Real Self Defence is Risk Management

Risk managment flow

Personal Risk Management matters

Please take a moment to reflect. What steps do we take to ensure we can enjoy a safe, happy and healthy life?
We take out insurance for car. For our home and contents. For travel. Some for death or permanent disability.

Almost all of us have learned to swim. Initially to prevent drowning and then for enjoyment. Many of us will have undertaken a first-aid course. Knowing how to treat injury and save lives is important.

On the North Shore we are very fortunate. We have access to a range of quality health practitioners who are skilled in injury diagnosis and treatment and future prevention.

These demonstrate proactive measures (planning for issues in advance – swimming, insurance and injury prevention) and reactive measures (first aid and physical therapy).

risk management chart

Sadly, there appears to be a breakdown in the prevention logic when it comes to self defence skills.

I think it’s due to a couple of factors. “Good people” (productive and social members of the community) not wanting to learn how to hurt others. This combined with an inaccurate perception of what comprises self defence training.

risk management circle

Self defence training is risk management.

It’s learning awareness and avoidance strategies to keep you out of dangerous situations.
It’s verbal tactics to de-escalate conflict.
It’s body language cues to alter the mood.
It’s understanding (but not agreeing with!) the thought process of the attacker so you are better prepared.

Physical training does make up a large part of training. This is so the practitioner has effective skill that work under pressure or if taken by surprise. However, physical is the last option. When all the other risk management skills have failed.

The scenario matters.
Adults may be at the pub. At the ATM or waiting for a taxi.
Teens may be catching public transport. Going to the movies. Hanging out in a park.
Kids may be waiting for school pickup. Walking to a friend’s house.

All these situations offer a higher degree of risk than sitting at home.

While the practice of self defence may not be compatible with every personality, ignoring the need for self defence skills will not make you safe from violence.

So, why are we averse to learning risk management skills that can PREVENT physical injury and psychological trauma?

Get in touch about self defence training now!

Goal Setting: Planning to Succeed – this is really Important!

Do you know how to set a goal that will help you achieve what you want?

“You can’t cross the sea merely by standing and staring at the water.”
– Rabindranath Tagore

Goal setting may be one of the most important skills you can learn.

In fitness, knowing what you want means you and your trainer can put together a plan to work towards your goals. Whether you want to lose ‘weight’, improve your strength, get leaner, improve your core strength, get more flexible/improve mobility, increase your cardiovascular or muscular endurance or have sport-specific goals has a huge impact on the programming – exercise selection, timing, rest, sets, reps and loads.

In martial arts, knowing whether your true interest lies in MMA, fitness, kata (patterns), tournaments or street-realistic self defence can have a huge impact on the style you choose or the emphasis you want to put on different aspects of your training.

Start the process by choosing 1-3 targets. Limiting the number means you won’t get discouraged if you have lots of things you’d like to improve. Map them out – making sure they are SMART:

Specific
Measurable
Achievable
Relevant
Time-based

Specific
This means the goal is clear and unambiguous; without vagaries and platitudes. To make goals specific they must say exactly what is expected and why is it important.

A specific goal will usually answer five “W” questions:
What: What do I want to accomplish?
Why: Specific reasons, purpose or benefits of accomplishing the goal.
Who: Who is involved?
Where: Identify a location.
Which: Identify requirements and constraints.

Measurable
This stresses the need for concrete criteria for measuring progress toward the attainment of the goal. The thought behind this is that if it is not measurable, it is not possible to know whether progress is being made toward successful completion. Measuring progress is supposed to you stay on track, reach target dates, and experience the exhilaration of achievement that spurs on to continued effort required to reach the ultimate goal.

A measurable goal will usually answer questions such as:
How much?
How many?
How will I know when it is accomplished?

Achievable
This stresses the importance of realism and attainability. While an attainable goal may be a stretch to achieve, the goal is not extreme. That is, it is neither out of reach nor below standard performance, as these may be considered meaningless. When you identify goals that are most important to you, you begin to figure out ways you can make them come true. You develop the attitudes, abilities, skills, and capacity to reach them.
An attainable goal will usually answer the question:
How: How can the goal be accomplished?

S.M.A.R.T goalsGoals-mistakes

Relevant
This stresses the importance of choosing goals that matter. A bank manager’s goal to “Make 50 peanut butter sandwiches by 2:00pm” may be specific, measurable, attainable, and time-based, but lacks relevance. Many times you will need support to accomplish it. A goal that supports or is in alignment with other goals would be considered relevant.

A relevant goal can answer yes to these questions:
Does this seem worthwhile?
Is this the right time?
Does this match my other efforts/needs?

Time-based
This emphasizes the importance of grounding goals within a time frame, giving them a target date. A commitment to a deadline helps efforts to be focussed on completion on or before the due date. This part of the SMART goal criteria is intended to prevent goals from being overtaken by the day-to-day crises that invariably arise in life. A time-bound goal is intended to establish a sense of urgency.

A time-bound goal will usually answer the question:
When?
What can I do six months from now?
What can I do six weeks from now?
What can I do today?

Using these criteria – think hard about what you really want. Write it down. Start planning. Start achieving your goals!

The Mindset of Happiness and Success

The only thing you truly have control over is how you react to situations.

Your outlook on life, how you interact with others and, ultimately, your happiness and perception of success all come back to how you think and how you feel.

Obviously there are events and situations that lend themselves to a particular emotion – just keep in mind: You are in charge of your emotions, they are not in charge of you. I came across this this morning and drew inspiration.

“Promise yourself to be so strong that nothing can disturb your peace of mind.
To talk health, happiness and prosperity to every person you meet.

To make all your friends feel that there is something [special] in them.
To look at the sunny side of everything and make your optimism come true.

To think only the best, to work only for the best, and to expect only the best.
To be just as enthusiastic about the success of others as you are about your own.

To forget the mistakes of the past and press on to the greater achievements of the future.
To wear a cheerful countenance at all times and give every living creature you meet a smile.

To give so much time to the improvement of yourself that you have no time to criticize others.
To be too large for worry, too noble for anger, too strong for fear, and too happy to permit the presence of trouble.

To think well of yourself and to proclaim this fact to the world, not in loud words but great deeds.
To live in faith that the world is on your side so long as you are true to the best that is in you.”

By Christian D. Larson; Your Forces and How to Use Them.

Everyone have a great weekend.

Self Defence and Martial Arts – What’s the difference?

A lot of people use the terms ‘self defence’ and ‘martial arts’ interchangeably. They have some overlap but are different things and should not be confused. A martial arts school can teach self defence, or it may ‘only’ teach martial arts.

Martial arts is the practice of physical techniques. These can vary greatly in focus. Super effective street realistic maneuvers, MMA (mixed martial arts made prominent by the Ultimate Fighting Championships); sparring (fighting for points or practice at full speed); and forms (patterns of movement to cement technique or for stylistic tradition).

Self Defence training is concerned with risk assessment and measures to minimize or eliminate that risk. The risk in this case is of being attacked. Risk minimization strategies include situation awareness, understanding the motivations and tactics of the attacker, how to circumvent the attacker’s behaviour, maintain distance and boundaries, choice speech to defuse the situation, pre-contact cues – and, of course, effective technique to escape and get home safely.

Obviously, smaller targets (potential victims) who appear weaker than the attacker will be more likely to be targeted. Women, teens, kids and older adults are all at increased risk compared to a large, strong looking adult male. It is even more important that these ‘at risk’ populations are pro-active in getting the right training to keep themselves safe.

In real-life emergency situations, defending yourself is not a sport. There will be no rules, no referee and no time-frame.
The assumption must be that the attacker is faster, stronger and much more aggressive. If they didn’t feel superior, stronger and faster, they wouldn’t attack. The strategies and tactics used must match the scenario.

That’s when realistic, scenario-based training will make the difference in improving your odds of avoiding or escaping the situation and getting home safely.

For more information, or to book into a self defence session, please contact Tim

.

Seniors Expo 2013

The Seniors’ Safety Expo will be on soon. It’s planned for 9.30am to 12.30pm, Tuesday 19th March 2013 to be held at the Turramurra Uniting Church, Turramurra Avenue, Turramurra.

The Expo will have around 20-30 stalls, invited from the various Crime Prevention, Insurance, Security and Personal Safety industries. The emergency services are also to be invited. Leaflets will be on display for those organisations unable to have a presence. We are hoping for a secure corral area with a demo and trial of power-assisted wheelchair scooters – what fun! Presentations of around 15 – 20mins are being planned to run during the Expo. We currently have on the schedule (selection tbc):

09:00 Doors open
09:30 Official Welcome – the Hon Barry O’Farrell, Premier, NSW
09:45 Police Looking After Seniors – Kuring Gai Local Area Commander, Supt Jeff Philippi (tbc) and Carroll Howe, Chair, Kuring gai Police & Community Safety Committee
10:00 At Home; Safe & Secure – our Crime Prevention Officer, NSW Police;
10:30 House & Bush Fires; An Aussie Problem – NSW Fire & Rescue Service, Gordon (tbc)
11:00 ‘Out & About’ | Personal Safety on the Move – Tim Brown, FunFit;
11:30 ‘Don’t be a Humpty Dumpty’ | Fall Prevention – Institute of Trauma and Trauma Management (speaker tbc);
12:00 ‘Ramps n Rails’ for Seniors – Hornsby Ku-ring-gai Home Modification and Maintenance Service? (tbc)
12:30 Close

If you know someone who would be interest in attending this FREE event please share this post.

Stay safe out there!