This is a writing advice blog, sometimes we get our personal pronouns a little confused and we do discuss the realities of combat. But, no. It’s not that I wouldn’t be qualified to teach you, I am, but the lessons I could impart would require you to be in the same room as me. It would be irresponsible to do otherwise. This is also why, for the most part, I don’t really recommend articles or videos for actual self-defense instruction. There is no video or article in the world (though the Michael Janich ones are very good) that can make up for the presence of a flesh and blood instructor.
For a raw beginner, their fighting style will simply generate too many flaws and when those flaws go uncorrected, they can be damaging to the student’s fighting ability in the long run. It’s not enough to know what to do, you need to know how to do it and how to do it properly so that you don’t hurt yourself.
If you are serious about learning how to fight back, then there are steps you can take:
1) Check out your local police precinct to see what they offer for self-defense courses, I know that may be asking a lot depending on who you are, but the truth is that the police do have some of the best self-defense programs available at the best costs and some of them are even offered for free.
2) Look into the different martial arts programs in your area, if your worried about your personal safety, find instructors who put their primary focus on real world application and self-defense training. Many of these sorts of instructors won’t take students under the age of 18 because of the seriousness of the knowledge they are imparting, but that’s the way it goes. Krav Maga, Muay Thai, and Jiujutsu are all solid choices in that arena. But, find an instructor who teaches what you want to learn. It will be time consuming and hard work, but the hardest path is often the most rewarding one.
The added bonus of learning an actual style is that it will make you less of a target. For most predators, the risk has to be worth the reward and picking a style with an established reputation in popular culture can go a long way towards driving people off before the first punch is ever thrown. Ask yourself, which sounds more scary: “Back off, I learned how to fight from a blog on Tumblr!” or “Back off! I skilled in Krav Maga, the style of choice of the Israeli Defense Force!”.
3) Your local college or community college will probably have a martial arts class in the school catalog (or several if you’re lucky). Even if you’re still in high school, it wouldn’t be too hard to talk to a guidance counselor and sign up for classes. Many martial arts professionals also run classes at the YMCA and other similar places (transfer this advice to what’s applicable in your own home country as needed). If you are a minor, this approach may go a long way towards convincing your parents to sign the consent form. I’ve known some great martial artists who got their start running classes at the Y, sometimes you can find a real diamond in the rough there.
Finding a real place to train and practice with an “in the flesh” instructor to learn from will also have a greater benefit of: building your self confidence through praise, give you other students to train with thus the ability to practice with different partners of varying shape, background, and size. Real world experience will make the difference in a tense situation, whereas just spending your time thinking about it or shadowboxing won’t really help when the time comes to hit someone.
We focus on fiction on this blog and post references for writers. This is because concept work is the limit of our ability to assist you. Bad advice can be just as harmful, if not more devastating, than no advice at all. If “fighting back” is something you are dedicated to pursuing, feel free to come off anon and we can discuss your situation in private and perhaps get you started on locating a school that’s right for you.
Until then, this is the limit of our ability. I’m sorry.