1. Assess the situation and the individuals. Walk away when something is not right. God gave you a brain -use it.
2. Don't take unnecessary risks (the underpass might save a minute, but "better late in this world than early in the next "-as my Great Aunt used to say). Think about dangerous places, bank machines, car parks, anywhere where you are alone (always lock the car when you get into it -get the habit).
3. Protect yourself at all times. Going to help someone is very heroic, but it is better to keep yourself safe and call for help from the professionals (after all that is what we pay our taxes for) and can be a trap of course, just call me paranoid.
4. Robbers and muggers are generally after your wallet, purse, mobile phone, walkman etc. they probably want this without a fight, obilige them; and certainly don't chase after them and get run over and killed (as sadly happened not long ago in London). But remember these people are scum and will have no "morals" about causing you harm.
5. Don't panic. Think of a way out. Leg it and shout fire (don't scream people will think you are messing about). Street fighting is very dangerous, particularly with every wimp in the place carrying knives.
6. Ladies, many self defense courses teach -go for the "vulnerables". Well a good "package check" does hurt, and I speak from experience, but remember that it is not an easy, or large, target to get (particularly if the assailant is on guard). Shouting, struggling, and resisting works well.
7. Rape is about power (not sex), and men are at risk as well. Statistics show that two are less likely to be attacked than one. Also, the use of drugs in drinks (so called date rape drug) has been on the increase; but just being drunk is going to reduce your power of "Assessing the situation". So will being on the phone, or plugged into a walkman. Be completely aware of your surroundings at al times.
8. Remember the fundamentals of self defense are Stamina (the ability to wear down your attacker etc.), Reflexes (learnt "subconscious" responses to punches like blocks etc.), and Technique (various options that can be used, a kick or arm lock etc.) Sadly these are not downloaded like in the Matrix, but are acquired over time and with practice. A two day self defense course is great start, but that will only give you the fundamentals of Technique and possible a false sense of security..
9. Common sense. Use it.
Indepth Self Defense Discussion
The majority of people we meet are human, but around 1 in a 100 is not. Make no mistake, these are scum and they will think nothing of hurting you, the people you love, or just trashing your house. Please excuse the paranoia, these pages are not to make out the world is a terrible place or that the majority of people are evil, just to present some information that hopefully will make you think.