When Push Has Come To Shove

Sometimes you can’t avoid confrontation no matter how aware you may be and no matter how non-confrontational your attitude might be. Sometimes trouble finds you. The problem for most of us is that while we are still flicking through our own rules of engagement, the opponent has long ago made up their mind what they will do, how far they will go. We are playing catch up for the most part.

One way to manage this is to have a plan in place. If suddenly confronted with a belligerent person, you might still be trying top placate and back peddle while they launch their assault. Wherever possible, if you can make some space you will have time to think and react, maybe even talk your way out of it. But what if you can’t? What if it is GAME ON! right then and there?

Remember your ABCs? Simple, basic and a foundation of reading, writing and communication. Well the same goes for stopping the fight once it either has begun or is imminent and you have no choice but to strike first. Believe me, striking first in such a situation is the best thing and the law does allow you to pre-emptively strike if you honestly believe you are about to be harmed.


Blood Flow


Like the triangle of Fire (Air, Heat, Fuel), if you attack any one of the ABC’s then you remove his ability to continue to assault you. Striking his airway, shutting off the blood flow and causing him to lose control of his limbs or equilibrium will all do the job, even with the biggest and meanest of attackers.

You can attack the airway with edge of the hand blows (karate chops) to the throat, or use an elbow or forearm or the web of the hand. You can interrupt the blood flow with edge of the hand blows to the side of the neck, shutting down the carotid artery to the brain. Snapping his head back with a palm heel strike to the chin or nose will stun as will cupped palm slaps to the ears, neck, eyes and face. Then you can cause loss of control with well placed elbow blows to the base of the skull or side kicks to the knee joint. Then escape!

My all time  Five Favourite Target Areas are:

Eyes -Control…if he can;t see he can’t find you

Throat/Neck… Airway and blood flow can be attacked

Knee Joint… Control, if he can’t stand or walk you can more easily escape

Groin…Control, if it causes him to be distracted, you can run but be aware all men instinctively protect the groin so surprise is the key

Face… Control as it distracts but also airway and even blood flow if the nose bleeds considerably and you smear it in his eyes or his mouth and jaw cause breathing problems

My Five Favourite Ways To Attack these are:

Palm Heel Strike – which can segue into a rake of the face on the back stroke

Edge of the Hand blow aka Knife hand or Karate chop

Elbow- Up, down, forward, back… a very versatile and powerful blow

Cupped palm slap- far more powerful than people realise

Lower limb strikes – knees, shin rakes and foot stomps, side kicks etc. Forget form, just kick and rake instinctively

All of these are simple and easy for anyone to do. The key is to do them as fast and as hard as you can with all your might and determination because once you resort to physical tactics there is no going back. You can try to talk your way out and if it fails, go for a strike. You can plead, beg, cry and if that fails, go for a strike. But if you go for the strike and it fails you have nothing left. So don’t hesitate to use it when you need to but go for it like a SAVAGE ANIMAL!

The three times when you need to use physical tactics you will either:

React Instinctively To Stimulus

React Progressively To Situational Developments

React Belatedly

While the first situation is like someone throwing a ball and you instinctively reach out and catch it, it can also mean you cover up to protect against the ball’s strike. Either way you are in no doubt something is happening and you respond. there is no time to think, no time to be scared, it is happening right this very minute and you need to do something!

The second situation is when a confrontation or interaction goes from bad to worse and you have time to be scared because you don’t know what the outcome may be. In this case you have time to realise you are in danger and form some kind of perhaps very brief plan but still acknowledge the threat and devise a response.Action dispels fear so take action and take it NOW!

The third reaction is when you are playing serious catch up. Perhaps you were in denial, unable to believe this person was going ballistic for real over something so trivial. Now they have made the first physical move and you have to take back the initiative and escape. This is, of the three, the worst one to be in. This is when you have no choice but to employ a physical response. This is when you could very well be, fighting for your life.

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