IN SELF-DEFENCE: A krav maga practitioner in action

After the horrific drugging and death of British teenager Scarlett Keeling in 2008 and the recent killing of perfumer Monika Ghurde earlier this month, it is time women – young and not-so-young – learned a few tricks to protect themselves in private and public. Cookbook writer and freelance journalist KORNELIA SANTORO offers a few clues to women to be always prepared…

VIOLENCE- Violence can hit you any time, any day, any place: Be prepared and know how to defend yourself. Life is dangerous and violent predators roam the streets everywhere in the world. There is no denying the fact that anybody could be attacked at any moment.  The few metres from your car to the entrance of your apartment can be enough for a human predator. Nobody can guarantee your safety every moment of every day.

If you want to live an interesting, active life without fear, you need to prepare yourself. Acquire an attitude! Everybody has the ability to defend him- or herself – without studying martial arts. Information and awareness are the keys to fighting an attacker successfully.

I have these nine useful tips on easy self-defence for everybody, read them and memorise them so that they become part of the psyche!

  1. Realise some basic facts

Violent attackers rarely act on impulse. Chances are high that they think a long time about their evil deeds before putting them into action. They are prepared.

So you should get your mind ready too: Think about what you would do if someone would try to rape, kidnap or rob you. When you are mentally prepared, you will avoid becoming frozen by fear because the unthinkable is happening to you.

2. Walk confidently, but avoid risks!

Your body language talks eloquently to everybody looking for an easy victim. If you make a timid, shy impression, you fit the victim profile much better than a confident person. Learn how to stride in front of a mirror or practise with friends.  

However, do not take any unnecessary risks. After dark, women should not walk alone in deserted streets or unlit areas. Do not get into situations where your attacker might say: “Everybody knows that a woman like this means yes when she says no!”

3. Make as much noise as possible

When you are attacked you will not have time to think clearly. That’s why it is important to keep self-defence simple.

Scream as loud as you can! An attacker can deal with you alone. When you manage to call for help he might get frightened and reconsider if the gain is worth the risk. Having a whistle in your purse and in your vehicle helps your confidence. Maybe you will be able to use it.

For sure you can use your voice. See how loud you can scream in the privacy of your home. Overcoming inhibitions can be easier than you think.

4. Avoid relocation

This is an important rule. Ponder it, imagine scenarios with a lucky outcome for you: When an attacker tries to force you from a street to another location, resist!

Predators know exactly what they are doing and why. Do not give in! If he wants to rape or kill you, a quiet place makes this much easier.  That’s why you have to resist with all your might.

5. Be aggressive

Do not wait for the attacker to strike first. When it is clear somebody wants to use violence against you, attack in any way you can.

Hit him with your purse! Scratch, bite, kick; just be aggressive! The important thing is to make clear to the predator that you are not a lamb.

Use everything around you for your defence. Kick him with your heels, wriggle in his grasp – just do not give in! And do not be afraid to hurt your attacker: It is you or him (or her)!

6. Your strong points

Your elbow is the strongest point of your body, followed by the knees and your head. These bony areas inflict the most damage. Learn how to make the perfect fist. Bend your knuckles and keep your thumb over your index and middle finger. Try to keep your wrists straight when hitting the attacker.

7. Attack weak points

The eyes: Try to attack soft points in your attacker’s body. The most vulnerable are the eyes. Scratch or stab his eyes with your fingers! Hit the area of his eyes with your head!

The groin: For a man, this is the most vulnerable area after the eyes. If you manage to inflict pain here, you will have a good chance of running away. In case you cannot kick him, grab his testicles and squeeze and turn as hard as you can!

The nose: Another weak point of the human body is the nose. Swing your purse or try to hit his nose with your fist or your elbow.

The neck: A multitude of nerve endings make the neck a good target if you can reach it – perfect for a good swing with a heavy purse.

The knees: Kicks to the knees are extremely painful and can give you the moment you need to break free.

8. Run away screaming

As soon as you can get out of the grasp of your attacker, run away making as much noise as possible. Do not wait around. When you prepare yourself mentally, always picture yourself running to safety.

9. Get smart about self-defence

A self-defence class does not hurt if you mean business. One of the most useful techniques is krav maga, a hand-to-hand combat method developed by the Israeli army. You can learn krav maga in Goa in several places.

Martial arts like taekwondo or karate can be useful too. However, in a dojo you are required to follow certain rules. When you are attacked, rules don’t apply and your training might turn out less useful than you think. It also takes quite some time to learn these techniques. If you just want to be certain that you know some basic self-defence moves, krav maga is a better option.

Before you sign up for a class you might want to surf the Internet. There are plenty of websites available with pictures and videos. Remember: knowledge and quick reflexes are the key to self-defence.

Krav Maga in Goa: Check out this website: http://www.kravmagaindia.in/pastevents/krav-maga-classes-in-goa. Vicky Kapoor  is the chief instructor and director of Krav Maga India, send a message or contact via WhatsApp on +91-9810412442.

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