Daily Independent (Ashland, KY)

January 23, 2013

Self-defense workshops scheduled for Friday

Carrie Stambaugh
The Independent

ASHLAND — Phil Clark has been getting a lot of requests for self-defense classes in recent weeks. They’ve come from all walks of life, especially professional women and their husbands concerned about the safety of their spouses.

On Friday the owner of Phil Clark’s Martial Arts Academy, a third-degree black belt in taekwondo with a purple belt in Relson Gracie jiu-jitzu, will host an open house from 3:30 to 6 p.m. at his business at 601 28th St.

The event will include a youth self-defense workshop from 4 to 4:45 p.m. and an adult self-defense workshop from 4:45 to 5:30 p.m.  

Clark, a 23-year student of martial arts, said the open house and 45-minute self-defense workshops are aimed at introducing people to the martial arts and teaching them a few basic techniques they can use to defend themselves.

“Hopefully they will never have to use it,” he said. “I don’t think that a one-time self-defense class is enough at all. This is just a little introduction. This is just to give them a little taste of it.

“The best thing to do is to come to a class and take a class on a regular basis to stay consistent,” he said, explaining he decided to offer the free workshops “just if someone is busy and they cannot make the classes, we can at least give them a little knowledge.”

Friday’s workshops will include handouts explaining basic steps adults and youth can take to better protect and defend themselves. These include being aware of who is around, where to park and tips about walking alone at night.

“If something just doesn’t feel right, it probably isn’t right,” Clark said.

Clark will teach participants basic techniques, including wrist, hair and throat grabs and how to defend oneself from several positions.

“If they have specific questions, we will go over those, too,” he said.

Along with jiu-jitzu and taekwondo classes for youths and adults, Clark also teaches a Little Dragons class for 4- to 6-year-olds as well as private lessons.

For more information, visit ashlandtaekwondo.com or call (606) 831-3167 or (606) 327-0004.

CARRIE STAMBAUGH can be reached at cstambaugh@dailyindependent.com or (606) 326-2653.