The self defence sizzle
Every few years a new martial way, self defence method or combat system explodes onto the scene promising a quicker, faster, stronger, sexier and improved version of whatever martial art we've all been practicing quite happily for ages. We just haven't realised that what we’ve all been doing is just Sooo last year. Sign here, believe ... and pay this much upfront. Easy?
Well not really, now I like fashion and being cool as much as the next hip young thing but not when it comes to self defence, I want my self defence training to be old fashioned, familiar, boring and simple.
In fact I don't want to be noticed at all, I'd rather just blend into the crowd and be forgettable.
Anything that works for competition fighting (rules, referees, nice uniforms, point scoring techniques and bowing), while fun to train, will in real life get you serious hurt or serious hurt your attacker. In a real situation all you'll ‘win’ is getting arrested.
As will training in some of the military combat systems that are fine for ex black ops soldiers making a living teaching specialized police and operational combat units. But not for a civilian market, who don't have the legal and moral backing of the state to apply any of the lethal force techniques taught.
So what should we do ? Just give up and start another hobby. No, just be selective and realistic in your training methods and train to be 'quiet'. What I mean by this is try to be as invisible as possible and only do the absolute minimum to keep yourself and others safe. It means turning down the ego and not showboating or making a fuss.
You can recognise the signs that you are in a fight by being switched on to what's going on around you regarding the situation, location and people involved.
As all fights will begin on either a visual, verbal or physical level, the key to self defence is to know which of these levels you are at and then deescalate to a neutral state as quickly as possible, avoiding further confrontation and an escalation of violence.
It's better to be giving the dead eye than being punched in the eye. So don’t make a bad situation worse, any techniques applied must be based on sound principles (see the TC classics) and relevant to the circumstance that you find yourself in.
The earlier you become aware, the earlier you can evade, divert, disrupt and escape home to enjoy a nice espresso and a copy of GQ.