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The following are a tiny faction of the articles available to members.
The Golden Move +1 – Rory Miller
Training is Still Hard – Garry Smith
Fear Management vs. Danger Management – Marc MacYoung
It’s OK to Lie to Drunks – Clint Overland
Train Hard, Fight Easy – Toby Cowern
To Fear or Not to Fear – Erik Kondo
Ordinary People – Kathy Jackson
Size Matters: On Fighting Bigger Stronger People – Teja Van Wicklen
Why going to the range isn’t enough – Kathy Jackson
Understanding “Bar Fights” – Clint Overland
Violence Dynamics: The First Model – Rory Miller
The Monkey Brain – Marc MacYoung
Maintaining Safety in Calamity – Toby Cowern
The Best Place to Start – Teja Van Wicklen
How Well Can You Defend Yourself? – Erik Kondo
Welcome to My Arsenal – Garry Smith
The Golden Move +1 – Rory MillerMy standard for any combative motion, for a long time, has been the Golden Move: Every single motion should: Injure the threat Protect yourself Improve your position Worsen the threat’s position That’s every single motion. Because it is easier to teach, many martial artists learned to strike (injure the threat) or unbalance (worsen the threat’s position); learned to block or evade (protect yourself); and learned footwork (better your position, sometimes worsen the threat’s)– but almost all learned them as three separate things.
Training is Still Hard – Garry SmithSaturday just gone saw me driving over to Winsford, Cheshire to meet up with Glyn Evans and his Saturday morning crew for one of their training sessions. Up with the lark and on the road by half six it was a beautiful drive over varied countryside and not a motorway in sight. The foothills of the Derbyshire end of the Pennines soon gave way to the Cheshire plain and all in stunning sunshine, I definitely felt good to be alive and out and about, windows down and Bruce Springsteen providing the music. The place names along the way cried out our English heritage, none more so than a place called Wildboarclough, and there is nowhere nicer on such a gorgeous morning.
Fear Management vs. Danger Management – Marc MacYoungLet’s start with the fact that there’s a difference between fear management and danger management. I’m talking in extremes here, but it’s to communicate an idea. Let’s say you’re terrified of vampires. No amount of rational explanation that vampires don’t exist and aren’t a danger is going to help. That’s because ‘terror’ comes from a deeper level of your brain than rational. However, if someone gives you a talisman (like a cross) and says “This will keep away the vampires” then that’s going really seem to work. The reason ISN’T that it solves the problem. It’s not even that it soothes your fears. It’s that it reconfirms your fears. It gives you an ‘answer’ in the context of your terror. By giving you a talisman against vampires, it confirms vampires exist, that they are a danger and that without this talisman you are in danger. By having this talisman you are emotionally empowered without ever addressing the fact that vampires don’t exist. Or, that you believe in them and are letting fear of imaginary monsters guide your life. That is fear management. It only addresses the emotions, NOT the actual problem.
It’s OK to Lie to Drunks – Clint OverlandWhen you are a bouncer the first thing you should be able to learn is to out think a drunk. Whaaaaat??? you ask in awe of my daring to say you shouldn’t fight!. No you are not there to fight, not yet, your first set of skills needed are communication skills. Any violence professional worth their pay knows that the first step is TALKING and LISTENING to the problem first. You need to be able to listen and see everything you are dealing with. That way you can get a better and more complete understanding of the drunken primate you are going to have to deal with probably for the next 15 minutes of more.Is this a pride problem, a social anxiety problem a domestic problem? Oh the list can be endless.
Train Hard, Fight Easy – Toby CowernThe maxim of many an Army and a familiar phrase to most. I want to explore this concept a little though, as I look and see so often now vary varying viewpoints in what ‘Training Hard’ constitutes, and also the fact this is becoming one of the ‘throwaway’ phrase that many like to use, but few actually understand and apply (Same as, “It is better to be judged by twelve, than carried by six”)
To Fear or Not to Fear – Erik KondoFear is a common emotion. Fear of violence is also a common emotion in most people. Fear can be beneficial when it keeps you safe in certain situations. This is Situational Fear. But when fear is ongoing or not based on an actual and current threat is becomes Dispositional Fear. Dispositional Fear creates stress and anxiety. Dispositional Fear makes you less safe because you have trouble identifying actual threats from imaginary ones. It lowers your ability to reason and make effective decisions. To summarize, some Situational Fear is good for you, most Dispositional Fear is bad for you.
Ordinary People – Kathy JacksonThe training world has not done a very good job selling the need for training to regular people. Partly, it’s because of the tremendous success some early trainers had in convincing a small segment of the population that training would make you a real man, a warrior, a ninja, a tactical god, a James Bond, a soldier of fortune, a real operator, a Dirty Harry …. whatever. The fantasy-warrior thing sold very well to a reliable segment of the potential market, and that factor still drives a big part of the training industry. All you need to do is look at popular YouTube videos to see that.
Size Matters: On Fighting Bigger Stronger People – Teja Van WicklenI began martial arts in high school, and excelled at it thanks to a few years of ballet. Shortly thereafter, I found myself bombarded by invitations to ‘spar’. It was a question always asked with a wink or a raised eyebrow. As a teenager I took it as an opportunity to show my prowess. Ah the naiivitee of youth – that being taken seriously in such a situation was not yet a blip on my radar. Obviously if these guys felt fighting me posed any threat of lost teeth or worse, it wouldn’t be such a thrill. Interestingly, that high school mentality persisted well beyond high school.
Why going to the range isn’t enough – Kathy JacksonBumped into an old friend the other day, someone I hadn’t seen in awhile. She asked me about my life now, and I told her I’d been teaching firearms classes all over the country for the past few years. She raised a skeptical eyebrow and said, “People do that? Take classes just for shooting? I wouldn’t think there was that much to learn. You point at the target and you pull the trigger. That’s like, two minutes. So what else is there to teach?” Funny thing is, she’s right in one sense. There’s really not that much to shooting a gun. It’s kind of like driving a car that way. You learn where the steering wheel is, maybe you learn how to put gas in the tank, 1 then you start the car, push the gas pedal and off you go. Right?
Understanding “Bar Fights” – Clint OverlandWhen people use the phrase “bar fight” to describe some type of a violent altercation that occurs at or around a bar, most people think they have a pretty good idea of what is being described. The problem is that, most likely, they are wrong. A “bar” or drinking establishment is actually not a singular or uniform environment. The typical bar consists of multiple areas. Each of the areas have its own particular characteristics as well as those in common with the other areas. A bar has at least six unique areas to consider. What transpires in each of these areas can be remarkably varied. Understanding how to deal with violence that occurs in a bar requires knowledge of the similarities and differences in altercations that transpire in each particular area.
Violence Dynamics: The First Model – Rory MillerThe idea is simple. If you are in danger of dying—starving, thirsty, sick or about to be killed and eaten– that is your highest priority. Until you have taken care of your immediate survival needs you don’t give a damn, and you don’t waste resources, on anything else. Once your immediate physical needs are taken care of, you can start thinking about your physical security. How do you arrange to have food and water tomorrow and next week? How do you get shelter to protect you from the elements and from predators?
The Monkey Brain – Marc MacYoungEvery night you go to bed with a human, a monkey and a lizard. No we’re not saying that you are kinky. Nor are we insulting your significant other. What we are talking about are analogies of the different levels of your brain. Although not exactly accurate, a useful rule of thumb goes: Neo-cortex = human brain Limbic system = monkey brain Cerebellum = lizard brain
Maintaining Safety in Calamity – Toby CowernThe latest spate of terrorist attacks and the clear assessment that these type of attacks are likely to increase in the near future has highlighted to many, the need to have a ’shift in thinking’ towards seizing control of their personal safety. There are many excellent training opportunities available even for civilians although some of you may not have the time, inclination or resources to afford comprehensive training in this regard. So below, there are some ‘top tips’ to consider, should you find yourself caught up in a ‘mass casualty’ attack.
The Best Place to Start – Teja Van WicklenA violent attack can be detected before it occurs by learning to notice various signals. There are steps you can take to disarm an attack at various stages before it occurs. These are not exciting superhero techniques for thwarting crime. They are logical, well-researched, methodical ways of taking yourself and your loved ones off a criminals radar.
How Well Can You Defend Yourself? – Erik KondoCan you defend yourself better than the average person? Most likely you think you can. Most Americans think that he or she is more intelligent, a better driver, and generally more competent than average. Interestingly, people with the lowest abilities tend to be the most likely to over-estimate their abilities, while people with the highest abilities tend to be the most likely to under-estimate their abilities.
Welcome to My Arsenal – Garry SmithWelcome to my arsenal. Sorry, I meant welcome to my home. Remember an English man’s home is his castle, indeed there exists the well known, if often misunderstood, Castle Defence, that covers our right to defend our home, family and possessions, in fact the Castle Defence also extends to a person’s car, but I digress. Welcome to my arsenal.
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