The most effective method to defend against a wrist grab is broken down into this training practice “3 Steps to Escape a Wrist Grab” with Chad Beal.
Women’s Self Defense: Wrist Grab Escape
Being pulled by the arm is typically a larger problem for females than males. Simply because in order for this type of grab it requires more strength than the person you are grabbing. Simply put, it will be overpowering.
The story goes: There was a college art student working on a project late one night on campus. She stepped outside for a cigarette. As she went outside she noticed another man she had not seen before. There was nothing about him that immediately caused alarm. He was opening a pack of cigarettes himself. He started patting his pockets and realized he did not have a lighter. So, politely he asked her, “May I borrow your lighter?” She said, “Sure.” Then she passed him the lighter and immediately a flirty conversation sparked. He was attractive, enough. So she didn’t see a reason to stop the conversation.
As the innocent conversation progressed a police car drove by. Then the man said, “Oh shit, that reminds me a guy ran into me today at a stop light and then he took off!! Can you believe that?” Then he added, “My tail light is busted. Is it possible for you to follow me over to my car? I am going to push on the break and I just need you to tell me if it is turning on and off. I really do not want a ticket. My vehicle is literally right over there,” as he pointed and signaled across the parking lot. She agreed and started across the parking lot to help her new friend. Then they started walking, and walking, and walking, and she realized his vehicle is a little farther than she liked. The lady said, “I’m sorry but I have to get back. I have a lot of work to finish and it is getting late.” The man replied with a sincere face, “Oh please no, my car is just right over here I promise. Please help me. I don’t know what I am going to do if I get a ticket. Please help.” She reluctantly agreed. As they approached the end of the parking lot she tried one last time to turn back right before he reached out and grabbed her wrist with both of his hands and pulled her behind the bushes.
The Unexpected Wrist Grab Defense
Now that the context has been set let’s unlock the keys to making this a successful defense. The first thing that EVERYONE wants to do when they get pulled is to pull back. This is futile since the opponent is assumably stronger. Pull as you might, but he will win this trade off.
Instead, make a fist with the hand that has been grabbed. Then, grab your own fist for extra strength and support. Do NOT pull back, rather, just go with. I know “going with” sounds insane. But it is only for a few hard steps and not an entire length of the parking lot. Then once you have grabbed your own hand, and moved forward bite their hand. It doesn’t matter how strong the man is, your jaw is plenty strong to hurt them. Bite them wherever you can but note that if you bite on the hand there is just skin and bones and it hurts much worse than being bit on a location with a lot of muscle. Then counter attack as needed. The main objectives are:
- Don’t try to over power a man
- Being bit hurts everyone
- Separate and run