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Old November 8, 2013, 08:49 AM   #51
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Highly suggest a book - " The SAS Self-Defense Handbook" written by John Lofty" Wiseman. ISBN 1-58574-060-4

The last 5 pages of the book alone are worth the prices of admission. Only 19 sentences & 5 pictures in those last five pages, and they will serve you well the rest of your life. Lots of good self-defense, awareness & preparedness tips. Great book.
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Old November 8, 2013, 03:53 PM   #52
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There are at least 3 reasons I can think of to be proficient in unarmed combat if you carry a firearm: 1) While carrying you may be in self defense situations where you don't want to escalate to presenting your firearm, let alone deadly force. Knowing how to disable, even temporarily, an attacker gives you a chance to get away and gives you options. 2) You may not always have your firearm with you (places where it is prohibited to carry or you just don't happen to be carrying that day; 3) Weapons retention and ability to deal with an attacker who gets to close (and even the most alert person can't keep potential threats out of striking distance, particularly since a person can cover 20 ft of ground in about 2 seconds).

Any martial art or combat system (those are two distinct things) requires a lot of sweat, often some blood and an investment of significant time and money to become proficient to the point where it is likely to be ingrained in muscle memory and useful in a real fight.

I have a 2nd Dan black belt in moo do kwan Taek Kwan Do (rougly 9 years of regular study). TKD is fun, and even with 2-3 years of practice you will realize some benefit in self defense ability. Knowing how to throw a punch and kick, increased foot speed and flexibility, and sparring experience will be of some use. BUT, TKD is a sport before it is a practical self defense system in my opinon, even in ITF schools. Learning pumsaes (forms, same as katas in Karate), the concept of block followed by strike, the prohibition on any strikes to eyes, throat, groin, knee, etc. and rules of sparring make TKD an art that doesn't translate very well to a real workd street fight. I'd assume the same applies to karate and even BJJ as taught in the lower levels in most schools.

I've been studying krav maga for 2 years and IF you have a legit teacher and apply yourself, I think it is much, much more relevant to a street situation. A good school will teach you the basics of punching, kicking (including front kicks, side kicks, round house and back kicks, similar to TKD/Karate but modified to make them more practical) and blocking ("360 defense") AND teach you real world techniques applicable in myriad self defense situations. The big differences with krav are: 1) from they outset it teaches simultaneous defense and offense -- eg a block is always accompanied by a bursting, explosive punch, not followed by a punch, 2) the concept of "retzev" or flow -- in a real fight there are no breaks or pauses if you want to prevail, you must hit hard first and keep hitting until the threat is eliminated and 3) everything goes -- eyes, throat, knees, are all not just legitimate, but in fact preferred targets. It is pure self defense, not an art or a sport.

One big caveat -- there are a lot of BS krav schools out there. Krav is "hot" and a money maker and unscrupulous practitioners of other martial arts take advantage of that. I've seen TKD and karate schools suddenly start a krav program after getting a certificate following a weekend of training with some bullshido artist (eg, see the Krav Maga Association headed by "Professor" Marty Cale.) Do your research to find legit schools. Those schools don't advance people easily. KM is deceptively simple. The fundamental principles requrie a lot of practic and technique to employ reliably and effectively.

If you can't find a good KM school I'd say look for a good, old fashioned boxing gym.
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Old November 11, 2013, 09:09 AM   #53
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I've studied Kali/escrima for a good number of years and my total extent of using it was taking a fork out of my 6 year old nephew's hand.
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Old November 11, 2013, 11:16 PM   #54
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If you can't find a good KM school I'd say look for a good, old fashioned boxing gym.

Reminds me of my karate instructor telling us once that a professional boxer would defeat a karate practitioner. This was MANY years ago, so I'm not sure of the basis for his statement, but it may have been based on the boxer's superior hand speed. If it wasn't hand speed, it was something to do with footwork and balance. The memory fails me. Anybody here enlighten me?
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Old November 12, 2013, 04:07 PM   #55
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Good boxing training will teach you proper foot work, get you used to taking punches (which is a key part of self defense), and obviously teach you how to punch properly and greatly increase your speed. Many people are not flexible or fast enough to properly throw kicks, particularly in a real world scenario, so all of the time spent learning fancy kicks in TKD and to a lesser degree Karate are basically useless for self defense. Boxing is basic and effective. Most fights start with and can be ended with a punch or elbow. The vast majority of people who aren't trained don't know how to throw a proper tight punch with proper body rotation and use of your legs and core that can generate tremendous force.

I saw on "Human Weapon" or another similar show that they tested punch strength of TKD, kung fu and boxer, and the boxer far and away had the most force behind his punch.
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Old November 12, 2013, 05:31 PM   #56
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A boxer would beat most MMA practitioners (whether it's karate, judo, jujitsu, taekwondo,etc) a boxing match. However I can kick a lot harder (and farther) than I can throw a punch and you don't need to be super flexible to kick someon's knee out. It is easier if you only have to defend against a hand strike, if you throw in feet and knees it's another dimension that can be hard to account for.
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Old November 12, 2013, 06:13 PM   #57
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I've trained hapkido for a few years now. Great form if you're looking for a balance between soft and hard style technique. Practice multiple times a week.
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Old November 13, 2013, 01:10 PM   #58
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40 years or so of boxing and wrestling have taken it's toll on me. I've managed to stay is some sort of shape for most, but at 57, that's getting tougher as well. I like to think I can still hold my own, but then at 6'4" and 250 lbs, suffice to say, I don't usually have to worry about strangers. I do carry concealed, all the time, usually on elevated alert, due to my previous location, but have had very few occasions warranting more than an extra worry or two.
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Old November 14, 2013, 08:42 PM   #59
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My guess - on what was meant by the boxing vs. martial arts thing - is that typically boxers are trying to knock each other out, and marital arts practitioners are trying to score points.
Obviously there are lots of exceptions but, a lot of "black belts" never progress beyond points-sparing and preforming katas.

I think it's a good idea to get some hand-to-hands training of some sort, but for practical purposes, the discipline you choose probably doesn't matter much.
If you're comfortable enough with physical interactions that you won't freeze up, have a basic understanding of kinesthetics, and can avoid having your gun taken from you, you'll probably do pretty well at defending yourself.
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