Real self-defense is first of all about avoiding being assaulted or even bothered, about seeing trouble well ahead and not walking into an ambush, about discouraging an attack by your demeanor, and only when all else fails is it about neutralizing an attack that could not be prevented.
1. Keep your hands up
This is something boxing coaches remind their fighters of upon entering the ring, and continue to do so until the end of their career. Most of all strikes will either be blocked or the force lessened if your hands are up. Also, watch the Rocky movie. His hands are down most the time and he gets hit a lot. Take advantage of his mistake.
2. Take him to the ground
If you close the distance, you may be able to trip, drag, or throw him to the ground. If you’ve ever wrestled, used what you’ve learnt to get a top position. If you get a top position on the ground you can strike your opponent without getting attacked.
3. Close the distance
Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu will tell you that in any self-defense situation close the distance as quickly as possible. If you are too close to him to strike you, then you can’t get hurt. Muay Thai will tell you that the clinch is among the best places to strike your opponent. From here you can dish out elbows, knees, and some close range punches.
4. Hit first
If you permit your attacker to hit you first, you are making a bad situation worse. Now you have to recover from the strike, and work to regain momentum in the fight. Hitting first makes the attacker defend himself, something he won’t be used to doing.
5. If you get hit, it’s not the end of the world
Getting hit isn’t fun, but it’s not the end of the world. Remember this is a fight, not a beat down, and expect your opponent to put up a fight. Take the shot, regain composure, and get back in there! It’s much better than standing still and getting hit.
6. Your main goal is not to win
If you hurt your opponent unnecessarily, you can find yourself in court. Also if you stun your opponent somehow (for example, you knock the wind out of him) you don’t need to do anything more – just run. You will find that you are not hurt and you are not getting sued. That’s winning to me.
Self-defense is a countermeasure that involves defending the health and well-being of oneself, or of another, from harm. So take into consideration this. It is not a battle to win.