Fighting VS Self Defense

celtic_crippler

Senior Master
Joined
Jan 15, 2006
Messages
3,968
Reaction score
137
Location
Airstrip One
Do you hold that fighting and self defense are two different things or do you view them as one and the same? (Not talking about sports.)

Why?

What's the difference? (or) Why are they the same?

Is training to fight different than training for self-defense? If so, what are the focus of each?

....yadda...yadda...yadda...and so-on-so-on-so forth...DISCUSS!
 

CDKJudoka

Purple Belt
Joined
Dec 18, 2008
Messages
346
Reaction score
13
Location
Hicksville, NY
I view them as different. Self Defence, to me, means that it is something that you put an end to quickly, where as fighting is what happens when self defence doesn't work.
 

bluekey88

Senior Master
Joined
Jan 26, 2007
Messages
2,056
Reaction score
89
I hold that they are two seperate events that have a lot overlap/similarities. hey both involve violence in some form...violence between two or more individuals.

Where they differ is that in fighting...I generally feel that at some level a fight is a mutually agreed upon event. It is a duel, a sparring match...whatever, there are certain overt or unspoken conventions and boundaries. it may be between two drunken and disgruntled people in a parking lot who're having a pissing match. It might be a rough and tumble between two friends.

In an SD scenario...the key difference is that this is something being done to you. You did not over tly or implicitly agree on this confrontation. It may be a robbery, an assasination, what have you. IN an SD scenario, the perpetrator chooses the place, the time, weapons, accomplices, etc. This puts the defender at a distinct and automatic disadvantage.

training for these things can overlap, but the differences need to be kept in ones mind.

Peace,
Erik
 

tellner

Senior Master
Joined
Nov 18, 2005
Messages
4,379
Reaction score
240
Location
Orygun
Self defense is whatever one uses to prevent oneself from being the victim of a crime or unwanted violence.

Fighting is the use of violence against one or more opponents.

One may fight in self defense. But self defense can include other things. Not all fights are for self defense, and sometimes fighting runs counter to that goal.
 

Deaf Smith

Master of Arts
Joined
Apr 25, 2008
Messages
1,722
Reaction score
85
The two are related, especailly in technique.

Self defense usually starts when one is accosted in some fashon by another. You did not provoke it, you did not 'ask' for it. And you certianly didn't desire for it to happen. Fighting is where you are an active player who, while maybe didn't come there for the fight, you most certianly decided you WANTED to fight.

They are related cause the techniques used in both are in many cases the same. Same punches, blocks, kicks, takedowns, etc...

So many of the same methods are used, but in one the person didn't want the conflict, while in the other they did.

Deaf
 

scarphe

White Belt
Joined
Sep 7, 2008
Messages
8
Reaction score
0
if the fight is not in the snes of sparring or sport, then yes a fight for me is the same as sd. unless person attcks my family or me i will not touc another person in a violent manner.
 

searcher

Senior Master
Joined
Mar 15, 2005
Messages
3,317
Reaction score
59
Location
Kansas
Self defense is whatever one uses to prevent oneself from being the victim of a crime or unwanted violence.

Fighting is the use of violence against one or more opponents.

One may fight in self defense. But self defense can include other things. Not all fights are for self defense, and sometimes fighting runs counter to that goal.


Took the words right out of my head. The two tend to crossover in the grey areas.
 
OP
celtic_crippler

celtic_crippler

Senior Master
Joined
Jan 15, 2006
Messages
3,968
Reaction score
137
Location
Airstrip One
Took the words right out of my head. The two tend to crossover in the grey areas.

Do they?

I view a "fight" as a failed attempt at self-defense.

Self-defense does not necessarily involve physical contact, but there are even more differences than just that.

From what I've gathered from my years in training from various instructors is that "fights" should and can be avoided. If/When attacked or even threatened it is at that point where self-defense takes place. However, when one's self-defense fails a situation can then become a fight becuase at that point your opponent has telegraphed your intention.

With a fight, there is posturing and preparation; almost a competitive sense about it. You "put up your dukes" and even before that at least one, if not both, members involved in the fight have announced that there indeed will be one.

There is no "announcing" where self-defense is concerned as that is a "telegraph." The last thing we want our attacker/opponent to know is that a whole lot of nasty is coming their way.

In terms of self-defense, I don't want my opponent to know my plans. I don't want them to know I'm going to hit them. My actions are quick, decisive, brutal, and intended to ensure I leave in one piece. It's not about bragging rights.

Fights involve ego. Self-Defense is ...well...just that. It's not about proving anything, it's about self preservation.

Example
Scenario: Mall parking lot, guy in car cuts right in front of you trying to get a parking space you're pullling into. As a result he hits the left front of your vehicle. The man gets out of his car in a threating manner yelling obscenities and cursing your heritage.

Fight: You retaliate verbally as well, citing that his family tree has no branches. He gets even more angry and starts to move toward you. You start moving closer to him continuing the exchange of insults and threats. As you come closer together you put up your dukes and before you know it you're both swingin'....

Self-Defense: You remain calm and instead of returning insults you start to dial 911 so that the police can take a report for your insurance company.
(a) the fellow continues to hurl insults but stays by his vehicle. You watch him warily but do not return any insults. Instead, you simply say the police are on the way and they will sort it out.
(b) the fellow takes offense to you calling the police and either (1) gets back in the car and flees because he has warrants, no insurance, whatever or (2) Comes at you aggressively, continueing to make threats. You warn him to calm down and stay away from you. You suggest he stay by his car until the police arrive. He does not, so you have to find another option. You can get back in your car and lock the doors. Or, if he closes the distance quickly and you don't think that's an option you can strike hard and fast when he's in range. You do NOT announce that you're about to break him off a piece, you just DO it. You don't get into a fighting stance and wait, any maneuvers you execute have a definate purpose related to putting the fellow down. You DON'T wait for them to swing either. They've made thier intention clear so at that point it's you or him. He may be thinking "I'm gonna punch this sucka's head off" but you're thinking "if he takes one more step he's gonna need surgery to repair his ACL."

Not sure I conveyed my point well or not....but maybe some will get the gist of it. LOL
 

pete

Master Black Belt
Joined
Aug 31, 2003
Messages
1,003
Reaction score
32
Location
Long Island, New York
Self Defense: Taking appropriate action to avoid harm to one's body, creating the means to escape... and escaping.

the moment that you create the means to escape, and you don't leave - it is no longer self defense. it is now a fight.

notice self defense deals only with a threat to YOU.

Protecting one's family, innocent bystanders, or cute little kittens is NOT self defense - neither is protecting one's home, money, or possessions - while being noble acts or the right thing to do in a situation...

pete.
 

allenjp

Brown Belt
Joined
Apr 28, 2008
Messages
456
Reaction score
10
Location
San Diego, California
Yes crippler I think you did a good job of illustrating this point. My point has always been that SD situations do not always seem different from a fight. If some idiot starts jaw jacking at me, I am not going to run in every situation. I am not however going to return his jaw jacking or challenge him to a fight. When it becomes clear to me that he (or she, or they) intends to attack me I will defend myself by any means necessary. Now to the bystander that will sometimes look like a "fight". But to me it is SD.

Hope that isn't ambiguous???
 
OP
celtic_crippler

celtic_crippler

Senior Master
Joined
Jan 15, 2006
Messages
3,968
Reaction score
137
Location
Airstrip One
Self Defense: Taking appropriate action to avoid harm to one's body, creating the means to escape... and escaping.

the moment that you create the means to escape, and you don't leave - it is no longer self defense. it is now a fight.

notice self defense deals only with a threat to YOU.

Protecting one's family, innocent bystanders, or cute little kittens is NOT self defense - neither is protecting one's home, money, or possessions - while being noble acts or the right thing to do in a situation...

pete.

Love the short & sweet definition in bold/underline. :)

As far as the last paragraph, that could depend on the state law where one lives. In some cases you can actually get into legal trouble for NOT helping....sigh...gotta love the law! lol
 

pete

Master Black Belt
Joined
Aug 31, 2003
Messages
1,003
Reaction score
32
Location
Long Island, New York
... could depend on the state law where one lives. In some cases you can actually get into legal trouble for NOT helping....sigh...gotta love the law! lol

it still isn't SELF-Defense. i'm not saying it is not morally, legally, or otherwise the "right" thing to do... it's just not self defense any more.

you can call it Body Guarding, Good Samaritan, etc. but now you are not defending your 'self', now you are protecting others...

pete.
 

astrobiologist

Brown Belt
Joined
Aug 10, 2008
Messages
418
Reaction score
20
Location
York, Pennsylvania
Self-defense is fighting, not all fighting is self-defense...

Best way to put it. In self-defense, you're fighting for your life (or someone else's) and the preservation thereof. Thus, self-defense is a form of fighting.

Fighting is a broad category of interactions. Fighting can involve physical fighting (punching, kicking, trapping, etc) and war, use of firearms and military tactics, fighting against an opponent in organized sport, fighting against a buddy to see who buys the next round, mentally struggling (fighting) against an addiction to nicotene or a narcotic, or fighting verbally in the form of debate. And these are just a few examples...

Graham
 

seasoned

MT Senior Moderator
Staff member
Lifetime Supporting Member
Joined
Apr 19, 2007
Messages
11,253
Reaction score
1,232
Location
Lives in Texas
Self defense, or the use of defending ones self, or others from those in our society, that pray on the weak and innocent, is valid and honorable. When one stands up for what they feel is right and just, whether it is verbal or physical. The opposite side of the coin would be, someone looking for some sort of gain, and is willing to pray on the weak, and take advantage. They are willing to fight for the sake of proving some point of view, that is different then theirs.
 

morph4me

Goin' with the flow
MT Mentor
MTS Alumni
Joined
Sep 5, 2006
Messages
6,779
Reaction score
124
Location
Ossining , NY
Fighting implies consent, we agree to meet and settle some arguement, right some wrong, regain our honor, or whatever. Self defense is a choice between defending yourself or becoming a victim, someone attacks you and you do what you have to so you can go home in one piece.
 

shihansmurf

Black Belt
Joined
Dec 10, 2007
Messages
685
Reaction score
104
Location
Casper, Wyoming
I have what could be viewed as a bit of a Devil's Advocate position on this matter.

I don't believe in the term Self-Defense as a seperate skillset to Fighting. In a violent encounter there are two sorts of people. Those that are skilled fighters and those that are not.However it is that you find yourself in the situation the fact is, is that once you are in an actual physical confrontation the skillsets are the same. Punching is punching, kicking, biting the nose is biting the nose, etc,.

I am of the opinion that if there is any seperation to be had in the concepts it is in the pre-fight stages, things like conflict resolution, risk avoidance, threat awareness, de-escalation techniques, and thing of that nature. Aside from the random gratuitous attacker scenario which happens with the frequency of winning powerball(I know, I know, we'll get a batch of 40 or so posts full of "No Crap, there I was, when all of the Sudden this guy just walked up and swung on me", stories, martial arts techniques are taught in isolation, espcialy grabe escapes leading to this type of thinking), but fights don't start out of nowhere. Nonetheless, once the physical battle(I like that term) has been joined you're fighting.

Just my view
Mark
 
Top