The term „Self-Defense“ means the avoidance and defense of attacks towards physical as well as mental integrity of a human. By defense against non-physical attacks one speaks of Self-Assertion.
- Avoidance: Avoiding potentially dangerous situations, e.g. kids getting into a car of a stranger or steering clear of certain groups of people.
- Defense: If avoidance and deterrent did not work. In most of Martial Arts the opponent is not hurt nowadays (except e.g. boxing); however, in acts of Self-Defense one can use such techniques. In realistic situations of defending oneself there is often a imbalance of power: the attackers are stronger or more numerous than the defender (because otherwise the attackers would not act). In Martial Arts one wants to win against an opponent who is equally strong, in situations of Self-Defense one wants to escape from a superior attacker.
- Systems of Self-Defense: These were often made with the sole alignment for Self-Defense. They differ from Martial Arts because of them missing artistic or spiritual elements. Systems for Self-Defense are often used in instructional institutions for the military or the police.