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Old October 9, 2000, 12:53 PM   #1
Join Date: September 27, 2000
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Only a minority of individuals have had serious training in self-defense and even fewer have had hands on exposure to violent attack which hones them into real warriors.
Most of us are average over the hill type people. Even so, there may come a time when we will have to do something if and when we and our families are attacked. So what do we do? Get a concealed handgun permit and carry. Carry a knife and learn the fundamentals of knife fighting. I said fundamentals. Nothing fancy. A good book: Master of the Blade by Richard Ryan.
Keep in mind, in hand to hand, that many martial arts techniques that take a million years to perfect are not for you. You want something that will stop your attacker long enough to affect an escape. A kick to the scrotum area is effective but it is not an easy target to connect with, so I do not count that as the best target. Too easy to miss. The throat, eyes and knees are the best targets for us over the hill types. oops, I gotta go. Maybe this will get some good discussion going.
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Old October 9, 2000, 01:40 PM   #2
David Scott
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Don't forget that the palm of the hand slapped vigorously over the bad guy's earhole can seriously disorient him. Two hands are even better. Just remember, you have to hit hard enough to make his eardrums pop.

Two fingers up the nose and push straight toward the eyeballs works, too. Wash your hands afterward, of course.

Finally, remember that anything is a weapon if used correctly. Ever see the movie "Extremities" where the girl stops the rapist with a can of oven cleaner? Think about the effect of a ball point pen rammed into a bad guy's windpipe. Take your bunch of keys and arrange them so they stick out between your fingers when you make a fist. The Marines used to teach fighting with a belt; my belt has a Caterpillar buckle that weighs about 14 ounces and has nice square edges -- I'd hate to be whipped on with that! Lastly, I recall reading of a woman who was on the phone to 911 when the burglar got to her, and she beat his head in with the telephone handset. Knocked him cold, and it was all on the 911 tape: "You SON <thud> of a BITCH <thud> BASTARD <thud>!"
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Old October 9, 2000, 03:09 PM   #3
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I'm back to finish. Had to run my son to gymnastics.

Good take David. Excellent.

The throat: a hard blow to the front with phoenix fist(extended middle knuckle),to adam's apple or wind pipe. David's suggestion to use keys to hit windpipe is excellent and a better choice than a phoenix fist if possible. Both hands: simultaneous hard phoenix fist blows to the side of the neck under the ears (target carotid artery).

The knees: kick to hyperextend the knee. Nothing fancy, just a hard kick. I have seen kicks to the side and back of a knee cause painful dislocations. The knee is just an easier target to hit than the scrotum.

Mouth: Pulling the lips apart or grabbing and twisting the lips causes painful tearing. Be carful not to get your fingers inside the mouth. They can be bitten.
David's suggestion of the nose hurts alot too. This next technique takes some practice. If you drive a thumb or rigid fingers up under the attackers jaw bone at the side, he will be at your mercy if you keep the pressure on. This hurts big time. The right spot is found by feeling under your jaw bone for a depression - a place with less resistance. A soft place that seems to miss muscle and is kind of hollow. Feel up there; you'll see what I mean.

The eyes: To me, this is last resort. Stabbing the eyes and using thumb to scoop the eye out are some techniques. Like I said, last resort.

Very important: Using closed fist generally leads to broken bones. Open hand (the heel) is a safer alternative with which to strike.

Fear: Fear is natural. To feel afraid is normal when we are attacked. This is nothing to be ashamed of. Everyone is afraid in these situations. Even if we feel no fear in one situation, we will fear in another. It is totally natural. In fact courage cannot exist without fear. If we didn't fear we wouldn't need courage. So, on top of the techniques we are discussing, knowledge that fear will come and courage is demanded should be part of our preparation.
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Old October 9, 2000, 03:39 PM   #4
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I almost forgot the most obvious. The fingers. When you are grabbed it is surprising how easy it is to isolate a finger and twist the heck out of it.

One more on the neck area: I have used a forefinger in the windpipe to good results - immediate results. If you can use your attackers momentum to get behind him you can get a sleeper hold on him. I have seen a 120 pound 15 year old teenager totally incapacitate a very strong 190 pound man by getting the sleeper hold on him correctly.
The arm snakes around the attackers throat. The elbow bend is directly in front of his throat and closes like a vice. Clasp the choking hand with the other hand tightly. The pressure is on the carotid arteries. Pull attacker backward and force him into a sitting position. This will bow his head downward into the choke. It takes about 10 seconds before the attacker passes out if technique applied optimally. When the attacker shows passivity, lighten the choke ever so lightly. If he gets aggressive, put it on hard. In this way he will be conditioned to not resist after a few of these. The potential here is the attackers death. Our responsibility is to go as far as it takes, and no more, to bring us and our families to true safety. The answer is not always the most severe techniques. Sometimes it is, but often it is not.
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Old October 9, 2000, 04:22 PM   #5
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Ridgehand strike to the base of the throat. Easy target, and the chin doesn't get in the way. Targets both the windpipe and the sub-sternal nerve bundle. Use the thumb/finger 'V' of your striking hand, and target the threat just above the two bumps of the collarbone where it crosses the throat.

Any strike across the bridge of the nose. Blurry vision is always good if it isn't yours.

Any strike to the brachial plexus located at the shoulder/neck junction.

Finger/object strikes to the eyes and orbital sockets. Best way to target this is to pretend that you're holding a grapefruit in your hand. Step forward and whip the grapefruit into the threats face. You want the tip of his nose to hit the center of your palm. This gets a fingertip or three into the eyes, and also causes the tear ducts to crank into high gear in case your fingers miss.

Knee strikes, kicks and object strikes to the common peroneal nerve -- outside of the thigh, about where the fingertips brush the leg. A good hit takes out the other leg, too.

Punches and knee strikes to the kidneys. No comment required, if you've been there.

Kicks to the superior peroneal -- on the front of the foot, where the foot meets the shin. Instant, immediate and long-lasting pain.

And last, but not least, the good old Palm Heel Strike to the chin. Quick, easy, dirty and muy efficient. Step forward, and bring your strking hand up the centerline of the threats body, below his line-of-sight, point-of-contact should be the heel of your hand. The initial impact should slam his mouth shut and pop his head back, but to make sure, clamp your fingers onto his face (remember to dabble a finger or two into the eyes), and push.

Don't practice this stuff on friends or family, even at half speed. The preceding information was/is for informational use only, neither the author, nor The Firing Line claims any expertise in the instruction of Self Defense.


[This message has been edited by LawDog (edited October 09, 2000).]
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Old October 9, 2000, 07:07 PM   #6
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Headcrank works well also and is very simple.
Or the Guillotine [the stranglehold]
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Old October 9, 2000, 07:24 PM   #7
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From my friends who are or have been in a controlled environment at sometime or other;

B**## slap to the temple (usually with something sharp in the hand)

Soap Bar in a for a couple of good shots (depends on the make of soap), then you can "wash away the evidence."

Saw this used in high school and also in college, coach used it to stop fights in the locker rooms...the simple combination lock to the a reinforcing tool in the hand or a very short flailing weapon...immediate one hit stop of fight in combatants.

Second the double slap to the grandfather all of 90 pounds, ran to help the neighbor lady who was being beaten by a big Polynesian guy who got into her house to rob her...Polynesian guy also thought it would be a good idea to beat her while he went through her house. Grandpa got him on the way out...big guy picked him up and grandpa double slapped him...popped his ear drums. Grandpa used cupped hands.
When the EMT's arrived, the Polynesian was bleeding from ears and walking in circles in the neighbor lady's front yard...seemed to have effected his middle ear (equilibrium.)

Heavy copper wiring works well. Or it could be aluminum, but copper works's soft, but it hurts.

The heavy rubber divider used at the markets can hurt a lot in the right places.
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Old October 9, 2000, 07:34 PM   #8
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Tell your attacker you have AIDS and scratch at him like a girl.

Hmmm, afterthought, maybe I should add to that.

Most people going into martial arts ARE average schmoes. If they could already kick butt, why would they bother ? Likewise, there are many competent systems that have nothing to do with the 2,000 year old B.S. ancient chinese secret arts, you know,

"Grlasshopper san, you must study ancient mahtial aht foh 80 years befoh yoo troo mahtial ahtist !"

Phhhhht ! Whatever. If you want to study the religious aspect of a martial art, great, good for you. Will you gain some secret Zen/chi that will allow you too incapacitate an attacker with the touch of your pinky ? Probably not, but even if you did, the concentration and time it would take to harness that energy would not be worthwhile. A lot of these myths and fables about secret chinese martial arts came over with G.I.'s during WWII to Vietnam, baby boomers who were into "self discovery" would latch on to these phony martial arts myths much like they would tune in and drop out with bogus Eastern religions/gurus. It's all an act to make one feel they are a part of something secretive and special, perfect for the "Me" generation. It's bogus, don't buy into it. Asians are humans just like us Westerners, they don't possess any enlightened supernatural fighting secrets. That just sells more tickets at the box office and attracts more students.

For a beginner, being in shape is more important than practicing one or two moves, i.e., one or two moves that will completely slip your mind the second you are attacked. Once you are in shape, find a "competent" martial arts school in your area, BJJ, Krav Maga, ect. Then, once you are familiar with the basic mechanics of your particular system, SPAR, and I don't mean that half-assed karate style sparring where you are stopping and resetting after each move. You have to be able to learn; One, to work through adrenaline, fear, and fatigue. Two, to be able to get comfortable in a chaotic enviroment and make positive contact with your opponent. This can be achieved much faster than most people think. If you go to class three times a week, apply yourself, and spar, you'll be able to competently defend yourself from MOST attackers in a matter of months. Lets face it folks, there are no quick fixes.

[This message has been edited by MTAA (edited October 10, 2000).]
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Old October 10, 2000, 03:41 PM   #9
SA Scott
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Thank you for this discussion, gentlemen.

As an "average schmoe" (perhaps sub-average) I have been contemplating this question, particularly in the context of finding myself unarmed or disarmed, as I have a Texas CHL.

I have not made the time to study or practice unarmed (non-firearm) defense to the extent I have armed defense. In retrospect, this is a major oversight which I need to correct.

While I still recognize a need to pursue a systematic approach, this topic is allowing me to concentrate on some intermediate strategies.

Thanks again.

SA Scott
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Old October 10, 2000, 07:57 PM   #10
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My daddy taught me that if I was going to do anything that I should do it well. Especially when your life and the lives of your family could be at stake, you really want to do it well.
So fancy or not...main thing is get the basics down exceedingly well...after you have gone to check out as many basic self-defense classes as you can, pick the best one that you can find, then really learn...then later go try other aspects of self-defense. Hopefully, you will like it well enough to take advanced training.
Same with gun training...take the best classes that you can and practice, practice, practice.
Check links for the schools and training programs in the city that you live in.
Remember, you are training to save lives, you and your family's.

I learned early in life...Better to train as if you are going against a really well trained opponent and succeed, then train as if you cannot lose...(against the weakest person) and really lose in a real confrontation.

Good luck.
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Old October 12, 2000, 03:47 PM   #11
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on the discussion about self defense, i went throught the army mp school at ft gordon in '58. they gave us judo and night stick . i stayed at the school and instructed that and the 45 for about 4 months then transfered to (germany) stuttgart moehringen, i alwys visualized differrent attack from armed and unarmed assailants , the first time it happened which was about 2 weeks after i arrived i didnt think i reacted or responded whichever you choose... and it worked just like it always did in the judo pit.. but i had no time to think about it it just happened!! Idisarmed or put on the ground numerous would be assilants and it was always the same. The same thing with the hand gun years later as a lawman it happend without thought and the result was the same the way i had visualized and the way i practised i know that you cannot practise for a specific thing but if you practice and visual and have made your mind up before hand to defend yourself it will happen. as far as exhiliration i never felt it or any other feeling other than the next day i got the shakes.... I will tell you that off duty when it looked like a fight was coming i always (almost always) pissed my pants then beat the hell out of whoever was coming after and i was scared. But i donot recall fear when i was an mp or a cop, thats probably one for the psych doc
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Old October 14, 2000, 02:39 PM   #12
Art Eatman
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"I'll take luck over skill, any day." I won't argue with anybody who says that I've been lucky in avoiding personal conflicts. I haven't had a fight since I was a highschool senior in 1951, and I didn't start that one. I also don't think I'm a weenie, having wandered around off-limits and red-light districts around the world.

I think that alertness and common-sense has played a large part in my avoidance of trouble. I don't get argumentative, so I'm not a center of controversy in a bar. I watch what others are doing or saying; if things look like they're getting out of hand, I have no problem in going somewhere else.

On the street, I'm in Condition Yellow--and I still, at my age, walk with confidence, not looking like an easy victim.

I agree with the preceding posts about what Joe BelowAverage can do--and a CHL doesn't hurt. But the brain is the best weapon for controlling the environment and thus the odds.

, Art

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Old October 15, 2000, 08:20 AM   #13
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My background is karate and judo. Without a doubt I received more injuries than I probably will ever experience in the real thing. What I noticed is that formal martial arts training generally is a sport. There are techniques that work in competition but in my opinion are not practical for real self defense. Also, I am 52 and have lost my physical conditioning. I also know that the winner of any fight is the one who endures the longest. I assess myself and know that endurance is not now my forte as it once was.
Still, I have those experiences to fall back on. So this brings me to an important point.
Whatever technique that interests us, we must practice it to make it ours.Now if you have the time, money and energy, then formal martial arts training might be what you want. But for us over the hill types who work long hours and are too tired to exercise, the best way to practice self defense techniques is to do what guncoach recommended: Visualize. Have a plan before you even have a situation. If I am attacked, this is what I am going to do. Then visualize
it. Do this with several simple techniques. Then we really have something in our library with which to draw on in an emergency. But, the number one rule we over the hill types are going to follow after we visualize is found in the post by Art Eatman. We will do our best to avoid those dangerous situations.
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Old October 15, 2000, 02:51 PM   #14
Jay Baker
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I, too, in age, am "closer to the end, than the beginning." I'm not about to try a bunch of "smooth moves" against a criminal. I know that the worst thing that can happen is to allow your attacker to get close enough to you to physically touch you, with whatever weapon he(she) has. Club, knife, gun, pipe, screwdriver, anything.

Obviously, there are times when an attacker can close on you before you have a chance to stop him. But in the main, being watchful, you'll have the warning that preceeds an attack.

I am always in Condition Yellow. And, I carry a handgun. If someone tries to attack me or my wife when we're out, I intend to pull my handgun, instantly. If the perpertrator does not IMMEDIATELY CEASE AND DESIST, if he advances one step, then his relatives the next morning are going to be doing some slow walking and soft singing.

I've seen far too much violence committed by criminals, and the resulting horror of victims who were attacked, to EVER give an attacker an "even break."

"Even breaks" are only viable in stupid movies and teeeeeveeee shows. No criminal is ever going to give you an "even break." Why give him one??

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Old October 16, 2000, 12:48 AM   #15
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It's all mindset, baby! If you can't flip a switch that turns YOU into a killer, you will lose.
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Old October 16, 2000, 11:54 AM   #16
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I will share a ladies experience that we all can learn from: An attractive young lady was enrolled in a karate class. Her sensei recommended a particular pepper spray for her protection. He taught her that the pepper spray in her purse was useless if attacked. So whenever she left a store she carried the pepper spray in her hand on the way to her car. This became a habit. One day at a large mall in broad daylight she was attacked by a male in the parking lot. Her immediate reaction was to spray her assailant. He instantly fell to the ground writhing in agony. She drove off. Later, she thanked her sensei for teaching her to keep the spray can in her hand and not the purse when she was out and exposed. Can you see how useless that pepper spray would have been in the purse at that moment? Whether it is pepper spray, a gun, or a kife, etc., this true story gives us alot of instruction
for minimizing the sudden, out of the blue, instant attack. She was prepared and the sudden attack was no advantage to the attacker. Jay Baker you make an excellent point, as you all have that have participated in this discussion. Thank you all so much.
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Old October 16, 2000, 12:21 PM   #17
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After rereading Jay Baker's post, I want to reiterate a point he brought up that is crucial: "the worst thing that can happen is to allow your attacker to get close enough to you to physically touch you, with whatever weapon he(she) has. Club, knife, gun, pipe, screwdriver, anything."

Anyone who is close enough to touch you is in your kill zone. If someone is in your kill zone, feigning friendliness, he can stab you with a knife faster than you can react. It is just too quick. Never, ever allow a stranger in your kill zone. If someone comes up to you acting friendly and invades your kill zone, increase the distance immediately. I have a friend who is a vietnam vet that warns people to vacate his kill zone. They immediately back up. He explains how he is a vet and just gets a little nervous. He makes it out as if the problem is with him. It also warns them that he could be a dangerous fellow seeing as how he is a combat veteran. This works well for him. However, if any stranger enters your kill zone, I guarantee you it is not for your good. Increase the distance immediately or be the first to the "punch". There are too many knife victims that were suckered by the pretended friendliness of the slayer. This pretended friendliness allowed the slayer to enter their victim's kill zone easily. BOTTOM LINE: NO STRANGER OR AGGRESSIVE PERSON ENTERS YOUR KILL ZONE. It might be good to reread Jay Baker's post.
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Old October 16, 2000, 11:55 PM   #18
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In my youth I participated in karate instruction but judo attracted me because it was real hands on stuff. Judo put muscle mass on me faster than weight lifting. The muscles I developed were built for endurance as well as power and were developed more fully. Then again, I was taught by Koreans. Their workouts are extremely tough. Anyway, when I started judo my best benchpress was 200 lbs.. After one year of judo, I was able to bench 215 for 5 reps. And this with nothing but judo. No weight lifting. Also, after that year, I was able to power up my own body weight (166lbs.)
straight up over my head. It was not a strict military lift. It was just getting it up with all my might. So, the benefit of the wrestling martial arts is tremendous. It definitely packs on power, endurance and speed. I was my sensei's favorite pupil which had the honor of being his technique dummy. I also was placed in charge of new judo students to teach them the first principals. I was fearless, stoic to pain and
intensely competitive. Like a true Korean. That was a long time ago.

But now I'm 52. The muscles are gone. The injuries are coming back to haunt me. My endurance is shot. I work 12-13 hours a day. The bod is just worn out. What I recommend for those who have not had any martial arts training and are over the hill is to seek a class (best) or watch a video (next best)that teaches PRACTICAL easy to learn self defense. Then take it home and daily visualize the techniques taught. Also there have been some excellent ideas in this forum. I don't recommend a formal martial arts school at this stage of our lives. But for us, the first line of defense is a gun, then a knife or club and finally hand to hand. Get that permit to carry! What are the odds of me at 52 overcoming some strong 19 year old attacker with a weapon? Not too good, even knowing what I know. So, be smart and get the concealed handgun permit. I can remember my sensei telling us that all the black belts in the world would not help us against an attacker who goes berserk. We would be in the fight of our lives. We were young and strong then. How much more now that we are no longer young and strong! Get that permit!
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