Body Language

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Drunken Master

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You don't need to know anything about body language to subconsiously pick it up from someone else perhaps what they are feeling and how confident they feel in a situation.

So my question is should you be unlucky enought to be in a situation where you may have to defend yourself, does anyone have any advise on altering your body language, e.g. eye contact, facing possible attacker, head held high etc, to possible diffuse a possible situation.
:(
 
I would say eye contact not a challenging stare but one of confidence showing no fear.
 
Agreed, eye contact that is not a challange but rather says you will sefend if you have to.
Sometimes just the nod of your head and a small smile or saying something non aggresive works ( your walking down the street Three gang members are approching with that look in there eyes. direct eye contac with one of them nod your head and say morning ((in whatever their dialect is)). And keep moveing in a no agressive but positive (you'll take no s##t manner).It works or at least it has for me more times than not.
Shadow
 
As it has been said before, most thugs are looking for a victim not an opponet. I fond that a smile and eye contact go a long way. Often I am amused at the attempt of people to pick a fight with me they don't know me or my training they just see a skinny white guy, and I can see in they way the move they can not fight. Projected confidance in your self and your training can deture all but the most thick headed of people.


Despair Bear
 
A few years ago, I found myself in a situation with a large aggressive fellow outside a convience store. Never having had to put my training to any practical test, I was a bit nervous..but also too stubborn and full of pride to just walk away. I found quickly that what unnerved him most was that I didn't let him pull me into his game. I didn't bluster, I didn't swear, didn't threaten. I kept my voice friendly and calm. But I didn't let him see how intimidated I felt.
When he finally did gear himself up to attack, his movements were quite expected, and so, easy to block. When I saw he really wasn't going to let it go. I simply said 'fine', and dropped back into a comfortable stance. At that point his buddy jumped in and dragged him back to the car. The fellow actually seemed rather willing to be lead away.
I guess what worked for me in that situation is to not give bullies the reactions they expect...they have to think and it breaks their momentum. If you are lucky, the situation can be defused if they find their anger isn't returned. If not, at least you know what to expect..an advantage they won't have if you stay meek (without being weak).
 
Originally posted by Kurt

A few years ago, I found myself in a situation with a large aggressive fellow outside a convience store. Never having had to put my training to any practical test, I was a bit nervous..but also too stubborn and full of pride to just walk away. I found quickly that what unnerved him most was that I didn't let him pull me into his game. I didn't bluster, I didn't swear, didn't threaten. I kept my voice friendly and calm. But I didn't let him see how intimidated I felt.
When he finally did gear himself up to attack, his movements were quite expected, and so, easy to block.


So this guy is attacking you, and you just stood there and blocked
everything he threw at you? At what point would you have
attacked?
 
Originally posted by Kurt

A few years ago, I found myself in a situation with a large aggressive fellow outside a convience store. Never having had to put my training to any practical test, I was a bit nervous..but also too stubborn and full of pride to just walk away. I found quickly that what unnerved him most was that I didn't let him pull me into his game. I didn't bluster, I didn't swear, didn't threaten. I kept my voice friendly and calm. But I didn't let him see how intimidated I felt.
When he finally did gear himself up to attack, his movements were quite expected, and so, easy to block. When I saw he really wasn't going to let it go. I simply said 'fine', and dropped back into a comfortable stance. At that point his buddy jumped in and dragged him back to the car. The fellow actually seemed rather willing to be lead away.
I guess what worked for me in that situation is to not give bullies the reactions they expect...they have to think and it breaks their momentum. If you are lucky, the situation can be defused if they find their anger isn't returned. If not, at least you know what to expect..an advantage they won't have if you stay meek (without being weak).
If anyone on this thread is familiar with the Cheng Shou work, or Cheng Hsen T'ui Shou, ( of Master Peter Ralston). The mind has a bulit-in body language meter call "Feeling Attention". This attention register's another's intent which may be violent, friendly, shy etc,. It sounds as though you may have tapped into your potential in this area and did not really feel threatened by the simple assualt of your attacker. The basic premise of this feeling attention is to respond to the attackers intent before he/she can respond to your intent. This type of signaling to a potential attacker will either lead him/her to continue with the assualt or reframe from the assualt intention. If the possible attacker reframes, then you have won. If he/she does not, then your feeling attention is the alert mechanism for your intent to be present within this individual's experience, while you are having an experience of "Body Being". Through the practice of becoming " filled out (radiant and three dimensionally equal and full), currenting ( circculating feeling throughout the body), while extended, balanced, and responsive"! This understanding is a part of the basis of producing effortless power, in striking, kicking, and throwing! There exists two other principles which make up your total body being and they are " Body integrety( wholeness, unity, relaxation, collected in the center, and connected beneath the ground). Lastly, effortless power itself, ( using intrinsic strength and sensitive alignment to the occuring relational process)! Sincerely, In Humility; Chiduce!
 
Chiduce,

Do you have any examples of the way we can control our body language or things we should be aware of.
 
I have done a little research on the body language that we should be careful not to exhibit.

Walking with your eyes downcast: There are a lot of people that due to the emotions of depression, loneliness, sadness, and etc. Will walk with their eyes towards the ground with realizing it. This shows the predator that they are not paying attention to their surroundings and will be easier prey because of it.

Walking with arms and legs out of sync: In the military some of the first things that were pounded into us was that we had to walk with a certain form of balance. I found it impossible to do otherwise, but there were members of my squadron that just couldn't coordinate their bodies and would walk without a certain balance. Go for a walk and you will see that it is difficult to walk without taking a step with your right leg and moving your left arm to a forward position to stabalize you. If you walk so that arm moves with the same side as the leg.. right leg and right arm move forward.. or walk so that only your legs move and not your arms, you've labeled yourself as a target because you are destracted and are having intense emotional turmoil which makes you vulnerable.

Bumping into people: This isn't so much body language as just not paying attention. If you are on a busy street and you bump into a lot of people or require them to take large steps, a predator will take notice and label you as potential prey.

If you are playing with something in your hands.. You hair, your keys, your mustache, a coin, a ball... whatever.. These are indications of destraction. Again, potential prey material.

The best way to walk is to hold your head up with your chest out. Pretend as if you are a puppet with a string attached to the top of your head pulling you up.. not up so much that your feet leave the ground, but enough so that your back is straight and your shoulders are back. Look around and be aware of things. If you are being followed, turn and look at the person following you. Let him know that you know he is there. If you are stopped, appear confident, friendly, and polite. Be respectful no matter what. If he or she shouts and curses at you, keep being respectful. Don't raise your voice. If he/she wants to listen, they will. If not, then you raising your voice isn't going to do anything for you. Conserve your energy for when a strike is thrown. Stand with your hands at your side or one arm across your stomach and the other on your face (like you are feeling your beard), which is a passive type of guard.. Or if they are yelling at you put your hands up to shoulder level as if holding your hands up in surrender as you take steps backwards. This makes the bully feel as if he has already won and might leave you alone... but it also puts your hands up ready to defend yourself. Never fold your arms or put your hands behind your back or in your pockets. Don't stare him in the eyes. I don't say that because he will take that as a threat but because if you focus on looking him in the eyes, he might have a friend sneaking around behind you.

Move! Angles are preferable to backwards because there is a good chance you will trip if you move backwards. But if he advances you need to move. Its a whole lot easier to move yourself than it is to move him. If he grabs your shirt, let him. If someone grabs you its a good thing. Why? Because you know where one of his weapons is. If he has his hand on your shirt or arm, then you know that he's not going to punch with it. He probably won't kick with that side because he will have to remove his hand in order to get the most power and you can always just tug on his hand and force him to plant weight on that side to nullify the kick. If he goes to strike you with the other hand you can use the same motion to pull and force the other arm to go back a little bit which will reduce the power of the strike. So, if he has grabbed you, leave the hand there.. this is adequet reason to strike back, but you want that hand there. Now if he starts pushing or pulling you, that changes things and you begin to act. Practice this blindfolded. Have someone grab your lapel or arm and then throw a punch with their other hand. S..l..o..w..l..y at first. You will be able to feel the shift of weight that comes with the strike and be ready for it.

Above all, avoid situations where any of this information might be needed. Find a bar where the patrons don't tend to get rowdy. (like will attract like, people looking for fights will go where fights are known to occur) Go the long way around to avoid areas where the criminal element lurks. If you must go there, go there with someone else. Keep alert too. Use your common sense, primarily.
 
Kirk;

I didn't intend to attack. I intended to defend. When I realized he wouldn't be put off I dropped back into a comfortable stance...to defend a little more assertively.
 
Originally posted by Drunken Master

Chiduce,

Do you have any examples of the way we can control our body language or things we should be aware of.
I can suggest what i feel is the best way for adapting in serious environments. Total body awareness is the key i would strive for in tight situations that may cause violent confrontations to exist. One thing that i do to practice gaining body awareness is train in sitting meditation exercises. Sitting with the lights out in total or semi-darkness with one hand in the buddha position, with my tongue at the roof of the mouth regulating your breathing is a great way to gather awareness of one's surroundings! With eyes closed to view the body from the inside out envision the self looking at the left side first, right, front and then back starts the awareness. This leads up to envisioning the complete outside of the body in meditation. I practice seeing myself from the top view, bottom view and angled high views and gradually close the distances of envisioned sight to just outside my body and then expand the view wider until i'am looking at myself from the outside as if i'am two persons! Viewing myself sitting in meditation. There is no set time limit for this exercise, yet i prefer 5 - 15 minute sessions. This helps me to adapt in typically uncomfortable situations. I'am aware of my surroundings, aware of my personal functioning environment, aware of those close to my personal environment; aware of those approaching my environment; and relaxed and accepting of those whom care to enter into my personal mental space for possible confrontation. In this way, the possible attacker has what they feel is the decision to attack or not. Yet, what they do not know is that what they see is a projected illusion of the danger to come upon them. They then realize that they are within reach of an unknown, uncertain environment and most individuals/ even psychos are looking to see to the other side of their possible confrontation. So, they will not venture into a confrontation which they cannot at least have some predetermined outcome in their favor. As a matter of fact, i have been friends with several individuals which sadly, finally saw to the other side in there favor and murdered someone else in their attempt to figure me. Of course the grass is not greener on the other side of the bars! Sincerely, In Humility; Chiduce!
 

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