He takes me by surprise – grabbing my shirt from behind and yanking me back. I set myself in a strong base position, stretch out my arm to control his elbow and secure an overhook, while turning my body to get enough momentum to jab him with my other elbow. I lock his leg, offset his balance and down he goes. Bam! I’ve just taken my assailant to the ground.Who, in this instance, just so happens to be a two-time Brazilian jiu-jitsu (BJJ) world champion teaching me basic self-defence moves, in case it actually happens in real-life.Evolve Mix Martial Arts instructor Teco Shinzato – a Singapore-based Brazilian – had been meticulously (and patiently) teaching this novice five-foot-nothing girl how to execute the BJJ move – and boy, did it feel empowering knowing how to defend myself.It’s also the moment when I realised the reason why women are increasingly taking BJJ classes to learn self-defence. Based on the principles of leverage, weight distribution and positional advantage, BJJ’s techniques provide women with a way of being able to defend themselves against an attacker, especially one who is larger and stronger than you.BJJ is a martial art discipline that uses a lot of grappling and ground… Read full this story
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