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Choose a Martial Arts School That Teaches You How to Survive

Aug 14, 2008
Get into a good martial arts school that teaches you how to survive! Don't spend years learning useless forms or how to use weapons that were popular in ancient societies. Who carries around a staff or sword in the real world? Find a school with a curriculum that emphasizes overall fitness, self-defense, and survival!

Most martial artists will tell you that your chances of surviving abduction once an attacker gets you into his car are slim to none. Their advice is to fight for your life because statistics show that the consequences are grim. On Wednesday, July 28, 2004, Larissa del Mar Fiallo, Miss Dominican Republic, was assaulted by two men who tried to kidnap her in the parking lot of a shopping mall.

What is interesting to us about this story reported by CNN.com (July 29, 2004) is that Ms. Fiallo was able to escape her attackers because of her judo training. She explained how she fought back when the two men tried to get her into their car and how she knocked over the larger one three times. Her attackers eventually left the scene. While Ms. Fiallo suffered deep cuts and bruises to various parts of her body, she survived the attack and was released from the hospital several days later.

One type of school to completely steer clear of is one that is very traditional, in the sense that you must pay your dues by doing countless hours of forms and techniques that would not work in the street before the instructors give you the "secret" techniques. Don't get me wrong, forms, katas, and tradition have their place in the martial arts, but not when it comes to self-defense.

Combat sports schools such as boxing, kickboxing, muay thai, MMA, judo, and jiu jitsu are very good places to learn, because in most cases, you get a sense of reality in the training. That is, a real live opponent who is resisting and attacking you. But there are 2 things you need to be aware of when you attended these types of schools for self-defense.

The first is application for the street. Combat sports are just what the name says, a sport. Now as I said earlier they are the best to experience defending yourself against another fully aggressive human being. However, as in all sports, there are rules to make the contest fair and keep the contestants relatively safe. Not so in the street. In the street there are no rules, in fact things considered foul play in a combat sport are probably the best techniques for the street. So if you're in a combat sports school find an instructor that can teach you the logic and the crossover from the ring to the street.

The second is safety. Instructors must simulate what can happen in the street as close as they can, safely. If you attend a school where there is reckless abandon in the training or you constantly are fighting far more superior students, it's only a matter of time until you get hurt. And being injured means your not going forward in your training. It is also harder to defend yourself (impossible with serious injuries) when you are hurt. Ancient warriors invented martial arts training to better their chances on the battlefield. But you can never completely recreate what happens on the battlefield (or in the street) in the gym or dojo, cause then everyone would be hurt or dead! Pushing your body and mind is part of martial arts training, but so is keeping your body healthy and safe. It's a fine line to balance.

Most people are concerned with their safety in an increasingly uncertain world. They want to be prepared to defend themselves and their loved ones. Ms. Fiallo's years of judo training paid off. Are you ready to fight for your life?
About the Author
Calasanz has created his own system of martial arts and self-defense. To see online instructional videos featuring martial arts and self-defense go to: http://www.interdojo.com
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