When the phrase “emergency preparedness” comes to mind, we often think of natural disasters or food shortages. But there are also everyday situations like walking home or getting stuck on the side of the road that could turn into larger emergencies if we aren’t careful.
Many of us don’t think through or prepare for a physical attack on our person, even if we’re aware they happen to people in the world every day. And while there’s no way to predict the way a predatory attack could go, there are several ways to avoid dangerous situations.
Here are 10 basic self-defense rules to keep you safe and to deter potential attackers:
1) Know your path. Be familiar with the routes and paths you take home or to your bug-out location. Knowing your path means knowing the places people could hide and giving those areas a wide berth when passing. It also means avoiding poorly lit or unfamiliar shortcuts that might get you lost or cornered.
2) Make sure someone knows where you are and when to expect you. This is true of many situations you may find yourself in, like hiking, traveling to or from work, or evacuating during an emergency. Keeping a close friend or emergency contact up-to-date on your location is as simple as a quick phone call or text message.
3) Walk confidently. Many predators are looking for someone they think they can overpower, much like a predator in the wild. Walk with purpose and direction, paying attention as you go so you avoid surprises.
4) Trust your instincts. If you think someone might be following you or are unnerved by someone in close proximity, it’s better to get to a busy area and contact someone you trust to pick you up.
5) Avoid routines that could easily be followed. If possible, avoid doing certain activities, like withdrawing money or taking the same routes home, at the same time each day.
6) Carry objects capable of making noise: cell phones, whistles, horns, etc., anything that can alert people to your situation. The sound from an emergency whistle can travel farther and is louder than simply yelling for help. Self-defense organizations such as Safety and Self Defense Solutions also encourage possible victims of attacks to yell ‘fire’ to draw attention and scare off an attacker. People are more likely to respond to someone yelling ‘fire’ than to someone yelling ‘help.’
7) Always know what tools you have to defend yourself and make them reachable before they are needed. For example, keeping your keys in your hand while walking to your car and letting the point jut between your knuckles can be used as a surprise weapon; or a monkey fist made from paracord can be used as an effective tool to stun an attacker.
8) Know the sensitive areas of your attacker and the way these areas can be exploited. The eyes, ears, throat, groin, knees and shins are all areas that hurt when hit. For example an ear slap or groin attack can give you the upper hand.
Check out the videos below to learn how to do an ear slap and a groin attack effectively.
9) Do not linger to fight: the bash and dash is the most effective approach. Once the attacker is hurt and his attention is diverted, go as quickly as you can to a busy area and call someone you trust. If your attacker gets a hold of you, do everything you can to keep them from taking you to a second location.
Education, attention, and assertion will be your best assets in warding off possible attacks.
When has knowing Self Defense come in handy for you during an emergency or in your everyday life?