Self Defense for the Physically Challenged
With all the advances in technology in recent years, the life of the physically challenged has become much more comfortable than 50 years ago. Accessibility is the law of the land, and there is relatively little that someone with a physical challenge can not do. Unfortunately, because of the social stigma that exists out there, physically challenged individuals are almost 4 times more likely to be a victim of violent crime than non-physically challenged individuals. In addition to the normal daily challenges, this is a challenge that they usually have to face alone.
Here at CMATOS, we want to support you in your journey to self-defense proficiency and are here to help you walk this path.
Myth 1: Physically challenged individuals can not study martial arts.
Let’s just dispel this myth up front with a couple of videos and links to some awesome martial artists.
In fact there is a whole website full of high ranking martial arts masters who have adapted to training with various physical challenge.
Myth 2: Physically challenged individuals can not defend themselves without weapons.
That’s like saying a writer can’t write unless they have a pencil. See this video here.
How to train in CMATOS
CMATOS is all about flexibility. Our mantra is “DO WHAT WORKS.” Depending on your situation, you will need to modify the movements and techniques to find what works for you. The goal being, to prepare you to react in a self-defense situation. Even those who are completely paralyzed still have options on how to defend themselves. It comes down to planning, preparing, and practicing. Listed below are some options that are available for those with physical challenges.
For those facing sensory challenges, the vast bulk of the CMATOS material remains exactly the same. The change that you will be focusing on is reaction and using your available senses to “feel” for the attack to execute the defense technique.
For those of you bound by a wheelchair, the modifications to the performance of the forms will be the basic maneuvering of your wheelchair. However, the techniques will be modified in that you will need to incorporate holds and grabs on your opponents to ensure that your techniques are powerful and you aren’t just pushing yourself backwards. The problem with strikes is that the power is limited to the friction and break power of your chair. Too often straight punches will lead to you just pushing off the opponent, which is why the circular techniques, driving downward techniques, and captures will be your primary focus during the skills.
The main challenge facing your modifications will be the adaptation of the techniques to utilize your available appendages instead of those which the technique calls for. All the same fundamental concepts remain, the application of them, however, will be up to you to figure out what works best for you.
Free Online Coaching
To help support our physically challenged students, we have waived all coaching and mentoring fees. Belt testing fees and membership fees still remain (if desired). Any coaching and mentoring during your normal training we will provide free feedback, we want to work with you to succeed in your self defense journey.
We are currently seeking dedicated individuals to take on the mantle of CMATOS instructor specializing in specific physical challenges. We will provide all training and mentoring throughout the system (including belt testing and CMATOS rank certification for free) and will work with you to master the CMATOS material. In return, we are looking to you to help us formalize the modifications to the CMATOS material for physically challenged individuals, as well as produce video and written lessons on the modifications. In addition, we would ask you to be available to mentor other physically challenged individuals through the system so that we can spread the CMATOS material throughout the world.