S: Strikes (how & where)

I waited to talk about actual physical self-defense until this time for a reason. My instructor tells us one of the best defenses is the “don’t be there” move. It is so much better to avoid a situation than have to defend yourself. If your security system and the actions you take to stay safe keep you safe, then you have won the battle. But sometimes we do get into a place where we need to defend ourselves. Let me first say, the best choice is to learn this information from an instructor in a safe place where you can learn and practice. These are just a few things you should know, regardless of skill level.

The best places to strike: soft spots: temple, eyes, nose, ears, side of neck, throat, groin, knees, feet
The best ways to strike: knee (to the head or groin), palm strike to the nose, fingers to the eyes, elbow to the head

For example, if someone grabs you by the throat, and you are facing each other both his adams apple and groin are exposed, and both of his hands are preoccupied. A knee to the groin will double him over. At this point you can slam your knee into his head, and he will be on the ground and you can get away. Or, take your fingers and push them into his adams apple. Damaging his windpipe will force him to let go of you and you can get away.

If the attacker grabs you by the wrist, this is what I want you to remember: you cannot pull your hand out of his. It’s nearly impossible, and if you try he will simply drag you off. However, this does not mean you are helpless. The weakest point on his grip is where his thumb is located. Grab your hand he is holding with your other hand, and now pull your hand towards his thumb. He will release the grip, and you can get away.

Remember, the goal is to get away and get somewhere safe. You do not always need to harm the attacker in order to do this, but if you need to do it then you need to know how to do it. This is where a class and instructor becomes important, as well as becoming familiar with the techniques and practicing them often.

If you want to see how these techniques are done and have yet to find a class where an instructor can teach you, go to youtube and search women’s self-defense. Tons of videos will come up, and some may not agree with each other, but all want to help you learn how to defend yourself. One of our black belts in class has also suggested going to youtube and searching street fight to see how people actually attack one another. I, personally, have not been able to bring myself to watch recorded street fights, but it may help you out. You can also get videos from the library under self-defense and martial arts.


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