defend yourself

Crime Scene

At a crime scene there will always be two people present, the victim and the suspect.

We see these two roles, the attacker (the suspect) and the student (the victim), acted out all the time in martial arts schools throughout the world for learning techniques, practicing tactics, and running through realistic scenarios. However, at a real crime scene there could be three additional people, or groups of people, present. Unfortunately, they are often omitted during self-defense training. These other people are persons of interest, witnesses, and involved.

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Kathy Long — aikidoka, kickboxer, kung fu san soo stylist and BJJ practitioner — drew from her vast martial arts experience to compose this concise guide to self-defense for all martial artists.

Being able to defend yourself isn’t just a matter of knowing which technique will stop an assailant in his tracks so you can get away. It’s also about being physically able to execute the move and being mentally prepared to do it. The following are some defensive components that will help you do that by enabling you to make the most of what you’ve learned in the dojo.

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An experienced muay Thai practitioner reveals the strategies you need to succeed with this martial art's most feared weapon.

When foreigners travel to Thailand to learn kickboxing, the biggest fear they face is the “knives of muay Thai.” Considered the secret weapons of Thai boxing, they’re the top cause of bloodletting in the ring. In case you haven’t figured it out by now, the knives of muay Thai are the elbows. Over the past few decades, they’ve proved so devastating that Western martial artists in Thailand customarily request that their bouts be conducted without elbow strikes. One of the most feared full-contact fighting systems in the world, muay Thai is renowned for developing the human body into a collection of weapons. For maximum effectiveness, the art teaches that each weapon should have a specific bone for striking, a specific movement for power and a specific target for destruction. The application of that ideology to elbow strikes is the subject of this post.

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When you hit another person in a fight, you can never know for certain what the effect will be, says Tim Larkin, founder of the self-defense system known as Target Focus Training.

When you hit another person in a fight, you can never know for certain what the effect will be, says Tim Larkin, founder of the self-defense system known as Target Focus Training. "I like to show clients back-to-back videos in which the human body takes a tremendous amount of punishment — really good bar fights in which they’re going at it, knocking the hell out of each other," Tim Larkin says. "At the end [of the first one], the guys are able to get up and walk away. ‘Isn’t it amazing?’ I ask. ‘Look what the human body can take!’ “Then I show a short video of a bar fight that starts the same way. One punch and the guy hits his head on the concrete and dies. There’s silence when I do that. They realize it’s a roulette wheel every time you put your hands on somebody. "If you cross the physical plane to protect yourself, you have to be OK with the fact that you or the other person could end up seriously injured or dead. The situation had better warrant it.” To see Tim Larkin in action, watch these exclusive self-defense videos, brought to you by Black Belt: How to Defend Yourself Against an Attacker Carrying a Knife How to Defend Yourself Against an Attacker Using Target Focus Training Street-Fighting Tips Incorporating Bodyweight in Self-Defense Techniques