Confessions of a Self Defense Instructor

Confessions of a Self Defense Instructor

Empty hand self defense is the absolute LOWEST form of self defense.

If it were so great…we wouldn’t need weapons.

Ever since Cain killed Abel with a rock, mankind has been developing faster, easier and more efficient ways of obliterating his enemies off the face of the earth. 

And if your self defense training doesn’t cover close quarter weapons, you need to SERIOUSLY CONSIDER what you’re studying…and WHO IS TEACHING YOU.

Practical self defense…useful self defense, covers ALL aspects – Empty hand, edged, impact and projectile weapons.

Anything less is NOT real self defense.

Your primary self defense systems are:

Level A: Projectile Weapons – Anything that can inflict a mortal wound from a distance (firearms, bow and arrow, crossbow)

Level B: Edged Weapons – Anything with an edge or a point that can be thrust or hacked into your target (knife, spear, machete)

Level C: Impact Weapons – Weapons that can cause blunt force trauma at close range (bats, pipes, brass knuckles, black jacks)

Level D: Empty hand techniques

In a life or death situation you may need skip around from level to level – constantly adapting to WHAT WILL GIVE YOU THE BEST TACTICAL ADVANTAGE AT THE TIME.

For example: you may be carrying a firearm, but it jams, you run out of ammo or you don’t even have time to draw your weapon – now you would need to fall back on empty hand techniques in order to secure the weapon to finish the job.

In reality you are constantly moving through levels as opportunity allows…


A gun is more efficient than a knife like a strike is more efficient than a choke. 

You can even break this down further into each of the levels – based on the “Most effective – farthest distance” principal.

I would prefer to knock a target out with a strike rather than a strangle – I would prefer to use a spear over a dagger and I would rather use a tactical nuke than a hand gun… :)



You’ve probably seen our ad “DON’T RELY ON WEAPONS, BECOME THE WEAPON”. That means once you understand the core principals of how empty hand, edged, impact and projectile weapons work together, then YOU can adapt to ANY situation – armed or unarmed. 

The samurai are known for the katana, but in reality, they never had a “favorite” weapon – no self respecting warrior would.

Their favorite weapon was whatever got the job done at the time…no matter what it is.



A lot can happen in the course of a fight, from being injured to losing your weapon – ADAPTING on the FLY is what will SAVE you.

Any SEAL or SPECIAL FORCES operator will tell you this.

We all have plans for an attack…and it all goes to SHIT when it’s on – WITH OUT FAIL.

That’s why you NEVER depend on one solution. 

Train Honestly, 




Published by theselfdefenseco

Founder, The Self Defense Company

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  1. Great material! If I don’t have my tactical nuke handy, I’ll be sure to improvise and adapt to the threat with what I do have, with intentions of eliminating the threat as quickly as possible. Thanks Damian

  2. Adapt and overcome, escape and survive should be the primary objective of any credible self-defense system. Thank you for teaching your students to train honestly.

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