Our Unique Format

If you have read our page titled “Our Unique Philosophy” (please read if you haven’t) you will know that we believe in short, focused courses that are achievable, versus years of (potentially good) training at your instructors pace, depending who is in the session, who is revising for what grading, and what knowledge the instructor feels like imparting in that session, which you generally have no control over.

Actually, I should clarify. If you are training in a system for the “martial art” aspect then no issue. By martial art I mean a system that you will diligently follow through its full progression for reasons that are not specifically self protection. Traditional martial arts have very little to give in terms of modern day self protection – and to master a martial arts takes years and years of diligent training. A very commendable thing. A martial art should give you discipline, respect (for yourself and others), self confidence, structure, focus, technical ability, some fighting ability, humility, fitness and many other things. But it most likely won’t help you when someone jumps out of a car with a hammer and tries to drag you out of yours because they are having a bad day.

Our courses are constructed to give you what you need in the shortest space of time. But not with techniques and tactics that we just run through quickly in a session. Every session is designed and developed, using tried and tested coaching methods, to deliver the training in the most structured way. What does this mean? It means that every new technique is taught in a specific way – component by component. If a particular knife defense has 5 component parts then you will practice component 1 for a certain amount of time, then component 1 and 2, then component 1, 2 and 3, and so on, until you can do the whole technique in one go. We then introduce reaction training whereby you have to conduct the technique either on command or in relation to another stimulus (an attack). Not too intense because we are still in the learning phase.

In the next session, after you have had time to internalise the technique, we will introduce the repetition stage, so you learn how to deal with an attacker who is not just stabbing once, but who will keep going until you are able to trap his arm and do the defense. We can then introduce resistance – whereby the attacker will not be fully compliant. There are a lot of resistance drills to implement and they help you to adapt your defense to the variations you might encounter with that type of attack.

The above is an example of the two sessions it will take to learn the defense against an Overhead Knife attack. We can repeat that formula for example with defense against an Upper Thrust Knife attack, and also with Stick Defense (and other knife attacks or gun attacks) after which we can build a practice session that pressure tests those techniques that you now know. Three key stages of training: Learning – Practice – Training. There is more to this methodology but these are the essential elements.

I wrote the above because I feel it is important for you to understand the progressive nature of the training, and how we build from the simple to the complex and from the easy to the hard.

It is a fact that when under attack, the release of adrenaline will cause physiological reactions that you may not understand or be able to control. By this I mean you may get tunnel vision, your hearing may be impaired, your legs will feel heavy, you will lose dexterity in your hands and you will lose an element of your fine motor skills. You may also lose the ability to speak other than monosyllabic words because the part of your brain that usually operates has been hijacked by your prehistoric amygdala. Which is why any defenses you learn should utilise gross motor skills as much as they can. Because you won’t be able to do anything else!

In our Training phase, once you are familiar with the techniques that you have Learned and Practiced, we can take the training to a higher level and introduce situational scenarios. This will help you work under stress so that in the real world, if you are unfortunately attacked, you will be able to possibly remain a bit more focused, work somewhat on autopilot (due to lots of repetition of the techniques), deal effectively with the situation at hand, and go home to your family afterwards.

Again, as written elsewhere, fighting is a last resort. Because there will be always be a downside. You could lose, and be badly hurt or worse. You could win, but may have to go to court to justify your actions. There could be financial implications. So of course, fighting should always be avoided. But if you are attacked, you have to respond with extreme prejudice, as if your life is on the line. Because it may well be. And as long as you did what was reasonable and justifiable you should be fine. In my book Keeping Safe in a Dangerous Place we teach all the self protection tactics that you could ever need to know. But if and when that fails…this is why we have Tactical Krav Maga.