Mother Daughter Self-Defense

A self-defense class may be an uncommon way for a mom to bond with her daughter, but it was special enough to get the attention of many Metea Valley families.

“The invitation came across email and I immediately sent a text over to Claire because she was still at school and said ‘hey are you interested?’ and she bounced right back and said ‘yes,’” said Sarah Mintus about signing up with her daughter Claire.

Within just 36 hours of being posted, Metea’s first mother daughter self-defense class was filled.

It was an idea that came about after health and P.E. teacher Ashley Abruscato took a self-defense class with a coworker.

“When we arrived we found out that One Light was the organization that was providing the training,” said Abruscato. “And we went for our first two-hour training and we absolutely loved it and we learned so much. We literally ran back to school to our department chair and we were like ‘we have to include this in our curriculum!’ And our administration was very supportive of us bringing them to our school and that’s how we incorporated them for the first time in our P.E. program.”

After that, Abruscato was determined to get Metea families involved in a self-defense class together. She started by organizing a One Light self-defense class for after school hours aimed at mothers and daughters.

“I wanted to take it mostly because I’m going off to college soon and I think it’s a prevalent issue in college campuses everywhere but I also know that, it happens anytime,” said Claire Mintus, a junior at Metea. “It can happen day or night, it can happen at a supermarket, when you’re walking down the street. I just think it’s important to know it.”

The pairs got to learn about striking techniques to the eyes, throat, and groin, as well as how to be ready for defending an attack.

They also discussed preventive safety techniques, like walking in groups, parking in well-lit areas, and staying alert when going places alone.

Abruscato hopes the high interest in the class can lead to more in the near future.

Naperville News 17’s Christine Lena reports.

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