By Neil Ohlenkamp


  • Get a security alarm system.
  • Get solid core doors with dead-bolt locks.
  • Get a solid core bedroom door with a dead-bolt lock, or a brace.
  • Have a portable cellular phone in your bedroom if possible.
  • Don’t use your name or phone number on your answering machine.


  • Park close to any building you will be entering.
  • Don’t park next to a van or vehicle you cannot see into.
  • If you return to your car and a van has parked next to it, get in the door farthest away from the van.
  • Look under your car and in your car to make sure no one is hiding there.
  • Have your key ready to open the lock. Practice unlocking your car door by touch so you can remain alert to your surroundings.
  • If your car has an automatic lock that unlocks all doors at once, change the system to one that only unlocks the driver’s door automatically.
  • Lock your door as soon as you’re inside your car, start the ignition, then put on your seat belt.
  • Keep car windows closed, especially when stopped (even at lights).
  • Always leave yourself room to get away, an escape route, at lights and when parking.
  • Keep car and other keys on separate rings, or a ring that splits into 2, so that you can throw keys onto the ground and get away when he goes for them.
  • Check your mirror for someone following you. If you think you are being followed don’t go home.
  • Don’t hesitate to drive off or use your car as a weapon, if necessary.


  • Put up parameters. If a man’s actions make you uncomfortable, confront him or escape before the situation escalates.
  • Walk with confidence, don’t be a victim waiting for an attack.
  • Be aware of your surroundings. Carry a personal attack alarm.
  • Don’t be too predictable, vary your routine.
  • Stay in good physical condition.
  • If assaulted, even with a gun, and you are told to get in a car, don’t. The criminal will have more control if you do and you won’t come back.
  • Take every opportunity you can to learn more about self-defense and to practice the techniques you learn.

This award winning page is copyright © 1994/2004 by Neil Ohlenkamp, Encino Judo Club, USA. All rights reserved. Last modified July 4, 2004.