How to Teach Yourself Self Defense Fighting Techniques

Written by kalyn villaneda
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How to Teach Yourself Self Defense Fighting Techniques
If a martial arts class is not an option for you, you can learn self-defence techniques at home. (Jupiterimages/ Images)

Knowing how to defend yourself can save your life. Learning self-defence techniques at martial arts or similar schools provides the benefit of learning from experienced instructors and having access to training equipment and partners. If a martial arts or self-defence class doesn't fit your budget or schedule, however, you can teach yourself self-defence techniques at home.

Skill level:
Moderately Challenging

Things you need

  • Self defence DVDs
  • Self defence books
  • Punching bags or dummies

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  1. 1

    Buy self-defence DVDs and/or books. DVDs and books are a one-time cost and likely cheaper than taking a self-defence course. DVDs and books also enable you to learn at home and at your own pace.

  2. 2

    Set aside time each day to study and practice self-defence. Start by learning some of the basics of self-defence, such as targets, strikes and stances. You can alternate between studying a book or DVD and practicing physically. It may be helpful to dedicate a room or space for your self-defence study and training to minimise interruptions. Practice for at least 15 minutes to half an hour daily to train your muscles in these new techniques.

  3. 3

    If you can afford one, purchase a punching dummy or bag. Practicing with a target helps you to increase your power as well as to improve your targeting ability. Your body--arms, legs, hands, knees and feet--need to be accustomed to hitting a target, otherwise you might hurt yourself using self-defence in a real situation.

  4. 4

    Visualise scenarios that require you to use self-defence techniques. How are you attacked? How do you defend yourself? What targets--for example, the attacker's temple, nose, throat, solar plexus, or knees--are available to you? Imagine the scene in as much detail as possible without becoming frightened or paranoid. This visualisation practice helps you to prepare for a potential attack so that you don't freeze up if an attack occurs.

  5. 5

    Shadowbox. Pretend you are being attacked and defend yourself against your invisible attacker. Practice putting combinations of punches, elbow jabs and kicks together. Remember that a good defence combination includes only two or three moves--no more. Attack vulnerable targets on the attacker's body. Try to be as realistic as possible when creating your combinations. If you discover a combination that feels easy and natural, practice it repeatedly so your muscles "memorize" the moves. In addition, continue trying new defence moves and combinations.

  6. 6

    Exercise. Even though defending yourself in an attack should ideally only last a few seconds, fighting requires endurance and energy. You may also need to run from an attacker. Therefore, include strength-training, such as push-ups and sit-ups, and cardiovascular exercises such as jogging, in your daily self-defence training routine.

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