Stay Safe with Self Defence Classes
With the nights drawing in, our journeys home aren’t so well lit and it’s more crucial than ever that we keep our wits about us – and if you’re considering self defence classes, then these tips will help you feel safe…
We at Time & Leisure called in the professionals at Fighting Fit to teach us some of the basics with some self defence classes, and came away with renewed self-confidence in our abilities to stay vigilant. Here’s some of their top tips…
An air of confidence goes a long way in keeping safe on the streets at night-time. Self-assured strides with your head up and maintained eye contact, even if you are fearful, shows you are far from vulnerable, and eye contact may not only deter any potential attacker, but will also help you keep your calm. If you feel like someone is getting too close, assertively and calmly shout at them to back off. Same goes for a tube or bus groper – call them out if you’re in a public place.
It may sound obvious, but stay aware and look around you. Put your phone away and keep an eye out for any movement in the shadows or in shrubbery at the side of a road. Scan the surrounds and don’t just bury your head down and charge on.
Walk in the road
If you are walking down a residential road at night, stay away from the sides and any bushes. Instead, (with an ear out for traffic) walk confidently in the road – your vision of where you are headed will be improved, and reduce the chance of you being taken by surprise.
Keep keys handy
If you are walking along a dark road and feel concerned, your keys can be used as a sharp weapon when placed so that they poke out between your fingers. And any scratch you make may leave a trace of an attacker’s DNA on your keys, potentially helping to identify and convict a perpetrator.
Distract the assailant
If an attacker is targeting you in the hope of taking your possessions, doing the unexpected will interfere with their plans. Throw your belongings, be it a purse, wallet or phone, in the air and this will confuse the perpetrator. But remember that you are more important than your belongings in the case of an attack. Just hand it over.
Use your legs and feet
If it does come down to physically defending yourself, your first instinct may be to wildly flail with your hands and arms, but what an attacker won’t expect is a blow coming from below. If your arms are pinned by your sides, use your feet to stamp on toes and deliver kicks to the shin. This is a surprising move that can force an attacker
to loosen their grip.
You can use your arms in a circular motion to create a space around your body that won’t be invaded if you act quick enough. Any blow, grab or hit coming your way can be stopped by the force of your arms which can easily act as a block. Practice at home and work on improving your reactions.
Keeping kids safe
If you have children, it is worth teaching them the basics of self-defence too so that they can confidently assert themselves if they need to. Teaching them to shout fire instead of help can also be powerful – they are more likely to attract help. Learning self-defence is worthwhile at any age.