Do Traditional Martial Arts Really Work Under Pressure?

This is an old chestnut that keeps going around every now and again; do traditional martial arts really work under pressure in the street?

Many people argue that they don’t, after all, we’ve all heard of a story where a black belt in whatever style ends up getting beaten up by a street fighter.  There are also lots of stories of martial artists, some even quite low grade, who have used their martial arts to successfully defend themselves.  Which story you quote depends on which side of the debate you’re on.

Now when you consider that there are literally millions of people around the world who practice martial arts, just by the law of averages there are bound to be some who are successful in defending themselves and some who are not.  So until somebody can come up with some studies and statistical data (I’m not aware of anybody doing so yet) I think we have to be careful how much we read too much into such stories. Continue reading “Do Traditional Martial Arts Really Work Under Pressure?” »

Target Hardening (Part 2) – Special Considerations For Women

This post follows on from the previous post on Target Hardening (Part 1) but covers issues that predominantly (though not exclusively) effect women.  It would probably be beneficial to read Part 1 first then return to this post, it’ll make more sense that way. Continue reading “Target Hardening (Part 2) – Special Considerations For Women” »

Target Hardening (Part 1) – How Predators Select Victims

First of all just to be clear, this post is talking about how predators select their victims and how to harden yourself as a target; with regard to asocial violence.  That is the type of violence where the perpetrator does not want an audience (witnesses), such as a mugger, rapist, serial killer.  This is as opposed to the bar room or class room bully who does want an audience to show of that they are the alpha male/female.  For the sake of this post, we’ll primarily focus on the mugger as that is the most common type of asocial violence.  For more information on the differences between social and asocial violence, please follow this link.

When the subject of street predators comes up in my classes I often ask, “how do lions hunt”? Continue reading “Target Hardening (Part 1) – How Predators Select Victims” »

What Is The Ultimate Aim Of Self Protection?

Self protection is a phrase that is often used, but what does it actually mean and what is it’s ultimate aim?  Well, self protection is a phrase that was initiated by Peter Consterdine, co-founder of the British Combat Association and it’s daughter organisation, the World Combat Association.  Loosely speaking, it combines “hard” physical skills of striking, kicking, grappling, etc; with the “soft” skills of de-escalation and dissuasion, using assertive behaviour.  The hard skills are usually referred to as self-defence and are the actual skills of violence; whereas the soft skills are non-violent and sometimes referred to as conflict management. Continue reading “What Is The Ultimate Aim Of Self Protection?” »

Line Up For Pre-Emptive Strike

When somebody is trying to bully you and it becomes apparent that they are likely to attack you, the tactics you use at that “pre-fight” stage can put you into a position of enormous advantage without the aggressor realising what you are doing. Continue reading “Line Up For Pre-Emptive Strike” »

Violence Never Solves Anything . . . . Really?

How many times have you heard well-meaning people say something like, “violence never solves anything”.

The idea that violence never solves anything has been has been around for a while in world of ever growing political correctness.  As a society, it’s a laudable goal to try and eradicate violence so that nobody has to be unnecessarily hurt and it is something that we should all work towards.  We’ll never achieve it of course as violence is part of the human condition and we are all capable of it given the right circumstances! Continue reading “Violence Never Solves Anything . . . . Really?” »

Positioning For Multiple Assailants

I came across the video below from the London Wing Chun Academy which I thought was worth sharing as goes beyond style boundaries and should be of interest to anybody who is into real world self protection.  It talks about being aware of your surroundings and how to positional yourself when facing multiple opponents. Continue reading “Positioning For Multiple Assailants” »

Best Street Fighting Style Vs Self Protection

How often do you see an advert or website claiming something like, “Best Street Fighting Style”, “Ultimate Street Fighting System”, “Scientific Street Fighting”, “The Art of Street Fighting”; or words to that effect.

Many martial arts, and I would say especially the more modern arts, like to emphasis how practical and effective they are and give themselves more kudos by emphasising “street fighting” over all other aspects of martial arts.  Some routinely position themselves as superior by deriding traditional martial arts; Continue reading “Best Street Fighting Style Vs Self Protection” »

If You Happen To Be Caught Up In A Terrorist Attack

As most people will know, there have been several terrorist attacks here in the UK over recent months, two of them involving vehicles running people over and following up with knife attacks.  Now the chances of actually being caught up in such an incident, I would say are very unlikely.  However, you never know! Continue reading “If You Happen To Be Caught Up In A Terrorist Attack” »

The Difference Between Social Violence And Asocial Violence

For anybody who is interested in real world self protection, it is helps to understand the difference between social violence and asocial violence, the motivation behind them and how to respond to them.

But first, what do they have in common? Continue reading “The Difference Between Social Violence And Asocial Violence” »