Luckily, you don't have to join a fight club if you want to learn how to throw a punch, because there are some more accessible forms of fighting, like Krav Maga, which means "contact combat" in Hebrew. Krav Maga was originally developed in the 's as a way to teach everyday Israeli people how to fight , says Ross Cascio, an expert-level self-defense and fitness instructor at Krav Maga Worldwide. So, even if you aren't coordinated or have never even punched a bag, you can totally learn the techniques. The difference between Krav Maga and other martial arts, such as karate or jiu jitsu, is that Krav Maga is known for using "dirty fighting tactics that would be illegal in a sport fight," Cascio says.
For example, you're allowed to hit someone in the groin or poke them in the eyes. Also, some people practice Krav Maga simply because it's a good workout.
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If you're curious about this fighting technique, here are the basic self-defense moves that everyone should know, according to Cascio. Of course, in an ideal world, people wouldn't need to know how to defend themselves and by the same token, if someone is assaulted and they can't defend themselves, it's not their fault. But unfortunately, knowing a few self-defense moves can be useful in the world we live in. When women are given a seat at the table, everybody wins.
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Basic self defense techniques everyone should know
An elbow to the face can do some serious damage. You don't need to rely only on your hands to strike someone. If your attacker is close to you, use your elbows and knees to strike him or her.
Lift your leg from the hips and aim the sole of your foot at where your attacker's stomach would be. It's important to lean your hips up and thrust your knee forward. Getting your hips up and leaning back allows you to kick higher. In the class, Steve taught me to use my forearms to block any angle of a frontal attack. To block correctly, bend your arm 90 degrees at the elbow, and flex to hold the L-shape.
Below, my attacker is trying to strike from the left, so I'm blocking him with my left arm.
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Aim to block wrist to wrist, instead of with your forearm. Blocking isn't just a defensive technique, either. Doing these blocks reminded me of my dance and cheerleading days when the teacher used to scream at us to have "strong arms. It takes about a second for someone to completely cut off your airflow by choking you. If someone tries, grab his or her hands and pluck them sharply away from your neck.
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The motion is fast and powerful. Simultaneously, use your knee to strike the groin. There are several other ways to strike your attacker and get out of this situation. If your attacker comes from behind and your arms are trapped, kick backward and upward, aiming for the groin.
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You can also drop your weight, making it tough for your assailant to hang onto you, by squatting slightly lower. If your arms are free , use your elbows to strike your attacker. When in doubt, go for the eye.
It's gross, but very effective. Your attacker's hands will always go to his or her eyes if something gets in them, like your thumb.
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Always be conscious of your surroundings, that way you can avoid someone who may pose a threat before even crossing paths. If someone threatens you with a weapon and demands you give up your wallet or bag, do it. It's best just to get out of the situation and contact the police as soon as possible instead of trying to resist. That's just asking for more trouble.