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How to Defend Yourself Without a Weapon

What happens when you feel threatened, but you don’t have a weapon?

The goal of any combative situation is to get away safely. If you don’t need to stay and fight, then don’t stay. Run away. Some might criticize this as the “coward’s way out,” but a strategic retreat is a sensible move. If an attacker has a weapon and you do not, then get away as fast as possible.

If you do not have the chance to get away, here are some additional methods to help you fight back.

#1. Get Loud

When you know that escape isn’t possible, it’s time to sound an alarm. Get as loud as possible. Yell at the attacker to “Back off!” Push them away from you to create some space, if possible. Then get away if you can.

#2. Hit the Vulnerable Parts

If an attacker continues to press forward, then you must target a sensitive part of the body. The eyes, throat, and groin are your best options. The ears, nose, and knees are secondary vulnerabilities that can give you some leverage as well.

The best way to defend yourself without a weapon is to strike sensitive areas with repetition, and preferably multiple points. For example, you could kick an attacker in the groin and then grab their head, raise your knee, and strike them in the face.

#3. Maximize Your Damage

Never strike with a closed fist. This can cause your bones to break and put you at a disadvantage.

Use the hardest points on your body instead. Strike with elbows, knees, or even the top of your forehead. This will help you to maximize the damage you can create.

Use your weight to your advantage as well. Even if you are small-statured, adding force through your body weight can help to create more damage with each strike.

Added weight can also create separation, which can help you to get away.

#4. Know the Weak Point

Many attackers will grab you around the arm or the neck, especially if they do not have a weapon either. Even though this can be a scary experience, it gives you a definite advantage. This is because every grip has a weak point.

Look for where the attacker’s fingers come together. This is where you can escape.

Rotate your arm or leg so that the point of your bones is parallel to the weak point in their grip. Then use force to pull away. Grab your other arm if necessary to give yourself enough force to escape.

For a two-handed grip, twist your arms so that the attacker gets pulled closer to you. Then, as you escape, kick the attacker in the groin. Follow with a knee to the face, if possible.

If an attacker gets you around the neck from the front, then lift your hands. This naturally breaks the hold. Then twist out of it and get away fast.

If the hold is from behind, tuck your chin into the attacker’s elbow. This will give you some room to breathe, even if the attacker is stronger than you. Then pull down on the attacker’s wrist, pull up on their elbow, and drop to the ground quickly to get free.

You can defend yourself without a weapon, but having self-defense tools within reach will increase the chance that you can get away. Whether you carry pepper spray with you or you use another option, make sure that you stay safe out there today.

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