Remember, self defense is about protecting your life - not winning a fight or beating someone up. Only stand and fight IF THERE IS NO ESCAPE.
Escape is Preemptive
You can avoid having to run away from a bad situation or needing to fight someone by avoiding unsafe situations. Honestly, if you really want to protect yourself make sure you avoid risky situations.
Pride Can Only Hurt
Many bad unsafe situations occur because a person is unwilling to back down. Remember, your pride can always heal but your body can't. Defending your ego is NOT self-defense. If you feel like confrontation might occur because of emotions then you should avoid these situations all together.
Why this is important for self defense:
You don't know your attacker. Maybe they have a weapon
You might survive the encounter - but with permanent injuries.
The world is unpredictable maybe you slip and hit your head...
SO RUN IF YOU CAN
Never let them take you!
Protect Yourself NOW
It doesn't matter if someone has a weapon or is much larger than you. If they are trying to take you away somewhere you have to fight or escape now! There are too many horror stories of people who cooperated with an attacker only to end up on the news... Don't be one of those people. If an attacker is trying force or convince you to go somewhere else you must act now.
Actions are louder...
Don't listen to the "reassuring" words of your attacker. Self defense is about understanding intent of attackers. If they want to take you somewhere this speaks louder than any words they use. Don't even think about listening. Your life depends on you seizing the immediate opportunity to protect yourself now. Use the element of surprise and defend your life, hold your ground or escape.
It's All or Nothing
In situations like this you are in EXTREME danger. Getting punched, kicked, broken bones or whatever else happens to you are nothing compared to what attackers are intending to do. That means it's ALL or NOTHING. Go all out, escape or fight to the very end. NEVER LET THEM TAKE YOU!
Scan your environment
Look for escape opportunities
If you only focus on fighting an attacker, you might miss the most important self defense tool: a way to escape. These come in many forms: other people, barriers, hiding places or weapons to deter your attacker(s).
Be aware of other attackers
It's no good if you protect yourself from one attacker only to get blind sided by another. Keep your eyes pealed for multiple attackers. If you are outnumbered it is important to generate space or obstacles.
Anything is a Weapon
Don't hesitate to find something to even the odds: rocks, bottles, dirt, sticks, silverware or any other hard or sharp object. Even a pen or a pencil is an extremely effective tool. Even a sidewalk can be used to your advantage: a hard shove can cause an attacker to trip off/over these.
Escape is priority
Your Voice is a Weapon
Yell. Yell LOUDLY! It is easy to underestimate how effective your voice is in self-defense. If you speak with assertiveness this displays confidence. Attackers are looking for victims - not someone ready to protect themselves. An unexpected shout can stun an attacker for a split second give you an opportunity to attack or make an escape.
Some words work better than others: "Gun", "Bomb", "Fire" get creative. Imagine the dismay an attacker would feel if all of a sudden their "victim" shouts "terrorist." These are "hot" words that attract attention. Attention is the worst enemy of an attacker. You don't have to strike an attacker to keep yourself safe from them. All you need to do is defeat the attackers mind. Attention is a great self-defense tool. So go all out, be loud and don't hesitate.
This is not a Game
Many people think that protecting themselves means beating someone in a fight - this is absolutely wrong. Self defense means protecting yourself by any means necessary. Maybe you have to bite or spit. There is no referee. There are no rules. Do whatever you need to escape with your life.
Let the Animal Out
Don't suppress your instincts: let that animal side out. Attack weak points: Yank fingers, rake/scratch eyes, hit neck/nose/groin etc.
Remember it's Self Defense
The rules of surviving an a self-defense are simple: keep your body safe while neutralizing the threat. No body cares if you had to kick someone in the groin to protect yourself. Again ego can literally kill you here. You don't have to "win" you have to survive.
Don't be "nice"
If you have successfully stunned an attacker you have two options: run away or put them down for the count. Scan the environment, if escape seems risky (eg they might chase) then be merciless. The key is not to use excessive force. A firm knee to the groin or an elbow to the face should be enough to generate an escape opportunity. There is a good rule of thumb between excessive force and self defense: if you could have easily escaped but continued to "neutralize" your attacker then you are probably using excessive force.
Knowing is not enough - You must Practice
How Zodojo can help
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