Meanwhile, live-streaming sessions of Zhang teaching self-defense skills on short video social platforms in China, such as Kuaishou, have also gained in their popularity among netizens, some of whom commented that the young woman is "the most stylish woman bodyguard in China." Zhang Meili, a 21-year-old woman from Zigong City, southwest China's Sichuan Province has recently emerged as an Internet celebrity, with a video clip of her performing various tasks as a bodyguard having since gone viral online.
Inspired by the Chinese martial arts film titled "Shaolin Temple," Zhang started to take strong interest in learning Chinese Kungfu at the age of 12. After graduating from university in 2020, Zhang decided to take part in a grueling training program at the Tianjiao International Security Academy, a Beijing-based training camp for bodyguards.
During the training, Zhang got up at 5 o'clock every morning to participate in various fitness programs, and attended a number of courses including those on American FBI mind-reading skills, anti-terrorism training and even business etiquette and communication techniques, in what she refers to as "devil training."
"The period of devil training is more about how to manage stress mentally," Zhang recalled, adding that the most essential quality of a bodyguard is the management of emotions and resistance to stress.
When it comes to people's misunderstanding about bodyguards, Zhang believes that rather than simply becoming skilled in kickboxing, the profession places more emphasis on the capability to detect potential risks, such as assessing the authenticity of a gun and levels of threats in particular.
When going out on a mission, bodyguards mainly wear communication equipment and all kinds of testing equipment, and often only require a pen for self-defensive purposes, Zhang introduced.
"A professional bodyguard is supposed to be equipped with knowledge and wisdom to prevent all the hidden dangers," said Zhang, adding that sometimes a bodyguard should also serve as a personal assistant for their boss.
According to Zhang, women bodyguards can be just as strong as their male counterparts, since there was no distinction in the training given to both genders. Furthermore, compared to male practitioners, women bodyguards are less conspicuous, which can be regarded as an advantage, especially when the number of women celebrities and wealthy women is skyrocketing.
In addition to performing tasks such as the protection of key personnel, Zhang also undertakes work as a trainer. Despite a heavy workload that requires firm commitments and dedication, Zhang can always derive a great sense of achievement from her job.
"Professionalism always reminds us that we should not underestimate everything and must pay full attention to any suspicious details and predictable dangers," noted Zhang.
As reported, China's private security industry has boomed in recent years, with women practitioners only accounting for less than 10 percent of the total.
(Source: People's Daily Online)
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