self defense

Some years ago, one of our experts, an experienced SWAT officer, asked for a drill to control and reduce stress (specifically, the kind that that arises on a dangerous mission like a hostage rescue or raid on a terrorist safehouse). He received a simple drill on rhythmic breathing and visualization. Its essence was to inhale, stop, and exhale in four-second increments for each segment, while paying special attention to the moment when the air flow changes direction. This drill should be done during the preparation period before the stress-inducing action begins, and also on a daily basis.

The next time we met, the officer told me, "This drill changed my life." It enabled him to control his mind and the stress during missions, be more focused, and function much better.

Imagine, after over 15 years in the unit, a simple breathing exercise changed his life.

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As women, we are fierce creatures by nature. While women tend to be more stereotypically associated with being nurturers, we are all born with the ability to flip a switch and transform from caring, gentle and benevolent beings into terrifying forces to be reckoned with in order to protect ourselves and our family.

In the wild, the most dangerous thing you can stumble upon is a mother protecting her young. The lioness can be more terrifying even than the larger male lion. This is because her ferocity is driven by her protective instincts and love for her cubs, whereas male lions usually fight for dominance or territory (in human terms, they're fighting for ego). The force driving the "why" behind the fighting spirit is more powerful than the physical attributes.

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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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Edged-weapon attacks are on the rise. Throughout the European Union, they're almost epidemic. Even worse, edged weapons used in attacks overseas many times aren't the 4-inch folders Americans are used to seeing. They're 10- to 12-inch-long kitchen knives, which makes many of the standard disarms taught in martial arts schools more dangerous, if not impossible. The problem has grown so significant that London Mayor Sadiq Khan recently issued a proclamation: "No excuses. There is never a reason to carry a knife. Anyone who does will be caught, and they will feel the full force of the law." He basically banned knives for civilians to carry.

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BLACK BELT: "You win 100 percent of the fights you don't have."— Kelly McCann, combatives instructor

Jarret Schonbrun: I teach my students de-escalation as part of self-defense. I always tell them that if it comes to a point where they need to use blocks/strikes, then they have already failed (but make sure that you fail successfully if needed!)

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