What is chi?

Chi, also spelled qi (or ki in Japanese) is one of those things in the martial arts that generates a lot of controversy. For those who don’t know chi is the supposed mystic power, used in the martial arts to do seemingly miraculous feats. The word chi itself is almost synonymous with the phrase “breath […]

Your Excuses Suck

A few years ago, a rather well known individual in the community confronted me publicly about a wrong that he thought I had done to him. He got in my face both figuratively and literally. I was taken aback at first, as I really was unaware of the situation, and definitely did not do anything […]

What Does Black Belt Mean?

Many martial arts schools today focus on belt-rank as an end goal. They have black-belt clubs, accelerated black-belt training, etc. That’s fine, and I’m sure most give good instruction. I take issue with the view that a black belt – or any rank should be an end-goal. The myth that the black belt makes you […]

Martial Alchemy™

In the Western world, the practice of alchemy has a long history as predecessor to modern chemistry (it’s where we get the name), school shrouded in mystery, and practice persecuted as pseudoscience or blasphemy by the powers that be. Outwardly, alchemists main goal was to produce the philosopher’s stone, a substance rumored to be able […]

Every Technique is Useful In Context

There is a lot of very bad information about self defense on the internet. A lot of this stems from forums and message boards which are usually collections of people who have such low personal self esteem they can’t wait to rip apart other people’s systems. There are the ever-popular discussions about who should win […]

Prevention, Detection, Response

Last night I attended a talk on information security given by a representative of a major endpoint security company. They make antivirus software for those who aren’t fluent in geek. The presenter made an interesting point that I think is relevant to personal security and self defense. He showed an image of a house and […]

Think Evil

“Think Evil” is at the heart of the Security Mindset… ~Patrick Heim, CISO of Kaiser Permanente from the preface to Hacking Exposed 6: Network Security Secrets & Solutions In my experience people are generally good. Most of us don’t want to believe we’re evil or that we do bad things. When we do “bad” things […]

The Power of Decision

Making a decision is a powerful mental process. In fact the word “decision” is a nominalization, the turning of a process verb into a noun. A decision is static – set in stone, unlike the process of deciding. This is an important distinction. When you decide something, you draw the proverbial line in the sand. […]

Couch Potato Training Plan

It’s been said that the hardest part of martial arts training is getting into the car. I have seen this first hand when 11 people tell me they are coming to train and 2 show up. I don’t take it personally when people tell me they were “busy” or there was “traffic” or whatever. I […]

Self Defense and Statistics

The other day I posted a statistic to my facebook profile – that 70% of adult males carry edged tools, such as knives, on a day to day basis in the U.S. A couple of people called me on the statistic; I have no problem with that. I do have statistics and research methods training […]

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