Wednesday January 4, 2012

Women's Safety

Helping Make the Street Less Perilous

Self-defence course January 7 teaches women to be alert, aware and assertive – plus a few moves like Jagger

Staff/Voice/Submitted photo & copy


t's dark. You're alone. You're female. Someone is following you. Suddenly, there's a confrontation and the thug demands your purse. What do you do? 


Over the last month in Chilliwack, there have been several instances of violence against women on the street. In most of the cases the women weren't seriously injured, but were robbed of their purses and other belongings by one or more thugs.


In light of this, the Voice wanted to know what women should do, or anyone for that matter, when faced with a situation where one's safety and security is being compromised.


So we went to a local martial arts expert Steve Hiscoe, owner of Hiscoe Jiu-Jitsu on Young Rd., who also teaches local police officers, and he was happy to share the following course content and what you can expect to learn in one of his courses.


These workshops are packed with expert advice and techniques to help to keep you safer and could even save your life. The course cost is $30.


The new studio is located at 17-8635 Young Rd., is clean and is equipped with approximately 900 sq. ft. of matted area for the students’ safety.



Hiscoe Jiu-Jitsu

Tips Anyone Can Use For Staying Safe


Be Alert:

You must know what is going on around you, do not get caught in a zone of inattentiveness. Do you know if you are being followed, have you looked over your shoulder? Have you noticed the

vehicle drive by you numerous time slowing down to check you out? Have you noticed the

person sitting outside of your place of work or by your car? Know what is going on around you!


Be Assertive:

You must show an air of confidence and control about yourself, walk tall with your head up and

shoulders back. When walking, keep your hands out of your pockets so that they are ready to

use if someone attempts to grab you. When speaking with someone make sure that you look

directly at them and speak clearly and directly, get your message across. If the situation

escalates, do not back down or turn your back on the person, this is a sign of weakness, which

can be capitalized upon by your attacker.


Be Aware of your surroundings:

If you are in need of assistance, do you know where to go for help? Where is the police station,

24 hour gas station? Go anywhere you might be able to find refuge quickly. This rule applies

not only when at home, but anywhere you might find yourself. Try and learn your surroundings

when out of your immediate local.


Hunters and prey:

There exist 2 types of animals, meat eaters and grass eaters. (hunters and their prey) The

ultimate goal is to avoid looking like the prey. Do not be a grass eater. Why? The meat eater

preys on the weak, the sick. The most likely target is the animal who limps at the back of the

pack. Why is this animal the stalker’s prey? This animal will provide the least amount of fight or

resistance to the hunter. The hunter will have an easy time of catching and destroying its prey.

Do not be the prey!


Follow your instincts:

Your instincts are a vital part of the decision making process. Everyone has a sixth sense or

what some people call a gut feeling. Listen to these instincts; do not place yourself in a position

where you are not comfortable. Only one person can change a situation and that is you. For

example, if you are getting into an elevator with someone who you do not feel comfortable with.

If you are about to enter, wait for the next elevator. If someone is approaching you and you feel

uncomfortable, be direct and in control, do not feel like you need to go out of your way. Do not

be afraid to appear rude, remember it is your safety. Portray an image of confidence.


Being Assertive

  • Be direct and say what you mean...

“I don’t like what you are saying!”

“You are making me feel uncomfortable!”

“Stop!! Don’t come any closer!”

You may have to be hostile and or rude, but don’t apologize.

  • Walk away

Body Language

  • Must be practiced.

  • Walk with your head high and your eyes aware of your surroundings.

  • Roll your shoulders back and walk with confidence.

  • Practising body language can be made easy at work and at home and should become a part of your everyday lifestyle.

  • Keep walking away. Don’t stop

Eye Contact

  • Takes away the attacker’s element of surprise because he knows you have spotted him.

  • Shows that you have self confidence.

  • If a person invades your personal space making you uncomfortable, you should take a step away preparing yourself to react.

  • Keep eye contact and keep walking away

Downplaying the situation

  • Talking your way out of a situation and walking away

Defending yourself

  • Yell – Scream and make lots of noise.

  • Yell FIRE

  • A attacker doesn’t want to be detected; noise could be your key to escape.

  • Keep your yell short, no longer than 2 seconds in order to keep your strength.

  • Key words NO and STOP

  • Run – if possible

  • Scan your surroundings for;

Lighted windows,

Other people and escape routes.

Attack the Attacker

  • Take a deep breath and fight back with everything that you have focus on the vulnerable areas of the body such as the eyes and throat.

Fear Factor

  • The fear of injury.

  • Focus on what you have to do to your opponent, not on what he can do to you.

  • Focus on target areas, techniques, have a plan of action and become offensive rather then defensive. Fight mad and angry (pretend you just saw someone slap your child)

  • The fear of not knowing what to do.

  • This is overcome by regular and realistic training. If you train for situations then you are

  • responding to training.

  • Try and get details of the attacker such as height, weight, hair color, eyes, distinctive marks such as scars or tattoos.

  • Always report the incident to the police in the event there have been similar circumstances.

For more information call 604-793-6107, e-mail here or visit online at: 



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