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Anyone do self defense? Lets all help each other?

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So I am starting to watch videos on self defense (thanks college for getting me back into it) and i was thinking that we could all help each other on here as well as preserve our memory of the techniques by posting up on here and asking questions on it. I am currently watching a video called "Bas Ruttens Legal Street Fighting" and I must say he is very effective with his techniques. Anyone want to give this a go with me? I have no sparring partner, so it would help me and you as well if you don't either.

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Hi Kollision.


I don't get it - do you mean we should get the same video and train each at home the same moves and then discuss the training here??


I think self defense training without a training partner is about as effective as bodybuilding without weights*...

You need good sparring partners. You can't just do shadow moves and think you're up to self-defend. It's better than nothing, but real martial art training requires others to train with.



* That's not zero effective, mind It's just inferior.

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Just put a picture up on a wall of your enemy and punch it until your fists become sore, swollen, and bruised. This technique will not improve your ability to throw your attacker nor defend yourself from them, but if you hit them your fists wont hurt if you have been using this technique for a few month or years. On second thought a wall does not make a very good sparring partner. Koll if I lived in Cali i'd work with you on this, but you are huge so I wouldn't be able to help you very much. Have you thought about pissing off some wrestlers from the UFC and fighting them?

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  • 1 month later...

you won't really learn shit without proper training, technique and light-med contact sparring.


i find it good to spar with people a lot better than you, so you get quite hurt if you do stupid shit.

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a couple of my friends used to teach it, it's a brazilian style that was disguised as dance so they could train while they were captured/conquered without alerting their oppressors.


it's really pretty and quite gymnastic, but i'm not sure how practical it is for brawling.

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I think its great you're training in self defense, everyone should take some sort of self defense or martial art class at some point. I would recommend you take a class as well, its best when there is an experienced instructor to take you through the steps physically, its never quite the same on video, although you do get some great fancy moves sometimes. Plus, in a class you'll get to train with different people of different shapes and sizes, the whole class experience will help you become more adaptive to different scenarios.


Capoeira, is a great martial art, concentrated mostly on kicks. I'd like to take a few capoeira classes on day. I did take two years of Tae Kwon Do a few years back, I'm in the process right now of enrolling in a Aikido class. Martial arts is a great way to get your cardio work out, helps keep your butt in shape and safe.


I'm kind of a big guy and I know how to take hard falls, I make a great practice dummy so if anyone needs a sparring partner and lives around the LA area let me know, I could use some practice before I start my Aikido class, don’t want to get my butt kicked around by some 12 year old the first day.

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If / when I get some money, I want to take a self-defense class of some kind. I think it depends on what kind of instructor you get, some of them will suck a lot I imagine. To be like a black belt etc, you don't even need to be any good at fighting, you just have to had followed instructions. Instructors who have actually been in fights will have good first-hand knowledge. Although I don't actually know what I am talking about. I also want to do some kind of acrobatics class at some point so I can learn to do somersaults etc, just from an awesome point of view not from a practical point of view.

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  • 2 months later...

After having taken tae kwon do and judo for many years and like some of you having to leave it due to knee injuries from kicking air so many times I also had to give it up.

I was a correctional officer in addition to being a butcher and about a dozen other things in my life so far but I learned some training as a CO that really opened my eyes to the whole "self defense" industry. And as some of you have said, it is an industry. You really need to find someone in one of the deadlier arts to really protect yourself.

As a CO you are told to sign a paper saying your life will not be bargained for in a hostage taking among other things, so it puts things in perspective. The training is more survival defense rather than self defense. It taught one how to subdue or injure very quickly and it ain't very pretty. In fact, like wing chun ( I believe is the close contact one, I may be wrong or incorrectly spelled) much of the damage must be done without throwing your limbs out into the fray i.e., kicks, telegraphed punches to the head, etc.


Fights are over in seconds and its usually the first guy who lands a good shot. There is no glory in fighting in the street or for your life or anywhere for that matter. Unless you are a Bruce Lee, some skinny little street fighter will kick your ass every time. I've seen massive powerful men roll around the floor scratching like women and biting and doing anything they can to basically kill the other guy. It's rage, it's instant and there is NO time for thinking. It's like any sport, you're body is moving and your brain is just watching it. You shake, you drool, you bite your own lips and tongue, etc and sometimes you vomit afterwards.


First and foremost, you do not fight, you leave the scene if at all possible. If you have to fight, you don't wait to defend, you wait until the enemy enters your range and you strike at nuts, eyes, throat, solar plexus and a nerve centres and you run like hell. You don't stand around to admire anything, you hit until they stop advancing and you run like hell.


These days, everyone is carrying something so it's not even worth it to fight it out unless you are cornered.


If you want to learn to defend yourself look up SURVIVAL self defense. There is a really good guy up here in Ontario who does training like that. I'll see if I can find him again.


Don't ever kid yourself that a black belt in anything makes you king of the street.


It is so much a change in psychology as well. That's a big part of it. Ask yourself, are you able to strike a person as hard as you possibly can in the throat or stick your fingers deep into someone's eye sockets or will you freeze or just go into a defensive posture?


It's not even like sparring, it's survival, there are no rules.


Like some of you have said, you have to do it so often it becomes an auto-reaction. But it is also a journey in knowing yourself. What are you capable of doing to another human being if you or your loved one is threatened.


These days we are all more likely to be threatened so it's probably a good idea to take up some form of protection but make sure it's useful in the street because buddy isn't going to be some sparring partner in a structured classroom. He/she wants to really hurt you badly or kill you and you should be prepared to do the same if adequately trained.




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Good post phoenix. I have started following a wing chun DVD, and yeah it does seem quite intensive. It is a defense or sorts, in that so far there haven't been any actual attacks, only counter-attacks, therefore it (so far) only works when an opponent has attacked. But the counter-attacks center around kicking and breaking the knee-cap, or jabbing in the eye, as well as punches to the head, and kicks to the shin and stomach. The instructor makes it clear that you are trying to deal with whatever attack is coming, from whatever fighting style or lack of fighting style, and then incapacitate the opponent quickly.


I have found the same thing regarding black belts. As far as I am concerned, you can be a black belt without knowing anything about fighting. It's like learning how to dance or follow a series of instructions. That's not to say that a black belt won't be a good fighter, just that they don't necessarily coincide. My friend who isn't black belt at tae kwon do (i can't remember what belt he is), is obviously much better at fighting than some of the people who have black belts, although it can be said he is not as good at tae kwon do.

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Sounds good Richard. Hopefully the man/woman spends a little time talking about stance, intuition/gut feelings, surveying your environmemt for objects that you can use as weapons before anything happens, looking at people to get some sort of idea as to who is trouble and who is not and staying away from them, very importantly always know where the exits are!!


Train, train, train...ask friends to spook you by yelling at you or jumping out in front of you from safe distances of course!!, tap you or jab you with a broom or something when you're just hanging out or relaxing at home to rest your reflexes.


It's a lot like the "way you walk tells a prospective mugger a lot about you" stuff. It's also about how you learn to become more aware of the new or dangerous environments/individuals automatically.


But remember this: the moment you begin to think "hey, I can handle myself" or "I'm ready" or "I'm trained up" etc. and ignore warning signs you are in trouble.


We will always be better off being proactive rather than reactive.





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Nah, the video is a martial-arts video, just about the practice of wing chun, so it doesn't talk about danger etc as such. But the basis of the art does seem to be in getting 'the job' done quickly, with high injuries intended, rather than being used for sport or being used for display purposes. I would like to take real combat classes to be able to actually defend myself better. A friend of mine from highschool told me that he was beaten up in a pub a few years ago, had bones broken and was badly bleeding, and since then has learnt proper practical self defense. I am thinking of having him train me in some way.

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I have trained in Wing Chun for some time.

I think the bottom line is the same for any martial arts/self defense:

never believe when people tell you that you'll be invincible. There is so much BS going on in this market (yes, it IS a market)... I have made a few rules for finding a good MA school:

  • Never go to a school that has ads in the newspapers around
  • Never go to a school that tries to lock you in a contract
  • If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is
  • Try to find the guy that doesn't advertise much, but loves what he's doing and doesn't need to say anything to prove you his worth

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Try to find the guy that doesn't advertise much, but loves what he's doing and doesn't need to say anything to prove you his worth


I love this comment. It goes along wtih one of my favorite quotes:


"When your actions speak for themselves, don't interrupt."



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  • 5 months later...

Have any of you heard of Aikido? I was pretty hardcore into it about 7 years ago, somehow I fell out of it, but I've recently started picking it up again...

Before I started up again I looked into some jujitsu, I discovered most of those guys are just out to kill people...this one guy I spoke with spent 15 minutes telling how great he was, then to top it off he used some racial slurs...I politely told him he had told me all I needed to know about his school. My old Aikido instructor was pretty cool, when I first asked about his school, he said very little, pretty much just said check it out for myself...he refused to self aggrandize, that was a good sign.

Our sensei was a guy named Tohei Sensei out of Chicago, he trained to be a kamikazi pilot in WWII when he was 17, the war ended before his mission. It devestated him and then he discovered Aikido and it gave new meaning to his life. When he was in his 70s I watched him manhandle 10 men in their prime, many were armed with boken (wooden staffs) He was like a tiny tornado...in oorder to get any rank we had to test in front of him...quite intimidating...so intimidating to me that I never tested, even though I had hundreds of hours of training! I'm back to the basic basics again...too long without training...but that will be remedied...

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As for fighters...has anyone heard of Genki Sudo, I think thats his name...I think he fights in Pride Fighting...He seems like a pretty cool fighter...I get the feeling he's a bit of a "pacifist" type, wierd but he seems like he's a real peaceful guy...he beats the hell out of people, helps them up, bows to them them pulls out a banner that says "love one another" or "world peace". I 've only seen a few of his fights tho, anyone else know about him?

Amarillo has TONS of fighters. Evan Tanner & Paul Buentello from UFC are from here, so is shootfighter Steve Nelson...Brandon Slay (Olympic wrestler-rasslin' for Jesus) is from Amarillo...pro-wrestlers Terry Funk, Ted DuBeussey (Million Dollar Man) and some others are also from here...it makes sense, this is a very agro town...it seems all people want to do are fight or fu..., well, you know what I mean.

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Just my 2 cents...


I've taken quite few different MA's, some just a few classes, others for years:


-taekwondo (to blue belt)

-karate (just a few)

-kung fu (few months)

-hapkido (just a few)

-wushu (few months)

-wingchun (few years and currently doing)

-capoeira (few months and currently doing)


The reasons I've chosen wingchun and capoeira, is because wingchun focusses purely on building up reflexes and also using the opponents energy against them, which is useful for being able to react quickly and also against someone stronger or bigger.


Capoeria, I do purely for the love of it. It is something of its own, the music, the feeling, the vibe one gets from the moments.


The other ones I've taken, I quit purely after realizing they would have absolutely no relevance in real life, and they are not true self-defenses. Many times a big guy in those classes would refuse to go along with the moves (such as letting you throw him), and you could see, it just wan't realistic. The moves in TKD for example, you have like 6-7 strikes if a guy trys to punch you (block, twist the arm, kick the knee, elbow the head) - ridiculous! That stuff would never fly in reality, especially with someone stronger than you.


However, in real self defense, I'd have to say that you should not think of using any martial art, but rather learn some street defense techniques, such as building up your reflexes as much as possible, and using vital blows such as palm uppercuts to the nose/jaw, guaging someones eyes, ripping at the nostrils, groin area, biting, breaking limb points such as fingers, knees, strikes to the neck/kidneys, even stepping on toes and pulling hair! In fact, using your wit as well is very important, learning how to do something to trick the person attacking you into giving you a moments advantage. These kinds of things are what instinct kicks in to those that truly have gotten into trouble and fights, and these are the techniques best learned to survive. Building up your cardio and training to run fast and for long periods of time is also good!


Most martial arts teach you in bare foot, and in uniforms, and also only against others that practice the same martial art. This is completely useless. In real life, you can't toss someone as easily if they are wearing a flimsy t-shirt, or you will maneuver less well with shoes, or you will not know how to react against someone just purely raging, or how to defend yourself if you are already on the ground or hit from behind - one least expects to be attacked in reality, whereas in MA training, you are face to face, expecting it, and there are rules and safety involved.


Martial arts are supposed to be a way of completing and understanding yourself, not for combat. This is how I regard them, purely for self learning and completion.


And, we must all accept the fact that guns have changed everything.

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Self-defense is a big interest of mine and I am very happy to see this thread. I'm glad to see what veganmonk wrote and agree fully. I dont have his experience but everything I've experienced, read and heard reinforces his point that most traditional martial arts are not esp. practical/effective for self-defense.


I am no expert but do want to throw some thoughts into the mix:

- First - get your mind right. Know your limits: what you are and are not willing and able to do while defending yourself and in your day to day life.

- Your best defensive tools are awareness, avoidance, de-escalation (sp?), diversion and escape.

- Have a plan to deal with attacks and practice your plan often, under as realistic of conditions as are possible without anyone getting seriously injured.

- Use the minimal amount of force needed to stop an attack but do not hesitate to do whatever you need to do to survive.

- If you must fight: do so explosively, with all you've got and continue until the person/s attacking you break off their attack or you are not able to continue.

- If you must fight: use a defensive tool / weapon - ideally one that you already have with you and that you have trained with. Used correctly, virtually any object can be used defensively but having one or more dedicated defensive tools on you at all times is a very good idea.

- Firearms, knives etc are a part of our world and if attacked, you should at least have a working knowledge of how they may be used against you,

in order to better defend yourself against them. Ideally, you will have these kinds of tools available for defending yourself.


I hope someone finds this helpful!

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You guys should really look into aikido...there are absolutely NO offensive moves or strikes...the founder was basically a pacifist. Now there are what they call atemis, but they are distraction blows which occur after the defender has been attacked. I know everyone thinks their art is the best, but I think aloy of people are in agreement that aikido, when done properly is one of the most effective. It's all about technique , not brute strength...having said that, there are no superior martial arts, only superior martial artists.

At my old dojo we would get ALOT of shoot fighters who came in saying they heard aikido was the best....but they all left because it was too passive for them...the wanted "ground and pound".

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I've watched quite a few hours of Aikido, and a some when I was in Japan. From what I can tell, it revolves alot around manipulation and throws. The training is also in uniform and barefoot. Many of the grabs require grabbing the other persons uniform, and in reality, a t-shirt is very flimsy, and doesn't work the same. But, some people are strong enough that you simply cannot manipulate their joints (ie: wrists, arms, and definately not toss them). Also in training, the other student does not really try to do anything to escape the one that does the maneuver. For example, they don't use the free arm/hand to strike at the face or kick or anything. They just go along with it to aid the other student in training.


If you try to use Aikido against someone much stronger than you, or if a person rages and takes you to the ground from behind and puts you in a choke hold or guages your eyes, aikido does not prepare you for this. It is similair ot wingchun, in that it revolves always around "not being the one to fall down", and that you will react quickly enough to beat the opponent before it gets that far, and that you are facing your opponent or that they are doing a "set" of moves on you, like grabs in certain areas. They are not preparing you for what to do once you are taken down already. And more than likely, you are going to end up on the ground. There are martial arts that try to teach people this as well, such as jujitsu, pancration, and all of those other "ultimate fighting" styles, and again, those are not practical in reality, as even those have rules designed to protect students, such as not striking the groin, eyes, face, nose, knees, etc..etc... and these are exactly the areas that people MUST train in for self-defense.


If you are training in Aikido, try testing it. The next time you are in training, wear a t-shirt, and resist the other person doing their throw or manuevers on you, and not only that, but do something that you would in reality that is unexcpected, such as stepping on their feet, throwing an elbow in, kneeing/kicking them if they have grabbed you, or grab onto their hair or react like you don't want to be thrown - even use all your force to pull away from them. Your one and legs should be free usually in aikido from what I've seen. Use them. The one free arm/hand can be used to grab on to them or gauge their face/eyes. The legs should be used to kick, knee, or trap (like go inbetween their legs). Also try falling straight down backwards if you are grabbed, and then as they come towards you, your body weight will make it difficult for them to do anything other than let go of you, or be kicked as they fall down with you.

It is a bad assumption to assume your opponet will just throw a punch and let you manipulate them once you grab their wrist/arm. They will rage to get out of it, or may be trained in a variety of other methods to know how to counter it


And, a gun pointed at an aikido master, is the same as a gun pointed at a child (and the child is even smaller and a harder target!). No hope for either of them. And in today's day and age, most robbings or gang related bad things happen with guns, and there is simply nothing we can do about it anymore.


It is also important to learn how to take a beating! In aikido, are you actually hit, and hit hard? If not, do you know if you could keep fighting after getting a good shot? This is another aspect missing from many MA, other than Muay Thai.

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And, a gun pointed at an aikido master, is the same as a gun pointed at a child (and the child is even smaller and a harder target!). No hope for either of them. And in today's day and age, most robbings or gang related bad things happen with guns, and there is simply nothing we can do about it anymore.


I'm with you on almost everything VM, but I have to disagree here on several points:

First, I do not think that most situations are likely to involve guns though many will.

Second, I think a true aikido master will have a lot of things going for them when faced with a gun, things we can all learn from and apply to defending ourselves against an armed attacker.

Finally, there's a whole lot we can due against someone with a gun and we have now entered the area where I have trained and studied the most.


Again I am no expert but I believe that what I share is solid advise. It is good to get familiar with firearms, how they work and what they are and are not capable of doing. Here's a few points to start with:

- The basic idea is that you dont want the hole where the bullets come out of to point at you and you do not to have anyone touch the trigger, which is where one puts a finger to shoot the gun.

- Bullets only come out of the gun in a direct line - if you are not in the path of that line you will not be hurt by the bullets / gun.

- It is extremely difficult to hit a moving target. The further away you are from the gun, the harder you will be to hit. If someone is shooting at you, create as much distance between you and them as possible and move as erratically (ie, in an unpredictable zig-zag motion) as possibe.

- Most guns you are likely to face fire bullets that will go through many common urban/modern building materials BUT there are many things such as thick metal, thicker trees or wood, stone, etc that WILL stop most bullets likely to be fired at you. The idea here is that you should put as much material between you and the shooter/s as possible but not to depend on these materials to stop bullets.


Having a gun with you (that you are trained in using defensively) is a huge help and greatly increases your self-defense options and chances for surviving the attack.


Whether or not this is the case, you still have options. If you can do so without putting yourself in an even more vulnerable position, your best option will generally be to give the attacker what they want. If this does not work, and you are not close to the attacker and the situation permits it then RUN! If are close in to your attacker and/or cant escape then you should counter-attack them. Target their face/head/neck and firing hand/s. Dont stop until they drop the gun and then get the gun away from you and them. Then run if you can, remembering the above points.


No matter what, stay calm and dont give up!

Edited by loveliberate
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