Tuesday, July 3, 2012

5 Tips for Defending Punches - 1 for Each Knuckle

Many assaults involve punches.  Learning how to defend against such attacks comprises a significant part of our self defense training at IKMF Toronto.  Punches pose a serious problem as they can come from different directions, angles, and heights. Here are some basic factors to consider when defending against punches: 
  • Direction.  Is the assailant in front of you or do you happen to catch a glimpse of a fist flying from your right side (a sucker punch)?  Direction, will among other things, influence how you move your body and how you use your hand/arm to re-direct or block the attack. 
  • Circular or Straight.  Like answers to questions, punches can be circular(hook punch) or straight(jab, or cross).   
  • Height.  An attacker, for example, can deliver a hook punch to your head and a hook punch aimed to your kidneys.  Same punch but you need to recognize the height or he is going to connect.
  • Where are your hands?  Not just a legitimate question on a crowded subway or a dance floor.  Are you waiting for a subway/cab with your hands by your sides or are you texting with hands in front?  Perhaps your hands are in front of you as you try to calm an aggressive person.  Wherever your hands are they need to intercept an incoming punch in the most efficient/direct way possible.  P.S. Your parents were right.  Don't walk around with your hands in your pocket. 
  • Your natural reaction.  Are you surprised and jerk your head away from the incoming fist?  Maybe you move to the side?   Do your hands try to swat away the incoming strike? Your defense must grow out of this initial response to be effective.  
Our training gives the skills to defend against all punches by refining technique and improving reflexive responses. 

If you have any questions feel free to contact me.

Stay safe,

Christopher Gagne
Lead Instructor and Owner
International Krav Maga Federation(IKMF), Toronto

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