WWU Self-Defense for Returning Students

The first weekend Western Washington University students were back in school, martial arts professional Rob Eis taught assault prevention techniques to residents at Birnam Wood, Buchanan Towers, and Fairhaven Commons from 7pm-10pm.

Rob Eis and his students were on hand to demonstrate why awareness and avoidance are a necessity when it comes to personal safety. Eis showed what to do when all else fails and you need to resort to physically defending your life. Areas covered were common attack scenarios, and solutions were provided for such things as hair holds, being pinned down or lifted off the ground, or getting attacked by an assailant with a knife. Techniques were 100% applicable to students’ daily life on campus and around town.
Hear what others thought about this event:
Rob’s visit to Birnam Wood was a great opportunity to learn some safety advice. Simply by standing off to the side and watching I got some good tips about different ways to stay safe before a dangerous situation even arises. I learned the importance of paying attention to how I’m walking (and where) and to walk with an attitude that says I know where I’m going. I will also always remember the defense move of how to get up when someone is standing above you without putting yourself in an even more dangerous situation. And I’m glad to have these new skills!
-Ammany McFadden, Birnam Wood resident
Rob was awesome enough to come in and teach our Western students how to defend themselves if necessary. He showed basic moves and let students try the techniques as he guided them through it. The program was very helpful because students learned how to be safe (using the) self-defense techniques, even if they weren’t physically doing them. I’ve received great feedback from students who were in the action as well as students who were on the sidelines. Thanks for helping us keep our community members safe, Rob!
-Laurel Eby, Apartment Coordinator at WWU
Having Rob come into Buchanan Towers and teach a self-defense seminar was a great start to the new school year. I enjoyed that he focused on teaching us simple, easy techniques that can be used in a real-life situations. The best part of his class was the fact that we not only were shown these techniques, but we were able to practice them as well, which helped me learn and remember them. My friend and I both feel like attending Rob’s class has helped us feel safer when walking alone on campus late at night.
-Mikylah Hunsaker, Buchanan Towers resident
The interactive nature of Rob’s program made the learning very real for the students involved. Both he and his co-instructors were very supportive to participants, many of who had never participated in an event like this before.
-Daniel Easton, Fairhaven Resident Director for WWU’s Residence Life


I’ve found martial arts training to be a fantastic way to relieve the stresses of modern life and a great way to keep in shape while pursuing the obvious goal of learning a self defense discipline. Whether you can only go once in awhile, or several times per week, I can’t say enough good about the training. I always leave feeling refreshed and energetic and that helps me to tackle a hectic schedule. Also, I’ve been plagued with back troubles for most of my adult life and the workouts and stretching do wonders for keeping my back in order. I’ve known Rob for about 7 years and met him when I first began my martial arts journey. Rob was a lead instructor at a local martial arts school, where I trained previously, before beginning his own school. I’ve trained with him in several different martial arts disciplines and I know Rob to be very dedicated, knowledgeable, and experienced in the various training methods. In addition to being a skilled trainer and teacher, he has a wealth of knowledge and a great proficiency in the martial arts. In addition to his qualifications I know him to be very patient and caring with his new trainee’s, as well as an all around great guy!! Whether you’re an experienced practitioner, or have no experience and a desire to try out martial arts, you couldn’t ask for a better teacher and I encourage you to go for it!

~ Paul Murphy, Patrol Deputy for the Sheriff’s Office

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