More often than not, the world is a more dangerous place for women as compared to men. Women are usually the target of assaults such as car-nap, rape, holdup, domestic violence, and other crimes. If you ever find yourself assaulted and forced to defend yourself from your attacker, there would be some consequences. For instance, you may not be able to take hold of a weapon such as a taser, mace, or stun gun at the time of attack unless you are ready or have already anticipated the attack.
Most assaults happen in split seconds and although the most common reaction of people, when confronted with danger, is to run, it could not always be the best solution especially if you have nowhere to run to or call for help. In fact, running might only lead to more aggression from the attacker. Thus, it is important that women learn how to defend themselves using self-defense techniques and weapons. Apart from this, women should also learn how to have the right attitude in times of danger.
Basic Self-Defense Moves for Women
Part of defending oneself from an attacker is discerning when to stay in place and convince the attacker to set you free and knowing when you should run. This is where self-defense techniques might apply. Your body is a potential weapon which you can use against any attacker.
1. Elbow Jab – Many women are not aware that their elbows could be their best friend during assaults or attacks. This is because elbows are sharp and can cause damage or pain when striking an attacker. On the other hand, women have to learn how to throw their weight to execute an elbow jab. This move is simple since you only have to twist your waist and use your lower and upper half to maximize the power of your elbow swing. It is best to aim for the attacker’s nose, groin, ribs, throat, or diaphragm to incapacitate him/her temporarily. This way, you have a chance to get away from the attacker.
2. Hand Defense Moves – Hands may provide comfort and affection but they can also be of great use for different defense moves other than punching. Since most women do not have sufficient upper body strength as compared to men, punching is not a good idea for defense. It is easier and better to use your hands.
You can use your hands for clawing or poking the eyes of the attacker. Hands are also best to use for twisting, tearing, or pinching the sensitive areas of the attacker. If the attacker is a man and you opt to use your hands to defend yourself, it is advisable to aim for the inner thigh area that is near the groin.
You can also aim for the attacker’s upper inside of the arm and other groin areas. These are the areas that are most vulnerable to damage or pain.
3. Head Butt – It is a fact that heads are hard because of the thickness of the skull. As such, they can cause great damage or pain to the attacker. You could use your head to head-butt your attacker or break his tooth or bone. You can easily execute a head butt regardless if you are attacked from the front or behind. Although headbutting can also hurt you, it can cause more severe damage to your attacker. A head butt to the nose bridge is especially painful.
4. Knees Defense Move – Most women are shorter than men. Thus, women can easily use their knees to aim for the groin area of a male attacker. The kneecap is strong and can cause a male to temporarily become defenseless especially if hit in the groin area.
5. Teeth Attack – If there is no other way to defend or protect yourself from your attacker, you can opt to bring pain upon him/her using your teeth. Although it may cause a broken or chipped tooth, you still have a chance to get away from your attacker by biting him.
6. Feet Defense Move – One of the most effective body parts that you can use for self-defense is your feet. The ball of a foot is perfect for stepping or stomping on the instep of your attacker. The ball of your foot can also cause pain to the Achilles tendon, calf area, or ankle of your attacker.
It is always best to discern or assess your assault situation so that you can easily execute the perfect self-defense move suited for such a situation. Following the instincts of your body would ensure your safety when defending yourself from an attacker.
Weapons For Self Defense
In general, women can think of different assault scenarios to prepare in the event that they encounter such situations. It may be common to hear or see assaults such as theft, holdup, or even rape in the movies. However, women should come up with something to defend them from different kinds of assaults.
Although self-defense techniques can very well help women in protecting themselves from attackers, it is also advisable to carry defense weapons at all times.
1. Pepper Spray – One of the most popular self-defense weapons that women carry with them is pepper spray.
Pepper spray contains Oleoresin Capsicum, a lachrymatory agent. Pepper spray can cause temporary pain, blindness, runny nose, throat irritation, uncontrollable coughing, and burning sensations to an attacker. Although the effects are temporary, pepper spray allows you to get away from your attacker within 30 to 45 minutes. Pepper spray is available in different variants.
The product can depend on the size of the pressurized canister which contains the Oleoresin Capsicum. In addition, pepper spray products differ in the foot range that you may be able to hit an attacker. Most pepper spray products can hit a person within 4 to 15 feet.
2. Kubotan – A Kubotan is similar to a small baton. Also known as a Kubaton or Kobutan, it is a self-defense weapon developed by Takayuki Kubota. Its size is almost the same as the size of a felt-tip maker. It is usually 1.5 cm in diameter and 5.5 inches long. A Kubotan is designed for attachment to a key
chain thus it may appear harmless to the attacker especially if he/she is not familiar with the weapon.
Women can grasp the Kubotan in the fist to execute a “hammer fist” move. It can also be used to aim for the pressure points of the attacker. A Kubotan adds strength to a woman’s punches when it is grasped behind the fingers. Some Kubotans have side grips, which are protruded between the fingers. This can leave your attacker defenseless.
3. Stun Gun – another prominent self-defense weapon carried by most women is a stun gun. A stun gun is a device that emits an electrical charge. This electrical charge can immobilize or disable an attacker. Tasers are the most common type and brand of stun guns. On the other hand, stun guns are available
in different types including Phase Induction, T-Wave, and Static Charge.
Self Defense Martial Arts For Women
A martial arts class is a place where women would be able to develop physical and mental skills that are necessary for defending or protecting themselves against assailants or attackers. Some of the most common and efficient martial arts for women include Krav Maga, Tae Kwon Do, Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, Aikido, and Jeet Kune Do.
• Krav Maga – This is a type of martial arts which was developed in Israel. It has gained in popularity because it is the self-defense system used in the Israeli Defense Force. Krav Maga teaches people in dealing with attackers that are both armed and unarmed.
Women can use Krav Maga for self-dense since its drills include mental and physical techniques for dangerous situations. More so, Krav Maga can protect women from different violent situations including sexual assaults. Women can learn how to use their different body parts including knees and elbows to be able
to defend themselves from assaults.
• Tae Kwon Do – This type of martial arts originated in Korea. It is probably the most popular of all martial arts across the globe. When the term is translated,it means “the way of kicking and punching.” This type of martial arts is often
mistaken primarily as a sport because it is seen in the Olympics and martial arts competitions. On the other hand, Tae Kwon Do is primarily developed as a self-defense technique. It can be well suited for women since it deals with kicking.
The heights of women are usually shorter than men. In addition, women have weaker upper body strength than men. As such, women are left with using their lower body parts to defend themselves. Tae Kwon Do teaches women to incapacitate assailants through devastating kicks.
• Brazilian Jiu Jitsu – This type of martial arts is becoming popular because of the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC). Most of the competitors in the UFC make use of Brazilian Jiu Jitsu to defeat their opponents. The grappling techniques of this type of martial arts can benefit women although most females
may not be interested in competitive combat. More often than not, women are left defenseless by their attackers especially in sexual assaults.
With Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, women could be empowered in ground fighting specifically when they are pinned under their attackers.
• Aikido – This type of martial arts originated from Japan and is considered as the most different among other types of martial arts styles. Most martial arts styles involve linear, hard, and forceful moves. However, Aikido involves lesser
force, which can be perfect for women. Women would not be required to be stronger than their assailants. Aikido teaches women different techniques of throwing and joint locking.
• Jeet Kune Do – This type of martial arts was founded by Bruce Lee, a famed actor and martial arts guru. The intention of Lee when he was developing Jeet Kune Do was to come up with the best and most efficient martial arts techniques from other martial arts styles. Lee had decided to make different martial arts moves and styles into one martial arts system, which is Jeet Kune
Do. Women who want to learn Jeet Kune Do can discover how to hit even the closest attacker with any weapon closest to them. For instance, women can hit an attacker in the eyes simply by using their fingers.
The Right Posture In Self Defense
Regardless if you are using basic techniques, weapons, or martial arts for self-defense, it is important to have the right posture. A prepared body is essential in self-defense apart from clearing out your mind. Most of the fine points in martial arts are not necessarily executable given a specific situation. As such, women
should also learn the proper posture when defending themselves.
• Keeping Hands Up – In most full-contact fighting like boxing and MMA, it is important to keep the hands up. This is to ensure that you would be able to intercept blows to your head. However, it is not advisable to make fists when raising your hands since it would give the hint to the attacker that you want to
fight. If you are threatened, keep your hands up in your front body and between the hands of your attacker and your head. This is comparable to “talking with your hands.” You only have to stay calm.
If the attacker starts moving, make sure to trust your instinct to flinch but keep your hands in front to intercept a blow or any move of the attacker. Although you may not be able to absorb the blow of the attacker completely, you could definitely lessen the impact. This could also give you time to run or take hold of a defense
weapon like pepper spray or stun gun.
• Tucking the Chin – Generally, receiving a blow to the chin or jaw can turn the head and cause a knockout. This is the reason why full-contact fighters keep their chins tucked during matches. Tucking the chin can make it harder to hit since the jaw is braced up against your shoulders as the head makes it harder to
be knocked out. Tucking the chin can be as subtle as keeping the hands up. You only have to drop your chin although you should not bend back. Make sure that you only tuck your chin enough for you to turn your neck in every direction.
• Keeping the Feet Shoulder-Width Apart – Usually women tend to narrow the distance between their feet during attacks or assaults. This is a huge mistake because they can trip easily or be shoved around by the attacker. It is also a mistake to keep a huge distance between your feet because it can keep you from
running fast. This is why it is best to keep your feet shoulder-width apart. This would provide stability if shoved and gives sufficient mobility to escape or run.
• Bending the Knees – It is important to bend your knees if you want to establish a biomechanical power to run or fight your assailant. Bending the knees can allow you to push off your legs. If your legs are already extended too much, you would only have little chance to build initial momentum. You only have to
bend your knees slightly to establish mobility and make it appear that you will not fight your attacker.
• Avoid Facing Threats Head On – If you already suspect an attack, it is best to step one foot back to help point the vulnerable parts of your body away from such attack. It is not advisable to face the attack head-on. Make sure that your body, specifically your abdomen, is well protected. Stepping one foot back can provide stability against the grabbing and pushing of your assailant and reduces your front profile.
You do not have to make it obvious to your assailant that you are stepping back on purpose. Keep it natural and make sure that there is enough space between your feet to remain stable. It is best to practice these self-defense postures to be prepared in assault
situations. Like many say, “Practice makes perfect.” Furthermore, always remain calm and relaxed when executing these postures to ensure their efficiency.
High Alert in Dangerous Places
Apart from learning different techniques and carrying weapons for self-defense, it is always best to avoid the areas which are commonplace for assaults. Some of the most dangerous places to avoid include:
• College Campuses – College campuses are the fifth most dangerous places for women. It is best to avoid walking alone in the campus especially during night hours. Women are also encouraged to take the advantage of free escorts, who are offered by police departments in campuses if a friend is not around.
• Convenience Stores and Gas Stations – More often than not, women assailants hang out in parking lots of convenience stores and gas stations since they know that people who go to these places carry money with them. It is best to plan ahead before going to these places. Make sure that your car is filled up in the daytime, lock your car, and avoid leaving anything valuable in plain view. In gas stations, make sure that your stand with your back to your car with something behind you. Always look around to ensure that nobody is walking upon you.
• Automated Teller Machines (ATMs) – Since many attackers are aware that you would soon have money when withdrawing from an ATM, these machines are prone to holdup or theft. It is best to go to ATM areas during the daytime while there are security officers on sight instead of withdrawing money during the night.
• Mall Parking Lots – These areas are the second most dangerous places for women since attackers or assailants have ample opportunities to do their crimes. When parking your car in public parking lots, make sure that you act quickly. Close and lock the car door as soon as you get in or out. If you have to bring your purse, it is advisable to carry it in your hand rather than placing it under your arm. It would be easier for attackers to grab your purse if it is placed under the arm.
• Home – Most women think that their homes are the safest places to be. On the other hand, homes are the number one most dangerous place, especially for women. This is because assailants know you let your guard down once you are within the vicinity of your home. They are aware that people tend to relax
once they reach home. Thus women can be easy targets for robbery, theft, or sexual assaults at their homes.
Assaults that occur in homes are often due to lack of preparation or too much ease. It is best to close your doors and windows once you get home. It would be much better if you can invest in home security systems or CCTV systems to keep assailants away from your home. Another way of tracking if someone has been going in and out of your house is leaving a 20-dollar bill by your front and back
door. If the money remains at its place, you are assured that nobody has gone to your house. If the money is lost, you would know that someone has been near your house and prepare you for any kind of assault. Most assailants would instinctively pick up the money.
When going into these places, make sure that you are aware of the
surroundings. Attackers or criminals often target people who are unfamiliar with the place they are in. You should also consider staying in well-lit places. Like vampires, assailants would not take chances on showing their faces. Finally, it is important that you remain calm. It is not advisable to stress on losing things. For instance, if the attacker wants your purse, let him/her have it. These things can be replaced but your life or dignity cannot.
Many female assault victims or crimes find themselves prompted to execute security measures at their homes, cars, and even work places. Some are compelled to carry stun guns, pepper sprays, or other self-defense weapons. In addition, some enroll in martial arts classes to learn techniques in self-defense.
These victims usually worry over the attacker’s tendency to return.
On the other hand, women should take the necessary preventions and solutions discussed above to keep themselves protected and safe at all times. The best way for women to keep themselves safe and protected from violent attacks is to be prepared fully at all times. Whether you opt for joining martial arts classes or carrying self-defense weapons, the important thing is you are prepared and
ready to defend yourself.