Knowing where you don’t want to be. There are positions from where an assailant can (and probably will) successfully attack you. If he (and his cohorts) can achieve these positions, your chances of effectively defending yourself are slim to none. And Slim left town. The violence will be swift, intense and aimed at your weak spots. Unless you are willing to commit extreme physical violence in self-defense do not allow this situation to develop. Positioning is a strategy game. It is the criminal trying to put you where he wants you and you moving so he can't.
The thing is this game is very real and very dangerous, it is however, not apparent on the surface. We have a term we use that describes this condition: "shadow dance." And that means something is going on that everybody knows is occurring, but nobody talks about it openly. Foreign embassies are prime examples of shadow dancing. On the surface, they are for diplomatic relations, commerce and to assist nationals traveling between countries. However, integral to their very foundation is spying, both the committing and preventing the host country from doing the same. So while everyone from the ambassador himself to the lowest secretary is either doing it, or has been trained to prevent it, nobody talks about it or admits it is happening. What's happening isn't innocent, but it is hidden behind a facade.
Criminals engage in shadowdancing all the time. They are pretending to be doing something else. If they blatantly display their intentions too early their "prey" will either elude them or have time to successfully defend themselves. Therefore the criminal most often tries to hide his intent until it is too late. This need for subterfuge can be turned against them however.
As they quietly try to jockey you into position, you just as quietly slip away. What are they going to say, "Hold still so I can rob you?" Criminals most often rely on their victims not knowing the "game is afoot" long before a weapon is displayed (by then it is too late). But by you knowing what the criminal needs and not letting him develop it you nonviolently protect yourself from crime and violence.