Crime is increasing throughout the world. Violent crime is expected to soar to an all time high. Gender based violence is increasing in South Africa at such an alarming rate that the South African President recently announced that drastic measures are required to curb this problem. In the wake of the Corona Pandemic, there is a greater need than ever for COVID Safe Self-Defense Training.
What is COVID Safe Self-Defense Training?
COVID Safe self-defense training refers to conducting quality reality based self-defense training, while at the same time providing a safe and hygienic training environment. This means that self-defense training providers and instructors should take all reasonable precautions to reduce the risk of spreading the virus. Reasonable precautions include all aspects ranging from the provision of a clean and sanitary training environment, all the way to instructors being trained in COVID Safety Procedures.
Is your self-defense instructor trained in COVID Safety?
In the normal training environment it is expected of self-defense training providers to exercise reasonable care to ensure the safety of clients. Reasonable care includes aspects such as:
- Instructors should be suitably qualified and experienced to safely teach their art
- A valid First Aid qualification is highly recommended
- The training facility should have adequate liability insurance
- Training equipment and the training facility should conform to the Occupational Health and Safety Act.
With the current worldwide COVID pandemic, self-defense instructors will have to go the extra mile. In addition to the above mentioned aspects, self-defense instructors should also be formally trained in COVID Safety Training Procedures.
C.O.B.R.A. South Africa Instructors are internationally certified instructors with extensive training experience. They hold valid First Aid Level 2 certifications. The training facility in Bloemfontein is managed by a Regional Instructor with extensive tertiary qualifications in Occupational Health, Safety and Environmental Management (SHE). The C.O.B.R.A. Self-Defense Regional Training Center in Bloemfontein carries public liability insurance is also fully compliant with the Occupational Health and Safety Act. The Instructors all completed COVID Safe Martial Arts Instructor Training which was developed and administered by the Martial Arts Industry Association in Australia.
What about the COVID Safety Standards at the self-defense training facility?
Generally speaking, most martial arts and self-defense training facilities conform to very high hygiene standards. Even before hygiene and sanitizing became buzzwords, Martial Arts and Self-Defense Instuctors knew that clients did not want to train in an unhygienic training environment. Seeing an instructor with a sanitizer spray bottle and mop was a common sight in all martial arts studios, even before the Corona Virus. However, like in any industry, there are the bad apples. Here are some bare minimum standards that should be in place in view of the current Corona pandemic:
- The training facility, including all door handles, counters, chairs, training equipment, toilet facilities and training mats should be cleaned and sanitized on a daily basis.
- Adequate hand sanitizer and disposable towels should be provided.
- Social distancing should be adhered to.
- Government regulations on the maximum number of clients allowed in the facility at any given time should be adhered to.
C.O.B.R.A. South Africa takes COVID Safe Training Facilities to the next level
At the C.O.B.R.A.South Africa Regional Training Center in Bloemfontein, client safety is our TOP PRIORITY. Coming from a professional Safety Management career background, the owner is passionate about safety. The co-owner comes from a Medical Laboratory career field and is equally passionate (read- obsessive compulsive!) about hygiene and safety.
Following a comprehensive Risk Assessment, it was decided that the following COVID Safety and Hygiene Measures shall be in place at the C.O.B.R.A. Regional Self-Defense Training Center in Bloemfontein:
- Training will be limited to a maximum of 4 people at a time.
- Upon entry, students will be required to sanitize their hands and shoes. Appropriate signage is placed at the entrance. A foot operated sanitizer dispenser dispensing medical grade sanitizer is installed at the entrance door. There is also a sanitizer soaked floor mat at the entrance door to clean shoe soles.
- An attendance register with Corona Symptom Questionnaire needs to be completed before entry.
- Before entry, an electronic temperature scan is performed.
- Students who show any symptoms or who have been in contact with people who showed symptoms will not be allowed entry.
- Wearing of face masks are compulsory at all times before entry and also during training. Appropriate signage to the effect is placed at the entrance.
- Once inside the facility, a red demarcated walkway leads towards a red demarcated student training area. Students may not leave the demarcated area under any circumstances.
- Instructors are restricted to a blue demarcated area from where all training will be conducted. Instructors will not be in physical contact with students and will also wear face masks throughout a lesson.
- Students may not bring any personal belongings except drinking water into the facility. Locker rooms are closed off and may not be used.
- Social distancing rules will be strictly enforced with a minimum distance of 2 meters between students at all times. An exception may be made for family members training privately and who live together in the same house.
- Each student will be provided with his/her own set of training equipment and a numbered training area will be allocated to each student. The training area and equipment will be sanitized before and after each lesson. For added peace of mind, each training station will be provided with medical grade sanitizer and a cloth so that students may also sanitize equipment before, during and after use.
- Before and after each training session, the Instructor will sanitize the entire training facility. This will include spraying all equipment, door handles, floors, counter tops, chairs, sign-in points etc with medical grade sanitizer and mopping down all floors and training mats with a sanitizing agent.
- C.O.B.R.A. Self-Defense South Africa proudly complies with the C.O.B.R.A. Self-Defense International Gold Clean Training Environment Standard which was developed by our Corporate Office situated in Clearwater FL in the United States.
Non-contact COVID Safe Self-Defense Training
At C.O.B.R.A. Self-Defense we understand that not all clients will feel comfortable to train at our facility or with other people. All people have different risk tolerance levels. We aim to cater for that by offering our clients access to online training options. Currently we have two options available namely live online self-defense classes conducted via Zoom and access to the C.O.B.R.A. Self-Defense Online College. The Online Self-Defense College provides students with access to pre-recorded training videos. Depending on the membership level chosen, it also include training support materials such as manuals, DVD’s and audio CD’s. Both forms of online training offers our clients access to quality self-defense instruction at their homes or anywhere they feel safe.
In regards to corporate training, C.O.B.R.A. Self-Defense South Africa offers contact free self-defense seminars. At our Corporate Self-Defense Seminars, corporate employees receive the highest standard of verbally-interactive instruction. We also show them highly effective physical self-defense techniques that require no practicing and that they can learn from the safety and comfort of their chairs. Of course we also offer our online self-defense training options to our corporate clients to allow employees to train where ever and whenever they have access to a smartphone, tablet or computer.