As another in our series of comments about self-defence, we’d like to say a few words about situations where you are forced to resort to your martial arts skills.

Toleration

Whatever techniques you apply and however conciliatory you may be, it’s always possible you will encounter someone who is determined to carry out some form of physical attack upon you. In such situations, your reaction should be dependent upon and proportional to, the exact circumstances.

For example, it may be preferable to tolerate a few minor “pushes and shoves” rather than to respond with an all-out physical retaliation.

In many cases where relatively modest physical intrusion is initiated against you, it’s likely to be that drink is at the root of the problem.  Most people who are inebriated are simply trying to make a point to others around them out of bravado and tolerating the odd push may be a small price to pay if it avoids a major escalation.

In these circumstances, you may have to work hard to master both your ego in terms of how others around might perceive you being pushed around a little (e.g. “losing face” and also your natural anger that might signal the animal levels of your brain that you should retaliate.

Escalation

Unfortunately, in a relatively small number of cases, the violence being perpetrated against you may be severe.  That might particularly be the case when the individual or individuals concerned have objectives in mind such as sexual assault, robbery or simply trying to cause you serious physical injury.

In those situations, you will need to call upon your full portfolio of martial arts skills.

Be clear, allowing yourself or those with you to be severely beaten, is usually not a sensible reaction.

When some aggressors cross the line, they lose all sense of proportionality and restraint.  If you do nothing in such situations, they might be inclined to go further and further.

So, you will need to respond and do so quickly and effectively.

Proportionality

Even here, we will teach you a range of responses.

Your objective will be initially to dissuade your assailant from going further.  In many cases, once they see that you are able to defend yourself and inflict pain, they will back off – and quickly.

In these situations, your objective is not to disable your opponent or give them a “good kicking to teach them a lesson” but simply to restore your own safety and that of anyone with you.

Only in exceptionally dangerous circumstances, where the aggressor has proven to be incapable of recognising that you are able to defend yourself and therefore failed to desist from further attacks, should you move to more severe disabling techniques.

If this all sounds complicated, it can be!  Don’t worry though. The boundaries here are all covered in our training.