In a physical confrontation the goal is to neutralize the attacker and protect oneself from harm. There are several techniques that can be used to neutralize an attack, but in this article, we will be discussing the four major neutralizations: Avoidance, Redirection, Deflection, and Convergence.
Avoidance: Avoidance is the simplest and most effective technique for neutralizing a physical attack. The goal of avoidance is to remove oneself from harm's way by either moving out of the attacker's range or moving away from the attack. This can be achieved by stepping back, ducking, or moving to the side. Avoidance is often the best option when facing a stronger or more skilled opponent, as it allows the defender to maintain distance and assess the situation. Also, completely avoiding an attack by using Situational Awareness to keep you out of harms way is the most effective form of self-defense.
Redirection: Redirection involves using the attacker's energy and momentum against himself. This can be achieved by stepping to the side or turning the attacker's force in a different direction. For example, if an attacker throws a punch, the defender can redirect the punch by stepping to the side and pushing the attacker's arm in a different direction. Redirection requires timing and precision, as it relies on using the attacker's force against them. Redirection can also be used prior to a confrontation by redirecting the attacker's focus. For example; you might point out cameras that would catch the attack on video, or offer an item you are carrying to appease the attacker and move the focus away from harming you to the object.
Deflection: Deflection involves using the body or an object to block or redirect an attack. This can be achieved by using the hands, arms, or legs to block a punch or kick, or by using an object such as a chair or table to deflect an attack. Deflecting an attack before it happens can be as simple as walking into a store or crowded area to deflect the attacker away from you.
Convergence: Convergence involves moving towards the attacker and neutralizing the attack by getting in close and controlling their body. This can be achieved through short rapid strikes to effective targets or using takedowns. Convergence requires a high level of skill and training, as it involves getting in close to an attacker who may be larger or stronger. Prior to the physical conflict, you may attempt to converge / move aggressively towards the attacker to try to intimidate. However, this should be a lost resort and be prepared for a physical confrontation if this tactic fails.
In conclusion, the four major neutralizations - Avoidance, Redirection, Deflection, and Convergence - provide effective techniques for neutralizing a physical attack or stopping one before it happens. These techniques require a combination of skill, timing, and physical agility, and can be used individually or in combination depending on the situation. However, it is important to note that physical confrontation should always be avoided if possible, and that these techniques should only be used as a last resort in self-defense.