SW Portland Martial Arts Blog

Acro Seminar is coming to town!

January 15th, 2019

Dance on your hands! Balance your friends on your feet!

We’re hosting a two hour acro seminar, coached by Ari Rapkin of justmovement. The first hour will focus on tumbling and hand balancing. The second hour will be partner acro.

If you sign up before February 14th, you pay $25 to do both hours or $15 to do (either) one of the segments. Starting February 15th, the prices go up $10 – $35 for 2 hours and $25 for one.

Click here for more info and to sign up!


Why is there a women’s only BJJ class?

December 7th, 2018

People practice martial arts for lots of different reasons, but at a fundamental level, the function of martial arts is to… well, be functional. If you call something martial arts, the implication is that it should help the practitioner defend themselves in an actual self defense situation. Given that martial arts should work, how is it possible for an all women’s class to be functional, as the majority of violent attackers against women are men?

Put another way, why offer gender exclusive classes? Shouldn’t people be training with everyone, so they gain a broad exposure to possible body shapes and sizes? Shouldn’t women be training with men since if they get attacker their attacker is almost certainly going to be male? My answer is yes, people should be training with as broad a range of partners as possible – if they want to test their skills. That phrase at the end, “if they want to test their skills”, brings us to the crux of having a women’s only class.

First, even if women do train in classes with men, it can be nice to get a chance to work only with other women so that you have a whole hour with people who are reasonably close you your size and strength. Generally, men are bigger and stronger. It’s certainly not the case that a women aren’t sometimes bigger and stronger than their male partner, but the usual scenario is a smaller female versus a bigger man. Given this usual scenario, it is sometimes hard to determine when the man ends up winning if it is the result of a physical advantage or a skill advantage. So, reason number one for a women’s only class – to have a day where skill is more prominently featured because the students are closer in size and strength.

Second, martial arts is largely a male dominated culture. Cultures tend to replicate themselves and exclude those who are not already represented in the culture. Sometimes this is deliberate, other times it is unintentional, merely a product of a women walking into a gym, seeing nobody else on the mats who is female, and turning around and heading out the door. There are definitely women who are willing to be the only female on the mat. However, it seems of value to offer a class where women see everybody looks like them and therefore are willing to take the chance and do some martial arts. So, reason number two for a women’s only class – to get women started down the martial path by providing a class where everyone is closer to their size and strength level.

Third, people ask for it. I love martial arts and CrossFit. I like seeing the gym full of people. I think people will use the class. I think the class will make the gym money and I am a cog in the capitalist machine as much as the next business owner. So, reason number three for a women’s only class – there is demand for it.

As a final thought, martial arts, while at root – must be about functionality, there is no reason why an individual’s training needs to be about functionality. There is joy, camaraderie, and sweat to be had on the mats. The art itself must keep an eye on honesty and functionality. To pressure test your skill against a bigger, stronger opponent is important to see if it will really work, there is no reason that everyone needs to do that the first day they walk in the door (or ever, really). So my hope is that the women’s class serves all three of the reasons above: it gives the women of the gym a chance to wrestle with people their own size, it gets some new women in the door who might otherwise walk away if they saw a room full of men, and it grows the gym.

Got thoughts on the subject of a women’s only BJJ class? I’d love to hear them.

Holiday Punch Card

November 29th, 2018

Want to give the gift of fitness this holiday season? We’ve got $150 10 class punch cards that give you access to our entire schedule. The cards never expire.

Simply enter your email below, pay on PayPal and we will ship the punchcard out to you.

Punch Card
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New Classes coming soon!

November 12th, 2018

We’ve got two new classes coming soon –

Yoga is coming, starting Sunday, November 25th. It will run every Sunday from 10-11AM. There is NO charge for currently enrolled CrossFit Hillsdale students. It’s gonna be rad! It will take place in the beautifully matted new space @ 6315 SW Capitol Highway. All levels of experience are welcome Click here for more details.

For non CrossFitters, here are the costs for the yoga class:
First time: 2 for 15$ (Non-gym member)
Drop-In: 15$
5 class punch pass: $60 (12 per class)
10 class punch pass: $110(11 per class)

Also, women’s BJJ is coming, starting Saturday, November 24th! It will run every Saturday from 12:30-1:30PM. Hopefully the name makes it obvious that this is a class for just women… and yes, the coach is a woman – Jasmin. The idea is to give people a chance to roll with folks who are actually the same size as them! The class is free for all enrolled Southwest Portland Martial Arts students.

For non MA students, here are the costs for the women’s BJJ class:
First class: free
Drop in: $20
Punch card: $150 for 10 classes

New Schedule Starting November 1st

October 22nd, 2018

As many of you have heard, we are opening a second martial arts space about 2 blocks away from our current space.

What does this mean for the schedule?

For CrossFit, nothing has changed. The times, the location, it all stays the same.

For the martial arts, much has changed! The day classes are the exception and they remain at the same time and at the same location – with the lovely addition of another morning BJJ class on Thursday. The kids classes stay at the same times but almost all of them move to the new space. The exception are the weekend classes. The Saturday and Sunday kids classes are staying at the old location. Notice that there are several new classes on the schedule, including a Tuesday and Thursday 4:30 class for 6-8 year olds!

The adult evening classes are almost completely different! Check it out and LET US KNOW if you have questions.

Remember, this schedule starts on Thursday, November 1st. If you are a martial arts student and have the night free, you should be there to help us open the new space.