Protect From Hate Crimes: Free Thai Defence Lessons Taught To LGBTQ Community In Chile

In Chile 50 eager LGBTQIA+ community members were taught basic Thai self-defence moves by three champion Muay Thai practitioners on Saturday.

Kalyani Ganesan
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Thai Defence Moves To LGBTQ In Chile
A group of members of the LGBTQIA+ community gathered to learn Thai boxing self-defence moves at a municipal sports hall in Chile’s capital, Santiago. This comes after a significant rise in homophobic violence.

On Saturday, 50 eager students were taken to the hall and taught basic Thai self-defence moves by three champion Muay Thai practitioners. The students were taught how to block an attack and how to hit back by using the elbow or knee to attack the assaulter’s neck, ribs, genitals, and thighs before fleeing to safety.

Thai Defence Moves To LGBTQ In Chile

According to a report by News18, Ignacio Gomes, 23, said that it was really good that they were offering to help out LGBTQIA+ people because they were one of the people who needed it the most. Gomez also admitted to being a bit terrified of walking alone in the street at night. The initiative was a free class, one in a series that was initiated by the Thailand ambassador to the South American country.

The representative, Chanida Kamalanavin, thanked Muay Thai for empowering gay friends to defend themselves against late-night attacks. He said that this ability to defend oneself will help save lives.

The event was organised in collaboration with Chile’s Movilj gay rights body. The class was initially expected to accommodate 20 people, but due to high demand, they welcomed 50–150 people who managed to get their names on the shortlist.

The organisation has also planned similar classes at Santiago and Punta Arenas in South Chile. The champion teachers will also be imparting their training in Brazil, Mexico, and Peru.


25-year-old Safka Vivanco, who attended one of the recent sessions, claimed that it is useful not just because she is a part of the queer community but also to protect herself from domestic violence. She mentioned that it was good to have a basic tool to handle such unfortunate accidents.

According to reports, hate crimes against members of the LGBTQIA community doubled from 2021 to 2022. There have also been six records of murder, a tie after 2020, which was the deadliest year. The NGO also recorded three police officers assaulting members of the community, including 40 cases of physical and verbal assault.

According to analysis by the National Crime Victimisation Survey in 2022, LGBTQ people in America were nine times more likely to suffer from hate crimes compared to straight people between the years 2017 and 2019. In 2022, 6.6 percent of LGBTQ people were victims of hate crimes per 1000 LGBTQ people, while 0.6 percent were committed against 1000 straight or heterosexual people.

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Image Credits: News18

Thai Boxing Lessons Thai Defence Moves To LGBTQ In Chile