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#183612 - 09/29/09 11:00 PM Re: Should survival prep include self-defense training [Re: NightHiker]
oldsoldier Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 11/25/06
Posts: 742
Loc: MA
Nighthiker, the point I was trying to make is that, although self defense courses are designed to render the threat neutral, it rarely works out that way. I agree with you 100% in regards to being prepared-locking doors, wearing seatbelts, etc. I think the point I was trying to make, in my rambling, round about way, was that relying o self defense courses isnt your best course of action, IMHO. There isnt enough full contact, or realistic training, in the average self defense course. Yes, its good to familiarize yourself with some basics, but for 99% of us, leaving is ALWAYS your best option, regardless of your training. Even well trained individuals can get one-punched-I've seen it happen. And, to be honest, if you've never been in a real fight in your life, the WORST time to try out your training is when you are fighting FOR your life.
Now, if it were to come down to that, all rules are off. After all, the winner is the one who is still breathing-anything that you can do to ensure YOU are that person will only benefit you-hairpulling, biting, hitting sensitive areas, throwing dirt, spitting, yelling-these are the things that are vital in a fight for your life-to become someone hellbent on staying alive.

I think that this is a very good thread-one that we dont often consider. Firearms, yes; preparedness, yes. Self defense, primarily open hand, maybe something we dont give enough thought to.
my adventures

#183619 - 09/29/09 11:19 PM Re: Should survival prep include self-defense training [Re: dweste]
ironraven Offline
Cranky Geek
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 09/08/05
Posts: 4642
Loc: Vermont
I say yes, for several reasons.

An antisocial event is as likely to have a singficant impact in your life as a large scale disaster. Being ready for everything from a flat tire to a big rock falling means nothing if a 3rd grade dropout puts you in a wheelchair for the ten bucks in your wallet.

Most forms of hand to hand training, armed or unarmed, are good cardio, while improving speed, flexibility and balance. And it probably puts less wear and tear on the knees than jogging.

It reaches responsability, particularly when combined with basic medical traning. I started learning first aid when I was able to see over the top of the table, and before I started learning to shoot, fight and fence. Throwing a kick, swinging a staff, or pulling a trigger, whatever happens with that tool is on my head and on my honor, so you use those tools as best you can.

It builds confidence. Not false confidence, just like having basic wilderness survival skills and a psk shouldn't make you think you have everything you'll ever need at all times. But if you can defend yourself and those around you, you are in greater control of your own fate than if your only other option is curl up in a ball and hope the cops get there before your head gets stomped in.

As for what to learn, always unarmed. Which one is up to you, there are good and bad schools for all hundred or so different formal styles. I suggest something eventually adds stick/sword, staff and knife techniques, because those are always going to around. Fireams as well.

When a man dare not speak without malice for fear of giving insult, that is when truth starts to die. Truth is the truest freedom.

#183620 - 09/29/09 11:21 PM Re: Should survival prep include self-defense training [Re: NightHiker]
Paul810 Offline

Registered: 03/02/03
Posts: 1428
Loc: NJ, USA
Should everyone go through hand-to-hand and/or weapons based self defense training? I'm reluctant to say yes. Some people just don't have the physical or mental well being necessary for that. Nor are many willing to provide the level of dedication that it requires.

It's sort of like buying a firearm. Some people just can't handle it, for one reason or another, and therefore shouldn't be forced into it.

However, should everyone at least attempt to be in reasonably good physical condition? That, I will most definitely say yes to. I'm not saying everyone should be a perfect specimen of muscle and stamina, but I know people who can barely make it up and down their stairs.

Basically, unless you're in your 80's or have some major medical issues, walking up and down a flight of stairs without getting winded should not be a problem. At the very least, getting into some shape, other than round, will help to improve your quality of life. At most, it might end up saving your life one day.

When it comes down to it, survival is mostly about luck and attitude. By doing certain things you can improve your chances against specific threats, but you can't prepare for everything. Personally, I'd rather see someone concentrate on issues that are most likely to effect them, than to spend money and time training in self defense when that effort might be better applied somewhere else. I mean, sure, knowing how to take down an opponent is all well and good, but the likeliness of needing that skill is low compared to a lot of other more likely situations. Some people would be better served putting that couple extra dollars a month into their car, house, BOB, ect so they're prepared for the next tornado/winter storm/IRS Audit/whatever.

#183628 - 09/29/09 11:40 PM Re: Should survival prep include self-defense training [Re: Paul810]
Susan Offline

Registered: 01/21/04
Posts: 5163
Loc: W. WA
I don't understand someone indicating that self-defense isn't survival. All the preps in the world aren't worth much if you can't make some kind of response to assault.

In Cody Lundin's latest book "When All Hell Breaks Loose", he talks about American Combato as being the most useful real-world self defense system. It's a way to learn to defend yourself that isn't from one of the 'recognized' clubs of self defense. I didn't know that was it's name, but it has long been the system that I subscribe to.

Here's their website, but Lundin's interview was very descriptive and enlightening. http://www.americancombato.com/index.cfm


#183636 - 09/29/09 11:55 PM Re: Should survival prep include self-defense training [Re: Susan]
Kingarthur Offline

Registered: 09/26/09
Posts: 32
Loc: Texas
I agree with several of the comments here. Physical endurance is necessary when humping it with everything you need on your back. Also, there is nothing at all wrong with being able to defend yourself, whether it be the martial art of your choice (there are very few bad forms out there), or knowing how to properly use a firearm-or both. I have been a gun toater by trade for over 11 years. My wife was raised that guns were evil, dangerous, etc. and had no experience with them. I took her, trained her in safety and marksmanship. Now, she is completely autonomous, is one heck of a good shot, and has her own CCL license.

Anyone can learn martial arts or firearms acuity. What the person does with it has a lot to do with their character like any other aspect of life. There are those that are responsible, there are those that are reckless. The reckless one's usually end up wearing handcuffs when it comes to the two above mentioned issues.
The journey of 1,000 miles begins with a single step.

#183650 - 09/30/09 12:38 AM Re: Should survival prep include self-defense training [Re: NightHiker]
2005RedTJ Offline

Registered: 01/07/09
Posts: 475
Loc: Birmingham, Alabama
Originally Posted By: NightHiker
Originally Posted By: MDinana
With respect to RedTJ, I have to wonder if carrying a firearm makes you 'want' to use it and thus put yourself into situations that you might have gotten out of?

That's almost always a matter of individual attitude and maturity. And by maturity I mean in a personal sense not age, Ive known 20 y/o kids who were more mature than some of the seasoned old men I've known.

I don't intentionally put myself in harm's way just because I'm carrying. My current line of work has put me in a bad area a few times, as did my previous one. When your job is to go to a call in a high-crime neighborhood, in the middle of the night, and work on something, you're crazy if you go unarmed - in my personal opinion.

I've survived several attempted muggings and one attempted carjacking without a scratch. The main reason is that I was aware of my surroundings and saw what was happening in enough time to react. The second reason is that once I saw what was going down, I had the necessary tools to meet force with opposite and greater force.

There are times when bad stuff is going to happen whether you are careful about where you go or not. There's no magical "safe" place where crime isn't allowed, where criminals can't go. All the situational awareness in the world isn't going to mean that nothing bad can happen to you, it just lessens the odds. This whole forum is devoted to handling situations that rarely happen to your average person.

If carrying a gun and knowing how to use it didn't deter crime, the cops would show up with a puppy and maybe some balloons instead of guns.

#183653 - 09/30/09 12:48 AM Re: Should survival prep include self-defense training [Re: haertig]
2005RedTJ Offline

Registered: 01/07/09
Posts: 475
Loc: Birmingham, Alabama
Originally Posted By: haertig
Originally Posted By: MDinana
I have to wonder if carrying a firearm makes you 'want' to use it and thus put yourself into situations that you might have gotten out of?

Less so, actually. You are much more inclined to be aware, identify a risky situation, and then avoid it when you are armed. BTW, I'm talking "legally armed" of course.

Exactly. If I behave stupidly with my CCW, I lose the right to carry it. A person who has gone to the trouble of getting a CCW permit knows this above all else.

#183672 - 09/30/09 02:56 AM Re: Should survival prep include self-defense trai [Re: Kingarthur]
Eric Offline

Registered: 09/09/06
Posts: 323
Loc: Iowa
I'll go with learning a martial art (or several) is generally a good thing. You will learn how to move with balance, breathe properly, develop some confidence (if you have a good instructor) and sweat a lot smile. If you want unarmed self defense (or sticks, knives, swords etc.) be sure to pick an instructor/school who includes that in the mix and not just training for competition.

Drilling on techniques, Forms or Kata (practice routines), sparring (practice fights), and set piece drills all have their place in mastering the skills. This is very similar to firearms and/or military training. It is very difficult to reasonably safely practice skills that harm others. So you put the basics together in different ways to develop the skills and reflexes. A good instructor will also point out the very real difference between practice and defense application. In practice bouts if is usually a bad idea to kick an opponents knee or attack other weak points, in a defense situation - it could be great idea.

If you want to get good at it be prepared to put time and effort in. It can take years to earn a Black Belt and in many martial arts a Black Belt is considered the starting point for serious study and training. Having a Black Belt does not mean you have the attitude or aptitude for hurting others, even in self defense.

I have studied Tae Kwon Do, Hapkido and Karate. Learned something useful in all of them, liked Tae Kwon Do the best and think Hapkido was the most practical for self defense. Actually, I think High School Track was the most practical for self defense - Running is always the first option.

- Eric

Edited by Eric (09/30/09 03:21 AM)
Edit Reason: remember to run
You are never beaten until you admit it. - - General George S. Patton

#183674 - 09/30/09 03:00 AM Re: Should survival prep include self-defense training [Re: 2005RedTJ]
MoBOB Offline

Registered: 09/17/07
Posts: 1219
Loc: here
I agree with the majority of the posters; get some sort of self defense training. Find the one suited to your temperament and abilities. I like Ironraven's suggestion about the stick/knife training. I would add staff (just a really long stick) training to that. The techniques are basically the same. I also agree with the point about getting some close-in training. But, I think the best thing to remember is what my sensei said: "the best fight is the one that never happens". He always recommended running away; use and improve your situational awareness. Do not walk, look, or act like a victim. If you have to fight, make the other guy cry for mommy!

Now, a lot of this easy for me because I am 6'1", 235lbs and I have had very good training. I am not a typical target. My preference is to run. If not, then get in close and make life very miserable for the guy. I'm not a kicking guy. Knees, a la muay thai, yes.

My $.02

"Its not a matter of being ready as it is being prepared" -- B. E. J. Taylor

#183721 - 09/30/09 02:15 PM Re: Should survival prep include self-defense trai [Re: ironraven]
Rodion Offline

Registered: 04/29/08
Posts: 285
Loc: Israel
Originally Posted By: oldsoldier
When we were in Cuba, we had the opportunity to work with some Israeli guy who taught us Hagganah (I likely spelled it wrong).

Nope, your spelling is fine. It literally means "defense".

Originally Posted By: ironraven

As for what to learn, always unarmed. Which one is up to you, there are good and bad schools for all hundred or so different formal styles. I suggest something eventually adds stick/sword, staff and knife techniques, because those are always going to around. Fireams as well.

Martial arts involving sword/stick training tend to be a bit... artsy. That is, if you find a good Kendo or Escrima school, more power to you, but it's just so hard to find a self-defense class that actually teaches you valuable skills, I'd say weapons training is secondary.

This is coming from someone who had to shop for a staff and bokken while still a white-belt. I switched dojos just before the Shuriken group buy...
Whenever you rest, someone, somewhere is training to kick your ass.


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