YMCA offering second session of self-defense classes for women

The YMCA of Greater Westfield will be offering a second session of self-defense courses for women in March. (WNG File Photo)

WESTFIELD, Mass. (The Westfield News) – The YMCA of Greater Westfield has been running a self-defense class for women. The first class in the three class session took place on Jan. 26, followed by Feb. 5 and the last class will be Feb. 12.

There will be a second session beginning March 12 with additional classes on March 19 and March 26.

Caitlin McCue, who has worked at the YMCA since last August, is the instructor for the course. Serving as an instructor for R.A.D. (Rape Aggression Defense) at Westfield State for 8 years, McCue is looking forward to teaching the class at the YMCA.

“It’s very exciting,” said McCue. “I’m trying to make it easy for everyone to learn the techniques.”

The techniques that McCue will teach, include striking motions, like kicks and some of the different chokeholds one can use when dealing with an attacker. Other defensive tactics will be implemented into the classes are ground defense, grabs, and the best ways to use your hands and feet as body tools.

McCue says that she and the participants talk about what some of the weaknesses are on someone’s body and what different people have done in the past.

“We go over a little bit of the history of self-defense,” said McCue. “We try to talk through every situation.”

With the first session nearing its end, McCue has enjoyed instructing the program thus far.

“It’s been awesome,” said McCue. “They’re very energetic, they’re very eager to learn.”

Each class is about an hour and fifteen minutes long, and there is a limit of 13 women per session. The cost to take three classes is $35 for non-members and $15 for members of the YMCA.

Girls as young as 14 or 15 years old are eligible to sign up for the classes, but must be accompanied by a parent or guardian.

It is required that women who are interested in participating in the self-defense class register as spaces for the second session will start to become limited as it gets closer to March.

If you wish to register for the second session starting on March 12, contact YMCA of Greater Westfield Fitness Director Cindy Agan at 413-568-8631.