Four Steps to Self Defense

Four Steps to Self-defense can be summarized by the acronym — P A R R (Robert Koga). Proper self-defense training for women should, at a minimum, incorporate four basic steps.

  1. Prepare for dealing with hazardous situations and violence, which is done through proper and adequate training.
  2. Anticipate potential threats and hazards through awareness that may be present anywhere you are.
  3. Recognize actual hazardous situations and threatening people.
  4. Respond properly to threatening situations and people. Response requires rapid evaluation of the immediate threat and your capabilities while understanding all the possible strategies and options available to you.

The application of these four steps allows you to avoid the danger whenever possible, but also apply physical self-protection when necessary.

Stay Out of the Victim Pool

There is a story about two hikers who encountered a ferocious grizzly bear moving toward them.

One hiker immediately stopped, bent down, and started to tighten his shoelaces. The other scoffed at his companion, “You can’t outrun a grizzly. A man can only run about fifteen miles an hour, while a grizzly can top 35mph.” The other hiker replied, “I don’t have to outrun the grizzly, I just have to outrun you!” (Thomas & Bishop 1993)


Other links to assist in considering what to look for in a self-defense program:

Self-Defense for Women

Evolution of Martial Science

Self-Defense vs. Martial Arts

Beware of Outdated Self-Defense Methods

Choices in Self-Defense

Various “Quick Fix” Items