Self Defence Tips

We have included on this site some practical (non-fighting) self defence tips. Some of the information has been taken from our Security Awareness and Attack Recognition anti-kidnap course that we used to conduct in Central America. You may find some of the information useful. 

Awareness, Anticipation, Avoidance

Whenever teaching a course one of our students will inevitably say something along the lines of:  “I was walking down the street watching what was going on around me when suddenly this guy appeared out of no-where.” Let me tell you, “no-where” doesn’t exist!  Parallel universes where people with ill intent can follow you and just appear when they want have yet to be discovered.  Street criminals don’t have the facilities to follow you by satellite and I’m pretty sure that the technology to transport oneself from one place to another invisibly and instantaneously does not exist (sorry Star Trek and Harry Potter fans).

Try to be aware of what is happening around you.  Don’t just look, SEE!  We are all guilty of the latter.  We check our rear-view mirrors subconsciously dozens of times on a journey but never know what vehicle is behind us, or we check our wrist watch several times an hour but if someone asks us what the time is we will have to look again and actually read the watch face! Make a point of studying your surroundings.  We advocate a technique called “Commentary Walking “or “Commentary Driving”.  It is self-explanatory.  When walking, talk to yourself.  Say “there is a guy walking towards me wearing blue jeans and a red jacket with dark hair”.  Look behind you and say “there is an old woman walking behind me and three youths walking fast on the other side of the road”. Actually “talking” to yourself will make you SEE and take in what is around you.   

Increasing your awareness will put you more in control of your self protection.  It is something that most people do not want to think about.  Most people suffer from the “it will never happen to me” syndrome and choose to take the easier path of shutting out all thoughts that they may one day be a target. If using your newly found awareness skills you notice a couple of “out of place” looking people who seem to be taking an interest in you, you can anticipate what you think their actions are going to be.  You can also “dream up” and work through various hypothetical situations and anticipate how someone may attack you and how you can deal with it.

Simply speaking, if you identify a problem early enough you can perhaps avoid it by taking certain defensive measures.  This can be as simple as crossing the road and removing yourself from the immediate threat of some drunks staggering down the road.  Another example is that you are walking at night and see a dark alley further down the road.   You used your Awareness to see the alleyway, your Anticipation to realise what kind of a danger it could represent, and Avoidance to take action to make sure you don’t enter the danger zone.

Obviously, Avoidance is not always possible, but in many cases it is an option.

We don’t want to be “wordy” or “preachy” but….here is another “A” word: Acceptance. You have to accept that you may be “attacked” at some point and you have to realise that the world is not a safe place.  Once you have accepted and realised that there are dangers out there then you can put into effect certain principles that can help you deter an attack from happening, and with the right type of self-defence course, you can even successfully deal with the attack if it was unavoidable.  Even if you do get attacked, you probably will not suffer the same kind of long recovery process that someone who has never thought about self-defence will.

AWARENESS is simply defined as consciousness of your environment and the knowledge of what things to look for.  To sum it up – we use a small chart to help explain the levels of awareness.

CONDITION WHITE Total lack of awareness
CONDITION YELLOW 360 degree environmental awareness
CONDITION ORANGE Identification and evaluation of threats
CONDITION RED Fight of flight decision

95% of people are in Condition WHITE 95% of the time!!  They cannot detect any pre-incident indicators.   You should always try to be in Condition YELLOW.  If you detect something then you can progress through the other conditions.