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College Offers Self-Defense Skills For Women

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Women can learn important self-defensive skills against both verbal and physical abuse through an eight-week Columbia College Community Education course. Classes will be held on MONDAY evenings, beginning APRIL 5 from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. in the Alder Building dance studio on the college campus.

Instructor Darlene Baumgarten will begin each session with a discussion on first identifying potentially dangerous situations and any other circumstances in life where students might feel vulnerable. Her philosophy is that “self-defense is something we need to practice in everyday life.”

Women will learn assertive, respectful communication skills to let others know what is okay with them and what is not, as well as how to handle angry and verbally abusive people. During the second half of each class, women will learn basic techniques of self-defense. “It is empowering to know how to rely on your body and know how to ward off an assailant. This important knowledge changes a woman´s confidence and how she carries herself in the world,” said Baumgarten, who compares taking a self-defense class to first aid. “You hope you never need to use it but if you do, you are prepared.”

Women age15 and up, including those with physical disabilities, are invited to enroll in the class. Participants should wear loose comfortable clothing.

Cost is $35 per person, and the registration deadline is March 29. To register or for more information, call the college´s Community Education office at 588-5144.