Gastonia self-defense instructor shares advice to protect yourself as sexual assault suspect still on the loose

Protecting yourself against an attacker

GASTONIA, NC (WBTV) - There’s some advice from a specialist that could help you defend yourself if you ever find yourself in the middle of an attack.

Ryan Hoover, who runs FTF Fitness and Self Defense in Gastonia, says there are some items you can go out and buy to keep safe. Though he adds that the most important thing doesn’t cost one penny. Hoover says if you’re faced up against an attacker, your mind must be made up. You have to know that you are not going down without a fight. He teaches that concept everyday inside his gym during his self defense classes.

“Throwing things, attacking with everything you’ve got. People have defended themselves all the time with no training at all, so it’s possible,” Hoover said.

Some of Hoover’s clients have gone through some sort of sexual assault, so they’ve turned to him to learn the moves they wish they would have known before.

“It’s the best and worst part of my job. It’s the best part in that we do have the ability to help people, but the worst part is that we actually need to help people,” he admitted.

We know it’s not possible for everyone to join Hoover’s gym or others out there like his, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t other ways you can stay protected.

“Harden your door, get a dog … I’m a believer in being armed if you’re trained to use it,” Hoover advised.

He says, it’s even a good idea to create dangerous scenarios in your head, and then plan ways on how to escape them.

“If you know what to do in case of a fire in your apartment, you should know what to do when there’s an intruder in your apartment,” Hoover said.

Because you have the power to take charge of your own safety.

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