Mon. Mar 4th, 2024

The woman seen in surveillance video from Tampa, Fla. fights off her attacker. It’s exactly what is taught in self-defense classes here in Connecticut.

Viral video of Florida gym attack reminds those of dangers women face

Surveillance video from a Tampa, Fla. apartment complex shows the terrifying moments a man approaches a woman in the gym and grabs her.

However, she fights back and doesn’t give up until she’s able to get away.

“I was so proud of that woman. She fought. She fought back. I mean she was striking, even when she got to the ground. I mean I was pretty impressed,” said Tracy DiGiovancarlo, of East Coast Training Systems.

It’s exactly what she teaches her students to do. She leads a women’s self-defense class with the goal of giving women the skills to defend themselves in dangerous situations.

“Self-defense isn’t anything fancy, there’s no spinning crescent kicks and crazy stuff. It’s quick, efficient, dirty, you get in you get out the most important thing is for you to get out,” DiGiovancarlo said.

Unfortunately, it’s a concern at the top of many women’s minds.

“It’s a crazy world out there and I just want to feel a little more protected being a young, small girl in a crazy world,” said Cheyenne Fortier of Litchfield.

While the viral video happened hundreds of miles away in Florida, it serves as a scary reminder of the dangers women face.

“I was going to bring it in today and show her, and be like what do I do? Because he got her on the ground in the video and that’s my worst nightmare. Like what do you do when they’re on top of you? It’s so scary,” said Julianna Bartolucci of Prospect.

That’s why during the eight-week course they start with the basics and practice how to get out of different scenarios so that women leave feeling confident.

“Every time that you’re striking and you’re doing it properly your brain is remembering it right,” DiGiovancarlo said. 

She said she also teaches her students that awareness is one of the biggest tools they can have.

“Look around, see what’s going on around you is somebody looking at you funny? Is somebody walking at you, are they approaching you? Notice them before they get right on top of you,” DiGiovancarlo said.