The increased awareness of violence in our society has been the impetus for citizens taking measures for protection whether it’s on the street, in a public venue, or in the safety of one’s home. Self-defense is the act of protecting oneself from harm. This generally means an act of aggression on the part of another. There are various forms of self-defense from calling law enforcement to avoidance, confrontation, and at times, the use of a weapon. Each has its benefit, but you should use the utmost care and intention. The decision of which method of self-defense to use is vital and depends upon the situation and the individuals.
In many cases, calling law enforcement is the best form of self-defense. Officers can deal with most situations in an effective manner. This may be the wisest choice if someone is prowling outside the home or following you on the street. There are times, however, when calling law enforcement may not be the best option. This is especially true if someone confronts you with violent conflict or police are not immediately available in your area.
Self-defense techniques vary widely from carrying a personal alarm to verbal de-escalation, although most people think of martial arts when it comes to physical self-defense. Most communities have programs wherein basic self-defense classes are offered. Gyms, martial arts schools, and community centers are good places to start when looking for training classes. Programs typically combine forms of martial arts to teach students how to avoid dangerous situations, get out of choke holds, or disarm a perpetrator. When considering a class, be sure that the instructor is qualified to teach and can offer the best instruction based on your physical health and situation. Once the class is over, don’t file away the information and forget it. Practice with family and friends to stay prepared.
Armed self-defense is common, particularly in a person’s home environment. However, with weapons there’s a chance that someone can get hurt. The most common form of armed self-defense is the use of a handgun. While it may be the most effective, the user needs to know how and when to use the weapon. An untrained person is far more dangerous than a criminal and more often than not will cause unnecessary damage.
Before choosing a handgun, do your homework. Research popular calibers and brands to learn which might be the best fit and then visit a reputable dealer who can give professional advice. Obviously, you will want to take safety training classes and practice on a regular basis even after you feel comfortable handling a weapon. Lastly, when it comes to using a weapon for self-defense, don’t ever pull it unless you intend to use it. And if you use it, make it count because you might not get another shot.