Strength vs. Weakness

In last month's column I explained how to get out of the way so you are not hit by the initial attack. That remains the most important action on your part. Let us presume that you have practiced the hip movement that will keep you clear of the attack. What do you do next? Always use your strength against a weakness, never try to match your strength against that of your attacker. Even the strongest person will, at some time, meet someone stronger than himself. If you never count on your strength, but always direct your attack to an opponents weak points, you will never be overmatched.

It is always preferable to talk someone out of their aggressive behavior rather than to use force. If your life is at stake, it is appropriate to use deadly force. The following points are very sensitive and take very little effort to use. These points must only be used in appropriate situations as using them can cause great harm and even death. Practice these points gently and with great care, this knowledge is for your protection only.

There are many "weak points" on the human body. I will start by describing some of the more obvious ones. Just about everyone is aware of a man's groin area and how painful an even slight hit is in that area. This area is equally painful for women. Using the hand or knee to the groin is usually most effective. The eyes are another well known "weak point". The bone structure around the eyes is also very sensitive to pain. Using fingers, keys, or any hard object to jab will be effective. The ears are another of these "weak points" to use in your defense. Most of our balancing senses reside in the inner ear and a broken ear drum can stop the most aggressive of attackers. A cupped hand blow to the ear can break the ear drum. One of the schools of Ninjutsu refer to the eyes, ears, and groin as "the three jewels".

The neck is a very vulnerable area of the body. Many nerves and important arteries pass through the neck and remain very close to the surface of the skin. On either side of the neck is the carotid artery which if constricted cuts off the blood supply to the brain. Three seconds will render a person unconscious. Not more than a few seconds longer can cause death. Even the shock of a light blow, to the carotid, can cause unconsciousness.

In the front of the body, where the neck joins the chest is a small hollow (below the Adam's apple). If a finger is pressed into this hollow, curled, and directed downward, the person on the receiving end will go quickly to the floor, even if only gentle effort is used. There are also other very effective points where the neck and the chest come together. If you explore these areas you will find spots that have the feeling of strings or cords. Pressing on those cords will cause intense pain.

Another area of effectiveness is on either side of the throat. Press a finger or fingers between the muscle and trachea. This is very hard to resist and requires no strength. At the base of the ear, where the ear attaches just above the jawbone, is a nerve. Press on the back of the jaw. This is a very painful point that can be use to control your attacker's head. This particular point is especially useful if your attacker has grabbed you from behind in a choke hold.

In a short column it is impossible to list all the "weak points" to be found on the human body. Next time I will describe a few more and explain how to use your body mass for power instead of relying on muscle strength.