What Do I Do if He ... ?

When people discover that I teach Women's Self-Defense, the first question I normally get is, "What do I do if he (you fill in the blank)?" Never do I get the question, "What do I do to avoid becoming a victim of crime?" You would think that would be the more logical question when it comes to your own personal protection and self defense, wouldn't you?

But everyone is fascinated with the physical. Everyone wants to learn the next secret ninja move and be like the TV/Movie action heroes. Unfortunately, real attacks don't happen like they do in the movies. In most attacks, you have seconds to determine what to do and to do it. Movies are choreographed and done in multiple takes. On the street, you have one take and you better get it right. Unfortunately, most moves taught to women are overly complicated and are from a male strength perspective, not a spinal reflex perspective. Also, most moves taught by martial artists just don't work for street survival.

Think about why you would take a self defense class? Is it to be able to physically subdue an attacker or is it to not have to be in the position in the first place? Or a combination of the two?

When you took swimming classes, you didn't go because you wanted to learn the next great breaststroke or butterfly technique. You went so that you wouldn't drown in the water and to understand safety precautions. Did you ask your instructor, "What do I do if a great white attacks my leg?" Probably not.

When you took your CPR classes, you didn't go because you were fascinated about the idea of lip to lip contact with some stranger (hopefully you didn't). You went because you wanted to have the skills to save your family's life and possibly your own. I doubt that you asked your instructor, "How can I do a tracheotomy if this doesn't work?"

Self Defense and personal protection are about education, mental and physical. Think about it. If you knew what a criminal was looking for; how a crime triangle worked; how to use color coding ; and the steps to self protection , you might find that you have the answers to the question, "What do I do if he....?


**Angie M. Tarighi is the CEO & Founder of Women’s Self-Defense Institute providing self defense training, education awareness & personal protection products empowering women to fight back against crime.