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About Self Protection

If you sense a danger of sexual assault, try to avoid confrontation. If you can't avoid confrontation, your own imagination and initiative are your best defenses. In any assault situation the most important thing to remember is to remain calm and avoid being isolated with the attacker. Immediately attempt to leave the scene and go to the nearest lighted public place. You may wish to attempt verbal or physical resistance.

Verbal Resistance

If the attacker has a weapon you may decide to use verbal resistance. There are many ways to use your voice to protect yourself. Trust your feeling about whether yelling or talking calmly would help you the most.

Physical Resistance

  • The goal of physical resistance is to react immediately, use your body or other available weapons, and escape.

  • An available weapon includes objects such as an umbrella, lamp, ashtray, bottle, purse, etc.

  • Five vital targets on the attacker are eyes, nose, throat, groin, and knees. The idea is to disable rather than hurt the attacker.

Be realistic about your ability to protect yourself. Practicing rape avoidance requires action, but you must feel confident with whatever measures you decide to adopt.

Rape Aggression Defense (RAD) Program

The Rape Aggression Defense (RAD) Program taught by UHPD officers empowers female students, faculty, and staff to combat various types of assaults by providing them with realistic self-defense tactics and techniques. This empowerment is taught through four basic principles: education, dependency on self, making one’s own decisions, and realization of one’s own power. The objective of RAD is to develop and enhance self-defense options for women. The course, which consists of four, 4-hour classes, begins with awareness, prevention, risk reduction, and risk avoidance, while progressing to the basics of hands-on defense training. The classes provide women with the knowledge to make educated decisions about resistance. Classes are open only to female students, faculty, and staff. In order to successfully complete the course, students are required to attend all four classes. Please contact the UHPD Crime Prevention Office for more information or to schedule a class.