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Self Defense Protection

Updated on August 16, 2016
Austinstar profile image

L. Cargill, B.A., Sam Houston University, Huntsville, TX., has been writing cool and interesting articles for the internet world since 1995.

Self Defense Weapons

Automatic hand gun
Automatic hand gun | Source

Personal Defense

Increased population means more of everything. There are more people on the planet than ever before in history. Accordingly there is more food, homes, families, schools, businesses, concerts and movie theaters. There are also more people with dangerous ideation in the world. It's not just terrorist types, there are also more pedophiles, rapists, thieves and other criminals.

People do crazy things. Some people are just downright crazy. While it is true that we have better news coverage and we actually do hear of more tragedies sooner and more frequently than ever before, the truth is that these events are growing along with the population.

The horrific events like the Colorado movie theater slaughter of 7/20/2012 that killed 12 people and wounded more than 50 others may occur with increasing regularity. All of us need to learn self defense now. There may never come a time when you will need personal self defense, but it is better to know about it and not need it than to need it and not have the proper tools.

Take a Self Defense Class

Self Defense for Women
Self Defense for Women | Source

Self Defense Classes

Martial Arts classes need not be for children. Adults are signing up for self-defense classes frequently now. Women especially need to learn how to protect themselves and their children.

A full course in martial arts leading to competition levels is not necessary. Many personal protection classes can be taught in a few weeks. Police departments recommend these classes all the time. Just learning some basic defense techniques may save your life. Taking a yearly refresher course would ensure that you keep up to date with countermeasures and self defense techniques.

To find a class in your area, just google "self defense name of your city". Call a few of them and get recommendations and more information about the types of classes available. You may find classes in particular age groups even for elderly people living at home.

Self Defense Weapons

Almost anything can become a weapon. Always be aware of your surroundings and make mental notes about what you can use as a weapon. Rehearse in your mind the steps you would take to find a weapon and how to go about using it effectively. There are self defense classes that teach these techniques.

Guns do not make good self defense weapons unless you are thoroughly trained to use them. That is why you must get qualified training by professionals before carrying concealed weapons. Once you do decide to use a gun for self defense, you must get a concealed hand gun license. Again, I would strongly recommend that you take a refresher course every year.

Choosing a Self Defense Weapon:

Weapon Type
Extensive Training Required?
Martial Arts
Moderate to Advanced
Builds self confidence
Difficult for some to learn
No contact with attacker required
Can be used against you or cause accidental shootings
Stun Guns
Non lethal
Requires close contact
Pepper or Toxic Sprays
Fairly effective and non lethal
Requires close contact
Batons, Umbrellas, Sticks
Effective in out of control situations
Requires strength, skill and close contact
Knives or sharp objects
No permit needed, easy to conceal
Can be used against you, requires close contact
Pencils or Pens
Effective for blinding an assailant
Requires close contact
Loud Alarms
Effective call for help
Only works if there are rescuers nearby
Specialty Weapons
Can be thrown or set off remotely
Thorough knowledge and practice needed
Surveillance Cameras
Early detection and documentation
Requires upkeep and possibly monthly fees
Body Guard
Must be thoroughly trained in protective services
Expensive and not always available

Home Self Defense

Get an early warning system or service. These systems can protect you against home invasions, property damage and can give you peace of mind. This would be the best line of defense for your home.

RealHousewife recently installed a home security system because of bad neighbors. The bonus benefit is that now she can instantly alert the police or fire station if she monitors dangerous activity in and around her home. She also gets the benefit of documenting illegal activity if any occur close by or proving property damage to authorities should anyone try to trespass and destroy personal items on her land. She can also spy on her teenagers in the back yard, but that is just a coincidence.

Self Defense Techniques

There are certain self defense techniques that can be employed should you find yourself in harm's way.

First and foremost is to be aware of your surroundings and what is going on around you. Surprisingly, this technique works very well for avoiding traffic accidents. Being distracted is by far the main cause of fender benders. Eating, drinking, smoking, listening to music, dropping things in your lap, talking or texting, reading a map, applying makeup, etc.. The list just goes on and on.

The truth is defensive driving means paying attention at all times. Not just when you think you should, but it should be an unbreakable habit. Self defense is equally important. Being aware of your surroundings can protect you against all manner of violence and accidents.

The moment that James Holmes allegedly walked into that packed movie theater, everyone should have noticed he was carrying guns. Hindsight has 20/20 vision, but foresight can save your life and the lives of others! Make it a point and a habit from now on to always be on the lookout for strange things or things that "just don't look right". Obey your inner intuition.

Countermeasures for self defense include, but are not limited to:

  • Avoidance - Stay away from areas that are crowded and have limited exits. At the very least, sit near an exit and be prepared to use it. This is the first technique to use in self defense.
  • Deadly force - Not everyone is capable of deadly force against an assailant. Get training and be prepared to use it if necessary.
  • Justifiable homicide - It may actually be easier for people to use deadly force if it is necessary to defend their families or friends. Once this split second decision is made, don't hesitate.
  • Martial arts - Classes in martial arts build confidence and skill. There are martial arts for defense as well as offense.
  • De-escalation - This is a tough one. Training in crowd control or suicide prevention may be of help. There are times when this will work and times when it will be of no use whatsoever.
  • Disabling or Incapacitating the assailant - Sure, if it is possible. If you have a pot of boiling water in your hands, use it! But don't hang around to see if this technique works. Do the deed and then run away!
  • Stay calm! - This is ever so important. You need to be able to think clearly in a step by step fashion. If you can rehearse a move in your head first, so much the better.
  • Don't give up - Even if you are injured, you may be able to fight back. If the assailant is injured, they may fight on, so be aware. Never give up.
  • There are no rules - If you become entangled in a fight, stop worrying about the rules. That can be sorted out later. Fight to totally disable the assailant at whatever cost. Stop only when the perpetrator is unable to inflict more damage.
  • No hesitation - Learn to recognize when lives are in danger. Commit to action. Don't react, get in the first punch if possible. Plan in your head what must be done and then do it.

Women and Self Defense

Women are natural protectors. The hardest thing for an attacker to do is to harm a child in front of a mother that is trained to defend her home and family. Even in the animal kingdom, a mother will not hesitate to defend her offspring against any and all attacks. They will fight off assailants that are twice or even three times their size.

Women also have the advantage of appearing defenseless. It's always a big surprise when a woman pulls out a big gun or fights and screams loud enough to wake everyone on the block. That gives women the power to overcome odds that would normally defeat a lightweight, petite woman.

Women have learned to fight back in today's world. They spearhead classes in self defense. They are not afraid anymore. Don't kid yourself, women have been trained to kill in many cultures, including our own.

© 2012 Lela


Submit a Comment
  • Austinstar profile imageAUTHOR


    5 years ago from Somewhere near the heart of Texas

    No, I don't work with them, but they make pretty good videos!

  • Austinstar profile imageAUTHOR


    6 years ago from Somewhere near the heart of Texas

    Woe to the creep who tries to attack a Real Housewife! It might be terminal. I heartily agree on the kick ass first and ask questions later approach.

  • RealHousewife profile image

    Kelly Umphenour 

    6 years ago from St. Louis, MO

    Man, I failed again. Apparently the things I would do are not recommeded! lol Yeah I answered honestly. You know I have a stun gun:) LOL

    I have been in a few bad situations and fighting back I found, confuses your attacker and you can get the upper hand if you just kick his ass first! Yeah I invite someone to try to attack me - I am ready with all kinds of surprises! haha

  • Austinstar profile imageAUTHOR


    6 years ago from Somewhere near the heart of Texas

    Yep, sometimes events like the one in Colorado seem to set off other nut cases.

    But again, almost anything can be a weapon. What if someone had set off an ammonia and bleach gas cloud into the theater. Or if Holmes had just used his car to run over the people waiting in the long lines for tickets. The scenarios are truly endless and there is no good answer for preventing things like this from happening.

    It is impossible to arrest someone just for deviant thinking.

  • xstatic profile image

    Jim Higgins 

    6 years ago from Eugene, Oregon

    I have been following comments on this Hub, which is getting deserved attention, and I am glad to see you write what you did about assault weapons. Between the fire power of those guns and the 100 round magazines that are still legal (no reason for anyone owning those either) they are way too lethal for anyone except combat soldiers and law enforcement.

    I see copycats have already begun too. Some nut with several guns was arrested in Maine on the way to shoot his boss, for instance.

  • Austinstar profile imageAUTHOR


    6 years ago from Somewhere near the heart of Texas

    Peggy, I don't know about others, but I would certainly have noticed someone coming in through an exit door dressed like a SWAT officer and carrying weapons. I don't care what movie it was. I think this may have saved quite a few people that night.

    As for him wearing body armor, return fire may not penetrate it, but it would hurt and perhaps knock him down.

    Of course, there is the panic factor. One really has to be trained to manage that aspect. Not only do you have the tendency to panic, everyone else does too.

    I don't think that morality has anything to do with there being more "madmen" in our society. Just using plain math makes it abundantly clear that since there are more people in the world, there are more "flawed" people in the world. If one percent of people in the world are mentally defective, then 1% of 6 Billion means there are a bunch! And the problem isn't getting better, it's getting worse exponentially.

    I do agree that some guns should have heavy restrictions on who can buy them. There is no good reason for owning an assault weapon other than killing.

  • Peggy W profile image

    Peggy Woods 

    6 years ago from Houston, Texas

    Excellent hub with regard to people paying more attention to their surroundings in cars & elsewhere. The problem with paying attention in the theatre was that most people would have watching the screen because it was about 15 minutes into the movie being shown. I doubt that in a darkened theatre most people would be watching for late entries into the theatre.

    He was wearing body armour so even if others had guns and would have shot at him, it might not have done any good. I am all for the 2nd amendment, but personally I see no reason what-so-ever for private people to own semi-automatic or automatic weapons where so many bullets can be fired in a matter of a minute or two. Those type of guns are certainly not needed for hunting!

    As to there being more madmen in our you think that there is any link to the seeming downturn in morality that can commonly be seen in print, television, movies, etc? Protecting children from the instant access to things easily viewed on cell phones, the Internet, etc. is something new compared to when I grew up. Even less religious training might be a factor. Overcrowding might be another in some cases...but not in the case of this latest atrocity in the theatre in Colorado.

    Much to consider! I'll have to look for those senior citizen self-defense programs in our area and hope that they never need to be put to use.

    Up, useful, interesting votes and sharing.

  • Austinstar profile imageAUTHOR


    6 years ago from Somewhere near the heart of Texas

    Welcome Mary and Dragonfly! If you do decide to get a gun, please, please, please go to a gun range and practice and take some classes. I agree that if a person trained in self defense with a hand gun were there at the Batman show, there would have been far fewer deaths and perhaps a very injured or dead perpetrator.

    Of course, we can't second guess this, but we have seen that having air marshals on flights has prevented more than one tragedy.

  • dragonflyfla profile image


    6 years ago from South Florida

    Voted up! Just think if 10% to 20% of the people in that theater had been armed with a handgun. Far less people would have died. When we ban guns only the government and outlaws have guns. Gun control only tells us that it is better to have 12 innocent people dead than armed citizens that are able to protect their selves.

  • mary615 profile image

    Mary Hyatt 

    6 years ago from Florida

    According to your quiz, I need to get a handgun. I can shoot, but not very well. I'd like to take some classes.

    Great Hub. Very informative. I'll vote this UP and will share.

  • tammyswallow profile image


    6 years ago from North Carolina

    This is a great hub. I am not a big fan of guns because I have little ones at home but I have taken some self defense. It is a sad fact we need so much protection but the world is a scary place. Great hub!

  • Austinstar profile imageAUTHOR


    6 years ago from Somewhere near the heart of Texas

    I know! It's so hard to figure out what is fact and what is fancy. The internet puts so much information out there. Newscasters often get the facts wrong too. I am sure that I don't have everything perfect either!

    There are three sides to the truth, there is your side, my side and the actual truth. I don't know who said that, but I believe it.

  • xstatic profile image

    Jim Higgins 

    6 years ago from Eugene, Oregon

    I did mis-speak. It is only among the 36 richest nations in the world that we hold the record in gun deaths. Those places you mentioned will remain ahead of us I suspect.

  • Austinstar profile imageAUTHOR


    6 years ago from Somewhere near the heart of Texas

    xstatic - if someone wants to buy 6000 rounds, I doubt there is any way to stop them, legal or not. I don't see how you can possibly make the statement that we lead the world in gun deaths. Places like Africa, Afghanistan and Iraq come to mind. And who has done a complete survey of all the people in those areas that own guns?

    Hi Josh! - I was pretty proud of that quiz. It made me think of all the rotten things that can happen. Some of those things happen way too frequently.

  • josh3418 profile image

    Joshua Zerbini 

    6 years ago from Pennsylvania


    Great hub! Very informative, I probably should of taken more time taking the quiz, ROFL! :) Thanks for sharing!

  • xstatic profile image

    Jim Higgins 

    6 years ago from Eugene, Oregon

    Except that we lead the world in gun deaths and gun ownership, and still that question about the 6000 rounds.

  • Austinstar profile imageAUTHOR


    6 years ago from Somewhere near the heart of Texas

    I agree with the shotgun being the best home defense. It is totally point and shoot and has good stopping power. Children who are educated about guns should not have a problem. Don't be afraid to take the youngsters to the gun range (unless you are powerless to control your kids). I fired my first gun at age 12 and watched others do it way before that.

    Of course, a parent should be aware of gun safety before trying to pass that information along to the kids.

    It really is true that guns do not kill people, uneducated and unskilled people kill people.

    Just like cars don't kill people, uneducated and unskilled drivers kill people.

    You can't lobby for all cars to be removed from the roads just because of vehicular manslaughter (which uses a car as a weapon). Nor should guns be outlawed because they are weapons. By that logic, we would have to outlaw knives, falling rocks and move to a Nerf world.

  • xstatic profile image

    Jim Higgins 

    6 years ago from Eugene, Oregon

    The best home defense legal weapon is a shotgun, shortest legal barrel size. I don't have one though and if you have children around, keeping it loaded and available is a problem with any firearm.

    Good Hub and good info and reminders.

  • drbj profile image

    drbj and sherry 

    6 years ago from south Florida

    In our world today, knowing self defense is more important than ever. Thanks, Lela, for these realistic suggestions and advice.

  • Austinstar profile imageAUTHOR


    6 years ago from Somewhere near the heart of Texas

    Hi Christopher. Yes, you do have a tough stance on people arming themselves over there, but do you have people committing random shooting sprees? Or terrorists blowing things up sometimes? What about home invasions? Bank robberies? These things are becoming more frequent over here. There is only so much a police force can do and they aren't always able to get to places in a timely manner.

    Hi TT - In this country we are so spread out and many of us are helpless against crime. Texas has seen a huge increase in home invasions, especially of the elderly. We all need to act, not react. Thanks for the kind words!

  • TToombs08 profile image

    Terrye Toombs 

    6 years ago from Somewhere between Heaven and Hell without a road map.

    With the recent murder of a teacher and the influx of people looking for jobs, self defense has become a HUGE business here in the ND/MT area. Unfortunately, the draw of high paying jobs has drawn the attention of a lot of people with really bad backgrounds. The crime rate has gone through the roof and every county and town is short staffed in the police departments. So, people have taken to educating themselves. This is a very useful hub for that. Great job. :)

  • christopheranton profile image

    Christopher Antony Meade 

    6 years ago from Gillingham Kent. United Kingdom

    Interesting, but pretty irrelevant in this country. Most of the weapons you mention are classed as "Offensive" here and would be illegal to possess, let alone carry in public.


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