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SELF DEFENSE: Knowing what to do, what not to do, and how the heck to do it

1st in a series on self defense: what to do and what not to do, safety at home & in public, what are your body’s natural weapons, what's the best areas of the body to hit, & how to release from grabs

Hi, Jan Wood here with the first in a series on self defense topics.  Over time we’ll talk about what to do, and what not to do, we’ll look at our body’s natural weapons, we’ll point out best attack areas for someone to strike in self defense, how to release from common grabs, and also safety at home, on the road, at work, and in public.  Some of this will be written, and some will be video.

First things first though.  With my first installment I’d like to talk to you about what I call the “A to E’s (and not “F”s) of self defense”.

 A to E’s (and not “F”s) of self defense:

            A:        “Aware and Avoid’:  Don’t put yourself in a bad situation. We know an “A” in school is the best grade to earn, well using this “A” is your best self defense.  In a nutshell, don’t put yourself in a bad situation and the odds are high you won’t wind up in a bad situation. Most of this is common sense, but unfortunately sometimes we leave our common sense at home when we go out.

Some quick examples are:  don’t go out at night alone, don’t walk to your car alone, don’t meet someone new in a private place, don’t be distracted when walking (hint: cell phones and ear buds), know where you are going, especially at night, keep your doors locked, don’t go for walks or runs alone (especially in the early hours / late evening), keep your gas tank filled, and listen to your inner voice.

             B:        Breathe, be confident and stay calm– look up, don’t show fear.  Think, breathe.  Believe that you can escape this situation. Tell yourself  “be calm”, “be smart” and “think”.

             C:        Communicate and take Control.  Shout, and look around for options.  Can you get someone’s attention?  Can you run to a public area?  Is there an escape route?   Tell your attacker you are not alone.  Remember that an attacker picks the time, method and place – you control everything else.   Don’t give up mentally.  “I’m not alone”, “I just called the police”, “Dave, come downstairs”, “Fire”, “Help, Call police”.  Make a distracting noise, waive your hands around – do anything to momentarily gain the edge and quickly use the distraction to your advantage.

             D:        Don’t aggravate, call names, or berate to make the situation worse.  This is especially true of road rage, and drunken rage or a violent person.  Males, listen up now because this is where most men get in trouble.  It’s not only important where you are, it’s also important whom you are out with.  If your friend (or your friend’s friend who tagged along for the night) says something stupid, he can put your life at risk!

             E:        Execute all action necessary to stop your attacker. Then evaluate, exit and/or escape.  Here’s where your self defense / martial arts training comes in play.  We’ll go into a lot of detail on this topic in the weeks to come.  Stay tuned!

 F:         You don’t want to get to “F” because that means you failed and that could prove fatal.

 Thanks, and stay safe and strong.

 Jan Wood holds a Bachelor’s of Science degree in Criminal Justice (Law Enforcement) and is a 5th degree black belt training and teaching in Taekwondo and Gumdo in Palatine, IL.

 Questions?  Looking for more information?  Call 847- 705-8714 for John or Jan Wood at JP Wood Martial Arts, 249 E. Northwest Hwy, Palatine, IL,  or email at jpwoodsmaa@msn.com

 © 2012 Janice Wood

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

Annette Kandell July 07, 2012 at 05:19 PM
These are great tips for everyone, kids and adults! Thanks!
Catherine July 07, 2012 at 07:03 PM
Thanks for the tips!
Maggie Wood July 09, 2012 at 04:38 PM
Jan this is really good I will be looking this up again Thanks
Donna Dickinson July 10, 2012 at 05:18 PM
Thanks Jan! Donna Dickinson

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