This is something most of us don’t typically think about…
But as “self-defense” minded as I am, I always remind everyone who comes to train with me PostFit, or any other place I’m training people at wether in Hartford or not, is that good self-defense isn’t just “learning moves” or “learning to fight”… it’s about staying safe.
Think of it as Personal Protection.
So, in short, here’s a quick list of 5 (or so) things you can do to stay safe during your holiday escapades. (I’ll have a few resources listed below the list too)
1. Vehicle Maintenance – i.e. good tires, windshield washer fluid full, lights in working order (and being used…), extra blankets, shovel, and other safety measures in place.
2. Dress Appropriately – Wear Extra Layers(it’s cold out there and you don’t ever know what’s going to happen). Appropriate shoes are a great way to prevent a slip and fall injury(they’re more common than you think)
3. Carry a Flashlight – Seems silly, but it’s dark almost all of the “non-working” hours, and people get creative with ways they can use the extra cover of night to take your things, or worse, YOU.
4. Keep Your Cell Phone Charged! – This is good advice for all the time, but in winter, car batteries can fail very easily, so you can’t rely on the ol car charger if you become stranded somewhere.
5. Practice Driving in Adverse Weather(somewhere safe!) – There are winter driving courses available(locally) that will help you learn to deal with a bit more than they taught you in drivers ed. Heck, it wouldn’t be a bad idea to practice moving yourself around on bad surfaces as well, you might need to run on the ice.
Most of this seems to be common sense, but we seem to overlook the simplest things in search of more complicated answers, I mean nothing can be that easy, can it?
Use the ol noggin to figure out a few other ways to be safe this holiday season. Just a few random thoughts here to follow and some bonus “things” for you are:
-Don’t be a jerk. If someone runs into you, apologize(even if it’s their fault!) I saw what could have wound up being a hospital visit for someone just the other day, all over some guy who just walked out into the street without looking first(he blamed the driver, colorful words were exchanged, thankfully everyone walked away)
-Keep your kids close. As fun as this time of year can be, don’t let your little ones escape to the various forms of merriment without you present. People are out looking for the perfect opportunity to grab unsuspecting kids from their parents, don’t be one of them.
I shouldn’t have to say this but….
DON’T DRINK AND DRIVE. There is literally nowhere you need to get so bad that it’s worth putting someone’s life and safety(and yours) at risk. It’s no different than walking around with a loaded gun and your finger on the trigger. Call an Uber, a friend, a family member, someone, but for Pete’s sake, don’t drive!
-Be Aware. This is the time of year where people try and take advantage of your “holiday spirit” by luring you into “helping them out” with something real quick. If they really need help, phone the appropriate person to help them. Don’t try and pull someone out of the ditch, give them a ride, lift something into their car, heck, you name it and I’m sure it’s happened or been a CSI episode at the least… Don’t be a victim!
I could seriously fill PAGES with all of this stuff, but I’m sure you have a life, and I have people to train… I hope you picked up what I’ve been throwing down, that is, the principles and mindset behind all of these scenarios that will keep you and your loved ones safe so you can enjoy your holidays for years to come!
P.S. I said I’d have some resources for some above mentioned things… and, I do.
My friend Craig over at D&D and Kasten Automotive can help with vehicle maintenance and winter ready your vehicle. http://www.ddmufflertire.com/
My personal favorite place is Cabella’s. They have clothes they have for cold weather that don’t have to look like hunting gear, so I’d check them out.
A personal favorite of mine, as well as my Hapkido Instructor, is the NEBO flashlights. They’re bright as hell, compact, and they look pretty sweet to top it all off! https://www.nebotools.com/prod_details.php?id=194
I’ve done Ice Racing for the past several years to help myself out, but I understand if you don’t want to subject your car to that abuse… so you should search Facebook for the Audi Driver’s Club’s winter driving course. One of the instructors teaches people how to drive race cars full time, so you’ll be in good hands!