Self-Defense for Back to School

Reporter: Shannon Samson

Web Producer: Amber Griswold

By next week, most Tri-state children will be back in school.
Besides clothes, shoes and books, one martial arts instructor thinks self-defense classes should also be on the back to school list.
While many girls are probably more worried about what they'll wear on the first day of school, Greg Russell says they should be thinking about getting there and back safely, especially if they walk to school.
Greg Russell, an instructor of self-defense, explains, "I try to teach them to be assertive, be aggressive, not to be a victim."
He says victims don't make eye contact and don't pay attention to their surroundings. This member of the Black Belts of Faith, says even the smallest of girls can protect themselves from an attacker.
Russell said, "I teach them just to utilize their body as a weapon. This guy is coming at you with one hand, which may weigh what? Two or three pounds? A person with a 40 to 80 pound body can put that weight against that hand."
Even if they hit the deck, they can fight back.
Even the little ones can deliver a swift kick with their powerful leg muscles.
Even though the class was intended for adolescent girls, a stay-at-home mom wanted to learn how to protect herself.
Robine Elleser said, "Instead of just trying to crawl away, to know that that is the most empowering position to be, is on the ground so you can kick with your legs."
For these moms and daughters, there's no more fear of falling or falling victim to violence.
Greg Russell is holding another back to school self-defense class this Monday at 5pm at Impact Ministries, located at 720 SE 8th Street, in downtown Evansville.   You can also call at 422-7607.  It's free and this one is open to boys.