The news is full of people being attacked or mugged, to be fair I don't think it's any different to when I was growing up, we just have more access to news on the go and social media, so everything is reported not just one or two.
Watching how people today seem to have lost their street smarts I have compiled a basic list of 6 ways to stay safe, that you can do right now to be a little safer where ever you go.
The trick with this is to make It natural, I don't go arround thinking I'm going to get attacked or caught in an evacuation I just prepare myself naturally to be safe and be aware of my surroundings.
This article is not to scare anyone it is designed to help you start to staying safe.
There are hundreds of things that can be added to this list and plenty of people will have opinions on what I am suggesting, and that's ok, use what works.
So here goes.
1. Check the exits.
Wherever you go hotels, clubs, pups, shops etc always see where the exits are, if there is a fire or an evacuation you will already have the advantage knowing where to go.
2. Don't look lost.
When you are somewhere new do not walk around with your eyes glued to your phone, put one of your headphones in and listen to the navigation occasionally glancing at the screen, ask for directions from couples, elderly people or in a shop.
3. Walk safe.
When walking through the streets it's best not to wear both headphones in, if you enjoy listening to music wear them in one ear, be aware of people around you, put your travel card (oyster card/ bank card) in to a separate pocket so you can get home if someone takes your wallet or purse, stand away from the curb so that people on bikes are less likely to grab your bag or phone.
Zip up your handbag and wear the strap over your head and shoulder like a satchel and carry it to the front of your body, it's harder to snatch and very difficult to open without being seen.
4. Put your phone away.
Whether dining out at a restraunt or in the pub with friends having your phone on the table is full on advertising to the would be thief, get it out only when you need to use it.
5. Learn A Martial Art
Most self defence classes are set up for a short course of lessons, if you have no option but to fight your way out of trouble it's unlikely that in a moment of panic you will remember what you learnt in those 3 easy lessons.
In my opinion you remember through practice and repetition, join a martial arts club, I personally recommend Julian Gilmour of Camden Martial Arts
Julian teaches a blended approach to the fighting arts including Bruce Lee’s jeet kune do, Filipino kali, kickboxing and self-defence. The classes aim to improve your fitness and confidence, relieve stress and teach you some cool skills, all in a friendly and safe environment.
We learn techniques suitable for basic self-protection as well as combat sports - everything from early danger recognition through punching and kicking, all the way to clinch work and how to evade all these things. Timetable details are here: www.camdenmartialarts.com with more detail about what he teaches and why, here: www.camdenmartialarts.com/ about/
6. Know when to walk away
The best form of self defence is to walk away, if you have someone shouting in your face stay calm and walk away, if you can't walk away, stay calm but be on gaurd to protect yourself.
If a weapon is involved give them what the want your life isn't worth the contents of your bag or your pockets.
If you can't run and you are in danger of being hurt find an equaliser, pick up a bottle, a newspaper, a chair or a stool anything you can use to keep them at a distance or imobilize them until help arrives is perfect all the while shouting for help.
This list of 6 ways to protect yourself is no where near complete as we could easily go into one hundred tips, the tips I have given are not to scare you just to make you aware of what threats are possible and what to do to when faced with a threat.
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