There are obvious physical differences between men and women. Self defence courses often take a one-size-fits-all approach to self defence, creating courses that may work for men but will rarely work for women. This leads to horrible advice such as biting, eye gouging and kneeing the groin. This advice is horrible — not because of the violence — but because of the likely outcome when it doesn’t work. When an inexperienced defender attempts these moves, rather than disabling the attacker, she is much more likely to enrage him.
Here is an essay on self defence for women that examines how women can successfully defend themselves against a stronger adversary.