The news is full of stories about attacks on people here’s just a few…

a chef attacked one of his staff in a rage after renowned food critic AA Gill reported that his meal was ‘disgusting’ (which later turned out to be a joke).

…disgraced labour MP Elliot Morley was beaten up in prison as fellow inmates stole his £3,000 Rolex watch

…Wayne Rooney prostitute Helen Wood was beaten up in a pub after taught from other drinkers who recognised her from the scandal.

All of these attacks have one thing in common of course…the victims just didn’t see it coming. Obviously that is the advantage any assailant has on his/her victim which is why we should always consider our personal safety as a matter of routine…it should be as normal a thought as remembering to brush your teeth every morning. Now, don’t get me wrong…I’m not saying live your life in fear or always look over your shoulder it’s just about safety…you check your car don’t you? The tyres? The oil? That you’ve put the handbrake on? That it’s not in gear before you start the engine? So apply the same principles….

….what do I have on my person (watch, money etc) do I need it all with me where I am going? Why, I have to ask did MP Elliot Morley have a £3,000 Rolex with him in prison?

….if you a well known figure in an area where you might attract unwanted attention, have you considered how you will get home? Prostitute Helen Wood would have been better placed to apply the ‘flight’ aspect of her adrenalin rush when other drinkers got abusive rather than ‘fight’. Choosing to confront a situation of conflict is not the safest option. If you have an escape route for goodness sake use it. Run.

For the poor employee who got pushed down the stairs by his irate chef I have two tips and this stands for any situation of conflict that you may find yourself in. First of all my assumption would be that the poor employee who was pushed down the stairs must have turned his back on his boss. So his boss had the advantage of surprise and impact – your two worst enemies….so tip number one….

  1. Never turn your back on someone who is being aggressive towards you.

Our natural reaction when someone goes to attack us is to flinch away. My advice is to use this natural response to your advantage and convert your flinch into a forward movement and ideally a pivot to move out of the way. This is what I teach on my personal defence readiness courses and it does take some practice to apply. So tip number two is…

2. Convert your flinch into a forward pivot movement to get you out of the way.

Both these techniques work really well in situations when you find yourself in a conflict situation and keep you ready to protect yourself. But don’t be a hero, when the opportunity arises and it’s safe to do so, get the hell out of there.