Spring may be on the horizon, but the horizon is still too far away. With the temperature hovering in the 30s and 40s, we’re not ready to take our tops off outdoors yet this year. That means finding fun things we can do topless indoors, and one of our members had a great idea: we could learn to wrestle.

Yes, wrestle. Why not? Didn’t the ancient Greeks do it naked in the Olympics? That’s what the sides of their urns would have us believe, anyway. And if we could find a place with the heat turned on, mats on the floors, and good instructors so we wouldn’t injure ourselves or each other, who knows? Maybe we’d enjoy going all G.L.O.W. on each other.

What we learned from our excellent instructors was that real, competitive wrestling has about as much to do with the G.L.O.W. variety as real fencing has to do with the swashbuckling in The Princess Bride. Our class was led by Goddess Lola Jean, a pro-domme, sex educator and wrestler, with the kind assistance of an expert in Brazilian jiu-jitsu, and the two of them demonstrated how the back-and-forth of holds and guards and pins and chokes and locks, used as a pair of opponents grapple for control, resembles nothing so much as a game of chess: If I go here, she could go there or there, and if she goes there, I can try one of these moves…

Something as small as a slightly different angle can make an enormous difference in terms of leverage when you’re trying to pin someone’s shoulders…

…or get their legs apart.

It’s as much a mental game as it is a physical one. That said, it didn’t take long for us to break a sweat.

And if that wasn’t enough in the way of body-to-body lubrication, our helpful Goddess had some massage oil on hand (rice/bran, if you’re wondering). We lost no time oiling ourselves up —

— and each other —

— and then we took a new stab at the moves we’d been taught. And what a difference a layer of oil makes! Good luck getting a grip on your opponent when she’s slippery as your proverbial eel. But grips aren’t everything. You can still use body weight against your sparring partner…

…or trap her head between your thighs…

…or try to land a headlock…

…or slip an arm under hers and draw her close.

The action grew heated. Limbs flew. No injuries, though, in part because no one was trying to win. Wrestling, we found, is its own reward. If you do it right, you both win.

Finally, when we were all wrestled out, warm towels helped get any leftover oil off our skin.

Will wrestling enter our repertoire as a thing we do every Friday night? Probably not — but it sure was a fun way to spend this one particular winter evening. And maybe we’ll do it again sometime. Once in a while it’s nice to have a chance to get physical with your friends.

Would you like to join us sometime? Whether it’s something as physical as wrestling or gentler like, um, competitive sunbathing, we welcome all body-positive women: the brave and the timid, the experienced and the first-timer. Just send email to toplesspulpfiction@gmail.com and we promise, we’ll find the sport that’s right for you.