Author Archives: John Titchen

Multiple assailants, combative distance and escape

In any unsolicited violent or aggressive event our primary aim is to remove ourselves (and others if we feel responsible for them) from danger of bodily harm. The aim is not to ‘win a fight’ for this is not consensual violence; in most cases therefore (excluding for example threats on the doorstep of our own property) we are endeavouring to create an exit.

To escape from a situation we need space to run/barge or walk through, created by the absence or inability/disinclination of prior threats to engage or stop us.

The problems of Self Protection & Self Defence

As most martial arts clubs advertise themselves as teaching self defence, and only deliver physical training, is the end result that most people who start training with a martial arts club don’t really get what they need? Rather than improving their ability to avoid or deescalate situations they end up with fighting skills of varying quality and efficacy? Does this make people less safe?

Terms and terminology

The other day a respected friend of mine made an observation about the number of clubs, particularly the pyjama dancers (as I call them), advertising that they were teaching self defence, when at best all they were doing was giving their students fighting skills.

A Christmas tail (off)?

It’s Christmas time, there’s no need to be afraid…

Are you dreading the physical toll of a dearth of training combined with a number of days of feasting?

Training for life

Why do you train? What could you train for? What should you train for?

Across my clubs and those that are affiliated to me, we use the phrase training for life.

Present and past perspectives on my training

The other day while reviewing some light personal training I’d just done, I found myself wondering what a younger version of me would have made of both my current ability and direction, and my current approaches to training.

Self Defence on a road trip or acid trip?

In the UK the recent release of crime statistics indicating a marked rise in the percentage of both moped related robberies (both of the vehicle and using the vehicle as a means of facilitating crimes) and acid attacks have caught the attention of the media.

Stop deskilling yourself!

There are lots of ways to train the martial arts, and many different and differently weighted reasons to do so. There is a danger however that through misguided training weighting choices, we may actually be hindering the skill development either of ourselves or of our students or worse, reducing it.

The Fantastic Four – the elephants that carry your training world

We all build the mental worlds in which we live, and we don’t all live in the same world, even if we believe we do.

Most martial artists build their personal training worlds on the backs of four elephants, elephants that I like to think of as the Fantastic Four (though admittedly some don’t even see or recognise all of them). These elephants that hold up our individual training worlds are Legality, Training Practicality, Training Viability, and Underpinning Psychology.

Step away from knee jerk fantasies

The loss of life and terrible injuries that occurred in the low-tech vehicle and knife attacks in London earlier this month shocked many across the world.

There are many unspoken taboos when it comes to discussing events such as this, and there are many things that armchair warriors say that should be dismissed.