Fundamental pillars of self-defense?

Discussion in 'General Self Defense' started by Brian King, May 22, 2015.

  1. Brian King

    Brian King Master of Arts

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    Fundamental pillars of self-defense?

    In the thread “Is grappling better for female self-defense than striking?” the idea of a fundamental pillar of self-defense” came up. Warning – while interesting, it is a long thread with a lot of- this is better than this, you know nothings, I knows all, type of posts. The talk of ‘fundamental pillars’ did start me wondering what different people would include as fundamental pillars of self-defense training. I imagine that the answers might depend on the culture lived in, the type of attacks experienced, capabilities and limitations of those training, length of time available for the training, and a host of other variables. I searched and found the thread “self-Defense???” interesting but different than a discussion on what folks expect or teach as specific pillars of self-defense.

    For the start of this exploration (thread drift happens and can be interesting) let’s assumes that the prospective student is married, with small children, and limited training time – say once or twice a week for a year. The kind of attack that she may face, could be assault in a parking garage, road rage, work place violence, domestic abuse, violent robbery, wrong place wrong time violence, and home invasion. Or we can assume that she might be single, so we could add date rape violence, bar/night club violence, woman on woman violence to the list. Attacks against the elderly are brutal as well, and in some areas becoming common place, so we could add healthcare/ nursing home violence to the possible list above.

    This video, taken with a nanny cam captures the violence that is common of assaults against women by men. They are violent and brutal. With this video to start – what do you think should form the ‘fundamentals of self-defense training’ for the women described above? Warning, video is violent.

    https://youtu.be/qU0EJS3cJIc

    Along with the suggested pillars, how about some reasoning of why, and how to train them?

    Now, everyone reading this thread can agree that there can be more than one way to solve a problem. For example 2+2=4, 3+1=4, 10-6=4, 16 divided by 4 = 4… which is the correct math formula, depends entirely on context. Let’s try to discuss the messages and not so much the messengers although a little background on the posters experiences if they want, might help to add context?

    Thank you

    Brian King
     
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  2. Flying Crane

    Flying Crane Sr. Grandmaster

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    I suspect that most people are going to recommend whatever system it is that they train in.
     
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  3. Drose427

    Drose427 3rd Black Belt

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    Well we know one person will at least
     
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  4. Brian King

    Brian King Master of Arts

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    Thanks folks,
    Rather than specific system, I am hoping for specific pillars. Even more than just a list of this and that I am also hoping for a brief discussion on how folks train those specific pillars. Hoping to avoid the get a gun - 45 vs 9mm, TMA vs MMA, Predator vs Alien discussions.

    More along - awareness - bring using reflections and listening to gut feelings into the training (how), chokes - bring using clothing as weapons into the training (how) etc...

    So, what specific self-defense pillars would you think fit into training the profiles above?

    Thanks again
    Brian King
     
  5. K-man

    K-man Grandmaster

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    Well for a start I am going to suggest that no matter what training you do, you won't be safe in every situation.

    Seeing the thread is about self defence, what could she have done differently. The guy kicked the deadlocked door in so that wasn't a failing. Could she have turned her home into a fortress? Maybe, but who wants to live that way.

    Why did the attacker target that property? We don't know. Was it a random attack? Again we don't know. In Australia, most home invasion type crimes aren't random and of course I am not speaking for the U.S.

    One thing we have with our alarm system are police assist devices that you can wear if you want. That may have helped in this instance but you still have the response time to survive which of course new brings us to the situation seen in the video.

    Having stated the obvious I will step back and watch for a while before adding to the thread.
     
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  6. Brian R. VanCise

    Brian R. VanCise MT Moderator Staff Member

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    Here are a few fundamental pillars of self-defense as I see it: avoidance, awareness, strategy and tactics specific to violence in your area and violence in general, verbal and non-verbal de-escalation techniques, understanding human behavior in regards to criminal behavior in your area, training in weapons/tools, kicking, hand strikes, trapping hands and joint manipulation, grappling. Heavy dose of Scenario Based Training where the person training learns to deal with adrenaline. Attribute training so that you can implement your physical skills: such as but not limited to strength training, aerobic training (with air), anaerobic training (without air), stretching, plus a lot more. Specific things for attribute training ie. weight lifting, kettle bells, Bulgarian bag, running, sprints, swimming, bicycling, hiking, kayaking, etc. All in all a very fit lifestyle.

    If you pose a very specific course for the woman above who only can train a couple of times a week and for only a year then obviously you have to get them consciously thinking about their personal protection so that they will raise their awareness and avoid areas that may be potentially dangerous for them. Help them learn to strategically reduce their victim profile and tactics they can employ for verbal and non-verbal de-escalation. Then a goal to improve their fitness while training heavily how to strike with their hands, elbows and knees. (skip kicks because they take quite a bit longer to develop though if they had longer then you could add it in) Basic functional grappling with emphasis on sprawl, guard with sweeps and getting back up as quickly as possible and getting out of there. Heavy and I mean heavy edged weapons training and firearms training. If you are good with a tool and can deploy it efficiently you have an extreme advantage! We are a tool wielding species so take advantage of that!

    I had to type this quickly so I know I have forgotten to mention a few things.
     
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  7. Brian R. VanCise

    Brian R. VanCise MT Moderator Staff Member

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    Great topic Brian!
     
  8. Steve

    Steve Mostly Harmless

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    I recommend an appropriate handgun, sufficient time at the range to be competent, and some additional training in use of force laws for your area. a year, two times per week sounds about right.

    I don't think 45 vs 9mm matters much, as long as it's a handgun you're comfortable and confident using.
     
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  9. Hanzou

    Hanzou Grandmaster

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    Well we both know Karate wouldn't have helped her in that situation. :p

    JK

    Anyways, I understand why she decided to do what she did, but I don't agree with it. She placed herself at the mercy of that animal, and he could have very well killed her and her child. Would a martial art have helped her? I believe so, but frankly the martial arts most beneficial to women tend to not be very popular among women.

    I'm not a huge fan of guns personally, and while she could have used the gun in this situation, the gun could have very easily been turned against her. Additionally, many people don't keep loaded guns in the household for a variety of safety reasons, so she wouldn't have had the time to use it anyway.
     
    Last edited: May 22, 2015
  10. Brian King

    Brian King Master of Arts

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    Thanks Brian for posting your thoughts. For a ‘quick’ post you covered a lot of great material. You wrote that “obviously you have to get them consciously thinking about their personal protection so that they will raise their awareness and avoid areas that may be potentially dangerous for them.” With your system and those that you have studied- is their concern about feeding fear and possibly developing ‘paranoia’ rather than ‘common sense’ awareness and avoidance?

    I agree that weapon use should be explored. Do you have in your experience, methods that you use to get the common lady described above comfortable with the thought of using a weapon for defense?

    Do you use the scenario based training to work on the strategy and tactics specific to general violence and violence in a specific area or is it more of a lecture based/ discussion area of study?

    Not related to this thread, but, did you see the summary in the latest Force Science of the study titled “Police arrest and self-defence skills: Performance under anxiety of officers with and without additional experience in martial arts.” It looks like an interesting study with police volunteers taking part, some with and some without martial arts training. The study (summary- I have not read the actual study) seems to show benefit of even leisure time training of once a week. It seems to break it down by length of study, style, and frequency of study.

    Regards
    Brian King
     
  11. Brian King

    Brian King Master of Arts

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    Thanks Steve.
    Glad to see that you would recommend use of force laws to go with the firearm training. Not a very sexy part of 'lethal' training but VERY beneficial it seems to me on many levels. So with one of the pillars being legal firearms use, would you also recommend some sort of trauma care training?

    If you read Grossman's book "On Killing" it would seem that the actual act of pulling the trigger on a human is not as easy as some make out and even for many soldiers it requires specific training to condition and ready the person to take a life. For many people a gun can easily become a talisman, a shield that they can use to ward off evil doers and danger causing them to be 'braver' than situations may warrant. Do you have any ideas or experiences in addressing these type of training issues with the firearm pillar of self-defense training?

    Regards
    Brian King
     
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  12. Brian King

    Brian King Master of Arts

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    Thank you for posting Hanzou.
    You wrote "would a martial art have helped her? I believe so...snip.
    Would you care to expand on that? In what way would a martial art have helped her in your opinion?

    Regards
    Brian King
     
  13. Dirty Dog

    Dirty Dog MT Senior Moderator Staff Member

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    One of the things I consider important to self defense is an honest self apprasal to answer the question "What are you willing to do to survive?"
    I've known people who believed that they were absolutely unwilling to kill someone, even in self defense. They may well change their minds if they were in such a situation, but that is their view.
    If you're convinced that you could never bring yourself to kill, even in self defense, it's probably not worthwhile to devote much time to training techniques that are intended to have a high lethality.
     
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  14. Hanzou

    Hanzou Grandmaster

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    She would have been able to defend herself. Especially if she was proficient in Bjj (combative over sport) or MMA. Again, I understand that she didn't want that guy to hurt her child, but she placed her life completely in his hands. He could have killed or raped her or worse. If she were a Machado, Relson, or Rickson brown or black belt, I simply don't see that happening to her.
     
  15. Dirty Dog

    Dirty Dog MT Senior Moderator Staff Member

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    Actually, it's not true that 45 vs 9mm doesn't matter much. It actually doesn't matter AT ALL.

    Loaded guns in the home are not the least bit unsafe.
    People who are too lazy or ignorant to control access to their loaded guns are unsafe.
     
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  16. Buka

    Buka Sr. Grandmaster

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    BTW, they caught the guy. Shawn Curtis, serial home invader, convicted of a dozen felonies since 1988.

    Sorry to stray off topic, just wanted you guys to know.
     
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  17. Drose427

    Drose427 3rd Black Belt

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    For me, its 2 part (3 if you can legally own a firearm)

    The first is things like awareness, in that thread (or a different) I brouhght up the similarities of being aware of your surroundings for SD and driving your car.

    Our brains are wired to do it already.

    But, anyone with a brain or experience will you sometimes that fails, for a variety of reasons.

    Then it moves on to firearms training, and most importantly KEEPING IT WITH YOU.

    it doesnt do a thing if its 300 feet away.

    Finally, physical methods.

    1 striking style

    +

    1 grappling style

    where you choose to focus is preference as long as youre competent with both.

    Then we go to The physical aspect.
    Actually the very beginning of the attack would have been right in the wheel house of any striking style.
     
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  18. Jenna

    Jenna Senior Master

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    In my experience Brian there is zero that compares to being aware.. I am conscious most all of the time wherever I am some where unfamiliar of the following things..

    > How do I make myself appear to be one of the least easy target for someone with ill intent?? How I look and how I act.. and that does not mean I must dress in combat gear.. I am happy if it is sunny and I am dressed for a top up tan that I am still sending out message.. if you come at me or who I am with it is a lot of trouble on you.. too much trouble so pick on some one else first who is easier to target.. who have their purse hung over one shoulder or on their arm or is walking about lost in their phone..

    > Who is there here anyway, who does not just look like they are getting on with their business -or- also who is there that might help if some thing happen.. for me this is a facial / bodily and non verbally communicated thing..

    > What can I use.. what can be a weapon, what can I pick up, what do I have on me and what have I to hand for example in London where there are strict limits to every day legal carry items, it was suggested to me that a better way to make use of my bunch of keys was to make them into a key whip with paracord..

    My art is my very very very very last resort.. unlike that thread you are mentioning Brian, when it come to my safety, if I have to use my art for serious -which you know I have- then I am in a bad bad place already.. and it is only if I come out the other side that I will be able to appraise where I had failed in all of the above awarenesses..

    I recognise, accept and concede where my art is imperfect.. I have always try to address this by focus training on what I admit is deficient in my Aikido to handle what I must face outside of my front door.. I do not see failure in my art much less my self.. I see areas that need work and I am happy to admit that here.. it is only a forum.. who cares.. I am not trying to prove I am best or my art is best.. it is good enough and good enough is good enough and if I have to use it any way then I have been lacking and dumb - or dumber than usual! :)

    Hope this make sense and is some thing like what you are looking for.. Wishes Jxxx
     
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  19. Brian R. VanCise

    Brian R. VanCise MT Moderator Staff Member

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  20. Hanzou

    Hanzou Grandmaster

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    Do you really think given the size difference and close quarters that striking would have been effective in that case? I mean what would she have done? A spinning wheel kick to his head? The guy had a significant size advantage and looked pretty good with his hands.123
     

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