Divorce yourself from this idea right now, author. While I’m sure it is the narrative you’ve been presented with your entire life, I’m here to tell you that it isn’t true. Women do find building up muscles in the upper body more difficult than men, but since power does not come from the arms, it’s actually a superfluous distinction. Women build up muscles in the lower body and in the core muscles (abdominal) very rapidly.
Skill in combat is not a matter of biology, but in training and dedication. Remember, if your female character fights, she’s neither unique nor special. In my experience as a martial artist and a martial arts instructor, there are on average per class 2 girls to every 10 boys, with the female number either remaining constant or doubling as the class goes up in age. While there are fewer female combatants around than male, it’s not hard to find 20 women to every 100 men. Extrapolate that out and think about it, women who fight are not as rare as you might have previously imagined.
Here are a few things to consider:
1) Power comes from the hips.
I will harp on this until the end of time until everyone shakes the myth of punch strength being decided by arm muscle strength out of their heads. The strength of the strike comes from the pivot of the hips and guess what? Women have wider hips than men, thus a greater opportunity to generate more power and hit their opponents harder. Combine this advantage with a low-center of gravity and the ability to push that center even lower and you have a fighter capable, not just in power, but able to topple much larger opponents.
2) Women have a lower center of gravity.
This is the advantage of the short fighter, it’s the same for short men and short women, a tall woman fighting a shorter woman will encounter the same resistance as a tall man fighting a short one. I list this as a female advantage because most women will always find themselves facing larger opponents. So, it’s important for an author to keep in mind.
So, how does this work? A center of gravity is the height difference from the ground to your core, around the belly button. The shorter the fighter, the lower their center of gravity, the lower the center of gravity the closer they are to the earth, the closer they are to the earth the better their ability to generate a stable base and the harder they are to knock over. A fighter who knows where to put their feet and weight to make use of their center is a hard one to take to the ground. This is one way for women to overcome the height and weight disadvantage.
3) Women are naturally more resistant to pain and fatigue than men, have a greater potential for stamina, and can fight harder for longer.
It’s important to note: it’s not just that men cannot biologically carry a child to term and survive the birth, but if they did with their current make-up, they would die. So, you may call it the miracle of childbirth, but a woman’s body is gifted with a much greater level of resilience than their male counterparts. While these abilities must be honed and improved through training, the natural talent is already present in every woman’s body.
4) The only combatants who ever actively terrified me were women.
I’ve met a great many master martial artists from a great many different styles, all of whom I deeply respect, and can trust in their ability to utterly annihilate me. But the female black belt sparring division, my first thought on encountering those women as a teenager was: “I want to spar with the boys.”
Women live in a very different world than men do, they live in a world that is comprised of dangers even in places that are supposed to be safe. A woman cannot walk down a street alone, never mind if it’s at night, without wondering if an attack will happen. Rape and other acts of violence are very real, every day threats, and women live with the knowledge that the places they have been told to go to for protection will disregard them, laugh at them, and judge them on their worth for “allowing” these acts to happen to them. Every woman, even the ones like me who began at a young age, will eventually be faced with the realization that they may have to use what they know against another person one day. This is not fantasy assessment full of wishful thinking, but a cold reality. What if one day I have to hurt someone else? What if one day I have to kill them? The women who practice and prepare through forms of combat do so with that in mind, with the knowledge that they are the underdogs and that one day, they may have to use that training to fight for their lives.
The ferocity with which they beat on each other in sparring matches is a reflection of that. Remember, these are women who have shaken off the socially ingrained idea of ‘I can’t hurt anyone' and moved on to 'I will break you if you hurt me’. They follow that up with: you will never walk right again.
Unless your character comes from a very different society, this attitude will be part of who they are. Women who are trained and dedicated have the capacity to be terrifying, especially in a patriarchal society. Why? It’s not the behavior that most men expect.
most things will be under the readmore
OH MY GOD THIS HAS EVERYTHING
Here’s a list of links to pages and posts that will help if you’re in search for some positive or negative character traits;
a really excellent way to reduce anxiety is to pick up a new hobby. find something you’re interested in, learn it, then use it as a healthy and productive way to cope.
- learn to play guitar
- learn how to make interactive stories with the free program Twine
- learn how to make pixel art
- learn another language
- learn how to build a ship in a bottle
- learn how to develop your own film
- learn how to embroider
- learn how to make chiptunes (8-bit music)
- learn how to make origami (the art of paper folding)
- learn how to make tumblr themes
- learn how to make jewelry
- learn how to make candy
- learn how to make terrariums
- learn how to make your own perfume
- learn how to make your own tea
- learn how to build birdhouses
- learn how to read tarot cards
- learn how to make zines
- learn how to code
- learn how to whittle (wood carving)
- learn how to make candles
- learn how to make clay figurines
- learn how to knit scarves
- learn how to become an amateur astronomer
- learn some yoyo tricks
- learn how to start a collection
- learn how to start body building
- learn how to edit wikipedia articles
- learn how to decorate iphone cases
- learn how to do freelance writing
- learn how to make your own cards and
- learn how to make your own envelopes
- learn how to play the ukulele
- learn how to make gifs
- learn how to play chess
- learn how to juggle
- learn how to guerrilla garden
- learn how to chart your family history
- learn how to keep chickens
- learn how to do yoga
- learn how to do magic
- learn how to raise and breed butterflies
- learn how to play dungeons & dragons
- learn how to skateboard
- learn how to do parkour
- learn how to surf
- learn how to arrange flowers
- learn how to make stuffed animals
ohh man for a couple days i didn’t realize each one of these was a link? and then i tried the learn how to code thing. and dude i have to psa about this because that site, codecademy? i have tried to learn programming (in this case html) MULTIPLE TIMES and never found a way that actually captured my interest and also made sense and that one does. you’re constantly learning how to do something and doing it—it’s all learn by doing!—and they start small and explain everything and go in a logical order to build up from there and like. add to your vocabulary.
also, it’s a really good way to procrastinate? that might sound funny, but i think it’s actually more effective to find good ways to procrastinate than not to do it at all. if you ever feel like you want to accomplish something but can’t focus, this gives you a way to feel like you’re constantly accomplishing things and it also focuses your brain so you can go on and focus on other things!
1. Open Culture: Not a large a selection, but high quality texts. If you just want to skim a book to brush up on a course you took in ninth grade, download one of these. I have yet to be disappointed.
2. Book Boon: Provides free college-level textbooks in a PDF format. Probably the widest range of subjects on the web. The site is also pretty.
3. Flat World Knowledge: The worlds largest publisher of free and open college textbooks. Humanitie texts are particularly difficult to come by, this site has a great selection in all disciplines.
4. Textbook Revolution: Some of the books are PDF files, others are viewable online as e-books, or some are simply web sites containing course or multimedia content.
5. Library Pirate: I’ve always had an addiction to torrent based pirating. When this site opened a few months ago, I went a little overboard. After dropping two hundred on a paperback spanish textbook, I downloaded the ebook version illegally. I also got a great Psyc text i’m obsessed with. It will be interesting to see how this site grows- they already have a great selection.
This is probably one reason it can be so hard to digest a lot of academic and straight-news writing. And, uh, therefore a helpful writing tip.
Time to write a script to insert filler words into academic papers. “Subject B was a member of, like, the control group.”
Interesting. I’ll keep that in mind next time I’m training.
People say that I explain things in ways other people can easily understand when I talk. I’m starting to wonder if this has something to do with it - I use a hell of a lot of filler words/syllables.
It always bothers me when people act like using fillers is “bad”, and that a person’s speech is better if they can minimize their use of them.