In this episode, Jeremy talks about how people can make self-defense non-violent and non-injurious, rather than something solely based on destruction.
The Need for Self Defense Strategies that Don’t Injure Others – Episode 231
Most of us plan to incapacitate an attacker when they intend to hurt us, which is how most instructors taught us self-defense. It has become a standard that we hurt our attacker if the situation arises. But, what if we could actually defend ourselves without being violent? Some of you may think it’s a crazy idea but Jeremy has some tips on how not to be violent in the context of self-defense – and why it’s so critically important to have these types of movements at our disposal. So take a listen and learn how!
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You can read the transcript below or download here.
Hey, how are you, everybody? today we’re going to talk about self-defense and we’re going to talk about why is it important that all self-defense curriculums have movements that actually don’t injure the attacker. probably not the reason that you think I’m gonna talk about.
if you’re new to the show, or you’re coming back and maybe you suffered an aneurysm, my name is Jeremy Lesniak, I’m your host here on the show. I’m honored to talk to you today, thanks for sharing your time with me. if you’re new to everything we do at whistlekick, check out, whistlekick.com that’s the hub for all the stuff that were doing online. whether it’s the show or the products we sell or the courses we offer, or martial journal, or the memes site or the social media, there’s a lot. and you know how I know there’s a lot? because it takes a ton of my time and I’m, not even the only one doing it. this is great. it’s amazing when I think back how whistlekick has grown, I’m not gonna go down that road now though, today we are going to think about self-defense.
there are a lot of topics within the whole concept of self-defense, things that we could talk about that will get a lot of views like “these are the top 5 martial arts defense movements”, I had no idea why I just did that voice. but we could put that out and we’d get a ton of views, ton of listens and a lot of criticism and that seems to be a lot of what’s out there for content around self-defense. we could do stuff on how most traditional martial arts aren’t applicable in self-defense and wed get a bunch of people looking at it, listening to it and some of them will be really, really critical today no, traditional martial arts works and we get some other saying no, it doesn’t and supporting what we said. I’m not talking about either of those things. in fact, I don’t want to talk about either of those things. those topics have been done to death, they bore me. and to be honest, to assert either of those positions, to say these are the best self-defense movements, ahh it’s kinda arrogant. I don’t do arrogant. I share. it’s kinda my mindset.
I’ve always been passionate about self-defense about sharing self-defense concepts with people both in and out of martial arts. over the last year or so, I’ve been involved with a group, teaching women self-defense but in a very different way and I’m not gonna go into that, it’s actually a past guest on the show who runs this company and I’ve been fortunate to get involved and volunteer my time, and I’ve learned a lot. and one of the things I’ve learned is that the martial arts concepts that we teach as self-defense are really hard for a lot of people to wrap their brain around. because a lot of people struggle with violence. the idea of defending yourself before it’s too late, requires, the way most of us have approached it historically, escalating the violence. If someone comes up to you and grabs your wrist. what’s the number one thing that tends to be taught in most martial arts schools? it’s getting out of that wrist lock, and maybe manipulating the hand, the wrist in a way. or maybe it’s a kick to the groin, or a poke to the eyes. well in all of those cases, we as the defender had escalated the violence. we’ve had not meet people where they’re at but go beyond. and you know what, that’s a concept that most people struggle with because the messaging from being, from birth, is you don’t hit people, you don’t hurt people. sometimes we get, you don’t hurt someone unless they’re trying to hurt you, and that’s been instilled over years and it takes a really long time to get past that or they even just reconcile it which is part of the reason so many martial artist seems to struggle when more realistic situations, anxiety driven situations come up. we’ve done episodes on anxiety and how to train under that load because it is a load, it completely changes everything that happens and ill link to that into the show notes today. and while people are anxious and they’re stressed, and on some level, they’re trying to consider how are they gonna do what they’re doing without hurting people, they get hurt themselves. it goes from the wrist lock, to being on the ground. it goes to a point that’s so much harder to handle. we don’t talk about that too much. I’m sure there are some schools out there that do and I applaud you. I’ve been part of nearly a dozen schools during my life and I’ve heard this topic come up a couple of times but not at length. we’ve always spent our time working on what in that school’s curriculum was considered effective and safe, easy movements.
I’m gonna share with you a few of my favorite movements and this isn’t turning into “top five self-defense movements” or even the “top five self-defense movements that won’t injure people” that’s not what I’m trying to do. I’m gonna share some with you as examples because I’m sure that you have others and that’s great and the key is that, those movements are actually pretty easy to apply. they’re simple, easy to teach, and most importantly, people can practice them on others and know that, you know what, it’s not going to hurt. I’m gonna start with my first one. the first one actually come from my taekwondo instructor. this is probably his favorite movement, I love it, and it’s pinching the inside of someone’s thigh. it really doesn’t get easier than that if you’re in a position to reach there and you pinch its generally gonna startle someone they’re probably going to release, it will allow you to maybe get away, or push someone away. it can even be linked to more physical attacks, but that’s not why I’m sharing that. we’ve all been startled by something like this, you know, a poke in the back, or someone coming up from behind and kinda tickling your armpit. that’s startle response, ahh, people tend to let go. it tends to take them out of where they’re at and it doesn’t hurt anyone. my favorite one is applying slow even gentle pressure up under the nose. and you may have heard my voice just changed because I did it for some reason. it is almost impossible for people to resist that. and if someone’s nose is pulled up, they’re head is back, they’re not looking at you, they’re looking up and that will take a lot of a fight out of a person. if the attackers facing you, the idea of pushing your couple fingers into their throat, again I did it, you may have just heard my voice changed. this is what I do, this is what I do, when I’m recording episodes, my feet move around, I have a hard time sitting still. I’m moving around, I’m acting out the things that I’m talking about, usually, you can’t hear but here we go, I’m grabbing my own nose and poking my own throat. to put a couple of fingers into somebody’s throat and just push, that’s such a sensitive area, it’s such a personally protected area, we don’t like people doing that. that will generally elicit a response and there are more. you can do weird things, you could do silly things sometimes in the way self-defense is instructed especially the non-martial artist, you’ve got to do something that they’ll easily remember. what’s more memorable than giving somebody, a wet willy. it’s not gonna stop someone from really trying to kill you, absolutely not. but its gonna make the attacker pause and a lot of cases, I’m certainly not an expert in human psychology, again I wanna roll you back couple minutes ago, I’m sharing these example as an example of a concept, not to say that these are the best things but I know you have some in your curriculum and I want you to consider them and their importance. if someone comes at you with violence, and you lick your finger and put it in their ear, they will pause. they will wonder what is going on and maybe that gives you the opportunity to pinch inside their thigh. maybe it gives you the opportunity to pull up on their nose.
why are these non-injurious movements so important? two reasons, we already talked about the first one, because people have a hard time escalating violence, good people do anyway. secondly, because sometimes you’re attacked by someone that you don’t actually want to hurt. what happens when your best friend has a bad day and they’re at your house and they get drunk? or you’re at a bar and someone that you know casually gets drunk and they’re trying to hurt you or at least they engage in a situation where you think they might try to hurt you or they might hurt you accidentally. yes, there are probably some of you out there listening saying, well, you know what you do what got to do and you sort it out later. sure. that is an option and maybe that works for you but that may not work for everyone. for a lot of us, it’s hard to harm someone that we know that we care about maybe even love. generating options training options that don’t hurt people that can be deployed quickly, it’s important to practice them. it’s important to make them part of your self-defense curriculum whether you teach that in a school or you teach that to strangers on the street. everyone loves the satisfying feel of kneeing a bag or a pad or a padded-up person in the groin in the belly, it feels good but it’s a lot harder to do that when people might actually get hurt.
I’d love to know your thoughts, what movements that don’t harm attackers do you have in your self-defense curriculum. let me know. firstname.lastname@example.org we are @whistlekick on social media and you can find the show notes for this and every other episode and comment there whistlekickmartialartsradio.com. hope to hear from you. remember this is episode 231, and maybe you can share this with some friends of yours that don’t listen to this show yet. we’re growing, we continue to grow, it’s so cool. thanks for helping with that. until next time. train hard, smile and have a great day.