Training for sport is to self defense as NASCAR is to parallel parking

Tweet In an effort to draw a distinction between training and competing in sports martial arts and the reality of self defense, I make the analogy: training for sport is to self defense as NASCAR is to parallel parking. I did sport karate when I was in college, and it was fun. But I stopped […]

Gracie Self Defense

Tweet I have a lot of respect for the Gracie family – and Hélio Gracie in particular. Here I’ve found this Youtube video, purportedly of Hélio Gracie doing a self-defense demonstration.

Lyoto Machida knocks out Randy Couture with a Crane Kick in UFC 129

Tweet It was like something out of karate kid: Here is a stunning video showing Lyoto Machida’s victory over Randy Couture in the recent UFC 129. The amazing thing is that the knockout blow came from a jumping front-snapping kick landed perfectly on Couture’s jaw. According to Lyoto, he was coached to perfect this kick […]

What is Self-Defense Training?

Tweet There are many reasons one could study a martial art: for sport, for exercise, to relax, build self discipline, or because you think the costumes are cool. All reasons are valid. In my experience, most people start training in martial arts because at least one of their goals is to learn how to defend […]

How Important Are Size And Strength In Self Defense

Tweet It’s a question that comes up quite frequently: Can you defend yourself against someone who is bigger and stronger? And: How important is size and strength in martial arts? The answer requires a bit of a breakdown: 1. Don’t confuse sport with self defense. Combat sports like MMA, boxing, and wrestling have weight classes […]

Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Should Be Called Something Else

Tweet Let me start by saying that nothing here is meant to denigrate BJJ or MMA in any way. As a rule, I do not criticize other systems. The BJJ guys I know are amazing martial artists and great athletes. My issue with the name Brazilian Jiujitsu (or Jiu-Jitsu) is a personal hangup, but bear […]

The Difference Between Self Defense and Sports Martial Arts Training

Tweet Someone once asked my sensei what he would do if Royce Gracie attacked him and tried to take him down. My sensei’s answer, “I dunno, probably pull out my knife and stick him.” The questioner was awestruck at the answer. My sensei went on, “I don’t train for sport, this is a school of […]