When people mention the phrase self-defence it conjures up all sorts of images. For some those images will be of the Karate Kid, for others it will be visions of elderly women learning techniques in the local church hall. Then of course we have the extreme, men dressed in camouflage,
rolling around in the woods and eating bugs.All these images spring to mind because there are actually courses and classes being taught that mirror your visions. Sadly, these courses and classes are not how a self-defence class should be structured and taught.
It is unfortunate that there are instructors all over the world teaching versions of self-defence that actually are far removed from the reality of violence, and what they teach is not likely to ever help you to be able to both protect yourself and reduce risk of being involved in a violent incident. This has caused people to 'switch' off about the need and importance of learning a quality self-defence system, in fact due to these images the term 'self-defence' is often deemed 'un cool' and almost slightly 'cheesey'. The truth however is that it has never been more important to learn self-defence skills and when taught correctly self-defence is an interesting subject to learn regardless of your age.
Now I am not going to sit here and frighten you with stories of violence.We all know that there are dangerous people out in the world that can cause both ourselves and our loved ones harm. The chances that you will come into contact with these individuals after the age of 25 are greatly reduced due to a likely change in social habits. After all most people either settle down at this age into a relationship or career.
However self-defence is certainly not all about fighting or fancy moves. It is my belief that good self-defence and self-protection is about applying common sense crime prevention advice to your life.
If you learn something but then do nothing with the information you have received then learning it in the first place was pointless. This is exactly what self-defence is all about. It is the study of preventing harm. Not just dealing with it when it happens.
A good self defence instructor should tell you that 90% of self defence skills are what are known as 'soft' skills. They are the physical application of common sense crime prevention tips. For example, you might be walking home and have two routes to take, one is across a dark and spooky looking field and the other is actually a longer but well-lit route which takes you passed populated areas and is clearly a safer option.
Now the person who takes the safer route is actually practising self-defence. This shift in view-point is essential to acquiring the belief that self-defence is not about fighting. It is about avoiding the need to fight and removing the risk from your life.
For that reason it is so important to take a good quality self defence course. Not because you want to learn to fight, but because you want to avoid the risk of being hurt. Many people believe that self defence is just about fighting down the local bar or pub. This is totally not the case.
Good self-defence is routed in taking steps to minimise the risk of harm coming to both yourself, your family and your property. These steps are usually simple ones such as taking a safe route home, to the more complex ones that involve installing burglar alarms to your homes and perhaps where appropriate using physical intervention and self-defence skills to keep safe.
It is essential that you take steps to learn these skills and pass your knowledge to your children and you friends. This is why it is never too late to start your self-defence training, because the most effective self-defence training actually involves using your mind.
So please at least look into finding a course or session near to where you live, however as I have said not all self-defence courses are the same. You need to be aware of just what a good course offers. However a good rule of thumb is a course that focuses on avoidance and awareness, rather than physical fighting skills is actually far more useful that a fighting based class.
So if you sign up for a short course or a class make sure you ask the instructor what the course entails. Ask them if they cover things such as 'avoidance and awareness'. If the course or class is a quality one then these skills will be a major part. As I stated it's never to late to start training because self -defence is not about fighting. It is about using your mind to avoid danger and take steps to reduce the risk that you will ever face violence.
Now that you know this, simply go and look for a self defence course today. You have one life and self defence will teach you how to stay safe.
The Author Andrew Holland is considered an expert in Self Defence and is the founder of http://www.theselfdefenceexpert.com. He has appeared on national radio and written for specialist magazines. He has vast experience in facing real life violence and is very experienced within the martial arts and holds the rank of Black Belt in Judo.
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