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Womens self defence and martial arts

Updated on September 17, 2014

Womens self defence

Self defense for women has always been an important tool. In most times of danger the easiest option is to run but there are times when simply escaping is not a possibility if you are trapped in a corner or in a room with the exit blocked. We have all seen films with female martial arts heroes (Lot's of wire action) jumping the height of buildings, flipping somersaulting and taking out 10-20 people at the same time. We also know that it will not work in real life. Some films have fight scene lasting 15-20minutes, in a life and death situation it shouldn't take more than 20 seconds to disable your attacker.

The most important thing my Karate Sensei every told me was, "In a street fight you take down your opponent in one move only or in Japanese issatsu ken". Men do have a slight advantage over women which is "Brute strength", but luckily enough most martial arts and self defense techniques no not rely on strength alone.

A veteran martial-artist Bas Rutten made one of the most important points ever "Never underestimate a kick to the groin". Why not? A man's most vulnerable spot, you are in danger, what else? Make sure it's an accurate kick though, not one of those kicks that simply moves the groin upwards and your foot safely flaps towards his behind.

There are many women's self defense classes which deviate quite a bit from traditional martial arts, since they introduce techniques to be used to certain situations that may arise in the street. Please see below a list of martial arts suited for female self defense.

1- Aikido 合気道

Aikido is a Japanese is passive martial art which relies heavily on counter attacks, disarming and disabling. Since it's a passive martial art, minimum strength is required, in fact it is your opponents strength you are using against them. E.g. if you throw a punch and miss, the more power you put into the punch, the more you will be become vulnerable and off balance. An experienced Aikido practitioner will be able to convert that force into their own favorable disabling position with minimum strength required, which is why it is a good martial art for women.

Mastering Aikido can take some time compared to other types of martial art. Not only technique is important but accuracy and timing are even more important. Poor timing can put you too close too your attacker leaving you in a wrestling type situation (brute force may be the advantage here).

2 - Judo 柔道

Judo is another Japanese martial art equally popular amongst both sexes. Similar with Aikido, no strikes are used however throws are used in order to fall an opponent. Fighters score by either putting the opponent clean on their back, or having the opponent in a grounded submission for 20 seconds.

The good thing about Judo for self defence is the fact that strength is not an important factor. Is more to do with position, physical leverage and timing in order to efficiently topple an opponent. A throw onto a hard surface can cause more damage than a punch or kick, giving you enough time to escape from your attacker. It is often to ones advantage being shorter than your opponent as it's easier to get hip leverage for throws.

3 - Krav Maga

Krav Maga was developed in Czechoslovakia in the 1930 and since then has been used for various types of military training.

Krav Maga's characteristics are to counter attack the opponent following with aggressive attacks. It also focuses on striking the bodies most vulnerable points such as groin, eyes, temple, kidney etc. This may sound violent but in a self defense situation it could be you or them. Stumbling a man with a weak technique will only anger and irritate him and may become even more aggressive. If possible, the best way is to make sure they stay down for a good period. Unlike some of the Japanese Martial arts, this focuses on real life situations and strength may be needed to some extent e.g. punch, kicking power. However if the body's weak spots are hit accurately, not so much power may be necessary.

Very effective for real time situations.


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    • Hezekiah profile image

      Hezekiah 5 years ago from Japan

      Thanks Rocklin, I've never realy tried Tai Chi (Tai Kyoku ken here in Japan) but the website looks interesting.

    • Rocklin profile image

      Rocklin 5 years ago from Lublin, Poland

      Hezakiah - I though you know.

      Anyway, I was learning Krav Maga like for half a year. It boost my self esteem and I have no more problems with people bothering me and trying to rob or attack me. It's a good system but eventualy it wasn't for me.

      Now I'm practicing Tai Chi Yang Style ( internal kung fu style) for over two year and It's awsome. If you're interesting in martial arts take a look at that one. Master Yang is one of the most known Yang style expert -

    • Hezekiah profile image

      Hezekiah 5 years ago from Japan

      Rocklin, Thank's for informing me.

    • Rocklin profile image

      Rocklin 5 years ago from Lublin, Poland

      Krav Maga is from Israel as far as I know.


      My bad. The creator was a Jew, but he lived in Bratislava

    • Hezekiah profile image

      Hezekiah 5 years ago from Japan

      Krav Maga is one of the most practical fighting techniques.

    • TheMMAZone profile image

      TheMMAZone 6 years ago from Kansas

      Very good hub and important topic. I really like the style of Krav Maga for women and self defense. The don't spend time with kata and other functions just street self defense. But, it also loses some of the other teachings sine it is so functional.