In virtually any violent encounter that falls short of attempted murder, your goal will be to escape from the threat as expeditiously as possible. If an assailant is gripping your wrist and dragging you somewhere you don’t want to go, your first concern is to make him let go. If a bully puts you in a head lock in a bar so his buddy can hit you, your first act should be to get your head out of the lock. That’s where jujitsu techniques come in. If you need to free yourself from a wrist grab, it can be as simple as turning your hand or angling your arm in a specific direction. If you must extract yourself from a head lock, knowledge of jujitsu techniques can make it as easy as maneuvering your attacker's arm forward while turning your face toward him and slipping your head out from behind. If the other person isn’t committed to harming you, the altercation will probably be over.

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Learn four more escapes in this FREE Guide — 4 Submission Escapes From Jean Jacques Machado!

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Jujitsu Techniques Are Serious Business In reality, the severity of the attack will determine the severity of your response. If the other person is intent on causing bodily harm and begins by laying hands on you, you’ll obviously need to thwart his attacks — but before you can do that, you’ll need to break free of his hold. Again, this is where these jujitsu techniques come in. Although "jujitsu" translates as “gentle art,” the execution of even the most basic jujitsu techniques can have a devastating effect if you need them to.

Japanese samurai swords are also serious business. Learn how to use them safely in this FREE Guide — Samurai Weapons: Sword Master James Williams Shows You How to Start Training With Japanese Samurai Swords!

In fact, jujitsu techniques are all about escalation. It’s not an all-or-nothing fighting method like some styles — which is what causes many practitioners to freeze up on the street. Jujitsu techniques enable you to do what’s necessary to repel the attacker and then take steps to prevent him from continuing, all while avoiding the use of excessive force.
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Choosing the Right Jujitsu Techniques to Counter Street Attacks Presented in this article are five street attacks you’re likely to encounter. They might not appear life-threatening, but if you don’t take action quickly, you risk great bodily harm. The jujitsu techniques offered in response are fairly simple by design. Why? Because simple jujitsu techniques are the most effective when you’re under duress. The scope of jujitsu means that within the art are numerous responses to the same attacks — not just the ones shown here. None is wrong as long as it works. The best one for any particular situation is the one you’re most comfortable doing.
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Concepts to Keep in Mind When Using Jujitsu Techniques Any jujitsu pin or lock taught in class can easily become a joint dislocation or break on the street. All that’s required is a bit of extra pressure, torque or speed. The difference between the opponent feeling pain and the opponent being injured is a fine line. In a real fight, you’ll rarely have time to evaluate your options; immediate action will be needed to preserve your safety, so make sure you know exactly where that line is. Ideally, an escape — and all jujitsu techniques — should have three elements:
  • Jujitsu Techniques Element #1: The first element in your jujitsu techniques should be a distraction such as a strike, kick, stomp, nerve attack or verbal utterance. Your goal is to increase the attacker’s response time. Studies have shown you can buy yourself .3 to .7 seconds while his brain processes the unexpected sensation or information.
  • Jujitsu Techniques Element #2: The second element is the actual technique sequence, which is designed to release his hold, counter his attack and ultimately establish control over him.
  • Jujitsu Techniques Element #3:The third element is the finishing move. It could be a strike to a vital area or a pin, lock, submission, break or dislocation — provided, of course, such an escalation of force is warranted. In other words, to stay on the right side of the law, you can use a finishing move only if you’re unable to withdraw and the attacker represents a continuing threat.
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About the Author: A 10th-degree black belt, George Kirby has taught jujitsu for 43 years. In 2007, he was inducted into the Black Belt Hall of Fame as Instructor of the Year. For more information, visit George Kirby's website.
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Do you want to maximize your self defense skills? Learn the game of combat chess and most importantly the queen of all moves.

Allow me to intercept those who would object to the title of this article. I'm not claiming that there's a secret move, shortcut or hack that will give you the edge in any fight. Even if there was an ultimate weapon or strategy, you likely would avoid it because you
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Looking to buy some weights to gain some strength?

Looking at Dumbbell, Kettlebells or Weighted bar? How about an all in one that won't just save you some good amount of money but also space? Look no further, we bring you the GRIPBELL!

Let's face it, when we do want to work on some strength building, we don't want to go around shopping for 20 different weight equipment things. That would just not want us to even do any sort of strength training. But what if we only needed a few, a few that can do the things we want without having 20 things lay around? That's where the GRIPBELL comes in. Let me clarify with you first, these are not some heavy duty, muscle exploding weights, they are for building the level of strength we as martial artists want without going crazy and insane in bulk sizing!

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Many different types of "blocks" are taught in most martial arts school. We are taught high blocks, low blocks, middle blocks, knife hand blocks, etc. Some schools will also teach how to use the legs to block an attack, as well.

The purpose of this writing is to possibly open some minds to the possibilities of going outside the box and considering alternatives to the basics.

Blocking is taught as a way of protecting oneself from harm. Truly, we don't "block" anything, as a non-martial artist would think of it. What we call "blocking" is more of a redirection of an opponent's attack, or even a counterstrike against the opponent's attacking limb.

To block something would mean to put something, like your arm, leg or other body part directly in front of the attack. That would certainly hurt and possibly cause some damage. The goal should be to move the attack out of the way in order to prevent injury and provide a way to fight back. For example, many schools teach blocks as a limb moving toward the strike such as a circular high block.

The movement required for a block might have other uses, if you keep an open mind. The blocking techniques can also be used as attack techniques. For example, your "low block" may be used as a striking technique against the outer thigh of the attacker. Your high block might be used as a strike to the jaw. The set up for a block can be used as a deflection, as well as the actual block.

Doing a block or a series of blocks will most likely not end an attack. A block needs to be followed by a counterattack. While the block is usually taught as a separate technique in order to learn it correctly, it should also be used in combination with a counter.

The more you know, the more you realize how much you don't know. Intensive books can and have be written about basic techniques. With this writing, I am hoping to create interest in exploring the additional possibilities for what we have been taught and what we teach others.

About Grand Master Stevens

GM Stevens has been training in taekwondo for 47 years under the tutelage of the late legendary Grand Master Richard Chun. He holds an 8th degree black belt and is certified in the USA and in Korea. Grand Master Stevens is a member of the Board of Directors of the prestigious Richard Chun TaeKwonDo World Headquarters organization. He has been very active in his community and has been a volunteer with the Glen Rock Volunteer Ambulance Corps for over 11 years. He is a certified member of C.E.R.T. (Community Emergency Response Team).

Gary Stevens Taekwondo is located at 175 Rock Road in Glen Rock, New Jersey.

For more information: call (201) 670-7263, email: or go to

Having partners at or above your skill level is important for improving in your martial arts training. At some point, however, you will probably find yourself with a shortage of skilled partners, especially if you are an instructor.

This can happen for any number of reasons: students can move away, change their work schedules, start a family, etc., and just like that, you find that you're the highest-ranked student, or sole instructor, in your gym or dojo. This doesn't have to be a bad thing. In fact, if you take advantage of it, even working exclusively with lower-ranking classmates or students can improve your skills.

I used to host a twice-a-week training session at my dojo where I invited mostly black belts from other schools (as well as a few of my advanced students) to come and run drills. It was a blast. These were tough two- to three-hour sessions where I got to work with fighters of all different sizes, speeds, and technique preferences. My sparring improved dramatically over the next few months, and I don't think I've ever been in better shape. But unfortunately, it doesn't always work out that way. And as the old saying goes, "You gotta work with what ya got." So, make it hard on yourself.

I like to set handicaps when fighting my students. Specifically, I focus on forcing myself to work on improving my weak areas. Is you right leg weaker than the left? Then only kick with the right leg when sparring your students. Not much of an inside fighter? Don't kick at all. Training with partners of lesser skill not only helps you improve your weak points but gives them an opportunity to improve as well by working on strategy. It's also great for building their confidence. It can also be a low-cost opportunity to test new techniques and combinations, which benefits you as well.

In grappling, just like sparring, there is little benefit to wrapping lower ranking classmates into pretzels over and over, for them or you. Instead, let your partner put you in a bad situation. Let them get the mount; help them sink in that choke or armbar. If you start standing, such as in judo, allow your partner to get the superior grip before attempting a throw. This way you will get comfortable working out of a weaker position and your less-experienced partner can perfect their technique (and get experience using multiple techniques, if you get out of their first one).

You might think that giving advantages like these to students who may be far beneath your skill level is much of a challenge. Trust me, you'll reconsider that sentiment when you wind up sparring a 6'5" novice with zero control over his strength after deciding to only use your weak leg, or have a 250-pound green belt lying across your diaphragm trying to get an armlock after you let them get the pin. Remember, this is exactly what you signed up for: a challenge.

If you find yourself at the top of the heap without partners who are sufficiently challenging, there is no need to despair. Use it as a low-stress opportunity to improve your weaknesses and develop avenues to help your less experienced classmates and students to grow. You may even be surprised. One day they might present more of a challenge than you ever imagined!
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