A good self defense / personal safety training program includes and teaches the 4 types of Awareness – Mental, Emotional, Environmental and Physical.
Mental awareness – this type of awareness provides the ability to identify, interpret and analyze input from your emotional, environmental and physical awareness. It helps you “know” what is happening around you. Mental awareness helps you make better personal safety decisions quicker.
Emotional awareness – this has two parts:
- Recognizing and understanding your own current emotional state and
- Recognizing and understanding the emotional state of those with whom you are interacting.
Environmental awareness – involves recognizing and analyzing your current physical environment. Some examples could include:
- Are you in a dark alley or a high crime area?
- Are you in a rowdy crowd?
- Are you in a room with only one exit (where is the exit)?
- Are the objects close by that could be used as defensive weapons, etc.
Physical awareness – this also has two parts:
- Knowing and understanding your physical abilities, capabilities, strengths and weaknesses and
- Knowing and understanding the potential physical abilities, capabilities, strengths and weaknesses of those with whom you are interacting.
A good self defense training program teaches recognition & avoidance of dangerous situations, verbal conflict resolution, exit methods and physical self defense techniques.
- If you are able to recognize and avoid conflict, you may never need to use physical self defense techniques.
- If you are able to verbally defuse a conflict situation, physical self defense may be unnecessary.
- Using proper “exit” methods to leave a volatile situation and scene is critical to maintaining high levels of personal safety.
- Learning physical self defense skills definitely enhances a person’s level of self confidence. Yes, using physical self defense should always be the last choice for action. But, getting the training and developing some level of proficiency in self defense skills does increase self confidence by providing a person with a higher level of self awareness related to personal safety abilities and capabilities – you will know what you are capable of! A “side effect” of this new level of awareness could be that you won’t “look like a victim” any more!
A good program also educates participants on legal liability issues related to acts of self defense. Each state may have different laws. An individual should become familiar with what is allowed in the way of self defense. For example, pepper spray is illegal to carry in some states, whereas some states allow (visible) firearms to be carried in vehicles.
The next article will provide you with more information on what to look for in a self defense training program! Remember, if you have any questions, please feel free to contact me or make comments on this article!
The goal of self defense training is not to create a paranoid population. The objective is to proactively educate people. Knowledge and experience (under safe conditions) are great personal safety weapons. A good self defense program promotes many things for the participants, including 1) development of a greater sense of confidence, 2) creation of a greater sense of control in life, and 3) motivation to be pro-active in creating a society in which we can all live safely and happily.
The best defense is a prepared offense!
“One Body, One Life, One Choice” Be Smart, Stay Safe!