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murjd17

Self Defense Training

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One of the first things I'm doing this summer after graduating college (and the budget situation allows) is enrolling in a martial arts course. Without starting a debate about which style/system is best, one of my search criteria was a style that teaches the use of and defense against knife attacks.

 

Aside - So many people get caught up in which knife is the BEST for personal defense that they forget that they actually need to know what to do with it besides open it (Hopefully I'm preaching to the chior here). This is also partially why the only knife I usually carry (unless I'm in the woods) is a leatherman - at least for now. You shouldn't carry a personal defense firearm without knowing how to use it, why should a knife (carried for the purpose of defense) be any different?

 

Anyways, back to my question. Here's probably where I'm going to check out first: http://www.radetactics.com/ Does anyone have experience with something similar? The main thing that drew me to these guys is the Philipino Kali (based around fighting with knives) combined with some of the more well known systems.

 

I'm hoping I can talk the wife into classes for the whole family - we'll see!

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Kali is great, the other one I'd recommend would be a Krav Magra school. They're pretty hardcore and all around.

 

However, the style or name to what you study doesn't mean crap if the instructors teaching it aren't any good. There are tons of commercial schools out there that don't get much deeper than pay $100, get a belt, learn a kata. I had the honor and privilege of having a fantastic Karate Club in college with fantastic instructors. Don't go to a school for the name on the uniform, go for the quality of what they teach.

 

Another thing to keep in mind is that no one style is completely better than another. That's one of the things they kept telling us at Karate Club. We focused on Shorin-Ryu, but also had Tai Chi, Kung Fu, Brazilian Ju-Jitsu, Krav Magra and any other guest instructors we could get. Every style has a different outlook on situations, and it can't hurt for you to have multiple options and find what works for you.

 

I hope that helps you a bit!

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I agree with Delta. I have studied several, Chung Do Kwan-Tae Kwon Do, Wang-Tae Kwon Do, Judo, Aikido, Arnis (Filipino stick and machete fighting), Shiri Ryu(sp), Karate, Ju Jitsu (Brazilian and Japanese) and Hapkido, plus studying with friends who had taken other styles so we compared notes and manuevers. I do not think there is 1 art that encompasses it all as the "best" and as for a defensive only art, Aikido, the "Art of Brotherly Love (Steven Seagal's art) is one of the best, but even it leaves holes. I like being able to blend the teachings of all into a complete mixture that even studied practioners do not have any idea what comes next. Like everything that is taught and trained to be reflex, a skilled and knowledgable assailant will use a move to illicit a known counter-measure then use that for their opening. By blending and changing up all counters throughout the engagement, you never allow them to find "your" style.

The biggest and best advice I can give you on defending against a blade; 1) you ARE going to get cut (twice here), 2) be prepared, this is a fight to the death so be ready mentally, 3) forget honor of the "pugilist" art, 4) try to never be in the situation.

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I agree with you guys on it being best to get a blend of martial art styles in order to gain more versatility and adaptability. I guess a better way to have phrased my original question would have been to ask if the place I linked to looks like a good blend or not? As I mentioned earlier, I want a place that teaches the use and defense against knives, but I know that I also need to learn throws, strikes, and takedowns from a variety of sources

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I don't know everything, that's for sure, but if I can share a bit of what my experience has taught me in more or less theoretical afterthoughts. I've studied several martial arts over my short lifetime, most of them in hindsight were useless, they didn't teach how to survive and be victorious in violent conflicts. What they taught was Martial arts. A physical art form, more at home on a tourney mat than pavement or the bush.

 

There are a lot of martial arts that are legit man stoppers, I'm not going to bend your ear on my opinions of which ones those are, you don't care, and I know the feeling after hearing the arguments for a couple decades myself. Look for something with striking, and something with grappling, some systems have both, if you grappling system doesn't have some extensive "what to do while your on your feet to crush/break/slam/choke your opponent" I'd look for something else. If the striking doesn't have a good bit about how to stay on your feet, and how to finish/stop opponents quickly look for something else.

 

For sharp object defense I'd actually look into some of the modular training systems for LEO and prison guards. At one time the army taught us grunts some pretty good SOD, not sure if they still do, but if you can hook up with one of those high speeds they can show you some pretty slick method and share the philosophies of it with you. Beware, a lot of the SOD coming from the mass produced martial arts systems is only effective against practitioners of that particular knifing style where attack lines, and cut arcs are a known variable.

 

I hope I haven't clouded the water for you, or injured you with my wall of text.

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For training with knives and impact weapons (sticks etc), I recommend Pekiti Tirsia Kali (aka 'PTK'). You can look at their main website at www.ptkgo.com

 

This is the system that is currently in use by the Filipino National Police and the Filipino Marine Corps. It is not a 'tournament' system, it is strictly combat oriented and focused on the practical use of edged weapons. My wife and I both study PTK, and we both have experience with a few other systems prior to PTK. We are both convinced it is the best possible choice for close quarters combat with knife, impact weapon, or empty hands. (If you would like me to explain why we think this is so, drop me a private message and I'd be happy to offer some examples. I just don't want to hijack your thread or turn it into one of those 'my system is better than your system' debates.)

 

Any martial art training is better than nothing at all, but for knife/stick/empty hand I'm a firm believer in PTK and recommend it, without reservations, to anyone. For comparison, my wife is 5'5" tall and petite. I am 5'11" tall and built like a refrigerator. PTK serves us equally well.

Edited by survivalcyclist

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I'm of course biased, but my vote is for Krav. Its a good all around fighting style. Grabs things from Muay Thai, BJJ, Boxing, etc. Been doing it for 2 years now and it still kicks my ass when I go to class. I plan to start crossing over and taking BJJ/MT classes at the same gym, time allowing.

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I have never have studied "martial arts" or trained in self defense I was trained by the Navy in projected force combatives with a firm understanding that even if your not the instigator or initiator you are the aggressor there is no defense, offense only, deflect and attack. You can not overcome, nutralize or destroy if your defending. I ended up becoming an instructor in this martial skill and added an instinctive combaties form to my skill set. I have seen in FBI Studies the women who attendend self defense courses are 4 times more likely to be seriously injured in an attack than those that did not have that training. However women who had lethal skill sets that were attacked, attacked their aggressor until their attacker was incapacitated by serious injury or death sufferd only minor injuries ie (sprained wrist bruises and abrasions, ect.)

Edited by warrior7r

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Eh. I have to recommend reading the book "Put em Down, Take em Out!" before ever selecting any martial arts or self defense classes. It's one of the more influential combat books I've ever read. If you look hard enough you can find it online. Don't go through Amazon, they'll charge you a first born.

 

/edit

 

To touch up on what Warrior7r just said. I agree, the women's self defense classes are a big *&@*ing joke. Their "practice" come-at-me rape actors are less violent than fast-food employees after a long day at work.

 

I loathe women's self defense classes with a passion.

Edited by Visvalor

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Aikido Is my prefered study,but judo as a 14 year old that was tall and skinney helped give me balance.

 

A Arkansas Red Neck(my father) said Son if he is down Dont let him up.Dad carried a Black jack for years!

Different generation, same problem.

Attack the problem,disable quickley!!Does not matter how you do it,just do it.

Everyone understand PAIN !!

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Well...I picked up a few things over the years. Showed my son some of em when he was younger, told him the first rule.

 

Rule 1. Last one standing wins

Rule 2. If you can limp off and are still standing see rule #1.

 

Somehow I think that most of us with kids try to show em a little something that can help em by...just saying.

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I would be careful about where you get your training. A rule of thumb for me is if the school does not encourage guide and facilitate regular full contact continuous sparring then your probably not doing much to significantly increase your chances of survival in a unarmed combat scenario.

 

For this reason I think combat sports are a underrated for self defense purposes. A good collage wrestler will crush a lot self defense instructors in a lot of scenarios despite never attempting to simulate real combat in his life just because his physical fitness technique and muscle memory are so finely tuned.

 

I would find a combat sport club of some kind near by that you can get to at least twice a week to train at whether it is boxing kick boxing full contact karate Muay Thai sambo judo Jiu-jitsu wrestling mma. Self defense style training can be good but the quality of the training and regularity of sparing varies wildly because it is not tested by regular tournaments.

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And just to be a counter voice to all the Aikido fans, in my opinion Aikido is not much use. I am not a expert and am happy to change my mind if some one has good evidence but I have never seen Aikido applied in either a full contact grappling striking or mma match of any format nor have I seen it applied in a street fight in my internet trawling. What furthers my belief that Aikido is not very effective is the fact that the few times I have seen Aikido guys sparing with full contact grapplers of other discipline's they seem to come off worse and are unable to implement there various techniques.

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Eh. I have to recommend reading the book "Put em Down, Take em Out!" before ever selecting any martial arts or self defense classes. It's one of the more influential combat books I've ever read. If you look hard enough you can find it online. Don't go through Amazon, they'll charge you a first born.

 

/edit

 

To touch up on what Warrior7r just said. I agree, the women's self defense classes are a big *&@*ing joke. Their "practice" come-at-me rape actors are less violent than fast-food employees after a long day at work.

 

I loathe women's self defense classes with a passion.

 

This is exactly my problem with a lot of self defense classes. The only way to practice defending against violence is to actually defend against violence. Not do some choreographed role play. Sports are one dimensional, in Judo you only learn how to stop people taking you, stop them keeping you down and make sure they do not strangle you or break limbs while your down which is just a small part of real combat. But its much better to actually have those few skills then to do four hours of pretend after which you have no skills in muscle memory and think you can defeat a much larger opponent.

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My two bits, adding to what others have stated is try to find a class that combines a mix of several marital arts into one system. I took a year of Progressive Street Combat that offered exactly this combination and also regular sparing several times a week, one on one and against multiple opponents at the same time, with and without arms, in all kinds of hypothetical confrontations, every race shape and size, mostly teens and early 20's with a few old guys (like around 40). The class should include knife fighting and stick fighting, grappling, wrestling, boxing/kick-boxing and various other asian and western MA technics.

 

Downside, this class was very dangerous. Most students arrived with some kind of black belt or multiples in something, few lasted more than a couple weeks....myself, I got knocked out and went to my "office job" with black eyes several times.....we had no girls in the class that lasted more than a week, except for one that hardly didn't spar and that's not meant to be an insult (maybe the girls were just smart enough to leave before they got injured unlike many of us).

 

That said, unarmed defense in fine, but having a weapon is always better when possible and we trained with sticks and knives all the time. Real fights are a lot different than even sparing. It usually takes many good hits, not just one to take out a motivated attacker, one or two just makes them more angry. That's my experience anyway.

 

Therefore, I think it's prudent to carry some kind of weapon like mace, or an extendable steel baton (these are extremely effective and non-leathal....usually), and especially for women. Knives are great but you better be ready to "play for keeps" after you draw a blade....should that knife get taken away from you by the attacker, it will surely be used on you.....

 

Good luck,

 

Wolfe

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OK, here you go. Over 50, smallish side & out of shape. Mostly out of shape from smoking for 30 yrs & not exercising, but quit 5 yrs ago. What would you suggest other than get real good with a gun (I am ;) )?

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OK, here you go. Over 50, smallish side & out of shape. Mostly out of shape from smoking for 30 yrs & not exercising, but quit 5 yrs ago. What would you suggest other than get real good with a gun (I am ;) )?

 

That's a tough one, at age 50ish, being on the small side, and being a bit out of shape... Reactions are a little slower than they used to be most likely, joints can't take near as much repeated impact (As A general rule, I know there are those rare sixty year olds who are still physical powerhouses and physically superior to most 20 year olds).

 

You'll want something aggressive that shuts things down quick before the thirty years of smoking and not so great conditioning can catch up to you. Effective striking takes a lot of years, repetition, and full contact sparring to get good at none of which is particularly good for you joints especially if you're like most people over 30, meaning you have some injuries already.

 

The only thing I can think of for a type of skillset would be throwing or standing grappling with a lot of emphasis on blood chokes. Heck maybe Aikido, although, as was mentioned earlier I've never seen great results from it. Judo on the other hand has some potential.

 

Just my $.02, put away the pitchforks and torches.

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OK, here you go. Over 50, smallish side & out of shape. Mostly out of shape from smoking for 30 yrs & not exercising, but quit 5 yrs ago. What would you suggest other than get real good with a gun (I am ;) )?

My recommendation to you and women is S.C.A.R.S the only problem is instructors that are fully qualified are hard to come by.

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(1) When the shtf your mind must be ready to allow the body to do what must be done. Gross motor actions are all that the body will have to work with....therefore muscle memory must be created by training.

(2) There is always more than one way from point a to point b.....think outside of your opponents box.

If you are interested check out these two sites.....I have some of their training material and both recognize reality requires doing the deed. Remember a fight is like landing an airplane...if you can walk away from it (before or after the fact) then it was a good landing.

 

www.CloseCombatTraining.com and www.targetfocustraining.com

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OK, here you go. Over 50, smallish side & out of shape. Mostly out of shape from smoking for 30 yrs & not exercising, but quit 5 yrs ago. What would you suggest other than get real good with a gun (I am ;) )?

 

Let me introduce you to T'ai chi ch'uan. I personal study the Chen style. You have probably seen Hollywood movie of old Chinese guys moving real slow in the park. Go ahead laugh. This "exercise" at its most basic level will limber up the joints, increase breathing capacity and increase balance. All the things we have problems with as we become older.

After a while you will notice an improvement in joint and muscle strength. It wont bulk up up. There is a heavy emphasis on a straight spine and proper movements in things like walking correctly. As with many Chinese martial arts there are many legends and myths.

The art is used as an exercise, a moving mediation and a martial art. In the martial art you will find it to be considered a soft martial art compared to some of the others mentioned here. T'ai chi ch'uan is the study of appropriate change in response to outside forces, the study of yielding and "sticking" to an incoming attack rather than attempting to meet it with opposing force.

 

On a personal note, i wear out grown men at work that are half my age. I believe that T'ai chi ch'uan and my hiking background have both greatly contributed to my energy level. Good luck in your search.

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