Uniforms and safety equipment are great, but don't really help your self defense training. In martial arts class you're barefoot and wear uniforms whether its a traditional gi or shorts and shirt. Unless you work and live wearing gloves and protective gear, you need to seriously re-evaluate your training methods if you're serious about self defense.
If you wear a suit or coveralls and boots, you better understand what you can and can not do. Soldiers and law enforcement need to train with whatever equipment they wear when they're working. When I see soldiers and uniformed officers grappling in BDU's or Sweats calling it "Defensive Tactics" or "Combatives" it makes me scratch my head. Try pulling guard with a utility belt on batman and let me know how it works out for you.
Be realistic. If you wear a suit and carry a pen, learn to use whatever your wearing as a weapon. If you work in Home Depot in the hardware department, grab a few hand tools and work with them. It was a well known fact that longshoreman were pretty nasty with a cargo hook.
If you're going to carry a weapon, make sure it is something you would feel comfortable carrying. This will make you want to create the habit of carrying it. As always make sure to field test it like we show you in the SDTS Combatives Program. There are quite a few tools I have been excited about only to watch them disintegrate in my hand when put to the test.
Gyms and mats are comfortable, clean and give you plenty of room but unless you live in one, you need to think about where you're training. You will most likely be attacked going to and from work, shopping, in your home and where you go for entertainment. Offices, stores, parking lots, bars, restaurants all have a few things in common: hard surfaces and lots of "debris" and clutter. You cant go 10 feet in any direction without hitting a piece of furniture or change in elevation. In the SDTS we show you how to set up a training area so you can learn to operate in those close quarters.
Get your mind set. "Mindsetting" is the simple act of looking at your environment and playing the "what if" game". What if an active shooter came down the hall and you were forced to deal with him? What weapons would you use? How would you plan your escape? How would you communicate to the outside world and call n the cavalry? Periodically going through these scenarios IN YOUR MIND will enable you to react when the time comes. Don't start freaking out your coworkers by grabbing a letter opener and running through the cubicles.
Do you like to drink? Good, now go get drunk and practice. No kidding. (I could see it now, sorry honey, Damian told me too!). But if drinking is a part of your lifestyle, you better understand what's going to happen to you when you have to "fight drunk."
Hey, we are all two people: the one we want to be and the one we actually are. Be honest with yourself and be honest with your training. The more honesty, the better and more realistic your results.
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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.