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Self-Defense Tips

Tips on how to defend against common attacks, how to use everyday objects in self-defense, how to tell realistic defenses from phony defenses, how to develop mental toughness for self-defense, how to select a self-defense system, a self-defense instructor, or a martial arts school.

Self-Defense Tip #86 — Using Edged Weapons: Knife and Machete

This tip and the forthcoming one are about general principles of using edged weapons, whether for attack or for self-defense. Unlike blunt weapons, edged weapons require very little force to do great damage. With well-sharpened blades, a touch and press is usually all it takes to leave an unforgettable impression. I write here only about […]

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Self-Defense Tip #85 — Using Flexible Weapons: Garrote

As you know from the preceding self-defense tip, most flexible weapons are blunt, but the garrote is a flexible weapon that cuts. It is easy to make in either the common version, with piano wire and metal handles, or the nonmagnetic version, with synthetic-fiber line and plastic handles weighted with lead. The following clip from […]

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Self-Defense Tip #84 — Using Flexible Weapons

Now a word about flexible weapons. Most flexible weapons are blunt—I know, there are flexible swords and composite weapons consisting of chain and a blade, but the likelihood of encountering one of those is slim. (Then there are piano-wire garrotes, but that’s a topic for another day.) As with nonflexible blunt weapons, flexible weapons must […]

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Self-Defense Tip #83 — Using Blunt Weapons

In this tip I talk about using blunt weapons for self-defense. I will write about other kinds of weapons at another time. Whenever you strike an assailant in self-defense, your strike cannot merely anger the assailant, or worse, amuse him. If you use a weapon and anger the assailant instead of disabling him, your weapon […]

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Self-Defense Tip #82 — In a Confrontation Don’t, Part III

When in a confrontation . . . Don’t be an easy target — don’t get into an easy range. Get out of the way of potential assailants. If you see a bunch of thugs, give them a wide berth. If they move toward you anyway, you will have a head start running away or getting […]

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Self-Defense Tip #81 — In a Confrontation Don’t, Part II

When in a confrontation . . . Don’t warn — it’s stupid, unless you have your gun drawn and trained on the attacker and you are in a good position. Warning involves talking, so besides revealing intentions and capabilities, it slows down the talker’s reaction time. Instead of talking, move and as you do, get […]

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Self-Defense Tip #80 — In a Confrontation Don’t, Part I

When in a confrontation . . . Don’t just stand there — move! Get off the line of a possible attack, like here: Watch also instruction at 2 min 38 sec (triangle footwork) and at 5 min 22 sec (moving to the outside). Self-defense tip from Thomas Kurz, co-author of Basic Instincts of Self-Defense and […]

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Self-Defense Tip #79 — Knives, Push Daggers, and Pencils

If you viewed the video in my Self-Defense Tip #58 — Tactical Pen vs. an Ordinary Pencil, or “Pay More for Less,” you noticed a peculiar grip I used in the demo. That grip turned an ordinary pencil from a mere bloody annoyance into a decisive lethal weapon. Here you can see this grip applied […]

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Self-Defense Tip #78 — Don’t Talk to the Police

A lecture by a law professor and a former defense attorney on why you should not talk to police officers. Here I quote one of the many reasons given by the professor why you should not talk to the police (beginning at 21:10 of the video): “Police make mistakes . . . innocently, inadvertently, unintentionally. […]

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Self-Defense Tip #77 — Avoid Large Gatherings

Avoid large gatherings, especially those that occur on a schedule. They are a pickpocket’s place of work and a terrorist’s target. Yes, stay away from crowds, and never mind feel-good declarations like those following the bombing at the 2013 Boston Marathon: “The 2014 Boston Marathon will be an act of defiance and courage,” “Let’s show […]

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Self-Defense Tip #76 — OODA Loop

Training in an effective self-defense system shortens your OODA loop. OODA stands for Observe, Orient, Decide, Act. In the smallest-scale tactics (i.e., in hand-to-hand combat), the loop boils down to this simple interpretation: Observe: Be alert. See what and who is around you. Orient: As you observe, orient and position yourself so as not to […]

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Self-Defense Tip #75 — Everyday objects as improvised weapons of self-defense: Why Unbreakable® Umbrella?

Why have I decided to produce Unbreakable® Umbrellas for Real-Self-Defense LLC rather than Kubotan-like key chains or tactical pens? Here are my reasons: 1. An umbrella is longer than a Kubotan or a pen, so you can hit your attacker from a greater distance. (In defense, distance is your friend, at least in the first […]

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Unbreakable Umbrella - Ideal Tool of Self-Defense