Most of us don’t like to think about the troubles our dangers that are lurking all around us. But ignoring the threat of an attack is not only naïve, but can also be extremely dangerous.
Even if it is unlikely that an attack may happen to us, being properly prepared can literally save your life.
Self defense is one of the best things that anyone can know. To ensure you can take care of yourself or your loved ones if you are ever attacked or mugged, here are fifteen simple self defense moves you should know.
1. The Right Way to Break from a Wrist Grab
If you’re being mugged, the attacker may grab your wrist in an attempt to prevent you from running. Your first reaction to break from this type of wrist grab is probably to pull away from your shoulder. Unfortunately, this doesn’t usually work the way you hope.
If you’re being held by the wrist, instead turn your wrist in the attacker’s hand so that the attacker’s thumb is below your thumb. Then, instead of pulling away from your shoulder, quickly bend your elbow to jerk your arm from the attacker’s grip.
2. Break Their Noise – Without a Punch
According to Pacific Wave Jiu Jitsu, the “Straight Strike” is the best way to induce pain on the attacker while also potentially breaking the nose. To complete the Straight Strike, you’ll want to hit your attacker with an open palm, pushing up on the nose with the bottom of your hand.
To break the nose, you’ll want to put a lot of force behind the hit. You can also use this move to just induce pain by pressing the nose into the face.
3. Feel Like a Spy by Learning How to Escape Zip Ties
Rarely do we like to think of the chance that we would be bound with zip ties, but knowing how to break free of them can be lifesaving if you’re ever in that situation. Because there are various ways that your hands may be restrained, there are a few ways that you can break free of your zip ties.
If your wrists are being zip tied, try to keep your hands in fists with your palms facing down. If you are zip tied in this position, you can easily twist your wrist to slip out of the tie. You can find additional ways to break free from zip ties at Imminent Threat Solutions.
4. Reach for the Ear
Your attacker’s ear may not be the first thing you think of when you’re looking for a way to defend yourself, but it can be a great way to break the attack.
The ears are sensitive and because they’re attached to the head, your attacker will have trouble seeing if you’re pulling them by the ear.
If you can, latch on to their ear. Chances are, they will jerk away and you’ll have an opportunity to run.
5. Know the Major Pressure Points
Pressure points can be a great way to fight off an attacker without needing extra strength or intense moves. Knowing all of the pressure points you should reach for can help you fight regardless of the position you are in.
Popular pressure points include the knee cap, the back of the knee, the groin, the ears, the eyes, the nose, and the throat. If you have access to any of these areas, give it a good punch or kick.
6. Keep Your Keys On Hand
When you’re walking to your car or to another destination late at night, keep your keys between your ring and middle finger in your dominant hand. Keeping the key accessible means it can be used as a weapon if you are attacked.
Think Like a Black Belt tells us that we need to keep the keys stable and strong, so they shouldn’t shift around if they are pushed. You’ll want to hold on to the bulk of your keychain tightly so that you can easily push the keys into the eyes, throat, groin or other pressure point if you run into an attacker.
7. Remain Calm and Collected
Staying calm while you’re being attacked is definitely a difficult task, but it is necessary if you want to stay level headed and make calculated decisions. When you are being attacked, don’t allow your panic to take over.
Remember that you are capable of fighting off your attacker and don’t allow yourself to get too scared. When you maintain your composure, you will have a better chance to think through your actions.
8. If You Can, Attack Them First
Don’t wait for them to attack you before you land your first hit. If they’re closing in on you, attempt to grab you, or otherwise threaten you, don’t be afraid to land the first hit.
Hitting your attacker first puts you at the advantage and will leave them feeling frazzled. Not only will they need to recover from the hit before attempting to attack you again, you will have time to flee.
9. Poke Them in The Eye
Sometimes the simplest moves can give you the most benefit. Something as basic as poking your attacker in the eye could be all you need to get free and return to safety or at least call the police.
If you’re being attacked, don’t be afraid to do some damage. We all know how badly being poked in the eye accidentally can hurt, so just imagine the kind of pain you can cause if you purposefully go for the eyeballs.
The Martial Arts Reporter provides a great guide to jabbing an attacker in the eye.
10. Never Stop Moving
If you’re being attacked, the worst thing you can do is stand still – even if you’re not trained in self-defense. Unless they have a weapon to you, you should always attempt to fight back.
Don’t believe that standing still will make the process over faster. It usually only puts you in even more danger. Show that you’re not going to allow them to attack you by fighting back and going for any available pressure points.
11. You Can Fight with More Than Just Your Fists
If you’re not a big fighter, you may forget that just about any body part can do some serious damage at injuring another individual. While you may feel most comfortable hitting with your fists or hands, it doesn’t necessary mean that they are the best option for fighting off an attacker.
Know how to use your head, elbows, and knees to injure your attacker. This video below can teach you various ways to hit an attacker with your elbow.
12. Avoid an Attack by Keeping Hair Down
While this technique doesn’t necessary help you fight off an attack, it can prevent you from being attacked in the first place. Because attackers will typically look for women who make “easy victims,” you’ll want to do everything you can to break free of that part.
Keep your hair out of ponytails or braids if you’re walking alone. Attackers like women with ponytails or braids because it is easy for them to grab on to. Wait until you get to your destination to put your hair up.
If you are grabbed by the ponytail, Real Self Defense says that you should immediately squat down to protect your head and back.
13. Know Your Surroundings
To avoid getting mugged and ensuring you’re prepared if you’re attacked, you should know your surroundings. SafeBee says this means that you will want to leave your headphones out and keep your phone in your pocket or purse.
If you feel safer having your phone in hand, be sure you aren’t texting or playing games as you’re walking.
By keeping your eyes open to what is around you, you can better see an attack coming and know what to do if you are mugged. You’ll know who is there, what shops are open, and where you should run if someone where to come after you.
15. Get Loud
Finally, the last tip for fighting off an attacker is to get loud. Lifehaker suggests yelling “Back off!” if you are being attacked.
Yelling can alert individuals in the area that there is a problem while also telling the attacker that you’re willing to put up a fight. While this may not cause the attacker to immediately back down, someone may come to help you.
How Will You Protect Yourself?
Getting attacked can happen at any time. When you know these self defense moves, you can fight off any attacker and return home safely and unharmed.