Don’t Mess with a Lost Girl!

Fitness & Workouts, Health & Safety, Travel Books & Movies — By on June 18, 2006 at 1:06 am

No joke, we’ve heard the warning “Be careful on your trip!” a million times (thanks to worried moms, protective boyfriends and concerned pals). Holly decided to put some minds at ease by signing up for self defense with Matan Gavish (, a personal trainer schooled in Krav Maga-the official martial art of the Israeli Defense Forces. Even though I’m praying we’ll never find ourselves in a situation where we’ll have to use what I’ve learned, I feel a heck of a lot better knowing what to do if we’re ever attacked.

In addition to making me feel like a bad ass, this was a killer workout! I’m a fitness fanatic and do a bunch of different exercises to keep from getting bored-running, boxing, Pilates, yoga, biking, weightlifting, rollerblading. After a session with Matan, my body hurt in places I didn’t even know existed and I had to splurge on a massage to soothe my sore muscles.

Here are the top three lessons I learned from Matan while kicking butt:

1. Put up a fight. A lot of attackers will ditch a woman who strikes back and opt for an “easier” target. Moreover, fighting back drastically increases your chances of survival (Disclaimer: Only fight back if you’re physically threatened. If someone wants your new Prada bag or iPod, for the love of God, let them have it. Possesions can be replaced, your body can’t).

2. Hit a soft spot. It’s good to make a move, but striking back without knowing where to hit is wasted energy. It tires you out and may make a bad guy angrier. Basically, hitting an attacker in the middle of his body is useless, as it’s hard to inflict major damage to this area. Rather, focus on the “soft spots”: Eyes (poke them with your thumbs to blind your opponent), nose (make a fist and hit the bridge hard with your knuckles), Adam’s apple (this can stun a person), groin (you know that one, ladies!) and knees (kicking someone here can make them lose buckle and lose balance).

3. Never let them see you sweat! From here on out I’ll always wear cotton underwear when getting physical.

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