Self-Defense Basics for Women
Editorís Note: In any
discussion of health and wellness, if we fail to mention injuries
and deaths caused by violence of any sort, we are not doing our
jobs. Our new Surgeon General, Dr Vivek Murthy took a stand thusly,
"What Iíve said before is what I believe now ó which is gun violence
is a public health issue."
We cannot solve any problem we donít first admit to having. Gun
violence, and indeed, all violence are public health issues. And
like the weather, we can parody the words of Mark Twain by saying
"Everybody talks about violence, but nobody does anything about it."
That is about to stop. As we post this article today, we going to do
something about violence, especially against women, though men too
can use the advice brought forth here on this page. Some of the
things you are about to learn are quite simple. I have taught
everything youíll find below on opening day of classes Iíve taught
in self-defense and in seminars. Itís up to you to put them into
Letís get a few things straight first.
Yes, men can use these techniques, but we all must first admit to
two very painful facts.
- Women are more likely to die by the hands of a man than from
any other cause.
- They are more likely to die by the hands of a man they know.
These techniques are designed to protect yourself from an unknown
assailant. However, some of them could be used to fight off a known
assailant. They wonít be as effective as they would be against a
stranger who doesnít know what heís getting into, but you can
surprise that date-rapist with a few tricks also.
So letís get started.
Refuse to be a Victim
Rapists, muggers, thugs, etc, look for victims. A ďvictimĒ walks
with her shoulders tight to her body, staring straight ahead at the
To not be a victim is to be aware at all times of everything about
Youíve all seen that ďbowĒ performed between two martial artists
prior to engagement. You all think that this is simply part of a
tradition of respect between the two fighters. And youíre all wrong.
It has become a tradition, but it did not start that way.
Awareness is the key. When a fighter bows, with his
peripheral vision, he can see whatís behind him.
To avoid being perceived as a victim, you will walk with your head
high, looking into the faces of passersby. Smile at them. Itís
amazing how a smile is contagious. Look around, swing your arms, and
be animated and aware.
But what about night time; that time when most attacks occur?
Youíll do the same thing, but you will carry a flashlight.
Just carrying a flashlight reduces your chances of being
attacked to just about nil. A mugger would have to be an
idiot to attack someone with a flashlight because sheíll be able to
see his face and pick him out of a line-up.
Additionally, a flashlight carries with it an air of authority. Cops
carry them; bouncers carry them; and the dreaded theater ushers
If you donít believe that they carry an air of authority, do what I
do when I go to a crowded bar (on New Yearís or St Paddyís Day).
First, make sure you have one of the new powerful flashlights. Hold
it over your head, turn it on, and announce: ďComing through!Ē
The crowd will part before you like the Red Sea before Moses.
This little trick has never ceased to work.
A flashlight carries an air of authority, shows youíre aware, and
proves youíre not a victim.
The flashlights I will show you all have a low mode for walking at
night that will extend the battery life. And speaking of batteries,
always carry a spare. If you are using rechargeable batteries, make
sure youíre using a smart recharger; one that will stop when the
battery is full,
Again, I cannot stress enough, always carry spare batteries
or a spare flashlight or both. Itís even smarter to always
carry a spare flashlight (and as youíll see further on down this
page, one that can be used as an offensive weapon).
Next: Know how to work your flashlight. You have to have it down so
that you donít need to think. Many double click to get into the
strobe mode, some just cycle thru to the strobe mode.
What do you do if you are attacked? Letís face it, if they were
smart, they wouldnít be out attacking helpless women. There are some
very stupid people out there, so what happens when one ignores your
flashlight and preys on you?
If you are alert, youíll know when you see someone you want to
avoid, or youíll hear someone coming up behind you. Keep your head
on a swivel.
When you ďthinkĒ someone is approaching you who could be dangerous,
step into the street and start to cross. I can say this, knowing
that thereís no traffic in the street because attacks donít occur
near busy streets.
That is, unless itís a purse snatcher about to do a snatch & run.
To protect yourself from that kind of attack, always carry your
flashlight in your strongest hand, and the bag tucked under your
other arm. Carry the flashlight in your fist, or at least practice
moving the flashlight into your clenched fist often so that you can
do it without thinking.
This is smart for two reasons. The flashlights Iíll show you have
the button on the rear, and in your fist, your thumb can easily
switch modes. And second, using your fist as a hammer, coming down
on the soft part of your hand with one of the flashlights
protruding, makes you as powerful as a man. You canít punch like a
man, but with one of these flashlights, you can hammer punch like a
man, or even better.
Should someone try to grab your purse, you must realize
that heís just given you a gift: both hands.
Heís given you both hands. Thatís a gift. He
doesnít have another hand to guard his head that you are hammering
with your flashlight.
Considering the shape of smaller flashlights heads, they do a lot of
damage hitting against his skull, and will draw a lot of blood.
One more thing: donít stop.
Donít whack him and then see if it worked. Assume it didnít work and
whack him again. Whack him until he stops or runs. When he does
stop, you run.
This is always the best thing to do. Donít stick around to give a
police report or talk to the ambulance driver. You hurt him till he
stops, and then you run like hell.
Oh, and always wear comfortable shoes. Save the stilettos for your
nights out on the town, not for walking to your car.
Ok, so itís not a snatch & run. Someone has his eyes on you and
youíre creeped out.
Hit the street and start to cross. If he starts to cross, you stop
and face him. Get ready to turn the flashlight up to bright or
But first stop, face him, and confront him. ďDo I know you?Ē
If he continues coming toward you, hit him with your brights, right
in the eyes. These smaller flashlights can focus the beam. You
should know how to do that without thinking. Focus on his eyes.
At this point heíll have to look away or put a hand over his eyes.
If heís still walking toward you, keep in mind he cannot see you
anymore. Youíre blinding him. He knows only where the light is.
With the light in his eyes, you make yourself a moving target. Itís
always best to stay in the street. People around you, if they are
present, will be more aware of you in the street than on a dark
Become a moving target. Go left, right, down the street. Just keep
your flashlight in his eyes.
And scream your head off! Get peopleís attention.
Additionally, since he cannot see you, you can tell him anything.
ďIf you come any closer, Iím going to put a bullet between your
He doesnít know you donít have a gun, but since youíre aware enough
to have a bright flashlight, you could be carrying a gun.
Once it looks like heís crazy enough to continue toward you, the
strobe action should be used. For some, a strobe can disorient a
person. All these flashlights strobe in their high mode.
Now Iím not so sure about the power of the strobe mode, but it will
also attract attention. Personally, blinding him is enough for me
because when heís close enough, heís going to find out Iíve got
another surprise for him.
Keep moving, keep alert, and find an escape route. Because heís
blinded, and if heís coming for you, heís coming for the flashlight.
300 lumens will blind him for about 10 seconds or more, and works on
a night that isnít totally dark. Greater than that and they will
blind him enough to make it hard for him to see clearly for a
minimum of 30 seconds. So, iof ou have a good strong beam, over 500
lumens, and you get a good shot as his eyes, you can turn your light
off and run like hell. Heíll only hear you retreating. He will not
Before we go any further, letís look at some lights.
As always, Iíve purchased these, Iíve used these, and Iíve tested
these. I am currently helping Simply the Best become distributors
They are the best. They are the sturdiest, the brightest, the
best-made, and guaranteed to work. There are hundreds of clones out
there, and Iíve tested some of them too. These are the originals,
they cost more than the clones from China and Taiwan, but they work
and they work well, and letís face it, are you really going to skimp
on your parachute?
The first I want to show you is the J5 Tactical V1. Itís the
smallest flashlight these people make. At their show, they keep one
lit at the bottom of a fish bowl to show that theyíre water
I want you to note the attack head design. It can do damage. I
never go anywhere without one in my pocket. In fact, at a theater
they handed us a list of objects forbidden to take into the theater,
and flashlights was one of them. I donít go anywhere without my
flashlight. So when they told us to hold our phones and keys in our
hands while they swept us with metal detectors, in the hand with my
keys was my flashlight, hidden from the security people.
This has the tail tap switch. When you turn it on itís in the bright
mode. Just tap the tail lightly and it goes into the dim mode, for
walking at night (and extending battery life). It takes just one AA
Simply the Best will not carry this one because the
250 lumens just isnít bright enough, in my opinion. Itís a great
little flashlight to have on hand, but itís just not bright enough
The V1 PRO is the next size up; it is slightly bigger (4 inches
long), tests out at 300 Lumens, and runs on AA batteries.
If I was a woman, out alone, I would carry two; one backup,
always with a fresh battery.
There are three modes: Bright, dim, strobe. Tapping the the Tail
Switch changes from Bright, to Dim, to Strobe.
There are many clones, and I have three in front of me now. I spent
$12 for one, and the others were under $10, found on Amazon. None of
them work properly now. I called one guy for a refund, and he said
that the warranty was just 30 days. The J5 Tactical V1 PRO will be
replaced if it goes out within a year.
Next is the J5 Hyper-V, which tests out at 400 Lumens, and is 5 Ĺ
inches long. You wonít be able to sneak this into the theater, but
you will be able to put a hole in an attackerís head that you can
drive your minivan through. Oh, and this one runs on 3 AAA
Note the design of the heads. That ripple design is for smashing
through a car window. Imagine what it can do to a skull.
The V2 is next testing out at 750 Lumens. Itís five inches long and
uses an 18650 3.7v battery. This will need a recharger. In the low
mode, the battery will run for 100,000 hours. This one is not just
water resistant; itís waterproof (resistant to five minutes of heavy
The V2 is impossible to get right now (December 2016) and the
company thinks they will have them in stock sometime in the spring
Finally youíve got the J5 732-1, which tests out at 935 Lumens. It
will use one of those rechargeable 18650 batteries mentioned above,
or two short squat CR123A batteries. Run time is 450 hours, and just
plain waterproof. You can go scuba diving with this one.
Itís six inches long, heavy, with a skid
proof bar on it to keep it from slipping in your hand if youíre
pounding someoneís skull in. It weighs just over 5 ounces.
Editorís Note: It was here that my proofreader
pointed out to me that I sounded like an infomercial, and warned me
that not everyone can afford ďthe bestĒ flashlight.
I told her that our readers know that if we help Simply the Best
sell something, that we are helping our readers get the best
products at the best price, and they (you, the readers) also know
(or should) that I donít make a dime off of anything I do for either
company or even for our foundation.
I will also admit that as a preventive, any flashlight will
do, but if you really need to protect yourself, I doubt
people will opt for something cheap. At the end of this article I
will show you the clones of these flashlights weíre pointing out and
how well they work (or donít work).
And (back to the infomercial)
Simply the Best
has a kit for sale consisting of this flashlight, all of its
accessories, three rechargeable batteries, and a smart battery
charger that will save you $64.92 off the lowest retail prices on
the web. I am very serious about getting our
readers the best of the best at the best prices. I happen know
they're hardly making a profit off of these life-savers.
Inova T5 Tactical Flashlight
Now here is another flashlight, and were I to do battle, this is the
one Iíd prefer. I take this along when I know Iíll be in the Cities
After I show you this one, weíll discuss the various flashlights and
the techniques for using them, as well as some insider tricks
especially when using the smaller ones.
This is the Inova T5 Tactical Flashlight. Itís 9 inches long,
rated at 672 lumens, uses three of the type 2-123A lithium
batteries, and will run 40 hours at its lowest light level, the one
youíll use just walking at night. It has 3 modes of brightness, 672,
213, and 27 lumens. You change modes from the moment you turn it on.
If you click once, to turn it on, it will go into the bright mode.
If you click it twice when you turn it on, it will go into the 213
lumen mode; three times and it's the dim mode. It also has a strobe
mode by double clicking the rubber switch at any time. You will have
to practice with this one to get it down.
It is 9 inches long. When used as a baton, it can
easily cripple or kill an attacker.
And now I shall teach you how to use it.
Using a Baton
I actually do carry in my car a baton in a flashlight that is steel
and extends to 20 inches. The only problem with this weapon is itís
a felony to carry it in some states. So, of course, I cannot take it
with me on road trips.
Itís ironic that batons and tasers are more regulated than guns in
America, but we love our guns and the NRA now works for the
manufacturers and sellers.
A steel baton, along with a flashlight, is the just the best
combination of a self-defense system I can think of.
Some would say that the gun is better, but not according to
statistics. Youíre more likely to get killed by your own gun than to
protect yourself from an attacker. Additionally, shooting a person
can land you in jail, whereas beating him with a baton wonít because
he was close enough to be a danger to you. You can shoot someone
from ten feet away. Juries tend to look down on women who shoot
people who are just asking for directions.
Since I do not live in a Stand Your Ground State, and I have no
intention of ever killing a person with a gun just so I can use
these laws to avoid prosecution, this is all Iím going to say about
Stand Your Ground.
Itís all about circumstances. If you have to use a baton, juries can
understand this; and besides, most cases never go to court. Women
just do not get prosecuted for beating an attacker with a
So, letís learn how to use this baton-like flashlight, which can do
a lot of damage.
Scenario: someone has followed you into the street. Youíve got your
favorite J5 Tactical light in one hand, pointing down. You confront
him; he moves toward you and you blind him with the light, either in
the bright mode or strobe mode, but focused on his eyes. You then
reach into your purse, hit the bright button or double click to the
strobe mode of your Inova T5. You point it at your attacker with
your thumb facing him.
Holding it thus, you slide your hand back (work it back) so that
you are holding the back end of the flashlight, still pointing it at
him. Now youíve got a real weapon. Holding it near the rear
increases the force with which it will strike. Then lift it up to
just about the top of your head. It is still pointing at the
attacker; your thumb is pointing at the attacker. In this position,
when you swing it around, it will act like a whip when it connects.
At this point you must be very aware of your attacker; aware of
his height, the speed at which his is moving toward you, and where
his knees are.
Here is a very simple fact. If your attacker thinks you are going to
take a swing at him, heís going to put his hands up to guard his
face and head. This is a very natural self-defense movement.
Additionally, after your blow glances off his hands, his hands are
then ready to grab you.
But here are some things to note. First, he really canít see you
because youíre blinding him. He canít see that as heís coming at
you, youíre slowly moving (if you are right handed, to your right;
to your left if left handed) keeping your J5 in your left hand (Iím
assuming youíre right handed), pointing at his face, your arm
extended way out to your left (youíre giving him a non-target to
attack). Meanwhile the other hand with the baton flashlight (Inova
T5) is ready for the strike. In this case, you donít need to be
holding the smaller flashlight in your fist, just pointing at his
eyes. Itís your power hand thatís holding the more deadly weapon.
The second thing you need to note is this: you are not going to
whack him on his head.
Youíre going to bend your legs, and with every ounce of might you
can gather, youíre going to take out his knee, hitting it either
directly, an inch or so above, or an inch or so below. Then without
even thinking youíre going to take out his skull.
You see, once you hit him in the knee, there is a short pain
response in which the attacker is aware only of pain. Nothing else
is going thru his mind except the pain. That lasts between a second
and about a second and a half. This is why you do not hesitate to
see if youíve hurt him. This is a two-step movement, possibly three
You could take out his knee and run, but if youíre in a parking lot,
youíre not going to run that far so you might want to consider
disabling him entirely as an insurance policy.
You are not going for the knee and then waiting; you are going for
his skull first by way of the knee.
If his hands are still up (they are there without his knowing it; he
knows only pain) your other hand can perform another movement before
taking out his skull, and that is to pull the hands down out of the
In martial arts, many strikes are first brought about by knocking
the hands out of the way. If they are in the way, move them, and
follow through with the kill shot.
Then run like hell.
If he tries to follow (odds arenít he wonít), you still have your
flashlights, you can still blind him, and you can now use him as a
practice punching bag. Just remember, swing that sucker as if itís
the last thing youíll ever do, keeping in mind that it could be. You
have to hurt him.
And always know this: If your light is in his face, when he is
coming at you he does not see you. If he tries to rush you, you will
use his energy against him by stepping out of his way. Then you
should know that no man can outrun a swinging arm, so as he passes
by, donít forget to tap him on his skull.
Some Points to Ponder
If you have only the small J5 Tactical flashlight (series), you can
still take out an attacker. You can still go low and take out the
knee. That head of the flashlight is designed to do some terrible
damage. You can step around the attacker (heís not seeing much since
youíve blinded him with the light) and take out his skull. These
little guys will make him bleed. A solid connect to the temple will
give him permanent brain damage.
The benefit of a baton type flashlight is distance.
Iím not crazy about heavily advertised TIGERLADY SELF-DEFENSE CLAW
because it doesnít prevent an attack as a flashlight can, and it is
designed for close combat. Close combat is something one must study
for years to be good at. I teach my beginners to stay as far away as
possible. With a baton, you keep a distance between yourself and the
attacker. If he canít grab you, he canít hurt you. So I teach people
to stay as far away as possible.
Knowing this, with the smaller flashlights only, youíre going to be
closer to the attacker and so youíre going to have to take out that
attacker swiftly and painfully. You will hold your J5 series in your
fist and pound like a hammer. If you are aiming for the face, the
eyes are a good place to start. Then thereís the temple, and the top
of the head, two or three inches to the right or left of center,
right about at the hair line.
And yes, the knees.
And hereís something you learn in martial arts classes: Remember
moving his hands out of the way? Well, if heís alert, and you tap
his hands to knock them down and out of the way, heíll quickly raise
them up again. And that is when you hammer at his collar bone. The
J5 series, pounded like a hammer blow, will break that collar bone.
Additionally, there are two ďyinĒ points on the collar bone that are
worth aiming for.
1. The high point where the collarbone starts in front, just
straight below the molars.
2. Just about an inch and a half from the points on this image
outward toward the shoulders.
Hit either of those two spots hard enough and youíll immobilize him.
If you want, reach up and feel them now. Youíll see it doesnít take
too much pressure to bring on a bit of pain. So go ahead and feel
those points. Give them a bit of pressure. Youíll see how tender
Most people panic if they trip and fall or get knocked down. This is
no time to panic. Youíve got your weapon in your hand, and just
because you are on the ground, it does not take away your advantage.
Just above the ankle bone is a great point to strike a hammer blow
with J5 Tactical Flashlight or with the Inova T5. Whack someone
there and youíve got time to get up, brush yourself off, and run
like hell. Also, if you get inside his legs, hit above the ankle
bone on the inside of his leg and heíll be stunned for about a
minuteÖunable to move. So, if you should fall, keep your wits
because you can still cripple this guy.
So thatís about it for now, but you really should practice. Always
practice. Get a nice cheap pillow to punch, some boxes, or a huge
And always carry at least two weapons, because you never know when
the battery will fail (and always have spare batteries).
Be aware and refuse to be a victim.
Anyone with questions can write to me and Iíll try to answer them.
Most of all, if you got anything out of this it should be: just
carrying a flashlight at night reduces your chances of an attack to
It doesnít have to be one of these flashlights that Iíve mentioned.
Just a simple flashlight is all that is needed to make sure you are
not a victim. However, if something starts coming down, youíll wish
you had one of these tactical flashlights because theyíre hard,
sturdy, and designed to take out an attacker.
Bonus ó A Little Story
Martial artists have hundreds of stories. Sometimes the best way to
get a point across is a parable. Here's one I'm sure you'll enjoy.
It was a beginner class in which the sensei (teacher) would
introduce the class into the variety of weapons and techniques
they'd be learning over the next six months. In one of the early
classes, the sensei stood before the with a stick known as eskrima
or kali. Before he began, he held it up and told the class, "Best
weapon in the world," and then went to work demonstrating how it was
used. He put down the kali stick and stood before his class again
with a much longer stick called a bo, held it up and told the class,
"Best weapon in the world," and then demonstrated how the bo is
used. During the break, one of the students went over to the sensei
and asked, "First you told us that the kali was the best weapon in
the world, and then you told us that the bo was the best weapon in
the world. I don't get it. Which is the best weapon?" The sensei,
who was drinking a cup of coffee, smiled softly and lifted his
coffee cup in front of him and said, "Best weapon in the world."
The student then realized the answer; the best weapon in the world
is the one you're holding in your hand.
Send in the Clones
This is supposed to have three modes, bright, dim, and a strobe
mode. It now has two modes, both bright, and for the strobe mode the
light flickers a bit. This one cost me $12.95, free shipping with
This is another Cree UltraFire that I got from Amazon about a year
later. The price had dropped to $5.99 with free shipping, if
you're an Amazon Prime member, otherwise shipping was $4.99. This
flashlight today has one mode: Off. As far as warranty goes, here's
what's posted at Amazon: 45 days Money Back Guarantee.
I bought two of these and one went out within two months. It was
supposed to be as bright as the J5-732, but was not. It's not