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Marshall University's Student Newspaper

The Parthenon

Marshall University's Student Newspaper

The Parthenon

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MUPD Hosts Rape Aggression Defense Class

Sergeant+Scott+Ballou+taught+the+self-defense+class+on+Wednesday%2C+Oct.+4.
Wade Sullivan
Sergeant Scott Ballou taught the self-defense class on Wednesday, Oct. 4.

Being aware of one’s surroundings is essential to self defense, said an MUPD sergeant at a Rape Aggression Defense class at the Memorial Student Center on Wednesday, Oct. 4. 

The class, taught by sergeant Scott Ballou, aimed to help women better protect themselves and to be more aware of their surroundings. 

“Ninety percent of self-defense is self-awareness,” Ballou said. “Risk awareness, risk reduction, risk recognition and risk avoidance.” 

He went on to say that these are the most important principles that over 2,000 women have learned from his classes since they started in 1998. 

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Ballou also said  that some women do not even realize just how important protecting themselves is, especially since one in four college women will experience sexual assault during their time in school.

One student at the class said that she never even thought about self-awareness being so important. 

“I definitely won’t be using my phone all the time,” said Ni’Asia Payne, a student who learned about the class through work. “I’m gonna observe where I’m at and gauge how to react to people.”

The class on Wednesday was a small part of the class Ballou teaches every semester at the Rec Center. He said that he encourages every woman that can to participate because not only does it teach self-defense, it also helps empower the women who take the class. 

“When you’re involved in something that makes people feel better about themselves, empowered and happy, it’s a great thing to be a part of,” Ballou said.

The hour-long class covered basic techniques of self-defense such as being loud and standing on one’s strong side to protect themself from potential attackers. The class also provided those in attendance to practice techniques shown, including a sweeping kick and getting away from another person grabbing them.

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