Thursday, 25 April 2013

Safety in the City Pt. 1

 A number of women have asked me to write about ways to stay safe during your day-to-day activities, because let's face it, those are the times that you're most likely to encounter someone you don't know, or who might make you feel uneasy. I'm going to write a few things on this over the next few weeks, but in the meantime, let's start with some basics to keep in mind: 
  1. Make Use of Your Senses - that means not having your iPod earbuds in, and not having your eyes down on your phone as you text, especially if you are by yourselfTo the predator, these are automatic and highly visible signs that you are disengaged from your environment, that you're not paying attention, and above all, that you are an easier target because now your attacker has the element of surprise on his side. Maybe you didn't hear him sneaking up behind you, or maybe you didn't see him walking towards you because you were texting your bestie. Trust me, your texting and emailing can wait until you are safely at your destination, or in a well-populated area. 
  2. Purse - Do not travel with your purse open. I see countless women who don't pay
    attention to their bag and just keep it open to make getting at their phone or other purse-contents easier. Safety is about minimizing your chances of being victimized, and nothing is more inviting than an open bag.Your purse can also serve as a handy self-defense tool, and you've always got it with you. Most women carry quite a few things in their purse (myself included), and swinging that sucker around to smack an attacker in the face will definitely hurt.
  3. Weapons - I do NOT suggest that women should carry weapons with them EVER. Any weapon that is ever introduced into an altercation can be potentially used against you. I'd also like to point out that pepper spray, mace and switch blades are illegal in Canada. However, that doesn't mean that there aren't really effective things that you can use for self-defense. 
    1. Rolled up magazine - A rolled up magazine is a pretty common thing to find in many women's bags, but the surprising thing about them is that the bottom of a rolled up magazine is extremely strong. If you hit someone in the temple, across the jaw, in the throat with one of those bad boys, trust me, it's gonna hurt. 
    2. Kubaton - These handy tools were initially invented by the Japanese Police Force and were introduced to the LAPD for use by female officers. They inflict a surprising amount of pain, but with non-lethal force. I have a kubaton on my keychain, and am always glad to have it with me. I have it handy when I'm out alone at night. It's great for penetrating any soft surface on your attacker (eyes, neck, behind the ear, zyphoid process, etc.) . Kubatons are available at most martial arts supply stores and some martial arts schools, but they're also easily ordered from amazon.com or ebay.com, and range in cost from hardly $5-$15. 

      These are but a few suggestions. Do you have any tips or suggestions of your own to add to our list? I plan to continue growing it, and input is always welcome. 


6 comments:

  1. Hi, some great advice here. I wrote a post a while back about victim selection, apparently assailants select their victims based on the way they walk - walking with confidence with a smooth even gait and looking where you are going makes you less likely to be selected for an attack. Here's the link to my post if your readers are interested: http://kickasssuec.blogspot.co.uk/2011/10/victim-selection-its-all-in-way-we-walk.html

    I'm loving your new blog by the way, so good to have a woman writing about women's self-defence. Keep blogging!

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    1. The victim selection process is, indeed, an interesting one! You're absolutely spot-on when you talk about how body language impacts the victim selection process, and thanks for the link!

      I love your blog, too, Sue! I think it's important to have women advising and guiding other women, particularly when it comes to things like their personal safety.I love that men want to help out, but a man will never appreciate what it's like to be nervous walking to his car at night, or what it's like to be anxious about the weird dude that's standing in the elevator you've been waiting for. Women gotta stick together and help each other along. Cheers, friend!

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  2. Sue, do you have a Facebook page to promote your blog? Check out mine at www.facebook.com/InvictaSelfDefense

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    1. No, I don't do facebook or twitter. I tried it once but didn't get on with it so I closed the account. I'm happy to just stick with the blog.

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  3. How about a tip on a worse-than-useless weapon? Car Keys! I wrote an article back in 2012 about why this is a terrible idea. Have a peek if you'd like:

    http://kyokushinblog.com/the-worst-self-defense-weapon-for-a-woman/

    As for not texting while walking, there is a guy I see nearly every day walking on the street (a sidewalk is available) and he is paying no attention to the cars that are oncoming. And every time I see this idiot I honk at him. I think he has confused me for a friend of his because now he waves and smiles. *Facepalm*

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    1. Hahahahaha, facepalm indeed!!! I laughed out loud when I read this.

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