New Hartford, N.Y. - In this day and age a self-defense class is definitely a good idea, and Saturday some local veterans took part in a very unique one in New Hartford.
Sitrin Health Care Center hosted a cane self-defense seminar.
Grand Master Mark Shuey Sr. taught the veterans self-defense techniques using assistance of a cane.
Shuey says he got the idea to start this type of class 23 years ago, "I was visiting my brother in Palm Springs about 23 years ago. Three ladies over 70 we're brutally attacked, and I mean brutally, and it just irked me."
Soon after, Shuey started this self-defense class and has taught it to people all over the country.
Mark Hediger, a U.S. Air Force veteran from Westernville, took part in Saturday's seminar and says he's never heard of such a class, "Back in ancient history they used everything, so farmers would use every one of their tools on the farm for self-defense, so this doesn't surprise me with a cane, but you're right you don't see this every day being offered. I think this kind of training would be important for anybody, anytime you get any training for self-defense, I think it's important, I really do."
William D. Currie Jr., a U.S. Army veteran from Holland Patent says this is a perfect class for anyone "I'm older, fatter, so the skills aren't there anymore or as sharp as they should be, so this is just another tool. It's better to have it and not need it than to need it and not have it."
Shuey says seniors are sometimes reluctant to carry a cane, "The hardest person to sell a cane to is a senior. They think it makes them look old, but once they find out that it's more than a crutch, their eyes open up and what's going on nowadays you need to carry something."
The event was made possible with the help of Secure Living Online and the American Martial Arts Institute.