Defense classes helpful for senior citizens

- It could be the equivalent of a fight scene with the hero just a few decades older than most.

"Use your pokes for distance. The cane makes distance," said Derrick Clark.

At Clarks Self Defense in Sarasota, Derrick Clark works with senior citizens.

"You want to create space between me and you. My biggest fear is getting caught or hurt," he explained to a student.

He helps them learn techniques to keep them safe.

"Get that waist. Hip over. Nice throw," he remarked.

It doesn't matter if you're on a cane or a walker. Clarks' defense techniques are for every able person.

"It's not often you get in a situation, but even if you do if you're healthy and strong," said Amos Fox.

Amos Fox started taking classes after his daughter and grandkids joined the studio.

"I'm 65 years old. I am fortunate to be healthy as I am, but going forward as I get older I want to have that embedded movements so I am prepared for a situation when I'm not quite as strong," he said.

Others like Irena Rayeck started as a technique to get stronger. A car accident left her with severe back and neck problems.

"Classes give me more than physical therapy because it's more freedom," she said.

Derrick teaches paid classes and offers free services to churches, senior centers, and nursing homes.

"Everyone needs to know it. It's really important. I think with the senior segment they look vulnerable and it's important that they know just basic tools how to defend themselves," said Derrick.

Derrick wants those in their golden years to know anything is possible.

"It's just lining up the mechanics of the body properly and with the proper technique it can be accomplished," he said.

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