A Russian martial arts center is teaching tourists how to defend themselves with selfie sticks

Protect yourself.
Protect yourself.
Image: AP Photo/Seth Wenig
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Selfie sticks are useful for more than just taking pictures of yourself. A Russian martial arts center is now offering selfie-stick-based self-defense lessons for tourists.

Daria Lapshina, a representative from the Moscow martial arts center M-Profi, tells Russian broadcaster M24 (Russian) that wielding a selfie stick can call the attention of nearby robbers, and make tourists the targets of theft. M-Profi plans to help them, with new kind of self-defense called “mpd-fight,” or “monopod-fight.”

M-Profi claims that “monopod-fight” can effectively deter attackers wielding boxing, wrestling and mixed martial arts moves. The BBC reports that the technique can be learned in just five lessons.

But tourists beware—popular travel destinations including Beijing’s Forbidden City and Disneylands around the world have banned the controversial selfie stick.