In a previously article I wrote about the advantages and disadvantages of owning a non-lethal weapon.
If you consider that it is necessary for your protection to get one, you will need to learn how to use it to benefit of its full power and protection. By training yourself or taking special courses about self-defense you will be able to protect yourself in any dangerous situations.
1. Defense Sprays
Buying a good Defense Spray is a great investment when considering your personal safety. It comes into many forms such as:
Stream mode – it sprays like a water gun and it can reach up to 10 ft. Since it is liquid form, it will not be affected by the weather condition, so if it’s windy you will not risk spraying yourself by mistake. The downside is that is not that effective if there are multiple attackers, and you also need an accurate aim.
Cone mode – it is like a hair spray bottle, but it has more force and goes at a greater distance. It can deliver at 2 ft. in width and 8 ft. in distance. The benefit is that it does not require an accurate aim.
Foam mode – it will spray like a shaving cream .It is ideal used indoors and it works better if the attackers are wearing glasses. The downside is that it requires a close range, about 4-6 ft. in order for it to work.
Fog mode – it sprays a large area, up to 25 ft. The benefit of this is that aim is not that important and you can protect yourself in case of multiple attackers. The downside is the same as the cone type, the wind can be an issue.
Gel mode – it sticks to the face and it can reach up to 15ft. The downside is that you will need to aim correctly, but it will not turn against you if there is a windy situation outside.
Some of the best known type of defense sprays are: Punch II, Mace Pepper Spray, Sabre Red Pepper Spray, Udap Pepper Spray.
Now that you have got one, how do you use it? Here are 4 steps to practice in your back yard and use a substitute for an attacker, like a watermelon or a canister.
1. Draw easily – practice as much as you can drawing out the pepper spray so that it will come out quick and naturally when faced with a dangerous situation. Some sprays come with a carrying case so practice taking it out as fast as you can without losing the spray. There are some that have 1 or 2 snap release process to draw, so practice doing this quickly. In a real situation, in case you feel threatened, do not waste time until the attacker comes at you, release the snap ahead of time.
2. Aim and Posture – the target is the attacker’s face , so that is where you will be aiming. Keep in mind the attacker will want to strike or grab you, so best will be to take a step back , to put some distance between you and him. Keep your hands up protecting your face and body.
3. Using the Spray – when using the spray, to have better aim, look at the attacker’s face while you bring the spray in line with your eyes. Once you release the spray, fan it back and forth, this will make up for the poor aim and also if the attacker is on the move. One quick advice, do not close your eyes, even if you are scared, this way you will have better chances at reaching the attacker.
4. Yell and Run – while using the spray yell as hard as you can “stop” or “help” and if you get the opportunity to run, run as fast as you can. If you use enough spray and your attacker is on the ground, this is the time to run, do not take matters into your own hands. He will be more aggressive than before and it is never good to risk it.
What not to do with defense sprays
- Spraying an innocent victim is a crime
- Don’t let children get access to it
- Do not use it from a moving car
- Do not use spray it into the wind
2. Stun guns
Before using the stun gun, familiarize yourself with the weapon. It is very important to read the manual that comes with it to know where the on/off switch is, the safety switch, the trigger or any other features it comes with.
There are many models you can opt in for, from high voltage ones to disguise models such as the pen stunner or tactical flashlight.
This is how you can use and test your stun gun:
- The first part is to read all the materials you receive with your stun gun to learn where is what
- Get familiar with the stun gun. Take it out from the holster and hold the gun properly so that the contacts are not pointed at your body. Hold it in a way that is comfortable for you and ensure that your fingers or any part of your person does not touch the contacts.
- Use the On/Off switch, most of the stun guns have a red mark that indicates when the weapon is on. Once you push the trigger button you will hear crackles and you will see blue arch of electricity coming from the contacts.
- Practice turning the device on and off as well as pressing the trigger as fast as you can. When dealing with a dangerous situation, it is best to act quickly as the stun gun requires being close to the attacker.
- Practice tacking the stun gun out of the holster then turning it on and firing the trigger.
- Put the stun gun in a place where you can reach it easily.
- When using the stun gun, it must touch the attackers body, and for maximum effect aim for the neck, torso or hips.
- Hold the stun gun on your attacker’s body until you bring him down on the ground. The higher the voltage, the faster he will be down.
- After he is down, run as fast as you can. The stun effect can last from 5 up to 30 minutes, depending on the voltage, the other person size and tolerance. So do no wait precious time, once your attacker is down just run.
What not to do
- Do not touch the contact while it is on
- Do not fire your stun gun for more than 1 second at a time in the air because this can damage the unit
Tasers work on the same principle as stun guns, but the main difference here is that it does not require you to be near your attacker because the barbed darts go as far as 15 ft. The downside is that both electrode barbs need to reach the target for the device to be effective.
When investing in a Taser gun, it is most important to check the manual as the manufacturer will explain how to insert cartridges and other necessities. The main focus will be your aim, as this is the most important part. With Tasers you only have one shot and if it’s a miss, then what you can do will be to just run. I recommend a Taser gun only if your aim is very good, but even so, the attacker can be moving constantly and it will be pretty hard to aim correctly. This are a few good Taser gun models that you can purchase TASER C2, X26c or M26c. Here is how you can use the M26c model:
- Remove the Taser from its holster and verify that the cartridge is inserted
- If you feel threatened , place the safety switch in the up (Armed) position
- Aim the laser beam to one of this key points: the torso, back, legs
- If the attacker is within the 15 ft. range , fire your Taser
- After the attacker is down run and call 911 for help
Tasers stuns have a blast for 30 seconds, then they stop, so once you get your attacker on the ground, this is your opportunity to leave. Using a Taser requires practice and you can do so around your house or in your back yard with different targets.
What not to do
- Do not point the Taser at innocent people
- Do not carry Taser cartridges in your pocket as they can be initiated by electrostatic discharge
- Do not carry your Taser in anything else besides the holster
- Do not tamper with live Taser cartridge because it can cause a discharge or malfunction and it can result in injury
- Do not leave it in the hands of children, probes may deploy unexpectedly if exposed to physical shock or static electricity and it can result in injury
4. Kubotans (pocket sticks)
If you get a Kubotan, then you will need to practice your self-defense attacking skills, because you will need to get close to the attacker, for it to be effective. Here is a few quick tips on how to use it:
- Strike using a Hammer Fist action or a Knife-Thrust motion and don’t forget to use your thumb to secure the end
- Push against sensitive areas to cause some damage to the attacker
- Practice your attacking position, have your knees slightly bent and flexible
- Keep the other hand in from of your body in case of retaliation
- Strike through your target, not at it
- Strike more than once
Although the kubotan appears to be simple and efficient, it does require considerable training in order for it to be truly efficient. You can take up kubotan training classes or there are some YouTube tutorials as how to fight using it.
What not to do
- Do not rely on a kubotan without training
Do not use the kubotans that you have attached to your keys as a flailing weapon to swipe across and attacker’s face, it will simply enrage your attacker and provoke him even more
If you consider using the rubber bullets then you will need to purchase a gun and basically you will need to train yourself to master your aiming skills. Rubber bullets can be lethal at a very close range and deaths have occurred in some situations. So do not point at innocent people and only use it when situation calls. As for practice, you can do this in your back yard with small targets like bottles or go to a shooting range. While in a real situation your attacker will be moving, it will be even harder to aim accurately.
I hope this tips will help you when considering what type of non-lethal weapon fits you best and how to use it.
Which of these do you think will be the most effective against an attacker? Share your thoughts in the comment section bellow.