What systems train for realistic self defense?

Joab

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Do reality based self defense programs and modern miltary systems such as American Combato, Krav Maga, John Perkins "Attack Proof" system, SCARS, MCMAP etc. the only kind of systems that prepare you effectively for surviving a serious attack on the streets of today, or are traditional, classical forms such as Kenpo Karate, Isshinryu Karate, Shaolin Kung Fu, Wing Chun Kung Fu, Judo, ju jitsu, tae kwon do and the like equally good at preparing you for a self defense emergency? All informed opinions appreciated.
 

jks9199

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Deja vu...

http://martialtalk.com/forum/showthread.php?t=69545
http://martialtalk.com/forum/showthread.php?t=66478
http://martialtalk.com/forum/showthread.php?t=65117
http://martialtalk.com/forum/showthread.php?t=65033
http://martialtalk.com/forum/showthread.php?t=63701
http://martialtalk.com/forum/showthread.php?t=68263
http://martialtalk.com/forum/showthread.php?t=70383
http://martialtalk.com/forum/showthread.php?t=66288

Bottom line:
Any training CAN prepare you for the real world, if it's practiced in a way that's aimed at preparing you for the real deal.

Rory Miller lists four truths of violence: Violence is closer, faster, more suddenly, and with more power than people expect. If your training takes this into account, and gives you some sort of means of preparing for the physiological, psychological, and emotional effects of a violent attack -- than it is preparing you for violence. This is true whether it's so-called Reality Based (often, it's worth questioning who's version of reality; some of the proponents haven't had any real world experience!) or a traditional martial art. And, if it doesn't take into account those truths -- no matter its origin, it won't prepare you.
 

GBlues

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Alot depends on the person too. Physical attributes etc....Nothing is full proof. You just look for the style or combat art that you think is best suited to you and your physical aspects. Alot of it also will have to do with how it feels. If I met a guy who was 6'2" tall and weighed 400 pounds I would not recommend taekwondo or capoeria. Just wouldn't work for him, not right away anyhow. Maybe if he lost some weight, but it's about those kinds of things that will make the difference, in whether an art works for and is capable of giving you what you need.
 

Ironcrane

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This can be one of the most confusing things to try and sort through in Martial Arts. One "category" of Martial Arts will argue that the other isn't realistic, because they do to much kata, or it's just a sport, or they take to many shortcuts, they're not in shape/you don't need to be in shape, etc.
But like the first two said, nothing is going to be full proof. And it'll come down to the quality of training.
 

dewey

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This can be one of the most confusing things to try and sort through in Martial Arts. One "category" of Martial Arts will argue that the other isn't realistic, because they do to much kata, or it's just a sport, or they take to many shortcuts, they're not in shape/you don't need to be in shape, etc.
But like the first two said, nothing is going to be full proof. And it'll come down to the quality of training.

Just remember that (unfortunately), many (but not all) commercial martial arts schools are also businesses...they're selling a product, namely, their instruction. Thus, of course they're going to hype their style/type of martial art...they want your money. Who would poo-poo their own "product"?

As others have noted: it's not necessarily the style/type of martial art...but how you train and how it's taught. Every martial art/style has some tactical application, making them suitable in some regard based upon a given self-defense scenario (e.g. groundfighting is very good against a single, unarmed attacker...but a bad idea for situations involving more than one assailant). However, the single most important thing to remember is that there is no one single "best" martial art! Anybody who claims as such is either a liar (con-man) or a fool (gullible sheep).

Some nuggets of wisdom:
  • Always observe both the beginner & advanced classes before making a decision to join. If you don't see much of difference in skill level or intensity...DON'T JOIN!
  • If there is little to no emphasis on practial self-defense techniques and/or drills...DON'T JOIN! Practial self-defense techniques are ones you can learn in a few hours because they're pretty simple. However, you must drill in them a lot in order to become proficient.
  • If they don't post the fees on the website or have them publicly posted in the school somewhere you can see the bottom line cost...DON'T JOIN!
  • Trust your gut, if the instructor seems fishy in regards to his credentials, his technique looks sloppy or whatever...DON'T JOIN! Remember, you're paying the guy to instruct you in self-defense. If he doesn't seem competent...then he probably isn't.
FWIW
 

KenpoTex

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IMO, the question posed in the following quote is the standard that our training should meet if it is to be worth anything. In other words, if it doesn't live up to this, why are you wasting your time with it?

"Will this work so that I can use it in vital combat against an opponent who is determined to prevent me from doing so and who is striving to eliminate me by fair means or foul?" -Col. Rex Applegate
 
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thetruth

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If your self defense drills in your traditional martial art have a 'throw anything at me with full intesity(or there abouts)' phase to them and you can pull of your styles self defense techniques then chances are they will work on the street. If however your style does the whole 'knowing the attack' thing and then expects it to translate then you will be in for some strife.
Cheers
Sam:asian:
 

jarrod

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Look at Tae Bo. It has alot of striking in it. If you train in a realistic fashion guess what Tae Bo can be used in self defense.

if you're training it in a realistic fashion, it's not tae bo.

although having good cardio doesn't hurt your SD skills, either.

jf
 

MJS

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A few posters have touched on what I was going to say....any art can be effective. What it comes down to is your goals and how you train.
 

Andrew Green

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Do reality based self defense programs and modern miltary systems such as American Combato, Krav Maga, John Perkins "Attack Proof" system, SCARS, MCMAP etc. the only kind of systems that prepare you effectively for surviving a serious attack on the streets of today, or are traditional, classical forms such as Kenpo Karate, Isshinryu Karate, Shaolin Kung Fu, Wing Chun Kung Fu, Judo, ju jitsu, tae kwon do and the like equally good at preparing you for a self defense emergency? All informed opinions appreciated.


Most people you ask, regardless of what style they train, will tell you there style is the best for self-defence, and everyone else is doing it wrong. I wouldn't believe any of them if I where you.

But, that said, I think the best style for any goal, and personally I think self-defence is a bad primary goal, is the style / club that you like being and and doing the most is the best. If you don't enjoy it you won't put the same amount into it and you won't stick with it, which doesn't acheive anything.
 

Deaf Smith

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If I had to start it all over again, and all I wanted was pure sefl defense, nothing else, then Krav Maga would be my H2H. And I'd stay in it to keep the skills up.

Then I'd go to a few good shooting/self defense schools starting out with Lethal Force Insititute and then a few advanced classes from such as Farnam, Tom Givens, SouthNarc, and the like. Don't need 20 classes, but you need some. Add to that IDPA to keep one's skills up.

Deaf
 

SteffenBerg

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Personally I think that most stuff taught as "self defense" is questionable at best. And I think it's dangerous and irresponsible to tell a student they are learning "self-defense" just because they learn some techniques that they can do (fast and powerful) against a relatively cooperative partner. I say irresponsible because many people are under the illusion that they can actually defend themselves which in many cases are not the case (even with many years of training).

It is also unfortunate that many schools/teachers that claim to teach self-defense will tell students that what they're doing is good self-defense because that's what THEIR teacher (or the founder) said... and not based on actual experience (or pressure testing the techniques).

Another reason why some schools (arts) may not be as effective in my opinion is that many of them are very technique driven. In other words, learning a response 'x' to a threat 'y'. And when they teach dozens upon dozens of responses... chances are pretty good you won't be able to do any of them. This is compounded by the fact that in most of these types of learning environments you already know what's coming (i.e. "this is a defense against a right jab..."); and once you start a technique the person acts as a "dummy"... with no real resistance after the initial attack.

Which brings me to another point:

Training with and against progressive resistance and the whole fear-reactivity / adrenal response aspects of training. Most schools do not prepare their students properly... and generally speaking most of the techniques you learn will fly out the window.

Doing simulations with increasing amount of pressure and randomness. This kind of training really should be done with "High Gear" or "Fist" type of body armor with full resistance. In my opinion, this is going to be the closest thing you can simulate to a real fight. Although there's some padding the impact is still felt and there is still a chance of a knockout (I've seen it happen). Simulating fights with the verbal posturing helps a lot and staging "micro fights" will kick your fear reactivity into high gear. However, it will always be a "simulation"...

In any event, a lot can be learned from suiting up and simulating an encounter and it probably will teach a student more about your skill (and yourself) than a year of doing techniques against a cooperative partner (or point sparring). And if you are serious about DEFENDING yourself you should take the precautionary steps and train to defend yourself by training "alive" against fully resistant opponents.

As one of my teachers always said: "The worst you do during training is probably the best you'll do on the street. You want to prepare by training hard so that your worst is still damn good".

So I guess my point is that it's not about the style / system - it's about how they train and prepare themselves for a potential confrontation. My personal belief is that the chances are pretty slim that most of us will be attacked (much less being able to use your chosen art in a confrontation), but if you are training for self-defense then you should train PROPERLY.

Just my 2 cents.

Stef

P.S. Just to clarify, I have nothing against drills or learning "techniques", and I think it would be impossible to learn martial arts without them. It comes down to how these drills are trained. If they are always prearranged then imho they would be of no use. They need to be done against progressively more resistance in a sparring / alive environment.
 

Geeba12

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It is the person who makes any Art form work. So my opinion would be based on the human element not any particular style.
Unfortunately it is also the human influences that has destroyed many styles functional potential for the sake of money, fame and ego.
Regards,
SJG
 
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