A martial artist uses a broom handle to fend off a knife attack.
Matt Numrich (right)

Read Part 1, on range gluttony in the martial arts, here.

Read Part 2, on technique or attribute greed, here.

Read Part 3, on E3 pride, here.

This deadly sin of street fighting sums up the previous sins perfectly: If you don’t have a streamlined game plan for what to do in a variety of self-defense situations, you’ll be like a blind person in a dark room looking for a black cat that isn’t there.

I liken this to seeing your neighbor packing his car and then walking over to ask where he’s going on vacation. Imagine if he shrugged his shoulders and said, “I don’t know … I’m just going to start driving.”

You need strategies that steer you through the situations that are most likely to occur, and you can use the five ranges mentioned above as a guide. Those strategies should address questions like:

“What’s my best course of action if I’m tackled?”

“What are the first and second steps if I’m attacked with a knife?”

"How do I deal with two or three assailants?”

How does this tie in to wrath? Your game plan should be one you can convey in a couple of phrases. If you don’t have a game plan, you’ll be “just driving,” perhaps acting out of fear, anger or wrath in an altercation. It’s these emotions that can get you in trouble. Responding with wrath when someone cuts you off in traffic or verbally accosts you on the street has been the cause of many a lawsuit.

Redemption: After you’ve addressed the previous sins, formulate a game plan for what to do in kickboxing range, close-quarters range, ground-fighting range, weapons range and mass-attack range.

Read Part 5 here.

Text and photo by Matt Numrich, M.A.

Subscribe to Black Belt here. Your support ensures that we can continue to give you free access to articles like this.

Introducing Martial Arts School Listings on Black Belt Mag!
Sign Up Now To Be One Of The First School Listed In Our Database.
SUBSCRIBE TO BLACKBELT MAGAZINE TODAY!
Don't miss a single issue of the worlds largest magazine of martial arts.