Those looking for effective methods of protecting themselves in a self defense situation are often surprised at the vast array of products available to stop an attacker. Guns, knives, pepper spray canisters, stun guns, TASER devices, personal alarms, kubuton batons, how can you possibly choose? When evaluating personal safety devices, there are six questions you should ask yourself.
What are the legalities?
Select a device that is legal in your area when carried in your car, our pocket, and your handbag, and that is legal for you to use in a self defense situation. Although many are legal for anyone to carry, others, particularly knives or guns, may require a concealed weapons permit. Make sure that the self defense devices you are considering are legal in your area before purchasing them.
Will I carry it with me?
Be honest with yourself. Purchasing a self defense device will do no good if you keep it buried in a drawer at home. Choose a device that you will feel comfortable carrying in your pocket or purse. Smaller devices tend to be more convenient in this regard. In order to be effective, your chosen self defense device must be with you at all times, since you never know when you might be attacked.
Can I confidently use it?
You may need training before you can use some devices, such as guns, effectively. On the other hand, devices like pepper spray are easy to use with no training. You must be confident in your ability to use the device you choose, even when under stress.
Will it effectively stop the attack?
Some devices, such as knives, guns, and batons, require skill to disable an attacker instantly. Others, such as stun guns and pepper spray, will effectively disable an attacker within a second or two. When comparing the different kinds of self defense products, make sure to choose one with a good track record of use by untrained individuals.
Am I ready, physically and emotionally, to use it?
Nonlethal self defense products are popular among those who would not be emotionally prepared to inflict lethal harm, even against an armed attacker. Be honest to yourself about whether you could bring yourself to use the self defense device you have chosen. Even if you have the physical skills to be able to use it, you might not be able to come to terms with the idea of actually using it in a real-life situation.
Could an attacker use it against me?
Always consider the possibility that an attacker could wrestle your personal safety device away from you. However, many devices come with built-in protections against this possibility. For example, pepper spray canisters often have safety latches, while stun guns taken away from their holders become deactivated, so they cannot be used against you by your attacker.
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