The Russians Are Learning How to Defend Themselves With Selfie Sticks

Moscow’s M-Profi martial arts center is teaching tourists how to fend off would-be thieves with the selfie stick.

by Jake Hughes
20 November 2015, 4:30pm

Selfie sticks are a societal abomination to many, blighting the streets of our major cities and holding up human traffic at tourist destinations across the globe.

The contraption is prohibited from being used in Disneyland due to safety concerns as well as in football stadiums across the UK for generally being a pain in the arse for anyone trying to watch the game.

Hell, among other reasons, South Korea has made it illegal for street vendors to sell unlicensed selfie sticks to prevent the devices with Bluetooth connectivity from interfering with technology we actually need. In short, there's a myriad of motives to get rid of them.

The overly elaborate act of taking your photo with your expensive smartphone on the end of a selfie stick, flaunting your wealth in public, can attract the undesirables of society and make you a target for robbery. This is where Moscow-based martial arts center M-Profi steps in.

M-Profi have introduced classes to help develop the defence of tourists armed with a selfie stick should they become a victim of an attempted attack. Taught in five lessons, it's claimed the art, dubbed "MPD-fight" (monopod fight) by the Russians, is an effective way to combat muggers who are practitioners of boxing, wrestling and mixed martial arts.

MPD-fight is akin to the Bartitsu martial art taught in 1900s Britain which promoted the use of boxing, judo, jiu-jitsu and incorporated every-day items of the time including umbrellas, walking sticks and long jackets.

The explanation of why this new defensive technique is rather presumptuous, with M-Profi telling Russian news outlet M24: "Tourists have become frequent targets for robbery in many countries and the only means of self-defense is what is always with you—your selfie stick."

I may be alone in saying this, but I certainly do not have a selfie stick and have no inclination to buy one—let alone carry one around with me 24/7. However, if there was a way to turn my headphones into an effective weapon of self-defense then count me in.

VICE Sports
selfie sticks
Martial Arts