Armory, Self Defense, And EDC > Martial Arts, Unarmed Self Defense, Hand To Hand Combat, and Physical Fitness

Unarmed Self Defense Recommendations

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Couldn't find this mentioned much, just wondering if anyone has any personal experience with a certain type of martial art that they would recommend to a novice. I'm fairly strong with better than average balance, but poor endurance (working on it). I've become very interested in Krav Maga, because of it's ferocity and the immediate nature of its application. More of a street-practical school of teaching is my primary interest, with lest emphasis on forms and belts, and more on smashing and getting the heck outta harms way. Any thoughts would be very much appreciated, also any tips on getting your GF interested, short of staging an abduction to instill a bit of necessary fear... ;) Thanks!

P.S. If the moderators know of any better spot for this thread, sorry! It's my first question...

Over the last 20+ years I've studied:
-shotokan karate - my highest belt
-jui-jitsu - last studied (2 yrs)
-aikido - 2 yrs
-tae kwon do - intro
-kung fu - intro
-kenpo - intro
-asst other intro classes

I tried out a lot of styles to see what they can offer as a self defense. I really enjoyed Jui-Jitsu and will go back to that. I found it the best for overall self defense. You learn how to roll/counter attacks and use the attack against the attacker. But also you learn how to recognize a situation (which any good instructor should teach) and how to control an attacker. Jui-Jitsu is very similar to Aikido, but it has an additional edge so that if you have to take things to a deadly level you can. The Dojo I was learning at also mixed in some mu-tie (sp?). The chief instructor has practiced it since he was less than 10 and is a police officer so knows what works on the street and how to counter weapons.
Hope this helps.

John Bennett:
I have 30 years experience with learning and teaching a lot of different martial arts.

It all boils down to which martial art is within driving distance of your house.  Don't waste your time worrying over "which is best".  The only thing that matters is what is available for you to go train within a 30 minute drive of your house.

There are a million martial arts technique videos and books available on the internet.  All of them together won't do you a bit of good unless you can train them in a real environment against resistance.  Repetition is how humans learn.

If you tell me what's available in your local area, I can recommend one, or at least tell you common things to look for in a school, and what common things to avoid.

Thanks for your help, sounds like you two have worked hard, I envy your discipline. Selection here is limited: Krav Maga is the only school within an hour, so I think I'll check it out and go from there. One more real quick: would it be unreasonable to think that after a certain amount of training with an instructor, I'd be able to work out solo (w/heavy/speed bag and so on)?  I'll report back as to what I find and my progress. Thanks again.

John Bennett:
It's very difficult to gain technical proficiency by working out solo.  You need the dynamic resistance only a partner can provide.

What you can work on solo is your body conditioning.  That you do on your time.  Expensive class time should be used for learning and practicing techniques, not body conditioning.

If you don't know good conditioning or stretching routines, the internet has great resources for that.

Here's a good list of exercises:  They don't require expensive equipment, gym membership, or a personal trainer.

Here's how to structure your solo workouts:


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