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Self-Defense Tip #18 — Non-contact systems vs. Knock-down systems

I just read an article—“The Night I Met Bruce Lee” by Chuck Sullivan in Blitz, October 1999 (vol. 13, no. 10, p. 38)—reporting an argument between Chuck Sullivan (9th dan Kenpo) and Ed Parker (Grandmaster of American Kenpo Karate, 10th dan) about what a person would do when struck with a forearm across midsection. I found it hilarious that two people with sky-high ranks argue about something anyone can just check during sparring.

This argument shows the ridiculousness of patronizing other than knock-down systems of striking arts. In a knock-down system students know what happens to a hit person because they hit and are being hit.

It is not easy to find a knock-down (popularly called full-contact) martial art school. I visited Edmonton, Alberta, this summer, and in this city of 800,000 people there are only two knock-down schools, although every school asked over the phone claimed they do full-contact sparring.

To find knock-down schools visit our links page:

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Self-defense tip from Thomas Kurz, co-author of Basic Instincts of Self-Defense and author of Science of Sports Training, Stretching Scientifically, and Flexibility Express.

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Self-Defense Moves

Basic Instincts of Self-Defense - Defenses Against Unarmed Attacks DVD

For your defense moves to work under stress they must be based on your natural, instinctive reactions, require little strength and limited range of motion, and be proven in fighting experience.

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Defend Against Weapons

Self-Defense: Tools of Attack DVD

To defend against weapons you have to know how they are used. Also—every stick has two ends … the weapon of attack may become a weapon of defense in your hand …

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