foundation, the one day seminar will teach self-defence tactics for women and girls, ages 12 and up. The seminar will be held at the Sunnybrae Community Hall on Saturday, Oct. 19 from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m.

Barry Adkins, head coach for White Crane Martial Arts in Kamloops, will be instructing the class. Adkins has more than 50 years of martial arts experience, with 26 years spent at the Kamloops Sheriff’s Department. He also served as the head instructor for the “Use of Force” training program for the B.C. sheriff’s services for more than 10 years.

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Adkins has taught men’s and women’s self-defence classes before but due to high demand, the decision was made to create a women’s only class. Adkins said that people have requested to attend classes specifically with their daughters because their children were having problems at school. The women-only environment helps create a safe space to learn.

“Some of them have had bad experiences and it creates a comfort level to be working with that group,” Adkins said.

Along with physical defence work, Adkins says a portion of the class will focus on “early recognition” techniques. Adkins describes this tactic as being able to recognize situations and handle them in such a way they do not escalate. At the same time students will learn how to recognize when a situation has escalated too far and prepare themselves for a physical encounter.

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Students will also be taught what constitutes assault, stages of aggression, attack management and physical self-defence training.

The seminar would not have been run at all if it weren’t brought to Adkins’ attention by one of his students, Lindsey Christian-Hack.

An avid boxer and kick-boxer, Christian-Hack had several parents from the Sorrento area tell her that their daughters were being severely bullied. Having had personal experience with this issue, the seminar became an important project for her.

“I myself was bullied as a young child and going through all my martial arts experience and the fighting experience I have now, I feel empowered,” she said. “It felt good to be empowered and I wanted to teach this to other young people so they could feel safe in potentially violent situations.”

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As she holds two blackbelts and teaches her own martial arts classes, Christian-Hack is no stranger to fighting, but she admits she is new to self-defence training and is very much a student in the seminar.

Christian-Hack hopes that through this seminar, students will come away with more knowledge and skills to help them if they get into aggressive or dangerous situations.


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