unlike most situations, in a mosh pit, a good offense is the best defense. in order to understand these rules, you must understand how a mosh pit operates. When the music begins, a circle forms somewhere. If you're inside the circle, you're in harm's way. This is where things go crazy. If you're just outside the circle, beware people getting thrown into you, pushes coming from behind, and stray fists and feet being thrust from the center of the circle.

  1. high kicks. If things are getting a little hectic in the circle, start throwing high kicks. don't actually try to boot someone, just kick as high as you can in random directions. kick as if you were trying to hit yourself in the face with your toes. if you find yourself losing balance, try extending an arm out in front of you. remember, try to stay in synch with the music so you don't look nuts. if done properly, the circle will clear enough for you to perform another maneuver.

  2. whirlwind/roundhouse. the ol' standby. there are alot of variations on this one. it doesn't really work out too well inside the pit, but it's good if you just wanna tear from one end to the other relatively quickly while causing some damage. what you do is spin rapidly while letting your arms go limp with your fists clenched tightly. don't just spin with your arms straight out at shoulder height; pivot the top half of your body with your own momentum.

  3. "spin me". say this to someone near you while extending your arms, crossed at the wrists. they'll cross their arms and grab your wrists. you grab theirs. begin spinning. go faster and faster until the lighter of the two of you begins lifting off the ground. if you're getting lifted, start throwing kicks behind you. this will almost certainly clear the pit.

one thing people don't realize is that moshing isn't just people punching each other. there is a right way and a wrong way to mosh, just like any other type of dancing. you don't really see people actually moshing unless you go to a smaller venue. if you decide you wanna check out the pit, don't just go flying in there. hang around the edge and watch what's going on. if there's 12 guys in there, beating the shit out of one another, that's not moshing, and you're probably safer just hanging out on the outside. if there's between one and five guys in there, and they're doing all sorts of acrobatic maneuvers and attacks, they're moshing, and you should try not to interfere. in either case, if you somehow get drawn into the whole deal, just follow the above rules and maneuvers and you should come home in one piece.