Campus Life, Crime and Safety, News

Senior sparring champion helps peers practice self defense

Forty students kicked, stomped and twisted their way out of troublesome situations Monday night. The defensive reactions were part of a self-defense course.

The course was sponsored by No Zebras, an organization aimed to educate the University of Miami community about sexual assault, as well as Kappa Kappa Gamma sorority. Held in the Storm Surge Room, it was led by senior Alana Wegfahrt, a two-time sparring world champion.

Wegfarht led participants in a series of tactics to get out of positions that can result in negative outcomes. Some of the moves taught showed how to escape choke holds as well as wrist and shoulder grabs.

The class was open to both men and women, allowing all students to learn tactics for self-defense.

“When I teach karate at home, it’s girls and boys,” Wegfahrt said. “Men can get attacked by men, too.”

Although the class involved serious preparation for life-threatening attacks, laughter took over the room as students enacted movements for the first time, often with awkward results as they were told to perform tasks.

Senior Melissa Villanueva, who participated in the class, said the twisting moves were the hardest to execute.

“It was actually pretty fun and important,” she said.

In addition to the defense moves, students were given safety tips, such as to remember to run after completing the moves. Wegfahrt advised students against speaking on the phone with a loved one when walking alone in dangerous areas because it is a distraction that poses a threat.

“When you’re on your phone you’re not really paying attention to your surroundings, and the No. 1 defense is to be aware of your surroundings,” Wegfahrt said.

Junior Brenna Riley, president of No Zebras, said self-defense courses are vital for students, especially females, to be prepared to defend themselves in dangerous situations.

“There have been different studies that show 1 out of 3 or 1 out of 5 women are sexually assaulted across the globe,” she said. “Just that alone is enough to need this class.”

 

Featured photo courtesy parhessiastes via Flickr.

November 18, 2014

Reporters

Nadijah Campbell


Around the Web
  • Miami Herald
  • UM News
  • HurricaneSports

If redshirt freshman N’Kosi Perry is starting Thursday night for the No. 16 Miami Hurricanes against ...

It sure sounds like redshirt freshman N’Kosi Perry is going to get his first career start at 8 Thurs ...

If he hasn’t made it already, Miami Hurricanes coach Mark Richt has a defining decision to ponder in ...

They were way below the radar coming into the 1983 season. And after their 28-3 opening-game loss to ...

In the opening eight minutes on Saturday — and the final seven minutes — FIU looked like a team that ...

Theatre arts students open the Ring Theatre’s 2018-19 season with a tribute to the creative genius w ...

UM representatives earned Novice and Junior Varsity categories at the National Opener, one of the mo ...

The Office of Civic and Community Engagement receives a $300,000 investment from JPMorgan Chase to t ...

Get Out The Vote, a nonpartisan initiative headed by the Division of Student Affairs and the Butler ...

University of Miami Libraries commemorates Banned Books Week with a special event and display. ...

The Miami Hurricanes were one of the biggest risers in both major polls released Sunday, jumping to ...

Miami junior Estela Perez-Somarriba's 6-4, 6-3 victory over Evgeniya Levashova will be re-broad ...

Estela Perez-Somarriba of the Miami women's tennis team earned one of the most prestigious coll ...

The University of Miami volleyball program defeated Duke, 3-1, winning its fourth straight match and ...

N'Kosi Perry and a dominant Miami defense led the Hurricanes to a 31-17 victory over the Panthe ...

TMH Twitter
About TMH

The Miami Hurricane is the student newspaper of the University of Miami in Coral Gables, Fla. The newspaper is edited and produced by undergraduate students at UM and is published weekly in print on Tuesdays during the regular academic year.