Women Who Bodyguard: Denida Zinxhiria
First printed in 2004 in Warrior Path Martial Art Magazine
In some countries the notion of a woman providing the service once thought to be only offered by hulking men could sound very strange and unacceptable. Although women already have made their appearance in ”masculine jobs” for decades now, they are still treated with prejudice and suspiciousness. Sometimes even they have to deal with negativity and slighting discussions for their professional abilities.
Being in the security industry since the age of 20 and in a country, where female bodyguards are something very new, I was asked to prove my abilities all the time.
The question I have always had to answer was ”Can we trust and feel secure from a female bodyguard?” Professionals know very well that we should erase the myth that says bodyguards must have the look of a giant with a stalwart shape to cover his client’s body in the case of danger or be ”big” enough to hold down the attacker.
Reality and experience have shown us that the best bodyguard is the one who has taken the necessary training which is based on real conditions and situations. They have the ability in an impending attack to make the best evaluation of threat and react fast and effectively.
We know that the male body, by its nature, has a bigger musculature structure than a woman’s. So, to the question of what is going to happen in close-quarter combat, we already know that if someone with a small body type is properly trained, then she can deal with someone ”bigger” than her and hold down the attacker. This is why training is especially important for women as we do not have the ability to work from our size. We must prove ourselves through proper training and utilization of our brains for strategic thinking.
Women also have the ability to pay attention to more descriptive information in an environment. If you ask a man to describe a person who just past in front of him, the chance is that he will give you general information… However, a woman is naturally trained to do that. We do that all the time even when we are off duty. Those small but important observations about a person’s appearance are very important in our job.
Also, imagine a woman bodyguard with a VIP at an event. She is sure to be considered by others as his spouse, partner, or colleague. The fact is that women offer greater flexibility ins shadow security details. She can be part of a male team performing the functions of the shift or detail leader because she can be in close when the environment necessitates a close protection female. For us as female’s being able to act as an associate to our client may also prove beneficial to providing close protection to male principals. Additionally, lest no one forgets, our female principals benefit greatly from our presence. We offer peace of mind, yet bring comfort in her knowing she has another female with her to relate to.
Ending, it is important to mention the power of influence that a female may exercise over males. It may be easier for a woman to extract information and confirmation about someone’s intentions, and secure her principal and team’s safety. Women by nature have the ability to get things done with the power of persuasion. Men relate well to women and women relate well to women.
So, there is no such thing as men vs. women in our job. It is men and women who cooperate in order to decrease the percentage of risk and threat and keep their clients and team secure and safe. We must all work together, but women must make their presence known and not back down in a traditionally male-dominated industry. The more we share our story, the more we share and teach the advantages the more the ‘perceived’ disadvantages will disappear. We are a powerful force in the next generation of executive protection.