Last week I attended a R.A.D. Systems training. R.A.D. stands for Rape, Aggression, Defense and it’s a course designed specifically to help educate people on the very real danger of sexual assault (commonly known as rape) and how to avoid it. For two days, our group of ladies learned about awareness, prevention, risk reduction and avoidance. We also learned some basic hands-on self defense training.
For me, the scariest part was fighting (yes, for real) the guy next to me in this photo. At 6’5″ and 282 pounds, he had a definite size & weight advantage on me. (I’m 4’10” and 114 pounds.) After several hours of instruction and drills, they put us through different scenarios where we were required to fight our way out of a precarious situation.
I was petrified.
I’ve been small my whole life. It’s something I’ve just kind of accepted. (It’s not like I have much choice in the matter.) That being said, I’ve also let it get inside my head on more than one occasion. Give me a CrossFit workout with wall balls? I’m totally going to complain & claim I have a disadvantage. Put me in a dark alley with a guy 168 pounds heavier than I am? I might just change my mind about my fighting abilities.
But, I did it!
I was definitely scared & more so than I thought I would be considering I knew this was just a simulation – but I did it. I managed to fight my way out of choke holds & being restrained from behind with my arms pinned down. I was able to fight this guy off several times and even land a few good punches in the process. Before last week, I had no idea what I was capable of. Today, I feel much more confident in myself were I ever to be put in a dangerous situation.
R.A.D. offers courses for women, men, kids and seniors. I encourage everyone take it, especially women. Without a doubt, I genuinely feel like this course could save your life. For those in our area, it’s offered free by the Beaumont Police Department. A fair warning, though, they are in high demand and space is very limited. I recommend contacting Sgt. Cox to get on the list for an upcoming class. Side note: Classes are limited due to funding. If you know of a business willing to donate, please refer them to Sgt. Cox as well. Those not in southeast Texas can find a R.A.D. training location on their website.
March 8-14, 2015 is NO MORE Week. NO MORE is a national movement to raise public awareness and engage bystanders around ending domestic violence and sexual assault. I encourage all of you to use this week as an opportunity to educate yourselves on sexual assault and domestic violence. And then, find a R.A.D. class and get signed up!