Avoiding Injury In Self Defense Training

medium_355290507Martial Arts is not a “no impact” activity. But that doesn’t mean that needs to be an activity riddled with injury and pain. Avoiding injury in self defense training should be priority number one in any gym or studio.

Most adult students realize that getting older means that things don’t work quite as well as they once did. We don’t heal as quickly after injury and we tend to get injured more easily.

At Dynamic Self-Defense our goal isn’t to injure students, it’s to prepare you to injure an attacker. With that in mind here are a few tips to help you prevent training injuries:

Strength Training: Research shows that moderate strength training can help prevent injury by building muscle mass and strengthening joints. When it comes to martial arts, we recommend working those parts of the body most commonly injured in training, shoulders, knees and lower back.

Go Easy On Joint Manipulation, Falls and Take-downs: Rapid shock to joints can extend injury beyond just the range of motion. For this reason remember to go easy when manipulation joins or practicing take-downs as these exercises can easily create undesired injuries

Know Your Limits and Speak Up: Our training is supposed to make you stronger. Working an injury can prevent you from making progress. Be sure to let your instructor and training partners know of any injuries or issues so they can work with you and at a pace where you can improve.

For more on aging, weight gain and strength see: Why We Gain Weight As We Age

photo credit: Robbie Veldwijk via photopin cc

How Would You React To A Gun?

DSD Gun DefenseIs there an effective self defense against guns?

When Debra Moriarity was looking into the muzzle of her co-worker and friend Amy Bishop’s gun, she thought that she could convince her not to shoot by pleading for her life and by reminding her of common bonds. She was wrong…

See full story from ABC News

Using social skills to try and convince an attacker to have mercy is a common instinct. In the case of Debra Moriarity her attacker, a trusted co-worker, had already killed 6 people just minutes before their encounter. And as is common in encounters with sociopaths, pleading for mercy didn’t make any difference.

Her attacker raised the gun and pulled the trigger, twice. But the gun was empty. During the attackers attempt to reload Debra and other victims managed to push her out of the room and barricade themselves until help arrived.

The problem when faced with a sociopathic attacker is that negotiation doesn’t work. The only thing that does is to use violence to neutralize their treat. And in this case, the victims had the opportunity to act in such a way that would have eliminated the attacker as a threat… and odds are that they had the opportunity well before she simply ran out of ammunition.

As Debra faced the gun of her attacker she didn’t have any other options but to plead for her life. I’m sure that at that point she would have given anything to know a few very simple techniques that would have left her attacker in a broken pile, unable to function.

She got lucky. The six others were not.

If you want to have real workable options in a violent situation. If you want to learn how to protect yourself even when faced with the nightmare of having a gun to your head… practical self defense against guns, don’t wait. Give us a call and schedule a time to stop by, talk to our instructors and observe one of our regular classes. What you will find is a training program that systematically build reflexes, skill and confidence that you can survive violence no matter what form it takes on.

When Is It OK To Strike In Self Defense?

Dynamic Self Defense Kids TestingThree 8th graders had approached one of my 6th grade students from behind as he was walking towards the school gym. My student had not noticed them coming up from behind and with no teacher in sight, the 8th graders decided to do a little physical bullying. One of the 8th graders pushed my student to the ground as they passed, and proceeded to taunt him while he was on the ground. My student immediately got to his feet and asked, “Why did you do that?” The 8th grader, who did the pushing, came right up to my student’s face saying, “what are you going to do about it?” My student, feeling threatened immediately replied with a knee strike to the gut and an elbow to the face! The other kids fled and my student ran away leaving the bully on the ground with a bloody nose.

Violence should never be a first response of action but sometimes it’s unavoidable. In the case above, the bullies did not let up causing my student to feel threatened. The response he had was valid given there might not have been another opportune moment for him to strike. What if my student decided to just stand there and the bully all of a sudden blind-sided him? Or what if one of the other bullies in the group jumped my student from behind?

The fact is you just don’t know that bullies won’t act on their threat – expressed or implied – and in my school, you train to not give up what you know for what you don’t. My student knew that he had an opportunity to strike when the bully approached him with his guard down, right up in his face; hence he took it. The techniques used were basic, practical and above all EFFECTIVE! The actions of my student were enough to diffuse the situation, control the fight, and be able to walk out of there with no damage to himself.

Violence is never pretty. Nobody ever wants to be in that type of situation but if it does happen shouldn’t you be prepared? Will you know what to do? Will what you know have a positive affect in your favor? Dynamic Self Defense can help… call or email now for details.

One Day of Crime In Columbus, Ohio

Effective Self Defense in Columbus OhioPeople often feel safe in their own city. But after a recent news story about a woman who was forced to withdraw cash from ATM machines by 3 armed criminals, I wondered what the real stats for Columbus Ohio are.

Looking up the Public Records at the Columbus Devision of Police website I found some startling facts. Just yesterday (Wednesday, Feb 3, 2010) there were 58 violent crimes reported.

The break down goes like this…

  • Rape/Sexual Assault – 2
  • Assault – 28
  • Aggravated Assault – 4
  • Robbery – 12
  • Menacing – 12

The terrible thing is that this appears to have been a pretty typical day in Columbus, OH. I checked a few other random days and came up with similar numbers. This means that if you live in Columbus you have a 1 in 40 chance of being the victim of a crime against you.

 Can a self-defense course or martial arts help?

Most people live in an altered reality where they either believe that nothing will ever happen to them (or just refuse to consider it) or that they are powerless to do anything about it. Both cases are very dangerous if you happen to become a victim of crime.

The majority of assault cases listed on the CDP site were simple fights. Usually social arguments or jockeying for social position that escalated to blows. About 1 out 4 involved a weapon – most often a knife or a gun. Cases of robbery almost always involved a weapon where aggravated assault by definition involved the use of a deadly weapon. Only about 1 in 4 cases involved more than one suspect in the case of a serious assault.

Can a self-defense program make you safer?

That of course depends on what kind of program it is. The first course of action is noticing that there are indeed good and bad parts of town. Awareness, how you carry yourself all play into your chances of being a victim.

While it would be irresponsible for me to imply that a Dynamic Self-Defense student is invulnerable to attack. I can say that they are desensitized to having a gun shoved in their face or a knife to the throat. That’s just another Friday night for us.

Being able to stay calm (or at least not panic and lose focus) when facing a violent situation means that you are able to assess the situation and know what options you truly have. This gives you the power to control the situation by either implementing the techniques you have learned, waiting for a better opportunity or by recognizing that the situation is not a threatening as it seems (most robbers for example simply want money, not attention). Key point you can act the moment you choose and not be a party in your own murder.

Funny thing is that by practicing practical self-defense and knowing you have the skill to defend yourself with lethal force if necessary changes the way you walk. You automatically become a less appealing target and better your odds of ever having to use what you learn.

I would invite you to schedule a time to stop by and observe a class for yourself. You’ll see that we’re just ordinary people that have fun training together.

How Fit Do I Need To Be To Train In Martial Arts?

Dynamic Self Defense Knee StirkeI was cruising the web today and came across another martial arts site that talked about how their black belt program was the toughest around. They made a point to talk about the physical challenge by pointing out that board breaks must be broken on the first try and that participants must be able to go all out for 30 minutes on air shield and focus mitt drills. This and the pictures of splits and high flying kicks brings up a common question…

How fit do you need to be in order to defend yourself?

Don’t let other martial arts programs kid you. Self defense is a very simple concept… come home safe.

The easiest way to do this is by first avoiding being a target – and there are many way to do this (we teach them here at DSD).

The other option is the only one you have when you can’t avoid a fight and that is to simply injure the other guy before (or more than) he injures you. Injury is simply a component of kinetic energy delivered to a target.

With most fights lasting less than 15 seconds, 30 minutes of fighting might proove you have extraordinary stamina, but it doesn’t mean you’ll be better at defending yourself. You might need that for an MMA match, but MMA isn’t self-defense.

Yes it takes a certain amount of strength to be able to injure an attacker. A light hit, a slap or anything that isn’t moving your entire body weight through your attacker isn’t going to cut it. Cardio capacity is nice to have and we work at building it in our workouts, but it’s not as important as strength. But it’s also a lot more than just about strength.

Where you hit first, then second, third and so forth makes a HUGE difference.

For example…

The easiest way for me to break your knee is by kicking you in the groin!

Breaking a knee is hard. It’s going to take more than just a quick kick. It’s a big joint and it takes your full intent and body weight to make it snap. It’s a lot easier to do when your attacker is reacting to another injury.

When you know what targets are the most vulnerable you can set up your defense in an efficient and devastating manner. This is something that DSD students learn throughout the curriculum.

If you want to learn how to defend yourself in any situation I would invite you to give us a call and schedule time to view a class for yourself. What you will find is a bunch of REAL people just like you that will prove that this stuff works no matter how old or fit you currently are!

Getting A Black Belt In Columbus Ohio At Age 38

Dynamic Self Defense School in New Albany OhioGetting a Black Belt at age 38 in Columbus Ohio isn’t something most people will do. After all, there are plenty of reasons not to… and even as you go for it, you’ll have plenty on opportunities to quit.

There will be that class that pushed your buttons at the wrong time. That time when your back gave out from going at it too hard on the ground. The broken bone from a technique gone awry.

There will be the heat, the aches, the bruises and of course that board that didn’t break and instead almost broke you.

Focus on these things and the road to Black Belt will lead you somewhere else.

Focus instead on the laughs, the camaraderie, the shared triumphs.

The technique that wouldn’t click and the encouragement and support of your fellow classmates in helping you get it down… in a way that works for you not just “by the book.”

Focus on the new found confidence, your new physical skill, your inner peace knowing fully that fear and pain will not stop you.

Focus on increased physical fitness, pounds lost, legs that lift higher than they did before! Look back and see how far you have come.

And don’t quit…

The road to Black Belt isn’t traveled in a week, a month or even a year.

Black Belt isn’t just a term to be used lightly or to make things sound cool. It’s a state of mind and the result of a won’t quit attitude.

I earned my Black Belt in Dynamic Self-Defense, not because I’m the worlds best fighter, the stereotypical athlete or even the best student in the class. I earned my Black Belt because I didn’t accept the excuses to quit.