Everyone needs to know the basics of how to defend themselves. With the state of our world today, you never know when someone might get it into their mind that you look like a tempting target.

Although your goal should be to escape, several real-world locations create natural trap points where someone could attack. You are vulnerable in everything from a toilet stall to an office with only one exit.

What can you do if you find yourself stuck and forced to fight? We’ve got some options for you!

Use a Hammer Strike

Take whatever you can find, put it in your hand, and use this technique to inflict as much damage as possible. If you’ve got keys, stick them as hard as possible in their eyes. The trick to a successful encounter with this technique is to avoid using your fingernails. Don’t clench your fist hard. Use whatever weapon you have and lash out.

If you have a little spare time and a lanyard, put your keys on it to have something you can swing at the attacker.

Hit the Groin

A solid front kick can incapacitate an attacker quickly when you impact the groin. The good news is that if you miss high, you can still knock the wind out of them to make your escape possible.

A firm kick requires a stable body. Lift your dominant leg off the ground, driving your knee upward. Extend the leg, push your hips, and lean back just a little. That motion lets you maximize your foot or leg’s impact on this sensitive area.

If your attacker is too close for a kick, use a knee strike using the same technique.

Get Low and Use Elbows

A bear hug attack from behind comes from an assailant who thinks they’re bigger and stronger than you. Use that perspective to your advantage by following these steps.

  1. Get low to create some space to free yourself. Don’t drop all the way to the ground to do this. You can lean forward a little, even if the grip is strong.
  2. Turn into the attacker with your dominant elbow, striking at their face with all your strength. Twist around and use the other elbow to continue the counterattack.
  3. At this step, you should have more room to work. Use another move to strike the face or groin, then escape from the situation.

Aim Away from the Chest

The biggest mistake you can make when defending yourself in a trapped area is to strike at the chest. People have a lot of resiliencies around the rib cage, which means you’re more likely to hurt yourself than them, even if you have a blunt object available to use. When you’re stuck, avoid aiming for the knees unless you’re trained in the kick that creates an advantage for you. Use all your force, let adrenaline fuel your aggression, and don’t be afraid to use your voice. If you can intimidate your attacker without using any of these techniques, you’ve found an easy way to win.