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Shopping Local: Getting a Kick--and Punch-- Out of Life

On a journey to shop local and try new things in Evergreen Park, your Patch editor shares her new discoveries.

Hello Evergreen Parkers!

In the spirit of "keeping the green in Evergreen" and trying new adventures, I'd like to make it a goal to shop locally as much as possible and experience unique things in the village.

A recent quest to get into shape and relieve a little stress led me into the, 3753 W. 95th St. The space has two training rooms and gives you the chance to pair up with a partner during sessions. I participated in the women's kickboxing class, then a combined kickboxing and mixed martial arts class.

Taught by Darlene Palenica, the kickboxing class got me moving, taught me appropriate kicks and punches, and is a wonderful way to stay in shape. Owner Jeff Waldrom's no-mercy combined kickboxing and mixed martial arts class had me begging for rest, but forced me to leave my problems at the door, and spar!

"This, to me, I find is the best form of exercise. And it's fun," said Palenica about kickboxing. "It not only shapes and tones the body, but teaches you how you defend yourself."

At the end of each class, the instructor teaches a self defense move. "It's important that all women know how to defend themselves," said Palenica. The one hour of power sessions were high-energy, informative and left me feeling exhausted, but empowered.

The Academy of Self Defense has a variety of classes for all ages including Karate, Jui-Jitsu, Thai Boxing and more. For more information and pricing, visit the academy's website or Facebook page.

Soon, the academy will hold a community self defense class for women. Stay tuned for details.

If you've taken a class at the Academy of Self Defense,

Have a suggestion of where I should visit next? Email me at renita.young@patch.com or tell us in the comments!

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