The Summer of 2014 brought fear to the women of North Park, a community of San Diego. You see there was an attacker on the loose apparently trying to sexually assault women in the neighborhoods. Here is the story: STORY.
The interesting thing to me about this story and many more like it is the normal advice for women to not walk alone at night, walk in a well lighted area, or avoid walking the streets at night seem like the normal advice parents have told their children ever since they were little – seems to have been ignored. So now that this suspected has been caught, are women now going to walk on dark alleys at night and feel safe?
This post is going to speak about common sense and yes I realize that everyone knows how to stay safe. I will speak about social norms that have changed and how it is not affecting the safety of women and what can be done about it. Oh yes – I will also cover self defense from a martial arts point of view.
Many of you have watched the Karate Kid or heard about challenge matches Bruce Lee had to endure from the Chinatown Kung Fu masters, and are probably wondering in this day and age – does that ever really happen?
Well more than you probably think. The challenges come from other schools, various kind of fighting arts, and what I encountered a lot was fighters creating their own martial art that wanted to test.
Before we get started, here is a scene from the karate kid were Mr. Miyagi issued a challenge.
I was searching for a topic for today’s article and I came on this youtube movie trailer entitled 100 Man Fight. I’ll let you see the movie trailer below but after watching that – I was thinking – ok – this is something I will enjoy writing about. But alas the movie was not on Netflix or Amazon Prime so I started searching around some more.
I found another 50 man fight video and started watching it. From the first trailer I was expecting a tough, hard fought fight with lots of injuries and blood maybe (if I was lucky) but watching an actual representation of this type of fight I was disappointed. You see I must come from another era. Sparring or kumite one had to use hand and foot pads and cups. We also did medium contact to the body and light contact to the head.
The contact for this 50 man match was very light to the body and for the first 10 minutes of so – no contact to the head. So my guess is anyone in good enough aerobic shape could have done one of these matches without issue so long as they had margional fighting skills. But anyway – please review the movie trailer and some of the 50 man fight video I found and decide for yourself. I’ll give my opinions about the kumite after.
I’m sure most of you have heard the advice to get pepper spray, stun-guns, knives, or hold your keys in between your fingers when walking out to the car at night, but are you really ready? I mean you may have the self-defense weapon in your purse or pocket but how many times have you walked to your car and nothing has happened?
There in is the challenge. Complacency. Whatever you told yourself that would make you ready might not be ready. I have always been an advocate of learning a martial art or at the very least (and I mean least), a short term self-defense course but how many people do you know that do martial arts, self-defense courses and still workout (hopefully a lot!)? The realistic answer is very few.
Another trend is electronic distractions. Everything from music and texting is keeping people from being aware of their surroundings (assuming they had kept up with their self-defense training)!
What you need for your distracted loved one is a workable self-defense strategy! Something that your daughter will be holding along with her smart phone while walking and updating her facebook status. One such product I will breifly review here is the Self-Defense Lanyard!
As you know this is a self-defense blog dealing with real self defense issues? It is not a political correctness blog where we try and say how we wish the world really was! For instance when I was remarking to my step-daughter one time my views about women in the military front lines and started extrapolating about women in other potentially dangerous jobs such as police or firefighting… she started accusing me of pulling the “woman card.”!
More on that conversation later but here is the question. Should be look at our self defense strategy from how we would like the world to be or how the world is? I would argue that a child or woman should not go running/walking at night unless the areas are well lighted and there are lots of people around (for instance at a beach boardwalk in the summer evenings would be safer). Read on for my supporting arguments and how I answered my step-daughter.
First take a look at this video – if you go to the 60 second mark, she starts talking about running at night and her concerns.
Way back when I first started in the Hawaiian Martial Arts, the first one I tried was Lima Lama (I later transitioned to Kenpo). That was a really cool – flowing martial art where I was first exposed to self-defense techniques. One would learn how to defend against a right cross or a club attack. The attacks and defenses seemed to go on forever from my beginning karate mind.
I recall telling my instructors that these techniques were really complex and when would I ever use one? I mean after you blocked – you then counter punched, kicked out the leg and dropped a knee and punch. That was a lot to remember and even back then – I did not believe if someone threw a right cross – I was going to do all of that.
In this post we will ask and hopefully answer the question of why we learn complex self defense techniques and are they relevant. But first watch this example of one such technique.
As you may know from reading this blog – I do Kenpo… I used to do other Japanese styles but I’ve never been to a Taekwondo tournament. My only exposure has been the Olympics. If you have read my comments back then – you know how I feel about kicking at the expense of punches.
I found this video and I could not believe it. First watch the video and then I’ll tell you what I think. Hint – I cannot believe this is a real video showing good moves.