Jess and Sammi’s First Wen-Do Class Experience

Wen Do is a Canadian self-defence program designed for women, for women. Throughout the year, the Community Safety Office hosts free self-defence classes for U of T students, staff, and faculty. 

On May 31st, Jess and Sammi went to their first Wen-Do class and here is what they have to say about the program: 

Participants in a fighting stance at the Wen Do class.

Why did you sign up for a Wen-Do class?

Jess: I signed up for a Wen-Do class because the last time I took a self-defence course was in Grade 9 gym class, and I wanted to get a refresher of self-defence skills to have in my tool kit. I also wanted to feel confident enough to defend myself in case of danger.

Sammi: I am passionate about learning self-defence and am always eager to participate when I see classes offered on campus. I believe learning skills to be able to protect myself in various situations is essential!

What is one thing you took away from the Wen-Do class?

Jess: I learned that verbal self-defence is just as effective as physical self-defence. Yelling or speaking in a loud, firm voice can throw the attacker off-guard and attract the attention of others, making it more likely the attacker will leave you alone. 

Sammi: You are stronger than you think! While there’s a good chance an attacker may be bigger and stronger than you, there are vulnerable spots and targets on the body that can allow even a small child to do some serious damage to a predator. Joints, groin, eyes, etc. are some of those spots to remember.

What would you tell a woman/girl looking to try Wen-Do?

Jess: Do it! In a space designed specifically for women, I felt welcomed and safe to learn a new skill. It can seem intimidating at first, but with the discussion portions, I felt validated listening and sharing stories to know that I’m not alone in being in uncomfortable situations. Our instructor and the participants were so supportive and I am grateful I signed up for Wen Do with Sammi!

Sammi: Definitely do it! Having the skills and confidence to be able to defend oneself is life-saving!! Women and girls of all ages are disproportionately targeted with harassment and assault. Being able to fight back can be the difference between making it home or not. Wen-Do makes it possible for women, no matter what your strength or experiences are, to take away the knowledge of how to find your power, and that your life is worthy of defending.


Wen-do is a self-defense program for women, by women. 🥋 Keep an eye out on CLNx for upcoming classes during the year! 💙 #wendo #selfdefense

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