Another Wednesday, another edition of Geek Jitsu! Welcome back, fit and healthy geeks of the Internet! So far, we talked a lot about the physical and mental aspects of fitness and health, but this week, I want to focus on something somewhat different: self-defense. As you know, I’m an avid fan of martial arts, and whenever someone gives me the opportunity to talk about it, I will gladly ramble on for more than an hour. Often, the conversation will head towards the topic of self-defense, the cousin of martial arts. Opinions about the practicality and use of the different self-defense system differ, but I believe that everyone should know a few techniques. Why? Well, read on and you’ll find out!
Before I got really into Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, I was part of a self-defense course taught by a colleague of my brother and his brother (so many brothers!). Their lessons focused on practical applications of different technique, for example what you should do when someone grabs you from behind or pulls out a knife. The moves were based on the reality of the streets, and were clearly different from the katas and move sets taught by traditional martial arts. Next to that, my two teachers knew how to get you tired, by adding a bit of cardio training to every session. From this experience come my three reasons why you should also learn some self-defense.
It is healthy
While not every self-defense course will include fitness components, most will at least have a warm-up routine. For people who are as unfit as a brick, this is actually a good start. While challenging, self-defense lessons are not as taxing on your body as other, more cruel workouts, and they can get you used to working out.
It makes you confident
Knowing how to defend yourself will make you feel safer. Even if you live in a safe and secure neighbourhood, it is good to know how to defend yourself and your friends. Also, many modern self-defense courses include a bit of mindfulness and “mindset training”, teaching you thinking patterns and ways to use your perception in dangerous situations. It is a really soothing thought, when you know how to keep calm in case of an emergency, no matter if it’s an accident or a mugging.
It teaches you cool moves
Really, this is one of the best ways to convince people to try self-defense: you learn all the cool little tricks you can impress people with. No, seriously, some of the moves you’ll learn in Krav Maga or other systems are simple but nifty, and it feels so rewarding when you can pull them off. You’ll be amazed of what you will learn in just a few lessons.
Still not convinced to give self-defense a try? Well, share your thoughts in the comments, or hit me up on Twitter!