The Bear Hug

An attacker may sometimes catch you by surprise when approaching you from behind. This is often also the case when they are part of a group. This attack may be aimed at restraining you while another person attacks. This may even happen at a party where there is a large crowd of people surrounding you and someone suddenly grabs you from behind without your consent.

When an attacker’s arms are wrapped around your waist or chest, though it may be a natural reaction to try to fight against it, it is often challenging to force yourself out of this position. Now, there are two possibilities here based on how you are being held. Either your arms are trapped next to your body with their arms around you, or your arms are on the outside of their arms and free to move around. In this blog, we will be going through what to do if your hands are free to move.

If your hands are free to move around, which is usually more likely, you should execute the elbow punches mentioned in the previous blog. (As a reminder: The motion is done with a lot of thrust to hurt anyone behind you at the time of this counterattack. Keep in mind that the opponent must be very close to you to be able to feel the maximum impact of the hit.) This time, however, you will not have to step backwards to be able to perform this, as the attacker will already be right behind you ready to receive the blow to their solar plexus (which will cause them to lose their breath). 

If they refuse to let go, then your role is to continuously repeat the elbow punches until the pain they are in is unbearable and their body forces them to let go. To ensure that you are able to hit their chest with your elbows, it may be necessary to twist your body to gain momentum and get the correct angle. 

However, if you are unable to use your elbows to hit their chest, you can also aim for the head. To carry out this movement, your elbows should be pointed out to your sides, perpendicular to your body, and your forearms and hands facing forwards (as if you have wings). Then, as your body twists, your elbows would make direct contact with the face. This should be repeated multiple times until they have let go.

Instinctively, as they move one way to dodge an elbow, if you rapidly throw an elbow from the other side, then they would move straight into your next attack. Also, if you do not manage to hit them, the repetitive twisting motion will make them slowly move backwards and loosen their grip and let go as they try to prevent themselves from being hit.

As usual, it is vital to practice getting your arms in the right position for muscle memory to be built, and for the techniques to be effective if used.

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