a few words about ‘Self-Defense’ classes, as I offer them:


  we start from the premise that the very idea that anyone should have to learn to defend themselves is repugnant 
…beyond that; young boys –particularly– need to be taught to respect people in general,
& women & their boundaries in particular 

…& so that I might manage expectations a bit; in the self-defense classes I teach, my aim is to offer the benefit of my expertise where i’m most able to do so, specifically; the application of basic logistical preparedness, & situational awareness, as well as when the use of force might be involved in the act of self-defense

defining terms:
…understand that tho much of what we’ll be exploring will be drawn from various martial arts, this is not a martial arts class
(the difference between martial arts & self-defense can be summed up thusly: any martial art, because it’s an ‘art’, is a practice constantly being refined & built upon over the course of the user’s lifetime, it is ‘a lifetime’s study’,
whereas basic self-defense techniques can be learned in the course of some weeks, & kept sharp w/ practice)

self-defense & fighting; what’s the difference?
  for the purposes of my classes, we define ‘fighting’ as; “two people trading blows”, whereas ‘self-defense’ is; “avoiding, escaping, & or ending an ugly incident”
– so, you will not be learning ‘how to fight’,
…instead you’ll be learning about specific steps to take to avoid, escape & end certain situations
…our pre-supposition is that we would all rather not fight even when we find ourselves in a situation where it seems like we might have to, even if that situation might cost us in material things; a wallet, a phone, a purse, a car, whatever
…how many of us would allow a thief who stole from us & ran away, to go ahead & run, w/ out our giving chase
(& thus escalating the situation & endangering ourselves, (which is of course, the very opposite of ‘self-defense’))…?

…pride & revenge can not exist in the same place
as self-defense

…remember; revenge is a double-edged sword;
‘to the degree that it is delivered, it delivers an
equal measure of harm to they that wield it’

(& you’re twice as likely to cut yourself!)

Avoid, Escape & End
  for our purposes we approach these terms thusly:
Avoiding= employing our understanding of
Logistical Preparedness & Situational Awareness
(note that there is a bit of overlap in these concepts)
Escape= physically extricating oneself from the situation 
Ending= taking action to end the situation
(most often this will mean fleeing the scene to safety,
tho sometimes it could mean incapacitating the attacker) 
…some of these steps involve violence, & a focused, maybe even ‘vicious’, intensity
…some of them involve mindful resourcefulness
…all of them require practice & a proper mindset

revenge, & punishment
…understand now that for our purposes, self-defense in its strictest sense, is never revenge, or punishment
…by ‘punishment’ we mean taking your righteous rage out
on yr attacker in the moment, instead of using that same raging energy to effect an escape
(e.g.; maybe an action you take in self-defense is to break the bad guy’s knee w/ a kick, but sticking around to aim a few kicks at their head while theyre incapacitated
is ‘punishing’
…which, btw, is not looked upon kindly by the eyes of the law)…by way of illustration,
consider the israeli martial art form of Krav-Maga;
KM is a ‘fighting art’, developed by the IDF, there’s nothing showy, flowery, meditative or poetic about it
…it is taught to commandos, & its meant for killing people
…it’s lethal & it’s mindset is all-out, all the time
…& tho its often promoted as self-defense, & maybe in some aspects is approached in terms of self-defense,
most of what’s taught ends w/ ‘finishing’ one’s opponent

…understand that tho we do not teach how to fight to the death, because we’re not commandos, it is important to know that we must be willing to go all out at certain times, to the end of the situation, wherever that might be
…once you’ve made the split-second decision to use violence, you must commit to it 100%

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