The Big Bata Weekend

The Irish martial art called bataireacht - or Irish stick fighting - was used for generations in community ritual and to resist colonization in Ireland (including a rich legacy of helping to drive landlords out of communities....), and which was almost lost to memory due to the Famine and targeted campaigns to eradicate the practice. I'm a trans and queer person and I'm one of only 8 instructors in the world in the family style that I practice!

This art has many practical uses for us today, as it teaches us how to wield mobility devices (walking sticks and canes, and similar (long umbrellas etc) for combat...and its history offers necessary challenges, lessons, and guidance for us in what it means to show up in the verb of solidarity in and for anti-colonial movements and in community care, accountability, and defense work.

The two day workshop on this art in Chicago in May is called the Big Bata Weekend - May 18 and 19th and include not just training in the martial art itself with guided practice fighting, but deep storytelling and communal dialogue on the history & cultural ecosystem of this art, deep somatics work and physical therapy care to support students of a wide range of abilities in sustaining this kind of training.

My classes always center my fellow trans and queer people (tho they're open to all who fight by our side) and because of this, these workshops are suuuper unlike most martial arts classes you've taken. These are spaces where femmes, fat folks, homos, & disabled babes are not just welcome, but the norm, where we gab about queer histories, talk thru specific strategies for fucking up white supremacists, laugh hard, PLAY, and otherwise explore in detail, from a place of joy, how this art can keep our communities safer, along with everything else.

I am so excited for this offering to come to life! Folks can participate in both days or opt just for our Intro workshop on Saturday.

Financé par Chicago, IL (April 2024)