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Jun 5, 2023

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May 2, 2023

War wounds are not always physical. Invisible wounds are among the most common for veterans who served after 9/11, according to the latest data from Wounded Warrior Project® (WWP).

Veterans Get Defensive during Wounded Warrior Project MMA Class

NORTH LAS VEGAS, Nev., May 26, 2017 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Dwayne Fitzpatrick took his wife and daughter to a recent MMA-style self-defense class so they could learn how to get out of trouble. As punches were thrown, Dwayne quickly was empowered to learn how Wounded Warrior Project® (WWP) programs help his body and mind heal.

Wounded Warrior Project recently gave veterans an opportunity to learn self-defense skills while experiencing firsthand what is possible at social gatherings that connect them with fellow service members.

"This was our very first Wound Warrior Project event," the Army veteran said. "We definitely will attend others. It was a great way connect with other warriors – and to burn off some energy."

WWP program events like this give wounded warriors an opportunity to experience firsthand what is possible at social gatherings that get them out of the house and connect them with fellow service members and their communities.

The class was taught by warrior Temo Solorzano, an Army veteran, who specializes in mixed martial arts. Participants were shown how to break way from an assailant, as well as using leverage to attack their weaker pressure points.

In a WWP survey of the injured warriors it serves, 29.6 percent of survey respondents expressed physical activity helps them cope with stress and emotional concerns. Programs like this highlight the importance of managing mental health through physical activity and connecting with other veterans.

Veteran Paul Schulz learned self-defense in the Air Force. He reawakened his military skills while learning some new moves in the process.

"The team did a great job of pointing out size, strength, and gender doesn't matter when the proper technique is applied," he said. "It was great to do the skills they taught and watching the challenges of size and gender to get the results you wanted.

"The technique that I thought was best was breaking out of a choking situation. This move is a must-know for women, but it can be utilized by anyone. The instructors practiced this technique to ensure confidence and muscle memory were built in."

"Temo focused on aggressive ways to take control," Navy veteran Alvin Sedlmeyer said.

"It was a wakeup call," he said. "Now I know attack moves, not just defensive moves."

To learn and see more about how WWP's programs and services connect, serve, and empower wounded warriors, visit

About Wounded Warrior Project
Wounded Warrior Project® (WWP) connects, serves, and empowers wounded warriors. 


SOURCE Wounded Warrior Project

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