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Utah News

One Utah Girl Is Learning Self Defense And Is Teaching It To Others

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One high school student is taking a different approach to combat sexual assault. She’s literally fighting against it.

Takiah Nish is a yellow belt in karate and a senior Girl Scout. To earn her Girl Scouts Gold Award--which is kind of like the Boy Scouts Eagle Project--she’s decided to combine the two and teach other girls how to defend themselves.

Nish has taught several self-defense classes around Logan, Utah at church activities. She also holds several classes on the Utah State University campus.

She said fighting is a way to really give yourself a fighting chance.

“It’s not 100 percent reliable, like, it’s not for sure going to save you but it’s still nice to be able to have a shot and be able to try and save yourself rather than just sitting there, not knowing what to do," Nish said.

Nish’s class is called S.A.V.E. which stands for Safety, Awareness, Violence and Education. Nish demonstrates how to defend against a variety of different attack scenarios--including defending against a knife.

One thing she said is always a good defense is confidence. And, not coincidentally, that’s what most who are taking her class are leaving with.

“They just feel a whole bunch more confident and that they can protect themselves," Nish said.

Vanessa Allen, who’s been teaching karate for 15 years, said that’s why she enjoys teaching young women.

"Because I feel like, you know, the more we let people know how to do this, the less people are going to feel like they can take advantage," Allen said.