When it comes to surviving physical altercations, there has never been a truer word said.
We often argue amongst ourselves in the Combatives/SD community, about who is right and who is wrong; about what techniques/concepts/principles/tactics/strategies etc. are right, and which ones are wrong.
The bottom line however, is that anything that leaves you standing and your attacker on the floor unconscious, is good.
Right and wrong do not matter.
How you put the other guy down doesn’t matter.
It only matters that you did.
If you say a technique is wrong and someone else uses that same technique to survive a physical confrontation, is that technique (or tactic, strategy…whatever) still “wrong”?
Of course not. How can it be wrong when it was used successfully? Even once.
Just because a technique or way of doing something does not fit your definition of what is right–or even what makes good self defence– it does not mean that the technique in question is wrong or invalid.
That’s just how you perceive things.
There are so many different approaches to self protection because there are so many different people teaching it. What an instructor teaches is just their learning of the subject.
We put too much stock in instructors– in what they say and teach. We never seem to look beyond the personality or system and realise that what is being taught is merely one person’s experience of a very large and very complex subject.
We would all do much better if we became our own instructors and figured out what our particular take on self defence is.
You have to own what you do. You must have your own approach, not a bad carbon copy of someone else’s.
That approach doesn’t have to be ground-breaking or new, and can pull from many different sources, but it should fit you perfectly. It should feel natural and flow from you when needed.
To achieve this means taking full responsibility for your own training and not leaving it in the hands of some instructor. It means thinking critically about everything and going with your gut on what feels right to you.
It means taking proof over opinion and conjecture.
It means testing stuff out until you are satisfied.
You may not become invincible with this approach, but you will certainly increase your chances of survival if the shit hits the fan sometime.
Your self defence is the only self defence that works. In my experience, it’s the only form of self defence that does the job. Not someone else’s take on it.
There is no right or wrong in self defence, not really.
There is only what works for us as individuals, and what doesn’t.
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