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The Force Continuum
Part 2: Body Movement and Posture
Moving yourself out of a trouble zone, either by taking a different route, or by effective positioning, is the first level of the force continuum. If you have to stay within a trouble zone, assuming a ready posture can often discourage attackers from assaulting you.


 More of this Feature
• Part 1: Introduction
• Part 2: Body Movement
• Part 3: Communication
• Part 4: Control Moves
• Part 5: Less-than-lethal Weapons
• Part 6: Impact Moves
• Part 7: Lethal Weapons
• Part 8: Summary
 Join the Discussion
"Maybe you think of the story above, 'What a coward, running away from a fight. Wuss!', but I am proud of it. I overcame my base animal urges and dealt with the situation as a human being should, with thought. And I won."
Rev. Phil
 Related Resources
• Color Codes for Combat Readiness
• Martial Arts: Aikido
• Martial Arts: Weapons
 From Other Guides
• About Law Enforcement
• About Psychology

Stay Out of Trouble

Paraphrasing Sun Tzu, the best way to win a fight is to avoid fighting. At its simplest, this tactic is the proverbial "stay out of dark alleys." If there's a safer way to get to your destination, even if it takes you a bit longer, it's worth the trouble.

"But I'm a nth degree black belt," you might think. "I can handle anything." True, you might have the skills to react to and deal with any violence. However, you'll have to deal with the legal repercussions, including submitting to a police interview, possible detainment, and in the worst cases, lawsuits from your assailant. Sure, you might've taken the bad guy out, but when you get sued and have to pay for his dental work, you'll wish you hadn't gotten into the fight in the first place.

Assume the Position

If you can't move your body out of harm's way, you can still provide yourself a positional advantage. Maneuver your body so that you have a good positional gap between you and the likely threat. Angle your body so that if he or she does attack, you can meet the attack with your best techniques on your strong side.

Stand Tall

Your posture also can help defend you. Besides assuming a stance that allows you to fight immediately, you can also project an air of confidence and security. Often, just being alert, "in Orange", causes you to exhibit this attitude.

If you appear to be a victim, you'll become one. Criminals look for easy marks--individuals who seem like they might be a little too much to handle get passed up for someone easier.

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