Halsall's character Tyrone Dobbs has been the victim of domestic abuse at the hands of his troubled fiancée Kirsty Soames in a long-running storyline.
Speaking about the violent scenes with Gumede, the actor told Digital Spy: "I've never been hurt, but I've been genuinely scared! Natalie is actually quite ferocious when you see her go in a scene.
"We'll rehearse things beforehand, but we'll do it at half pace and not put the full emotion into the rehearsal, as we're just reading the words through.
"But then we go for a take and when Natalie really kicks off, I have been genuinely scared once or twice - but that's fantastic and it's because she's so good at her job."
Elsewhere in the interview, Halsall predicted that Tyrone will forgive old friends Tommy and Tina following their involvement in his relationship.
Explaining his thoughts, he said: "I don't think Tyrone would ever really alienate a friend for good. He's even forgiven Kevin, who slept with his wife and had a baby with her.
"That's one thing I know about Tyrone - he will forgive, because he's done it with his mum all his life.
"I think at some point they can definitely have a relationship there again, because deep down he would like to be their friend."
> Read Alan Halsall's full interview with Digital Spy here