Lately safety has been on my mind more than ever.

A few weeks ago there was a lot of fear mongering  in the media regarding 6 women who went missing within 48hrs of each other in downtown Toronto.  As someone who is naturally paranoid, this really set me off and I kept thinking 'OH GOD there's a psyopath on the loose' anytime I stepped foot out the door.

Normally when I use to hear these "reports" they would consist of women being abducted or attacked at like 2am usually near Jane & Finch and I would think "Well, I don't stay out that late walking by myself nor would I ever find myself in an area as nefarious as Jane & Finch," and somehow that gave me a false sense of safety.

Then when the reports were being released that tallied up to 6 women missing, it really shook me up because a) some of them were last seen as early as 7pm when it was still very bright out and b) they were last seen in neighbourhoods that were considered safe and crowded, like Queen & Ossington or even Yonge & Dundas (my backyard!)

That's why when a friend asked if I wanted to join her for a complimentary first class at her brother's Krav Maga studio, I thought "Sure, why not, it could be super useful."

Not going to lie, I also thought "ooh! Krav Maga! That's the type of self defense that Jennifer Lopez learned in the movie Enough, the one where she ran away from her abusive husband and then had to learn how to defend herself because she KNEW at some point he would find her again."

Cue this Sunday morning at IKM Krav Maga in Burlington where I attended my first Krav Maga class. Here's a breakdown of what we did in that hour:

1. Ran around getting our muscles warmed up. Then did some push ups, sit ups and Yoga stretches to get the blood flowing.

2.  Learned how to react if you were getting pushed into the wall - from your back with your face hitting the wall

3. Learned how to react if you were getting pushed to the wall - from the front with your back hitting the wall

4. Learned how to maneuver out of a position if someone had you on the ground and was choking you

5. Learned how to maneuver out of a position if someone was pinning you down by straddling your chest and punching your face or choking you

6. Learned how to maneuver out of a position if someone was pinning you down from in between your legs

Ok up until the last maneuver, I was actually having fun being active and trying to learn these different self defense moves. But then the instructor showed us that last move - i.e. the RAPE attack - and it got REAL for me in that moment.

Sure, it's all fun and games on a Sunday morning when I'm in a brightly lit studio learning self defense, but being showed how to maneuver out of a position where someone was trying to sexually assault you... well, that's REAL LIFE and unfortunately a REAL possibility and danger in women's lives.  I sobered up in that moment.

I really liked this class. I would highly recommend anyone out there to take the class or a similar course that shows you self defense moves based on real life scenarios.

I DARE any person out there - guy or girl - to tell me that they never felt at one point in their life worried about their safety, even for a split second - whether that's walking late at night somewhere or being around someone on the street that seemed super sketchy. When your spidy senses go up, there's a REASON.

To end this somber post, here's a video posted on their facebook site HERE - you can find YOURS TRULY being featured at 38 seconds in the bright neon shorts (obviously).  DON'T MESS!!!!!!!!!!

lifeKaty Hung