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Fight or Flight: How to Defend Yourself From Attackers

Did you know that in 2021 there were 694,050 crimes committed against people in the United States?

Even though the world doesn’t always seem like a safe place sometimes, you can minimize your risk of becoming a victim of crime. Knowing how to defend yourself from an attacker is one of the most important things you can do to stay safe.

Read on to learn about some of the best tips and tricks on fighting back against an attacker.

When to Flee?

In a dangerous situation, your body’s natural reaction is to fight or flee. While it’s not always possible to know ahead of time whether you should stay and fight or run away, there are some general guidelines you can follow.

When it comes to self-defense, the first thing you need to do is assess the situation. If you are faced with an attacker who is significantly bigger or stronger than you, has a weapon, or is part of a group, your best bet is to flee the scene. Running away may not be your first instinct, but it is often the smartest thing to do in these situations.

No matter what you do, always remember that your goal is to get away from the attacker and to safety. Do not engage in a fight unless you are confident you can win, and never give up or give in to demands. Your life is worth more than anything the attacker could take from you.

But if you can’t flee, fight like your life depends on it because it just might.

When to Fight Back?

Self-defense is a human right. It is our instinct to protect ourselves and our loved ones from harm.

However, there is a lot of confusion about when it is appropriate to fight back. The answer depends on situational awareness and the perceived threat.

If you can’t flee, then you have to fight. And you have to fight to win. No holds barred. Do whatever it takes to disable your attacker and get away.

In Imminent Danger of Being Harmed

When you are in imminent danger of harm, your body’s natural reaction is to fight or flee. If you choose to fight, it is essential to remember that you have the right to defend yourself, and you should use whatever means necessary to do so.

You have the right to defend yourself. There is no need to wait for the attacker to have a weapon. You can use whatever force is necessary to stop the attack and escape to safety.

Attacker Is Making Threats

If you can de-escalate situations and talk to the attacker, do so. Try to reason with them and calm them down. If you can get them to leave peacefully, that is the best outcome.

If you choose to fight, it is essential to remember that you have the potential to hurt the attacker as much as they could hurt you. Use whatever you have as weapons, such as your fists, feet, or anything you can find in the area. The most important thing is to focus on protecting yourself and not inflicting damage.

Self-Defense Strategies

There are several self-defense strategies you can use to defend yourself from attackers. You can use pepper spray or a taser.

Another option is to use a baton or other blunt object. But the best self-defense strategy is to know how to fight. To do this, you must understand how to punch and kick effectively.

You also need to know how to use your elbows and knees. And you need to know how to use ground fighting techniques. With these self-defense tips, you can defend yourself against most attackers.

Remember, self-defense is about protecting yourself, not about winning a fight. If you can safely escape, that is always the best option.

Use Pepper Spray

Pepper spray is a chemical that causes burning and irritation in the eyes, nose, and throat. It can also cause difficulty breathing. When used correctly, pepper spray can give you the time you need to escape a dangerous situation.

To use pepper spray effectively, aim for the attacker’s face and spray directly into their eyes. It will cause them to feel pain and to be momentarily blinded. It will give you time to either run away or find something to use as a weapon.

Use a Taser

A taser is a device that emits an electrical charge. Using this to an attacker can cause muscle spasms and paralysis, giving you time to escape. Tasers can also be used to subdue an attacker who is already down.

To use a taser, you first need to remove the safety cap. Then, point the taser at the attacker and press the trigger.

The taser will fire two barbed darts that embed themselves in the attacker’s skin. Once the darts make contact, the electrical charge will be discharged, stunning the attacker.

Tasers are a powerful tool for self-defense, but is also risky to use. The electrical charge can also affect you if you are close to the attacker when the taser is fired. Additionally, tasers can be taken away and used against you, so you must be prepared to defend yourself even if you have a taser.

Use a Baton or Blunt Object as a Weapon

Using a baton or blunt object as a weapon can inflict more damage on your attacker than if you were to use your fists. When using a baton or blunt object as a weapon, you can target your attacker’s weak points, such as their head, knees, or ribs. You can also use the baton or blunt object to knock your attacker unconscious, giving you time to escape.

Learn more about objects that you can use as weapons here.

Target Vulnerable Areas of the Body

Whether you’re preparing to defend yourself or someone else, targeting vulnerable areas of the body will disable an attacker is essential. It doesn’t mean you have to go for a home run every timestriking; any unprotected body area can still be effective. However, if you can manage to hit one of these critical points, you’ll be better off:

The solar plexus is a large nerve cluster located just below the sternum. A hard strike to this area can cause paralysis or even unconsciousness.

The temples are another sensitive area. A sharp blow to either side can cause disorientation or even knock out an attacker.

The eyes are a sensitive spot, and poking or gouging them can be an effective way to distract and disorient an attacker long enough to make your escape.

The throat is another good target, as a hit to this area can make it difficult for an attacker to breathe and allow you to get away.

Effectively Throw Punches and Kicks

When you are in a fight, there are a few things you need to do to throw effective punches and kicks. It would help if you stand your ground. It would help if you were standing with your feet shoulder-width apart, and your fists should be up near your face.

Be quick and agile, move around quickly, and accurately land your punches and kicks. It would help if you also had good aim and could hit your target with precision. Lastly, it would help if you had a strong follow-through.

Your punches and kicks should have a lot of power behind them so that you can knock your opponent down.

Know How to Use Elbows and Knees

Use your elbows and knees to defend yourself from attackers. Elbows and knees are solid and bony points on your body that can inflict much damage. Use them to your advantage.

Aim for sensitive areas like the eyes, nose, and groin. A well-placed elbow or knee can incapacitate an attacker and give you the time you need to get away.

Use Groundfighting Techniques

Groundfighting is a term that describes a range of combat sports and martial arts that focus on fighting an opponent on the ground. The most common forms of ground fighting are Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, Judo, Wrestling, and Sambo.

Groundfighting is an essential skill for self-defense as it provides a way to control and disable an attacker, even if they are larger and more robust. You can use ground fighting techniques to escape from an attacker who has you in the wrong position, take an attacker down to the ground, and submit an opponent with a joint lock or choke hold.

Know How to Defend Yourself

If you find yourself in a situation where you are being attacked, there are a few things you can do to try to get away safely. First, try to stay calm and assess the situation. If you can, try to talk to the attacker and see if you can reason with them.

If not, try to create space between you and the attacker and run for it. If you cannot get away, try to fight back and defend yourself as best as you can. Remember to stay calm and focus on getting away safely.

For more information on personal safety, check out our other blog posts!

The founder and CEO at ThriveVerge, The Verge, and Thrive Revolution. He launched Thriveverge in 2016, a leading behavior change technology, business, media, and entertainment company with the mission of ending the collective delusion that burning out is the price we have to pay for success.


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