The definition of self-defence is not easy to define. Our experience and understanding of violence are filled with assumptions. You have heard the old saying “I could knock that person out with one punch”. The question I ask is “Have you ever knocked someone out with one punch?” and the answer is normally “No”. Assumptions are normally generated around impressions we receive from TV, something we have read or heard in conversation.
To simplify self-defence we can understand that:
- It differs for all of us
- All students and instructors we have a limited view due to our expertise
- There is no one martial art that has all the answers
- We need to tailor our system of learning to meet the needs of the wider community
In my opinion the best form of self-defence is awareness. To all instructors take your students for a tour around your Dojang and ask them to pretend to be the perpetrators. Then get the students to tell you where they would hide if they were going to surprise someone. What this will do is teach the students to be more aware of their surroundings, especially if they are not in a familiar location.
Keep your eyes open