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From Chiropractic to Pepper Spray, How Women Should Protect Themselves

By Sara Butler

Women: How You Can Protect Yourself

Every woman knows that when you’re walking alone anywhere, you grip your keys between your knuckles in one hand and keep your pepper spray ready to attack in the other. We’ve seen far too many movies or listened to too many podcasts about unsuspecting women who are just going about their lives and before they know it, they’re being held captive in some sicko’s dank basement.

Of course, it would be nice to not have to understand self-defense basics, or carry a taser or mace in our purse. It would be nice to simply be a girl or woman moving through the world without a care. But this is where we’re at, so everyone needs to understand the basics of protecting themselves.

The chiropractors at The Joint Chiropractic may specialize in spinal health, but they also understand the importance of the whole person. Feeling safe is one aspect of overall health, as is keeping your body healthy and strong to fight off would-be attackers at the drop of a hat. That’s why The Joint has put together these self-defense tips for women to help you stay safe and to help you keep your body in fighting shape.

Self-Defense Tips for Women

You don’t have to be a martial arts expert who does a perfect heel palm strike to get yourself out of a dangerous situation. All you need to understand is a few basics and how to land a well-timed groin kick.

Some basic self-defense tips that women should commit to memory include:

Be mindful of your surroundings - When you’re out anywhere, you need to keep aware of your surroundings and the people in them, scanning for a potential threat. Don’t wear headphones so you can hear things around you. Remember, people who may want to do you harm aren’t looking for a fight, they’re looking for an opportunity to catch you off guard. Don’t give it to them.

Trust your instincts - In the modern age, people don’t give enough credence to what their gut is trying to tell them. Remember, your body still reacts to threats as it would have back when your ancestors’ base of operations was a cave. There may no longer be sabretooth tigers out there, but there are still threats in your surroundings. If you don’t feel something is right, trust it.

Be Confident - Self-defense is another situation where you can fake it until you make it. Your body language says a lot to the world, so project that you are not someone to tangle with. To put it in simple terms, don’t look like an easy target. Keep your head held high and show that you’re paying attention.

Take a defense class - In almost every community, it’s easy to find a self-defense class to show you the basics of hand-to-hand combat and how to get yourself out of a dangerous situation. Defense courses may incorporate martial arts techniques as well as show you the vulnerable places to strike an attacker, such as the eyes and nose. These techniques come in handy if you don’t have a weapon to protect yourself with. Sure, you may not need to register your hands as deadly weapons Bruce Lee style, but you can learn how to use your elbows, feet, knees, forehead, fists, and even your fingernails to fight off an attacker.

Don’t get lured - You’re a nice person, right? Chances are if you see a person in need of help, you’ll step in to help. However, it’s vital to understand that some situations may simply be bait to lure you in and every woman needs to recognize what these situations are. It goes beyond sketchy vans with “Free Candy” etched on the sides. Sometimes people will appear to be injured and ask for help, say they’ve lost a pet, ask to use your phone, offer to help you in some way, or fake an emergency of some sort. Never get close to the car of someone on the street and recognize that your safety is the most important thing -- who cares if you come off rude, as long as you’re safe?

Stay in a group - When you can, stick together with others. If you’re walking to your car at night, get a friend or coworker to walk with you. If you’re going out for fun, don’t go there alone. There is safety in numbers, after all.

Run - When in doubt, run. Seriously, if you are in a situation that is giving you the heebie jeebies (that instinct!), don’t think you have to stick around to find out. Run to a place where other people are or try to flag down the help of another person. Don’t worry about appearing strange or hysterical because when it comes to your safety, does it matter how total strangers see you?

How Chiropractic Care Can Help Self Defense

To keep yourself safe, you have to engage all of your senses. It stands to reason that keeping your senses sharp, your ability to move well, and your central nervous system functioning optimally will only make you a more fearsome foe -- and chiropractic can help with that.

Chiropractic care can help manage aches and pains and treat injuries that may limit your range of motion. Many people may ignore minor aches and pains, but those can put you at a disadvantage if you’re in a situation in which you must fight to protect yourself. The chiropractors at The Joint can ensure that your body is free of joint dysfunctions that can put you at a disadvantage and also hinder the ability of your central nervous system to freely communicate with every part of your body. Once those lines of communication are open, watch out world -- you’ll be in optimal condition to deal with whatever the world is throwing at you

Eat Your Way to a Strong Body

Another aspect of self-defense that may be overlooked is nutrition. Yes, nutrition! Providing your body with what it needs to stay strong and work in the way it was made starts with how it is fueled. That’s why each day you should endeavor to provide it with the foods it needs.

Eating healthy doesn’t necessarily mean you need to count macros or get into the minutiae of nutrition. Anyone can focus on a few simple strategies to fuel their body appropriately, such as:

Eat whole foods - A good rule of thumb is that if you can’t pronounce an ingredient in a food, you shouldn’t eat it. Focus on whole, unprocessed foods as the bulk of your diet, such as whole grains, vegetables, and fruit. Lean protein is also an important component.

Eat the rainbow - When someone says to eat the rainbow, they aren’t talking about Lucky Charms. Eating the rainbow means you are incorporating a large variety of vegetables and fruits of all different colors into your daily meal plan.

Don’t drink sugar - You may have sworn off soda (which is great) but you should also be wary of other sugary drinks that may be hiding in plain sight. Fancy coffee concoctions, fruit juice, and even tea can have just as much or more sugar as soda, so pay attention to what you drink and focus on getting enough water each day.

Self-defense is, at its core, simply a way to take care of yourself. While it conjures images of Jennifer Lopez kicking the butt of her domestic abuser in movies or channeling your inner Uma Thurman a la Kill Bill, it’s about more than fancy martial arts moves. Caring for your whole body is also a way to defend yourself -- and that’s something the chiropractors at The Joint are happy to help you with. Now, excuse me while I shop online for some brass knuckles.

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