We had the good fortune of connecting with Tracie Arlington and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Tracie, what was your thought process behind starting your own business?
After earning my black-belt in 2001, several women’s groups were asking me to teach them and/ or their children self-defense. They wanted to learn self-protection, but they weren’t interested in a martial arts program. So “Play It Safe Defense” was born. I then became a community partner with the Girl Scouts and expanded my program by adding a “verbal karate” curriculum. Verbal strategies that teach people how to deal with bullies, mean people, frenemies and conflict resolution. I believe that everyone needs to know how to protect themselves physically and verbally; it’s a life skill. To date we have taught hundreds of thousands of women and children, including 150,000 Girl Scouts.
Can you give our readers an introduction to your business? Maybe you can share a bit about what you do and what sets you apart from others?
Overview: Every parent fears that their child will be bullied, abducted….or worse. Play It Safe Defense provides self defense training for women, children and men that are not interested in a Martial Arts program. We use a fun and age appropriate one session class to build confidence and increase awareness skills that help prevent potential danger. Competitive Advantage/Solution: A mobile business that brings the training to groups. We teach children to self protect by using the Chihuahua as an example of “Tiny but Mighty!” This branding has given us a lot of media exposure. Our business model includes: classes for Women & Children, a Licensing program, certification of Physical Education teachers, online classes, school assemblies, corporate events. Milestones/Major Achievements: Appeared on the Dr. Phil Show, The DOCTORS TV – Major clients include Girls Scouts, Boy Scouts, schools grades K 12 and Colleges. –
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
I live in Point Loma, so we would start at Point Loma Seafoods and then take a walk around Shelter or harbor Island. Sea World would be a must see. My favorite restaurant would be Fogo De Chao in the Gaslamp district followed by a Padre game. Finally, my friend couldn’t leave San Diego without attended the ROCK Church Point Loma.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
My mentor and “Sensei” is Darren Kikuchi from Freestyle Martial Arts in Point Loma. Without him there would be no “Play It Safe Defense.” He trained me in the martial arts and then helped me develop my program. He has also supported and encouraged me over the years. https://freestylesd.com/
Other: Teachable online course platform https://playitsafedefense.teachable.com/