Bruised but not battered

20 Dec

“If he gonna come in here, he’s gonna kick MY ask!”

~ Three-year-old girl

Today I got punched in the face. True story. Not a sentence I ever imagined I would write prior to taking up Krav Maga lessons, but I guess sometimes in life you just gotta roll with the punches. Ha! “Roll with the punches.” Geddit? Geddit?

*crickets chirping*


Bad jokes aside, every week for the past six weeks I have arrived at work on a Friday with bruises or red marks or swollen wrists or a combination of all three. It’s not a particularly good look, but it is for a good cause—learning how to defend myself.

My team mates all know I’ve been practising Krav Maga on Thursdays, but I have a feeling there are other colleagues I’ve passed in the hallway this week who noticed the purple and green finger-print-sized bruises on my arm and didn’t know what to think. They were probably concerned about my domestic situation, or started speculating I’ve been dating a Christian Grey wannabe.

On the two occasions where my regular training partner (Vic) has been unavailable, two other friends (Ness and Megs) have kindly stepped in to take her place and be what I jokingly call my human punching bags.

Vic, Ness and Megs have been much more coordinated and familiar with the concept of fighting than I have been. They have all either played some form of contact sport or have older or younger brothers. Apparently it’s a rite of passage to beat up or be beaten up by your male siblings.

My younger sister and I had our occasional spats and squabbles while growing up, but we didn’t fight very often. I would boss her around horribly, however she was normally ‘compliant’ so there was never need for further physical action.

This all means I’m not really accustomed to hitting someone. Even when I did a kick boxing class back at university, we practiced with boxing bags or focus mitts. We never actually sparred.

When practicing an exercise with Megs last week that involved kneeing my assailant in the groin, it was quite a shock for me when I accidentally connected. My immediate reaction was to stop what I was doing and check that she was alright, which resulted in the following ridiculous simultaneous exchange:

Me: “Oh my god, I’m so sorry, are you OK?”

Instructor: “What are you doing? Don’t stop! Keep going! Keep going!”

Megs: “HIT ME!!! HIT ME!!! HIT ME!!!”

My big lesson from last week’s session: once you’ve disabled your attacker, don’t stop and ask them if they’re OK; get the hell outta there!

My big lesson from this week’s session: defend or Vic will punch you in the head!

And for those of you who aren’t one of the 17,000,000+ YouTube viewers that would know where the quote from the top of this post comes from, check out this tough little toddler:

I bet she has big brothers!


2 Responses to “Bruised but not battered”

  1. LMaya January 17, 2013 at 11:40 pm #

    I’m really enjoying your blog and it seems we have a lot in common beyond AFS! I made a connection between krav maga and Honduras as well but I see that you are doing them in the right order… Not sure what life is like in Tegus these days but be prepare to kick some ass just in case 😉 Here’s my experience:

    • honduranhiatus January 18, 2013 at 7:02 am #

      Thanks for dropping by Laura. I found your blog via the link on the AFS Facebook page, and when having a brief browse last night the words “Tegucigalpa”, “volunteering” and “Krav Maga” definitely leapt out at me. Thanks for the link. It was interesting if slightly nerves-inducing reading. 🙂 I’m really looking forward to exploring your blog in more detail. It’s very inspiring.

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