As a survivor herself, the founder of Defy & Conquer intimately understands the lifelong impact of domestic and sexual violence. After countless hours of therapy through the years, she found that the mental healing did not translate to healing the visceral physical responses and sensations. What many who have never been faced with such a situation fail to recognize is the dysfunction that violence, coupled with a total loss of control, can have in key regions of the brain, most notably the amygdala and the prefrontal cortex. The physical side effects remain without the standard brain functions that typically shut them down. This is common in PTSD of trauma survivors.


Jiu Jitsu was offered as a method of self defense to combat the feelings of physical insecurity, and soon was realized as a form of exposure therapy. After having found the physical calm so desperately sought, she realized jiu jitsu could be used as a tool for other survivors, not only to ensure their safety should another attack ever occur, but also to provide the physical healing often found lacking in traditional therapy modalities. 


The concept is theoretically simple: To carefully and systematically expose a person to feared situations without any real danger present so they may extinguish the fear surrounding the situation. The end goal is to help the survivor reduce or eliminate the heightened anxiety and fear associated with the trauma, and guide them to reclaim control and power over their bodies and life.

© 2020 by Defy and Conquer.

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