Self Defense for Children

So, about a century after the rest of the cyberworld I got on Twitter, perfect for the short attention span. If the net is monkey-mind, Twitter is gerbil-mind.

I’m tweet-buddy with about 500 sites and get some really cool links from across the spectrum.

Modern Family Life posts an excellent short review of effective self-defense techniques that can be used by children to deter and defuse potential dangers.


Ask your kids to discontinue the journey if they feel something not right even if it’s their usual route on a bright sunny day. It’s always better to be safe than sorry.

Stay In Numbers

Who cares if you hop into a crowd that gives you the dumbfounded stares? That’s exactly what your kids need to deter advances from any potential attackers.

Be A Whistle Blower

Assure your child that they have every reason to alert the crowd or someone who are able to assist them if they’re pretty sure of just having escaped an attack. Shouting on top of their voice such as “HELP!” or “THIEF!” are good attention-grabbers.

These techniques work for adults as well.

One new factor in daily life is the cell phone, and while we should not over-estimate the potential of the cell phone for getting help in a bad situation, it does keep us connected and cuts down on the chances of being isolated without anyone knowing where you are.

Even Better Than Karate

Not to disparage the martial arts, and potentially offend some black belts, but this innovative approach to rape prevention offers ten simple behavior changes that can completely eliminate the risk of rape. Most people are already following this program, which seems completely natural once you get used to it. What to do about the others is the problem…

Sexual Assault Prevention Tips Guaranteed to Work!

1. Don’t put drugs in people’s drinks in order to control their behavior.

2. When you see someone walking by themselves, leave them alone!

3. If you pull over to help someone with car problems, remember not to assault them!

4. NEVER open an unlocked door or window uninvited.

5. If you are in an elevator and someone else gets in, DON’T ASSAULT THEM!

The other ten tips are here, courtesy of Salon’s Broadsheet.

Interestingly, the comments section on Broadsheet is flaming with angry men who mistake this satire for actual prevention tips or else feel it puts too much responsibility on men. The list isn’t gendered, which makes sense because women can be predators too.

When I first started studying self-defense, there were countless books that told you to ‘never do this’ and ‘always do that’. This was very blaming, and if I’d followed all the advice I would have become a recluse. There was also a lot of ‘should have done, shouldn’t have done’ even from victims themselves. One of my fellow karate students, a man, was beaten up by a gang in an act of random violence. ‘I shouldn’t have walked by them.’ he said.

If we were omniscient we would certainly avoid all dangers, but we are only human and have to live in this imperfect world. As the self-defense movement matured, and more books by women became available, there was recognition that every day we have to choose what risks to take.

I would no more say that it’s fine to live as if there was no such thing as sexual assault than I would say that you should leave your laptop on the table at Starbucks while you go out for a smoke. On the other hand, it’s the thief’s fault if they steal it.

It doesn’t make sense to talk about crime prevention if you take the criminal out of the equation. This reversal of the advice women have been hearing for years is a mind opener, and puts the responsibility where it belongs.