Re: Bad Advice and Self Defense
You are right! That type of training is some of the most effective training available for self-defense courses, particularly for women. That being said, the cautionary notes that typically do follow those courses are as follows:
1) What we know about the learned behaviors is that there is a steady drop off in learned behaviors unless the skills/behaviors are practiced on a regular basis. Most people do not take yearly refresher courses (psych. of learning would suggest monthly refresher experiences). If you hurt a person without disabling them (or even worse) and the person is good and angry, then there is a very big problem that know has to be addressed, particularly since that person is now anticipating a fight.
2) If you are caught unaware and/or unable to respond appropriately (a women listening to an i-pod, wearing high heels and both hands are filled with handbags, shopping bags.....) then the odds of that person successfully fighting her way out of that encounter are very small.
It is very important for people to remember (or even research) the psychology of the aggressor. These perp.s hunt for an easy prey. They do not look to assault a woman who is aware of her surroundings and appears to be a "difficult target." Victims are typically chosen because they stand out in a bad way from the environment, are clearly unaware of what is going on around them, and seem like an easy mark. That is why simple preventive/protective measures are so important.
As an interesting aside, my wife started Aikido for the following reason. About 19 years ago, she was walking in NYC (she works in the city) and was wearing a gold chain necklace (she rarely wears that kind of jewelry). She stands about 4'11". A large African-American (about 6'2") ripped the chain off of her neck and started to run away. She took off after him yelling at him! She chased him for several blocks. A fire chief doing an inspection of a building saw what was happening and radioed his men to help her out. They joined the chase and this tired guy finally got taken down by an undercover cop. My wife was asked what she would have done had this perp. stopped and moved towards her in an aggressive manner. She had NO good answer and realized she needed to learn something! She appeared to be an easy mark (no pun intended!), but her response helped in getting this person put behind bars for several years without her getting hurt! When this guy first walked by her, she recognized that the guy was casing her and quickly dismissed that information rather than act in a protective manner. She was lucky and learned from that incident.