I received a few questions after the "SDTS is not Krav Maga" post regarding how to defeat larger attackers. For starters in the SDTS we naturally assume everyone who chooses to mess with us is bigger. After all, when sizing someone up, it's the first thing you evaluate (um..that's why it's called it "sizing up").
We don't just assume he's bigger. We also assume he has friends, is armed, has intent on harming us and is willing to do so. We also make some more assumptions...like we may be fighting on ice, in the parking lot, or even in the sand or in the woods. We also think that we're probably going to be attacked when we're sick, tired, injured, older or otherwise distracted. Yes we make a lot of ASSumptions at the SDC, but they're not in our favor.
That being said, the question on the table is: How do you defeat larger attackers?
We address this from Module 1 of the SDTS and we continue this line of thinking throughout. The first and most obvious way is close quarters weapons. Impact weapons like black jacks, yawara sticks, sap gloves, steel toe boots and shoes, fist packs, clubs, axe handles, chains, hammers and a wide array of nasty little tools can help you even the score quick, fast and in a hurry. ( Reference SDTS Modules 9 and 11)
Let's also not forget about edged weapons, t-handles, boot knives, push daggers and anything else you can conceal and carry. (SDTS Modules 9 and 11)
Oh and there's also "non-lethal" methods like pepper spray, pepper foam and stun guns. Yes I've even heard real guns will do the trick too. So before you go running off to take on the world with nothing in your hand but your pecker and good looks, you might just want to consider the obvious. Methods that consider themselves military or even just self defense methods that don't have a systematic approach to offensive weapons training are suspect and can not be considered REAL self defense.
Krav maga for example only teaches weapons DEFENSE and has no real systematic approach to edged, impact or even firearms. Hmm...the Israeli Special forces don't use any of these?!?!
The Self Defense Training System, self defense in general for that matter is about one thing and one thing only...winning the fight by whatever means necessary. If that means using a weapon, then so be it. You may be morally opposed to using any form of weapon on another human being (but I'm sure that if some piece of shit was raping your wife or daughter you may make a concession). At the end of the day it's my job to give you the tools and it's your job to decide whether or not you're going to use them. I can't tell you, but I also can't sleep at night without giving you the option.
I once heard some puss- I mean some one say that "weapons teach you to be a violent person". This is the most inane, misguided and self indulgent notion I've ever heard. Weapons are a tool, they have been since Cain hit Abel with a rock. In the end it's about winning, no points for style peaches.
Not what you expected so far? We're the SDC, I'm not going to blow smoke up your dress and lead off with the LEAST effective form of self defense...empty hands.
Regarding empty hand techniques, this is what you don't want to do: grapple. Getting on the ground with someone who outweighs you by over 50 to 100 pounds is insane. Have you seen a lot of great heavyweight grapplers? Me neither that's because when you're on the ground you need to create space between you and your opponent and trust me, when you weigh 160 and the guy on top of you is 260 there "ain't no space." In all my years I've know maybe 3 guys on the planet who could submit very large people on the ground. They are all world class athletes and weighed at least 180 to 200 pounds, you're not them so please don't bother.
Striking the body, huge waste of time as well; especially with a larger attacker. Add to that clothing and jackets and your strikes will be muted. Your best bet ALWAYS is to attack his extremities: neck and head, knees and shins. The testicles are obviously a great target but are a little tricky to get to, you might want to start with some chit-chat and a few drinks...sorry, I couldn't resist.
The genitals are placed where they are on the body because they need to be protected and you will have to be at a close range to attack them. If you do attack with a kick, like a saddle kick or a point of boot kick you should distract him either verbally with a question or physically with something fast to his face like a finger dart. This will eliminate the flinch reaction that every man on the planet does when anything goes near that region that was not invited.
As detailed in SDTS module 1, knock out areas exist on the neck and mouth line as well as the sides and base of the skull. The only secret to exploiting these areas is that you need to hit them with enough force to cause a disruption in the nervous system and blood flow. How much force varies from person to person, but I assure you it's not as much as you think.
Tips to defeating larger attackers (or any attacker for that matter)
Use Weapons: Weapons were invented for a reason, they make the job easier.
Hit Hard: You must train to hit with power. The more power and the faster you can hit your target the faster you will win the fight
Hit First: You can easily discover someone's intentions well BEFORE they throw the first punch. If you're facing a good street fighter you don't need to worry about the first punch, you need to worry about the second, third, forth, fifth and sixth punch.
Attack the Extremities: lower legs, neck, head
Attack soft targets: eyes, base of the nose, genitals
Every fight comes down to Distance, Momentum and Balance. Close the distance, gain the momentum and keep him off balance. Always train as if nothing will work. In training, keep hitting and trying to destroy your target with every blow- it's not sparring and there's no such thing as "over kill".
All things being equal, the fight will always go to the bigger and stronger. Being smaller means you have to make up the difference with technique, technology, tactics and training. The only secret is to attack, attack, attack. Sure, there's some work ahead of you, SIMPLE does not mean EASY. If you want magic, go some place else, if you want the truth, stick around.
Damian Ross is CEO of the Self Defense Company and developer of The Self Defense Training System, the most lethal and effective self defense system in the world, The Guardian Defensive Tactics Police Combatives Program, 60 minute Self Defense and the Family Safe Program. Mr. Ross also founded the Self Defense Instructor Program that helps people develop their self defense careers from the ground up. Mr. Ross is originally from Ridgewood, NJ where he was a High School Hall of Fame Athlete in football and wrestling as well as a varsity wrestling coach. He then went on to Lehigh University where he was a varsity wrestler and football player. Mr. Ross has 3 black belts, 4th Degree in Tekkenryu Jujutsu, 2nd Degree in Judo, 2nd Degree in Tae Kwon Do. In addition to his martial arts experience, Mr; Ross spent 8 years in the professional security and personal protection business. He is internationally recognized as one of the foremost authorities in reality based self defense.