What To Expect When You Least Expect It
The time you will be attacked you will most likely be:
1. Nothing you do will work. Last night one of the guys who train with me is a Port Authority police officer. We were discussing the merits of Pepper Spray. The common misconception is that the pepper spray will end the assault. As you may or may not know, a lot of emotionally disturbed persons (EDP) will just walk off the pepper spray. Most times, it only serves to enrage them further. Now what? Should you throw out your pepper spray? Of course not! Don't expect the pepper spray to end the fight. DO expect the pepper spray to afford you an opening to inflict greater damage or escape. Even if the spray simply causes your target to blink, it's done its job. All it has to do is create an opening, a little hesitation in your assailant's plan of attack; just enough to let you seize the opportunity, gain the advantage or escape.
When you train in hand to hand, always train with multiple, lethal strikes. Don't depend on every technique you throw to hit its intended target or end the fight. You will miss a lot more than you hit. That's why you train with OVER KILL. You should go about two or three steps past what you would normally perceive as the "end" of the fight. Remember, it's better to be pleasantly surprised that gravely disappointed.
2. You will not feel how you feel right now. In fact, your body and mind will due a wide variety of things to help you deal with the hormone induced stress. Tunnel vision, audio exclusion (you won't hear everything), slow motion perception, loss of finite motor skills and your reasoning skills will disappear. Don't think of this a problem. Understand that your body is preparing its self for battle. The same as it has done since Kane killed Abel.
3. You will act with single purpose. Think about the time(s) you locked your keys in your car. How many times did you try the handle? Even when you knew it was locked. Heck, we press an elevator button repeatedly when we are impatient. Imagine if your life depended on it! Simple effective methods are tailor made to enable you to operate with in this specific behavior. When you study a martial art, the feeling is "The more moves, the better" Sort of a more bang for the buck. Don't be concerned with what, just how effective.
4. You will be in the worst place imaginable. Your home, the parking garage; chances are you will be distracted. That is, if your assailant is doing his job. The terrain will be cluttered and covered with "body unfriendly" objects like bottles, concrete and asphalt.
5. You will be distracted. There is no doubt that the more aware you are, the less likely you will be assaulted. Expect to be surprised. Even the most experienced martial artists get startled by the family cat.
6. Your assailant will have a distinct advantage. Whether it's a weapon, accomplices or sheer size; you're picked as a likely target because your attacker will think he has a great chance of imposing his will on you. No matter how hard you train, these reactions are hard wired into you. That's why you need to work with in the parameters of what you will be capable of accomplishing.
Now for the good news...
You will be able to absorb a tremendous amount of damage. There are numerous reports of people being shot and stabbed multiple times, surviving the assault and even driving themselves to get help. I have seen video of a 110 pound police woman get shot 2 times, fight back and surviving to patrol another day. I have also heard first hand accounts of a 220 pound man crumble at the first sign of gun or knife play; only to be pronounced dead at the scene. Do your own research. You can begin by reading the accounts of Congressional Medal of Honor winners. All of these people have been shot and stabbed multiple times, performed amazing feats and some even SURVIVED before they died.
Take Ben Salomon for example. On July 6th and 7th, 1944, during a battle on the island of Saipan, Ben Salomon's Army surgical tent became overrun by a Japanese infantry. According to eye witnesses, Ben shot the first one who had bayoneted a wounded American lying on a stretcher. Two more charged through the tent entrance. Ben clubbed them both with a rifle, then shot one and bayoneted the other. Four more began to crawl under the sides of the tent. He shot one, bayoneted one, stabbed another with a knife, and head butted the fourth. Next, Ben ran out of the tent to get help to defend the aid station. He quickly realized that the situation was hopeless since the Japanese force had overwhelmed the two American battalions. Pockets of American resistance fought on inside the perimeter, but the bulk of the surviving American soldiers were being pushed back toward Tanapag village. Salomon returned to the tent and ordered his aid men to evacuate the wounded while he stayed behind to hold off the enemy and cover their withdrawal. Salomon then grabbed a rifle and fought on with the few Americans still resisting inside the perimeter. Eventually he manned a machine gun after its gunner was killed. That was the last time anyone saw Ben Salomon alive. After the battle, Ben Salomon's body was found with 72 bullets in it. Doctors confirmed that he incurred at least 24 of the wounds BEFORE he died. Not bad for a dentist from Wisconsin.
What's the secret, what's the difference? What makes people like Ben Salomon continue to go forward?
No matter who you are you will have one of to reactions. One will get you killed; the other may save your life. If your reaction is "Oh God, why is this happening to me" you will surely end up in the box. But if your reaction is "I'm taking you with me you SOB!!!" You've got a good chance of making it home. First, you have to assume you're already dead and anything you do is an improvement over being dead. Don't complicate this issue. It can't be rationalized. Rationalization only serves denial of the truth. And Denial will get you killed.
You can use this information when you're training. If you are doing weapons training and the knife touches you, YOU ARE NOT AUTOMATICALLY & MAGICALLY DEAD. You may be cut or shot, but you are far from dead. Remember, nobody dies in training.
But be prepared. Know that you will have to fight, even if you're injured. Don't stop. When you do this you will stop at the moment something doesn't work out.
Nothing will go smoothly and it NEVER LOOKS GOOD. Save that for Hollywood. It's a struggle. It's Ugly and painful. You want to be as ruthless and as nasty as fast as possible. Anything less reduces your chances for success. It's that simple. The longer you prolong the fight, the less your chances of success. Train and act as if your life depends on it, because it does.
"Non-lethal" technique or methods designed to subdue your assailant with out doing significant damage are a fantasy designed to play on your sense of compassion and fair play. If you're a civilian being assaulted in the street or a soldier in the heat of battle, there is no place for it. The only application of non-lethal technique is in law enforcement only to be used on compliant and semi-compliant subjects. If you happen to end a situation and your target remains alive, it was his lucky day. But it was your choice to stop, not his.
Why are the methods that came out of the early 1900's are so effective. First off, we will never have the opportunity to "test" methods like these on the scale that they have been tested. Technology has changed the way we wage war, so the instances of hand to hand combat significantly less. But make no mistake, times and technology may change but hand to hand, mano y mano will never change. Unless we grow a third arm, we are still basically the same since the first homo sapien sapien walked the earth. New training methods may appear but the opportunity to test their validity is less available than the world war I and world war II era.
No matter what you do?it must be instinctive, swift and powerful. This is why the information gathered @ www.thetruthaboutselfdefense.com is so valuable and sought after. Carl Cestari breaks it down in a way that is easily understood.
PS. Don't believe me? Send them back and we'll refund your money, no questions asked.
Damian Ross is the owner of Zenshin and instructor of Tekkenryu jujutsu and Kodokan Judo. He started competing in the combative sport of wrestling in 1975 at the age of 7 and began his study of Asian martial arts with Moo Duk Kwan Tae Kwon Do at the age of 16 in 1984. In 1989, Shinan Cestari gave a seminar at Sensei Ross's dojo. Sensei Ross has trained under Shinan Cestari's direction ever since. In addition to Tekkenryu Jujutsu, Judo and Tae Kwon Do, Sensei Ross has also studied Bando. Sensei Ross continues his study of Judo under the direction of 8th degree black belt Yoshisada Yonezuka and Tekkenryu Jujutsu under it's founder, Carl Cestari. Below are is a list of some of his title ranks:
Yodan (fourth degree black belt) Tekkenryu Jujutsu under Carl Cestari
Martial Arts: Mind, Body and Spirit Presented Online
This Martial Arts website uses body, spirit and mind to construct an excellent example of the quality and amount of information you can put on your website.
Is Aikido a Martial Art ?
Sensei Henry Ellis Co-Author of the new book Positive Aikido.- 2005. A direct student from 1957 of the legendary master Kenshiro Abbe Sensi 1915 - 1985..
Judo Nagewaza (Throwing Technique) In The Street
How practical are throwing techniques (nagewaza) for self-defense or street-fighting? NOT VERY!
The Thumb Jab
I'm sure a lot of you remember the scene in the movie "The Presidio" were Sean Connery's character decimates the jackass in the bar with nothing more than his thumb!
Interesting Facts on Samurai Sword Manufacture
A samurai's sword is his most sacred and prized possession. Not only did the samurai rely on his sword to defend him, but spiritually the sword held greater significance as the samurai actually believed his soul inhabited the sword. Therefore it comes as no surprise that the same discipline and respect in which the samurai wielded his sword, went into the actual making of the sword itself.
A Great Question!
It's a question that we went back and forth with for awhile ourselves many moons ago. The "how" and "why" of our conclusions may be of some interest. Whether or not anyone agrees with them, well at the least you'll fully understand the basis for them.
We all have a good foundation in the basic blows and combinations.
Are You Frustrated Yet?
I was talking to a parent recently and they told me that their son was not going to compete in wrestling because they were afraid they would get frustrated when he lost. The parent felt the child was far too sensitive to handle the frustration of failure and may get 'burnt out'. My response was, "What will they do when they get frustrated in life?" What happens when that kid has got to suck it up and go forward when it REALLY counts? Being a new parent, my daughter is 2 and I have another on the way, I only want the best for my child. What parent doesn't? It's obvious this parent I mentioned loves their child, but that's not the issue. The issue is what's best for everyone involved. What this child is being taught is to quit when things get tough. In an effort to protect the child, the parent winds up doing a disservice to the child. The result is undermining the ultimate goal- the training of the child.
Are You Still Standing Toe to Toe?
How many times do you practice techniques with your training partner and you stay in the same spot? Next time you are training, see how much you and your partner move. You will find you move very little or not at all. You see, when you are training, or doing ANYTHING for that matter, you always try to seek the path of least resistance. This is natural and can be viewed as a good thing (more on that later). Because you concentrate on the repetitions and the minutia of the detail, how hard we are hitting, what we look like, you are forgetting the big picture. And its easier to stand in the same spot. I am constantly reminding my guys- MOVE FORWARD!
About four years ago Carl recommended we start using the Bogu during our kumite (sparring practice). This method was developed in Okinawa and then found its way into mainland Japan and eventually to the U.S. where only a few clubs still do this. And even in those clubs, only a few members do it. I know there is other equipment out there that looks similar and I have used most of what's available. But it does not provide you with nearly the same overall effect that the bogu does. Rules in bogu training ? Any punch, any kick, save foot stomps, a strike to the spine and to the back of the neck. Throws and leg kicking is certainly allowed. Use, dare I say, your commonsense.
Have No Misconceptions
I just received an Email from a woman who has a child (3 year old) and about to have another. Considering my wife is in a similar situation, this question couldn't be more relevant. This idea can be expanded to those of us getting older, injured or of smaller stature. Keep in mind, a little common sense goes a long way.
So You Think You Train Hard
"Tokio Hirano (1922-1993) 8th DanThe Man Who Revolutionized Judo"By Jim Chen, M.D . and Theodore Chen
Martial Arts and The Zone
On the occasions you delivered the perfect strike; blocked without the need to think or performed a near flawless kata, did it feel difficult? Or did you get the sense it happened by itself? The 'zone' is a place where athletes describe this sort of experience. Studies suggest its a state of 'effortless merging of action and awareness'. So what stops us from getting there? Factors such as stress or attempts to try harder can interfere. Often our efforts to train harder result in unnecessary muscular responses that prevent us reaching the effortless state of the zone.
Content, Are We?
I asked a simple question at the last seminar:
Historical References to W.E. Fairbairn, E.A. Sykes AND Dermot Pat ONeill
FROM THE BOOK: "PIERCING THE REICH"AUTHOR: JOSEPH E. PERSICO
The Shocking Truth About Stun Guns
If you are outside the world of law enforcement, chances are you haven't had much "hands on" work with stun guns. Stun guns are as popular today as they have ever been and with the newer smaller packages like cell phone/stun guns, their popularity continues to grow. But before you deploy a stun gun, there are a few misconceptions you may not know about.
Traditionally, people trained in Martial Arts in order to utilized their skills as a form of attack and defense in both armed and unarmed combat. Today, people train in Martial Arts in order to keep fit, as a form of meditation, to learn self-discipline and as a competitive sport. Although Western culture associates Martial Arts with Asian countries, many countries developed their own Martial Arts as a form of military defense, prior to modern technology. There are many different styles of Marital Arts, such as Ju Jitsu, Tai Chi and Karate. All styles of Martial Arts follow a system of teaching. During teaching, a student is taught a series of forms. These forms, once learnt, help the student to develop a technique that they can then utilize when needed. There are also different levels of training that a student can progress through, once they have mastered the first level.All students must study under a Master of the particular Martial Art that they wish to learn with the hope of one day becoming also a Master. This is the traditional way in which the skills all Martial Arts has been handed down over the generations.
New Book: Positive Aikido
A new book with a practical look at Aikido and its history. The Co-authors are direct students of the legendary master Kenshiro Abbe Sensei from 1957. the following is an indepth look at how the book came into being.
The Fallacy and the Myth
It's always amusing when "know it alls" dismiss certain methods out of hand as being useless or "unworkable". One "victim" of this line of thinking is the "cross arm" or "X" block (for lack of a better term).
Samurai Armor Part 1
The first prototype for Japanese samurai armor came about in the form of the yoroi during the Gempei War of 1181-1185. The weight of the yoroi was around 60lb. The upper-body armor of the samurai was known as the 'Do'. This comprised of the 'Sode', the suspended shoulder and upper-arm protection plates. The Sode had hoops by which silk cord was tied and then fixed to the back of the armor in an 'agemaki' / decorative knotted tassel. Guards were also placed over the shoulder cords, and a leather plate placed across the bow cords to prevent them from been cut or becoming ensnared during a skirmish.
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