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Moms self defense class ‘empowering way of life’

A group of moms are making the most of their Tuesday mornings by taking a self-defense class at Eun’s Martial Arts Center in Farragut.

The women’s reasons for taking the class are similar: getting exercise, learning self-defense, being prepared in a bad situation and even to practice at home with children who also take Tae Kwon Do from Master Seong J. Eun.

But the effects of learning self-defense are as varied as the women taking the class.

“During my son’s yellow belt test, the students break boards. And there were a couple of extra boards and Master Eun said, ‘We need a few parent volunteers to try to break boards,’” Andrea Roesch said of her introduction to the teachings of Master Eun.

Roesch was volunteered, “And so they showed me what to do and then I was able to go ahead and break the board with a kick, and it was so much fun, and I thought, ‘I’m going to give this class a try.’

“As a role model for my children I think it’s great to show them that learning is a lifelong thing and that you continue to try new things,” Roesch said.

Lisa Haddad agreed: “I think it’s a great family-oriented activity that everybody can do as a family. We all practice it at home together.”

“It goes far past self-defense. It’s more of a way of life. Master Eun teaches to be humble and respectful and I think that’s so important,” she added.

In addition, knowing self-defense techniques often makes these mothers feel safer.

“I love it. It makes you feel empowered, I guess,” Angie Hodge said. “It empowers you to know this.”

“After living in Memphis, it is real. The threats are real. ... I think that if I had known self-defense back then, I would have been more empowered and less fearful.

“When I was younger, I wish I would have known this,” she added.

Roesch said, “It’s made me feel a little bit more aware if that [situation] were to arise what would be some good choices. It’s definitely made me more cognizant and aware of things and what I could do,” she added.

Eun teaches his self-defense students to remove themselves from uncomfortable or bad situations if at all possible, and to use self-defense techniques only as a last resort.

Jenny Williamson said, “It makes me feel more confident because he’s teaching us strategy to defend ourselves if we’re ever in trouble. It’s been a really good confidence boost.”

“His classes help me have the instinct to react to situations and not just let things happen to you. Hopefully I’ll never have to use my move on anybody,” she added.

Haddad and Hodge said they wished they’d known the self-defense techniques in previous years.

“In the past, I have wished I had known that skill. It would have been very handy in the past,” Haddad said.

“I think it’s a very good skill to have,” she added.


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