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Defending Yourself

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Defending Yourself

Old 05-23-19, 08:04 PM
  #1  
mjac
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Defending Yourself

This is a serious discussion for the men on Bike Forums. Not the little boys.

There are are three basic questions.

1) Have you ever been assaulted while riding? What happened and what did you do?

2) What measures have you taken to defend yourself and how far are you willing to go?

3) This one is personally important to me. If you primarily ride on one particular Bike Path at specific times, sunrise and sunset, and were assaulted one evening on that Bike Path, would you just avoid that section of the Bike Path in the evening, which is the only time they would be there, or would you ride anytime and anywhere you wanted even though it might mean defending yourself using very drastic measures?

Last edited by mjac; 05-23-19 at 09:05 PM.
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Old 05-23-19, 08:43 PM
  #2  
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Originally Posted by mjac View Post
This is a serious discussion for the men on Bike Forums. Not the little boys.

There are are three basic questions.

1) Have you ever been assaulted while riding? What happened and what did you do?

2) What measures have you taken to defend yourself and have far are you willing to go?

3) This one is personally important to me. If you primarily ride on one particular Bike Path at specific times, sunrise and sunset, and were assaulted one evening on that Bike Path, would you just avoid that section of the Bike Path in the evening, which is the only time they would be there, or would you ride anytime and anywhere you wanted even though it might mean defending yourself using very drastic measures?
1. No
2. None.
3. Yes, I would avoid that bike path before taking drastic measures, especially if the assailants were minors.

-Matt
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Old 05-23-19, 08:55 PM
  #3  
AlmostTrick
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1. No

2. Maintain awareness and be prepared to avoid and/or confront or react. I have decades of martial arts training. I'm am willing to go as far as it takes to eliminate any threat to my wellbeing, and no farther.

3. It's always better to avoid, if you can. If that's not possible, then be prepared.

4. This is one reason why I believe roads are safer than some paths.
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Old 05-23-19, 09:05 PM
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1) - yes, sort of. Outside Boston MA, passenger in a passing car threw an unopened soda can at me. Hit me on the back, but startling more than anything. The driver of a following car took their tag# and flagged me down at the next intersection to give me the #. I passed it on the cops, but nothing came of it
2) Only thing I've ever been in a position to respond to are dogs, and I either outrun them or head straight for them and yell really loudly. This usually throws them back on their heels long enough for me to outdistance them.
3) Avoid - there are endless places to ride a bike. I ride on the road exclusively, so while it's not ideal, I don't have to worry about pedestrians etc messing with me. Nothing would persuade me to ride regularly on an MUP.

I'm assuming that this is more of the same thread that recently went off the rails and was shut down. If nothing has changed since then, you had a pretty unpleasant run-in with three teens on bikes. I don't know if you've been back there. If you haven't, then this might have been a once-off, but the little feckers are clearly in your head, and the only way to get them out is to go back and see if they're there again. If they're not there, then chalk it up to bad luck and get back to riding. If you have been back and they were there again, then it looks like they've figured out your routine, and now you're sport to them. As I see it, your options now are either (i) find another route or time, or (ii) film an incident and take it to the cops. If they won't do anything, then confirm that you're on solid legal ground for carrying and using Mace or equivalent. Film the next encounter, wait until they have clearly committed some form of harassment or assault, then blast them. My concern is that it could go two ways - they might have learned a valuable lesson and stop screwing with people, or they might escalate. Maybe find another route in any case. Whatever you do at this point, don't bring a gun. If you draw it, you'd better be prepared to fire it, and remember that, at this point, these are presumably unarmed teens - little feckers certainly, but unarmed - and doing something irrevocable will bring a life-changing ton of crap down on your head

Last edited by Litespud; 05-23-19 at 09:27 PM.
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Old 05-23-19, 09:10 PM
  #5  
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Assaulted? If you call getting punched off a bike, pushed off a bridge into a river, beer cans thrown at you and drivers swerving to run one off the road then yes all of the above. But that was 40 years ago. We have it good today on that front in my opinion. The problem today is primarily the distracted drivers. I have not encountered any physical threat while riding in years.

Have I defended myself? I've only had to defend myself from mean farm dogs. The cars and trucks that pushed me off the road years ago just kept going.

I would never choose to ride a route where there is a high likelihood that I would be assaulted.
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Old 05-23-19, 09:14 PM
  #6  
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1) Only by a dog. Chased me on a country road. Frame pump to dog snout took care of that.

2) I had to break a guy's nose once, back in '93, who attacked me with a knife, but I was walking, not on a bike.

3) I personally wouldn't change my habits because of some scumbag. The world can be a dangerous place, no matter where you are. But then, I've been in and out of martial arts since I was 5.

Last edited by LAJ; 05-24-19 at 05:41 AM. Reason: No Gun Talk
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Old 05-23-19, 09:39 PM
  #7  
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Cannot recall any issues than yelling and arm waving while on a bicycle. Well, was attacked by pit bulls and nearly killed---.

I am very non-confrontational and would probably avoid higher risk areas and always would choose to retreat/avoid conflict. But if somebody is determined to corner me, and at 65 yo, I am much less prone to running as I am not all that fast anymore, especially if my wife/loved one were there as well, they may just get what they want, a conflict and it is not going to go well for them. And that goes for the four-legged variety of assailant as well as the two-legged sort. I always carry.

Last year, I pulled into a gas station to refuel, yes, on my motorcycle. While fueling some dude hauled off and punched me in the back of the helmet hard. I turned to him and he swung again. I moved away him and he turns and goes back to his vehicle and futzes about and then leaves. I went back to topping the bike off. I never said a word because it would have escalated the situation. I have no idea what his issue was. The attendant then came out and asked if I was okay and if I wanted the police, I declined the fuss. And, yes, I was carrying.

Last edited by Loose Chain; 05-23-19 at 09:46 PM.
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Old 05-23-19, 09:40 PM
  #8  
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No I have never been assaulted while on my bike.
But I have opinions on your situation.
1. They sound like bully's and I don't like bullys and I never ever let a bully try to bully me. Only anonymous posters could get away with that. My way of life means trying to treat people the way I want to be treated and never ever posting anything I wouldn't say to someone in person.
2. My advice any time you're about to get into an altercation is: Ask yourself 2 questions. Do you want to fight this persion? If the answer is no then back out. If the answer is yes, proceed to next question. Are you willing to hurt this Person? If the answer is no, walk away. If the answer is yes. Then strike first, strike hard, no mercy. Striking first means using a chair, a bottle, a weapon. Strike hard means making them no longer and threat. No mercy means I'm gonna do whatever it takes to make sure I stay alive.

Finally if youre talking about those guys that harassed (or assaulted) you last time and your asking should you use extreme measures, then refer to my previous advice.
Side note, remember you must live with your decision but in my experience the showing of a weapon or firing of one is enough to keep harm at bay and I would never ever let bullys dictate my life or in your case bike route.
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Old 05-23-19, 11:09 PM
  #9  
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No

Confidential

No
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Old 05-23-19, 11:16 PM
  #10  
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Have you tried dousing them with gasoline and setting them on fire?

Beheading is also quite effective, especially when you impale the severed head on a spike for the others to see.

You should also develop a signature card you can leave with the immolated corpses, so that other bullies will see this and know who did it to them.

Kumbaya
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Old 05-24-19, 12:12 AM
  #11  
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Originally Posted by wgscott View Post
Have you tried dousing them with gasoline and setting them on fire?
Be sure to take a selfie video as you confidently walk away and flip the lit match over your shoulder. Pics or it didn't happen.

1. No but I got yelled at pretty good yesterday -- a verbal attack, for being a bike on a road, from two teenagers in a car -- and I'm afraid I wasn't very nice in reply. (I earned my Honorary-Brooklynite merit badge.) I spent most of the return ride gaming out what I'd do if various things happened and feeling vulnerable to every passing vehicle.

2. Not since junior high school. Some punk decided it would be hilarious to put a lit firecracker on my books as I walked down the hall between classes. I don't remember how I knew who did it, but I knew. I went home, thought about it, and decided I had to do something, skinny science-fiction-reading geek though I was. The next day, walking between the same classes, the same guy was following me out of class, so I turned around, pushed him down the hall and punched him in the eye, then went on to my next class. The next day he was wearing aviator sunglasses all day to cover the HUGE bruise on his eye, looking the way bullies do when their victims refuse to be victimized: wounded, sullen, and cheated because things didn't work out as expected. I'm sure he had to explain to a parent why he had a black eye, and that didn't go like he wanted either.

How far would I go now, if attacked? As far as I had to to survive and GTFO of Dodge, hopefully so I could get back to my decent-enough life unharmed and not in trouble with the law.

3. Whether to avoid the MUP depends on how good your alternatives are. Of course you should be free to ride, but 3v1 are not good odds.

Last edited by rseeker; 05-24-19 at 12:52 AM.
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Old 05-24-19, 12:44 AM
  #12  
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1) Have you ever been assaulted while riding? What happened and what did you do?

While riding a bike, no. While walking, yes. On a couple of occasions. People I'd never seen came up to me and, for their own reasons, began to commit assault and battery upon me. I put them down.


2) What measures have you taken to defend yourself and how far are you willing to go?

Whatever is necessary. As far as it needs to go.

If I'm still breathing, I will not tolerate being violently assaulted. If that's solved by exiting stage right, so be it. If that's solved by putting down the assailant(s), so be it.


3) ... (If you) were assaulted one evening on that Bike Path, would you just avoid that section of the Bike Path in the evening, which is the only time they would be there, or ...[/quote]

A single instance of presence isn't sufficient, for me at least, to determine people will be there. If I see a pattern, I'll generally adjust the route to make it safer. Then again, I usually vary the routes and times, generally.

Before completely ash-canning a route, I'll be in contact with police and notifying them of the details I have about the threats ... the people, places, times, numbers of individuals involved, specific acts I've personally witnessed. Once on record as having been informed of actual situations, it's the rare police department that can afford to completely ignore a problem.

That said, I never expect police to be the omniscient, omnipresent savior. WE are that. Because we're out there, we're present, and we're witnessing what is happening. At best, police (if available in a town), can only make it riskier, engage in clean-up, and generally only if witnessing something can they actually take down an individual or crew doing violence to others.

So, largely, it's on us. The citizens. Because we're there. And, quite simply, because at the moment something is happening to us, there's almost certainly not going to be anyone else around. Be prepared and capable of dealing with it. Or, not.
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Old 05-24-19, 02:36 AM
  #13  
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Originally Posted by mjac View Post
This is a serious discussion for the men on Bike Forums. Not the little boys.

There are are three basic questions.

1) Have you ever been assaulted while riding? What happened and what did you do?
Not assaulted, but accosted on several occasions. In all of those cases I stood my ground and let the bullies talk his tough talk and eventually move on.

2) What measures have you taken to defend yourself and how far are you willing to go?
A) Being aware of my surroundings, and B) within legal guidelines, match force with equal force. That is, if I'm slapped I'll return the slap. I wouldn't pick up a pipe and bash someone's head in. That's not justified.

3) This one is personally important to me. If you primarily ride on one particular Bike Path at specific times, sunrise and sunset, and were assaulted one evening on that Bike Path, would you just avoid that section of the Bike Path in the evening, which is the only time they would be there, or would you ride anytime and anywhere you wanted even though it might mean defending yourself using very drastic measures?
I have, and would continue to avoid it at all costs. I'd have to ask myself is that the only way for me to get from A to B? So far, that has never been the case.

If I can avoid an altercation by selecting an alternate route, I will. Same as I would not ride through a dangerous neighborhood.
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Old 05-24-19, 02:48 AM
  #14  
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If you have to ask avoid the area.
Fix your bike.
Take some self defense classes.
Let it go.
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Old 05-24-19, 03:04 AM
  #15  
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Originally Posted by hillyman View Post
If you have to ask avoid the area.
Fix your bike.
Take some self defense classes.
Let it go.
Hire Mr miyagi. Wax on, wax off. 😜
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Old 05-24-19, 04:33 AM
  #16  
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1) Have you ever been assaulted while riding? What happened and what did you do?
On our tandem, someone in a car hit my visually impaired with with a plastic container of wax or something. I pray to God regularly thanking him for not allowing me to catch them.

2) What measures have you taken to defend yourself and how far are you willing to go?
Dogs - Call the local animal control office. People? If contact is made, I file a police report.

3) This one is personally important to me.
I do not change my routine as doing so lets the idiots win. The last time that I had a vehicle incident (Verbal exchange - driver at fault) was on my morning commute. I started videoing my commutes. The next day the driver of the truck passed me with plenty of room and waved.

I also carry self defense grade pepper spray most of the time. When in the mountains or USFS roads, a bit more than that.

Oh yeah. ****.
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Old 05-24-19, 04:49 AM
  #17  
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Macing them is an awful idea. Your best defense is almost always going to be mobility, and the odds are pretty good you're going to mace yourself as well as them, and it's going to be difficult to pedal off fast if you're choking and/or vision impaired. Also, mace doesn't really incapacitate, and you might end up just making them crazier.

I've been threatened with an object that may or may not have been a gun while riding in NO in the 1980s. I did a uturn and rode away fast. There's no good going to come from a direct confrontation, and my primary strategy is to not put myself in situations where I could get cornered.

There's a path about a mile from my house that I don't go on at any time but rush hour because it seems to have become a hangout for drug users, and I think getting mugged there is a real possibility.
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Old 05-24-19, 04:56 AM
  #18  
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OP made a run at this last week, locked thread, no surprise. https://www.bikeforums.net/general-c...5-assault.html Here we go again....
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Old 05-24-19, 05:48 AM
  #19  
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Dress appropriately and no one will mess with you.

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Old 05-24-19, 06:00 AM
  #20  
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You may be on to something. Maybe the children who "assaulted" OP viewed him as weak and easy prey due to his choice of clothing. Ditch that little sissy boy spandex kit and try riding the MUP in manly jorts and wifebeater.
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Old 05-24-19, 06:19 AM
  #21  
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1) Have you ever been assaulted while riding? What happened and what did you do?
I have been assaulted or threatened with it several times over the years while on a bike. In particular I had a boiled egg thrown at me once and was driven off into a freshly cut ditch. Could easily have died, got lucky. This was back before cameras, and had no real information to follow up on.
I was run off the road during a commute home one time. It was honestly mostly my fault for shooting a bird at the driver through his pickup truck window in front of his girls face.
The latest occurrence was some years ago. I got buzzed by a guy and held my hands in the air in the easily recognizable "WTF" pose. He came back around, buzzed me again and pulled to the side of the road. I passed him as he was getting out of his car and he rushed towards me. As I dismounted he literally ran into my prosthetic foot and knocked himself out. By pure luck there was a police officer leaving his home right in sight of the whole thing. It was thrown out before ever reaching court as the guy had a history of "craziness".


2) What measures have you taken to defend yourself and how far are you willing to go?
Of these instances only one of them even presented an opportunity for me to have taken measures. I am a pretty big guy in stature. I have been lucky enough that since my adult life (at least) that presence has been enough to dissuade most people from escalating beyond a bit of raised voice. I have taken enough martial arts to be a danger to myself (lol), and I don't carry a gun or anything. I would like to hope I never find myself in a position to NEED to take things to a next level.


3) This one is personally important to me. If you primarily ride on one particular Bike Path at specific times, sunrise and sunset, and were assaulted one evening on that Bike Path, would you just avoid that section of the Bike Path in the evening, which is the only time they would be there, or would you ride anytime and anywhere you wanted even though it might mean defending yourself using very drastic measures?
Honestly, I would be very careful where you tread with the thought process that could be interpreted from this line of question. It could easily be interpreted as preconceived desire to do harm to someone. Do yourself the favor and just avoid the area for a while. If you were to even see the individual(s) in question at some later point, turn around. Perhaps get yourself a video camera, etc. such that you might use any interaction footage as both protection and/or to perhaps use for a PRO or other measure.
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Old 05-24-19, 06:22 AM
  #22  
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ugh, again

report to the police

document, including cell phone pics

start using a camera

ride with someone else

avoid the area until it dies down
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Old 05-24-19, 06:35 AM
  #23  
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As an adult:
1. No. Been yelled at by rednecks a few times, but never actually assaulted.
I don't do spandex, and I am starting to believe that is a wise choice. I have read a few threads that indicate that spandex is best left to racers or at least group rides.
2. You can beat the ever lovin' bejeezus out of someone with a decent pump (nuff said).
3. Not sure how I would handle that. I would probably inform the Police. Assault is assault, and I would doubt you are the only victim.

As a kid:
1. Yes.
2. See #2 above.
3. Made no changes to my route.

Last edited by ironnerd; 05-24-19 at 06:39 AM.
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Old 05-24-19, 06:53 AM
  #24  
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Yet another Ignore:mjac

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Old 05-24-19, 06:55 AM
  #25  
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Originally Posted by shelbyfv View Post
You may be on to something. Maybe the children who "assaulted" OP viewed him as weak and easy prey due to his choice of clothing. Ditch that little sissy boy spandex kit and try riding the MUP in manly jorts and wifebeater.
The OP is trying to start a conversation and you mock him.

So now we are into victim blaming and victim shaming? So by extension, a woman who wears a short skirt or tight shorts is just asking to be raped because of her choice of clothing?

Good job bro.

There are some “youth” out there who can and will cause a great deal of injury regardless of what you may or may not be wearing.
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