Thursday, November 29, 2018

Cryptic vs. Clarity

When it comes to training to protect, less cryptic and more clarity is not only a plus it's essential! That's why I like Krav Maga & the PeaceWalker Approach to Conflict.

Now I know some of you who train w/me are saying...

"Sometimes you're cryptic as f*ck Craig."

...and you would be right! But that's because when it comes to APPLICATION of those basic principles things get real!

...And SIMPLE doesn't mean EASY!


It depends on what course/class you come to and what questions you ask. If you take one of our Basic Defensive Tactics or PeaceWalker Conflict Management Courses it is a 1-2-3 approach.

The basic fundamentals are not that cryptic they are elegant! It's in their application where things get a bit confusing for the novice. The concepts can be so simple that people think they are easy and believe they 'got it'. Then when they try applying that Basic Principle and fail. After that people typically want the next thing to solve their problem. They believe the next technique will prove to be the solution (and sometimes it will), however what they rarely realize is that it is usually in their application where the problem typically resides. Most of the time it is because people can't do the basic principles well.

You have to learn the basic... 

How it works. How it doesn't. 
When it works. When it doesn't. 
When to use it. When not to. 
When to modify it or transition into another principle. 
When to try harder. When to abandon it all together. 
When to know that even attempting to apply it would be useless or not appropriate for the circumstance.

E=mc2 (squared) is a simple equation that holds the keys to understanding many complex things. 

If you want to apply simple principles to complex situations (Real Life) it's going to take some practice! You have to learn what the basic principles are and how to apply to a variety of dynamic situations under stress.

Here are some examples of basic principles:

Conflict Management:

Learning to set clear and reasonable boundaries.
Developing options when those boundaries are not respected.

Defensive Tactics:

3 C's of Empty Hand Defense vs. Someone Using a Weapon  -

CLEAR your body from the threat of attack.
CONTROL the weapon from further attack.
CONQUER the threat.

Tactical Leadership:

ATTITUDE: Baseline - Boundaries - Set the Pace
AWARENESS - You - Subject - Environment
ACTION - Right Thing at the Right Time for the Right Reason

Now take those principles, turn them into strategies, tactics and techniques and begin applying them in real time to human situations...

That's where it starts getting complicated, chaotic and cryptic!

Want a Good Cake?!

Award winning cakes are made with the same simple ingredients as the ones that don't taste good!

It boils down to the quality of the ingredients, the recipe and the chef!

If You Want Better Answers...
...Ask better questions!

... and Keep Going!

All the best,

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Monday, November 26, 2018

Position Before Submission

This is a concept that is taught by practitioners of Brazilian Jiu Jitsu. The idea of it is that you first establish a good (tactical) position BEFORE you initiate an attack.


Because you will always have to give something to get something. Meaning that you are going to have to risk or sacrifice something you have to gain something you want.

In a physical engagement in order to attack you have to risk some of your defensive position.

In relationships, you have to risk being vulnerable and getting hurt, to deepen your relationship with another person.

In a fire fight with guns, you have to expose yourself in order to get your shot in or return fire.

In business you have to risk resources like time, money and effort to acquire something in order to possibly gain financially.

There are few "Sure Things" out there... So it's really about Managing Your Risk...

What I teach in my Assault Prevention Course can be used in life outside of defending yourself physically:


1) Understand that there are Risks.
2) Identify those Risks.
3) Assess the Risks According to Your Risk Tolerance.
4) Manage the Risk.

This framework can help you to develop a plan to better prepare you to not only protection, but also PROGRESS, because with Risk also comes OPPORTUNITY!

...And in the world of real people like you and I, where resources are limited, we often have to stretch in order to get to the next level (heck, sometimes just to maintain...).

...Sometimes we have to break a few eggs in order to make that omelet.

Sometimes we have to be violent to protect ourselves from greater violence...

Sometimes we have to RISK in order to be safer...

Sometimes we have to be tough on someone because we love them.

Sometimes going toward the threat is less risky than going away from it. 

Hindsight Maybe 20/20...

Hindsight may be 20/20, but when you're in the thick of things it can be tough to have clarity.

...Often the stress makes things less clear. So, it's important to have a plan in advance, so you're not making decisions on the fly, so to speak.

Remember, nothing comes free, we just have to make sure that we manage the what we do, so that the risk is worth the reward.

Keep Going,

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Monday, November 5, 2018

How to Handle a School Lockdown

Rather than me going into detail on what to do or not...

I thought I'd let ROB BARRETT talk to you about his experience of recently being through an actual school lockdown...

This was NOT A DRILL mind you...

It was a REAL Lockdown in response to an actual threat!

But rather than tell you about it, click on this short video below, where Rob tells you what happened and how they responded to the situation.

Keep Going,

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Thursday, November 1, 2018

Trick or Treating is a Like Self Defense

Trick or Treat... 
Good for Halloween... 
Bad for Protecting Yourself!

Remember Halloween night when you were a kid!?

You prepared for weeks figuring out what you'd dress up as...

Mapping out your route to the houses that you knew handed out the best candy...

Getting your Halloween flashlight...

Remember those things?!

They were these really cheaply made flashlights that had a pumpkin, ghost or witch face made of plastic on the front end of the flashlight. We picked them up at Meijers (our local grocery store)...

They never survived the night w/o breaking or just not working.


Choosing your candy bag?! 

Not too small... (You want to make sure you have enough room for all that loot!)

...or too big... (You don't want to lug around something that slows you down from getting to the next house... Lord knows they might run out of candy before you get there...)

So finally, the night comes!!!

You're all duded up and your folks unleash you on the neighborhood!

You look to see who has their porch light on... or some other signs of life indicating that they're 'open for business' so to speak...

You're soooo excited (and a little nervous too!)

You run for the door and make your approach. Stopping your sprint just inches before you slam into the house. You reach out with your little pointer finger to ring the doorbell...


And then yell...


You excitedly wait for the sound of the door opening. The Oohing and Ahhhing as people fawn over your expertly fashioned costume. 

Then out comes...The BOWL!!!

Yes, that's right!!!!

The Bowl w/the CANDY!!!

You open your bag and preparation for a healthy handful of sugary goodness!

You scream 'thank you' as you tear off to the next house to be sacked!

Aaaaaahhhhhh the memories!

Conflict & Violence Is a Lot Like That Too...


Just like Trick or Treating...

Conflict and violence has a rhythm, script and 'rules of engagement' as well.  I call it...

"The Game"

Rather than going over all of the details (like I do in the PeaceWalker Course)...

Let me hit a main point or two...

1) There are PLAYERS: 

With Halloween, there are the Trick or Treaters, the parents that haul them around and the people who hand out the candy!

Everyone knows their role!

Same thing when it comes to conflict, crime and violence...

There are...

Aggressors ('perps') & Victims

Aggressors are looking for victims, either consciously (premeditated) or innately (they have learned how to spot targets who are vulnerable and are now drawn to them almost naturally).

Don't Be a Target or Look Like a Good Victim!


Stay Alert! Look Like You Could / Would Protect Yourself.

Have a good Baseline! (Meaning have the right Attitude, Awareness & ability for appropriate Action!)

Stand up for yourself and draw clear boundaries.

Just like when you were a kid trick or treating...

Have a PLAN! It doesn't need to be complicated. As a matter of fact, the simpler, the better! But have one! 

How you're get in and out...

What to do if things go 'South'.

What does 'Going South' look like?

Like Trick or Treating... If you go to a house that has their light on, but if no one comes to the door after a few attempts of ringing the doorbell and yelling 'Trick or Treat', you cut your losses and move on to the next house...

If a stranger tries to get you in their car... Yell and find your parents!

You get the idea...

It doesn't have to be complicated!

If you are in a relationship and it's abusive. Get out! Relationship DONE!

BTW - That works for jobs / careers as well. If your job is abusive and sucks... GET A NEW JOB!

If someone put a gun to your head and wants your money... Give them your money!

If someone tries to isolate you and take you somewhere you don't want to go... DON'T GO WITH THEM!

When you go places... Know where the exits and entrances are and what to do if they're blocked!

Have a plan for you and your family in the event of an intruder...

I could go on, but... You get the idea!

Well, I hope you had some Spooky Halloween Fun on your All Hallows Eve!?!

And Remember...

Wondering if you'll get a Trick or Treat is fun for Halloween...

But, it's not when it comes to the safety of you or those you care about!

Have fun and be safe!

All the best,

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