Warrior Mindset 2 – Motivation and Work Ethic


In our first segment of this Warrior Mind Set series I covered Goal Setting. This is very important for Combat Sports Athletes, Soldiers or anyone who wants to overcome any sort of challenge in their life. However, determining your goals and accomplishing them goals are two different things that require developing the proper Motivation and bringing those goals to fruition with a strong Work Ethic.

Motivation can be defined as the “Raison d’être” or the “reason of existence”. Motivation is not just the goal or end state, but the reason behind the action and the “Why” for the “Act”. What motivates one person doesn’t necessarily drive another. When embarking upon the journey of competition in a sport or the challenge of shedding a few pounds; if one is to be successful in achieving their goals they have to have a driving force behind them which compels them to achieve their maximum potential for the endeavor at hand. Motivation is fuel for the fire that drives one to excel.

Oscar De La Hoya once was quoted on his biggest motivation:

“When my mother took me to amateur fights she’d scream: ‘Kick his butt’ at me from ringside. To be honest, I was a little embarrassed because, as a kid, you don’t want your mother shouting out at people, but she was, and remains, my biggest motivation.”

Michael Phelps the greatest US Olympic swimmer in history was quoted on what motivates him:

“I wanted to do something nobody ever did. This goes hand in hand with my goal of changing swimming.”

To take the idea of motivation a step further one should recognize the depth and degree of the motivation at hand. The old adage “How bad do you want it?” comes first to mind.

Whenever this writer trains for a competition, there are so many things that I do to focus my motivation; and reinforce my drive. I have been known to post pictures of my opponent at key places throughout the house; behind the speed bag, in my office, on each wall of my training area etc. etc. In the days leading to the competition, I watch inspirational films like Rocky, Rocky IV, Gladiator, Brave Heart, Blackhawk Down, Cinderella Man and more. These films help recreate the passion for victory. I also have motivational play lists for training and relaxation. For training much of the music is fast paced and conveys the message of overcoming or triumph, victory and redemption. For relaxation I listen to inspirational poetry, quotes, powerful symphony and positive messages. All of these help me to conceptualize, visualize and become success.

Established goals, motivation and drive are useless without Work Ethic. Work ethic can be defined as follows:

“A set of values based on the moral virtues of hard work and diligence.”

Typically one who has a good work ethic could be described in the following ways:

“He is the first one to show up to practice and the last to leave.”
“In her free time she would spend hours working on the fundamentals in order to improve her practice sessions.”
“He trains twice as hard as he believes his opponents are training.”
“While other teens were out partying and having fun on the weekends, he stayed at home and trained and worked out in the gym. When his peers were eating junk and drinking he stayed true to his strict diet.”

[pullquote]Work Ethic isn’t always about working harder though[/pullquote]

Work Ethic isn’t always about working harder though. Often times it goes hand in hand with working smarter as well. Work ethic in athletes is often tied to efficacy and particularly self efficacy. Its about getting the most “bang for your buck” per say. Top athletes and driven individuals get the most out of every single moment in order to efficiently achieve their goals. Work Ethic is all about giving it all; 100 percent and then some, whatever the task may be.

As an athlete part of my work ethic includes not only going the extra mile to train longer and harder than I believe my opponents are training; I also try to think outside the box and approach training in a manner that no one else is doing. For this reason I am always trying to thing ergonomically and synergistically based on cutting edge science and training methodology. I spend hours and days working on and scrutinizing even the most fundamental movements and techniques. I rehearse, I set up training environments that mimic the venue. The list goes on and on.

In summary

I have continued this installment of the “Warrior Mind Set” by bringing the subjects of motivation and Work Ethic to the discussion. Again, these are all just parts to the whole. In the next installment we will discuss Intestinal Fortitude and Tenacity in achieving goals. Till next time.


Warrior Mindset 1 – Goal setting and self belief by Andrew Curtiss

How can you know where you are going if you don’t know where you have been?

This quote a variant of George Santayana’s quote on history “Those who are unaware of history are destined to repeat it.” The greatest warriors in history from Sun Tzu, Alexander the Great, Musashi to George Washington, General Eisenhower, General Schwarzkopf, Mohammed Ali, Dan Severn or Randy Couture and Georges Saint-Pierre all have one thing in common. They knew where they wanted to be in life and what they wanted to do. They were all able to extract the lessons from their past experiences to help formulate how they would exact future ones. They were all meticulous and ardent goal setters and achievers. If one knows where they have been and what they have already achieved; then they can decide who they want to be and where they want to go.

[pullquote]Goal setting is fundamental in being successful in life.[/pullquote]

Goal setting is fundamental in being successful in life. This writer learned from an early age that anything was possible if one set their mind to the task. Many however do not know how to goal set. As a certified fitness trainer conventional teachings preach that you should always advise clients to set “realistic goals” because they are easier and more likely to achieve. There are a couple ways that one can view this perspective.

  1. Setting smaller more achievable goals favors success and is more likely to be achieved than setting larger goals. Setting easy to achieve goals are more likely to attain longevity in the areas that the goals pertain. For example; an overweight client wants to lose 100 pounds and the trainer tells them to set a smaller more attainable goal like 25 pounds over the next three months.
  2. Setting just small goals only limits one’s potential. For example; the same overweight client limits themselves to losing 25 pounds at a time and thus hits a plateau. Instead set lots of small goals as stepping stones along the way to your final goal. “I will lose one-hundred pounds twenty-five pounds at a time.”
Defining realistic and attainable

What is realistic? Was it realistic that Columbus would ever find the “New World” across the ocean in 1492? Was it realistic that one would ever attempt walking on the moon? Realistic is a subjective term. When this writer was a child, I was told by certain friends and family, that I would never do anything with my martial arts training and that any goal I had of doing anything with my training was unrealistic. Over 20 years later I have won a National championship, become a professional athlete, written a book on it and make a living teaching government and police agencies Defensive Tactics.

[pullquote]One thing that all of the greats have in common is that they believed that we are limitless. [/pullquote]

One thing that all of the greats have in common is that they believed that we are limitless. Another expression that has always been influential in this writer’s life is “If you think you can; you’re right. If you think you can’t you’re right.” We are only limited by our mind. Once one comes to this realization they accept that anything is attainable; if one sets their mind to it and has the discipline and determination to see it through. Technology is a prime example of realism and attainability. Today we have the technology to travel to the moon and back, reach unheard of depths in the ocean, replace and even grow body parts and do other things that only ten years prior would have been thought not possible. In combat shooting there is an expression; “Aim big, miss big. Aim small miss small.” That basically means that if you want to shoot a pin point, you aim at the smallest possible point on the target that you wish to hit. Goals are the same but kind of in reverse. Set your goals high, shoot for the top and don’t stop until you achieve them.

Small victories

The term small victory is used quite often in the US military’s Survival Evasion, Resistance and Escape school. What it refers to is that although Aiming high and shooting for the “Big Picture” is great; if one solely sees only the overall picture and ignores each small victory, they grow frustrated and mentally exhausted. The key is to see each small or minor accomplishment one achieves as a small victory that leads one closer to overall mission accomplishment. Each small victory is a celebration and helps to keep hope and morale high. After all everyone needs hope.

Believe in yourself

All the greats share a belief in themselves. Self belief is so fundamental in achieving success. It is impossible to achieve victory in any endeavor if one does not believe in themselves. Arnold Schwarzenegger has a famous speech in which he talks about the six rules to success. In this speech one of the rules is self trust; “Believe in yourself”. Self belief is absolutely necessary if one is going to have self confidence that is so crucial in success.

Failure is not an option

In 1999, this writer was a candidate in the US Army Special Forces Selection at Fort Bragg North Carolina. In selection candidates are subjected to a plethora of unconventional situations designed to test them mentally and physically and push them to their limits. This process of forced physical exertion, mental, emotional and physical stress and sensory deprivation is designed to weed out candidates that are not cut out for Special Operations training. Each day those of us who made it would continually remind ourselves that quitting and failure were not options. The key to this is that without failure in the picture the only option was success and victory.

Never Quit

Members of the world’s most elite warrior groups such as Special Operations and top professional athletes keep true to the motto of “Never Quit”. It is a way of life for these warriors to give one-hundred percent dedication and conviction to the task at hand regardless of the odds or circumstances. This level of Dedication and conviction is necessary for any success or victory.

Short term and long term goals

Aiming for the top can be a difficult but worthwhile endeavor. One just needs to remember that the road will be filled with ups and downs; rises and falls. On a training mission once in Montana; my Special Forces Team Sergeant and I were to set up an observation post overlooking a target to be hit the following morning. This same mission was given to every other Operational Detachment Alpha in the battalion and each team tasked with this operation failed by never making their time on target. The movement was several kilometers, up and over two mountains in the dead of winter; wet and cold and in the black of night. The mountain was a muddy scag full of loose gravel difficult to climb, especially at night with snow and ice as additional obstacles. The movement was hard and fast with no rests.

Throughout the trek I was point man and it seemed that we were constantly climbing but not getting anywhere; as if we were on a treadmill at over 6500 feet altitude. At one point my Team Sergeant began to complain about the hazard of the operation under the conditions and how this was a foolish idea for a training operation. Although I had to agree; I knew that negativity is contagious. So instead of feeding his fire, I continued to propagate positivity. Instead of just looking at the top; I would pick out nearby ledges and tell myself and him that we were “Almost there”. Each new ledge was a small victory that led us one step closer to the top. I made each ledge a short term goal along the way of achieving the bigger goal of making it to the top.

Each time I would tell my Team Sergeant that we were almost there he would snap at me, “No we’re not!” The problem was that he only had one goal and that was to make it to the top; missing each of the other small victories along the way. At one point during the climb I scuttled ahead quickly maybe more than 150 meters above him, where I found the top. There I dropped my pack and went back down to deliver the good news to my boss. When I got down to him he was at the point of breaking when I told him that I had already made it to the top. He didn’t believe me; but when I led him to the top, his excitement was priceless. We were successful in making our objective hit time and were the only team in the battalion to successfully complete that mission. The importance of setting lots of short term goals along the way to your ultimate success is vital to any victory.


In this first segment in the “Warrior Mindset” series we have covered the fundamentals of goal setting and self belief. Knowing where you have been and establishing where you want to be. Defining what’s realistic and attainable; realizing that you are only limited by your desires. Understanding the importance of both short term and long term goals and realizing that each time one meets a short term goal it is another victory on the way to the top. We discussed the importance of self belief and never quitting until you have attained your goal and knowing that failure is not an option and that only success is. Whether you are an elite soldier, professional athlete or even a weekend warrior these tips if applied to your own challenge will help you come one step closer to success.

Knee Strike Tutorial

This video I will be going over the basic knee strike and the Muay Thai Clinch.
Knee Strike Breakdown:
From your fighting stance you’re going to bring your back knee up leading with the point going towards your target. As you do this you need to do 3 things:
Thrust your hips
Arch your back
Keep your guard up
Muay Thai Clinch Breakdown:
You can either grab behind the head or behind the neck. Either way you need to make sure you DO NOT interlock your fingers or use your thumbs. And make sure your elbows are in tight for a secure grip on their neck.
Now you can control their body and direct them into your knee strikes.


What was your motivation in opening your dojo ?
Initially I opened a dojo 6 miles away from my Sensei’s dojo, I opened this dojo as I wanted to help expand and promote Kyokushin in my area. My dojo opened in June of 2009 and had a very successful first year, however, during the 2nd year my instructor and mentor Sensei Richard Males was suffering from ill health, his dojo had been running for 31 years, his health became so bad that he could no longer teach, I made a decision that I didn’t want to let this club that I basically grew up in close, so I offered to run the dojo for him and in February 2010 he retired from teaching and handed his club down to me, I trained under Sensei Richard for 25 years, HE was my motivation to open my Dojo, and HE was the reason I closed my dojo and kept his very prestigious dojo open, still to this very day he keeps teaching me new things, either by sitting down at his home with a cup of tea giving me pearls of wisdom or occasional stroll to the pub for a quiet pint when he’s feeling up to it. 
When did you begin your training in the martial arts
I started in 1989, I was 11 years old. Now at 36 I still remember the day I started, I knew it was going to be hard, strict…..But Sensei Richard was a proper old school Sensei… Trained with and under the Welsh greats, Shihan Howard Collins, Sensei Gary Bufton to name just a few…I found the whole thing to be very prestigious and vigorous. I loved every minute of it.
What did you do prior to opening your dojo
Trained hard, I wanted to achieve everything I could, my goal was always open a dojo, as I said before I wanted to help expand the organisation in Wales, I opened my dojo as a shodan….i know some people think that you shouldn’t be a dojo operator as a shodan as some sceptics think you don’t know enough… but when you spent the later part of your kyu grades learning to actually BE an instructor from someone like Sensei Richard, you find that you have more knowledge than some of the sceptics.
What are your goals and the direction you want to take ?
My goals…. Probably to continue to run one of the longest running dojo’s in Wales, it takes a lot of my time…much to the disappointment of my wife, but Kyokushin is not just a sport or simply a martial art it’s a Passion, a way life…its got such a fantastic history and heritage I find myself gathering and investigating and collating every scrap of info I can find, I suppose my other goal is to at least at one point in my life actually visit Japan and train at the honbu and visit Sosai’s shrine. I want to emerse myself in any aspect of Kyokushin. And my Direction……. Well…. That’s an easy one, there really is only one direction isn’t there… Upwards…I’m still scaling that mountain and I’ll never stop.
Who were some of your Instructors and influences ?
Over the years I have trained under Sensei Richard Males as my main instructor, but also Shihan Paul Greenway, Shihan Mac Robertson, Shihian Jose Claronino, Shihan Martin Marlborough, Shihan Gary Bufton, Shihan Wakiuchi, Shihan Loek Hollander, Shihan Alan Cleary. But I have to say 3 of those names I owe my passion and determination to , Sensei Richard was like a father to me, as a child he gave me discipline and guildance through my early kyu grades , Shihan Paul taught me many great things and taught me to be humble, but my drive and passion and determination came from Shihan Mac Robertson, he is a true friend and someone who no matter where I am or what I’m doing is always willing to help and give sound advice, I find you always know who the greatest influences are in your karate by the way you mention them in your own teachings… I quite often tell stories of when Sensei Richard taught me this, or Shihan Paul told me that, Shihan Mac showed me this. One day I hope individuals I teach say the same about me.
How long have you been teaching and training ?
I have been training for 25 years …you never ever stop training, I started teaching since 2nd kyu so was 2005 so 9 years teaching now….There is a gap in my years of training, during my teens I had quite a few jobs that required me to work strange hours so had to stop training at the dojo and hence taking gradings stopped, but never actually stopped training myself, quite often in the early hours I could be found I empty conference rooms doing kata, after a few years I went back to training  and it was like I never left…
Why did you choose Knockdown karate ?
To be honest I didn’t really choose it for its Knockdown karate, I joined because I was 11 years old and not a very confident person, also bullies in my area were rife so really just wanted to protect myself, it wasn’t until I got into it and began training I felt the confidence start to build and that confidence spurred on the passion and discovered that Kyokushin gave me a new way of life. The sound of that sounds all spiritual and mystic but I’m serious… the way I view things now and how I manage my life is so much better than others my age who don’t train. I sometimes feel like I’m in a bubble in the hussle and bustle of modern life and I’m all relaxed and calm. I have my Zen, I have Kyokushin, I have my family, I’m a very complete man, but I feel without Kyokushin it would all fall apart.

Picking out the BEST martial art? by J WILSON

Living in most parts of the developed world any would-be martial artist usually has a plethora of choices of arts to study. There seems to be a martial arts masters and grandmasters living on every other street corner. So how do you choose a martial art? There’s lots to consider in the choice. What follows are some guidelines to the categories of martial arts are kind of grouped into, besides country of origin. Because that really is only the cultural trappings of the art itself, it has little to do with the art itself.

Martial Art/Martial Way/Martial Sport

"-Jutsu" Art or science

The first thing you should think about is your goal in taking a martial art. There are three general categories of arts that are called martial arts. The first is a martial art. These tend to be more focused on the martial aspect of their techniques. They tend to be more useful in self-defense, but they are also becoming harder to find, and there is little immediate reward. They could also be based on specific historical situations that may not be as relevant today, such as kenjutsu. Most people are not going to be involved in a sword fight in the near future. In Japanese martial arts, they tend to have “-jutsu” as an ending, such as jujutsu, kenjutsu, or hojojutsu.

The second type is a martial way. They are usually derived from martial arts, but their main concern isn’t the martial aspect, but the personal development aspect of martial arts. They can be useful in self defense, depending on the training method, but that isn’t the main goal of the art. Aikido is a great example of this.

Martial Sports are again, usually derived from some original martial art, and martial skills are demonstrated, but because of the rules of competition, self-defense isn’t their main goal. The winning of competitions against another martial sports practitioner is. Putting your abilities and skill against another person’s skills and abilities. Personal development may or may not be part of the goal depending on the art. TaeKwonDoKendo, and even Judo all fall into this category. Though honestly Judo fall into both the martial way, and martial sport categories.

These categories are artificial creations, and many arts don’t nicely in these categories. But they establish the goal of the martial art, and they are all viable, depending on what it is that you are looking for.

Hard or Soft

The second category most martial arts are lumped into is hard or soft. A hard art is one whose techniques rely on meeting force with an equal or larger force. They tend to focus more on the overt physical abilities of the practitioners. When dealing with a punch, a typical hard reaction is a block, forcing the punch up, and counter-punch. Shotokan karate, Tae Kwon Do, or Escrima would be good examples of hard arts.

A soft art is one where the goal is to not overtly resist force with force, but to redirect any energy or force coming towards you. Dealing with that same punch, a soft art will redirect the punch without stopping the energy of the punch, and then usually perform an attack, joint lock, or a throw. Aikido, Bagua, or Taiji are all good examples of soft arts.

Now, those categories being established, there no arts that are 100% hard, or 100% soft. And soft gets a bad rap in the West. It is our ideas that martial arts is about strength and/or skill overcoming the bad guys’ strength and/or skill. 14th Century German wrestling and swordplay measured their skills with the same idea, they just called them strong and weak techniques.

The end result is whatever art you pick, it only matters that you enjoy it. Because the best art is the world is the one you do, and enjoy the most.

9 Life Lessons From Martial Arts by LUKE JONES


The martial arts have always been a big part of my life. Tang Soo Do, Muay Thai, Amateur MMA, Judo, BJJ… I’ve been lucky enough to try a whole range of different styles with some great people. I’m certainly no expert; but I’m enjoying the journey.

Aside from the physical benefits: the increased strength, flexibility, endurance, and the ability to defend yourself; if you put in the hard work and dedicate your time, the martial arts can repay you with some valuable life lessons.

Over the 8 years I’ve been training, I’ve learnt some interesting things that have helped shape who I am today. And I believe they can help you too, so I would like to share them.

1. Mindfulness.

In many of the martial arts, especially the grappling kind; there is a big focus on sparring, where you compete against your training partner with the aim of making them submit or ‘tap out’ to a joint lock or chokehold.

In the midst of battle, it is nearly impossible to be thinking about anything other than what’s happening before you. Forget about that looming work deadline or your evening meal plans, there’s someone trying to stop you from breathing!

Your mind is focussed solely on the present moment, and if you stray from it, you’re likely gonna get submitted.

Over time, the more you practice sparring and spend time in this mindful state, the more you start to become mindful during your everyday life. The more you notice what’s going on around you. The more you reside in the present moment, rather than worrying about the past or future, and the more enjoyable and meaningful life becomes.

2. Humility.

Occasionally, a beginner will turn up to a martial arts class, confidence brimming and ego spilling; ready to prove their mettle. Most of the time however, they leave at the end of their first session with a very different feeling…

During sparring, they will likely come up against people much smaller, much weaker than they. But they will likely lose, again and again. They will be forced to submit to the little guy or the small girl. Over and over.

This experience can be the start of a shift in consciousness. It reveals a taste of reality.

It’s pretty difficult to make it through countless more session of conceding to defeat without experiencing a change in your thought patterns.

The fear based ego is dissolved. The chip on the shoulder is repaired. The fog is cleared and the path to the truth is revealed. Humility ensues.

3. Interdependence.

When you are humble, you realise that not every training session is a competition. Your training partners are there to help you improve, and for you to help them do the same. Without each other, you would get nowhere. You would stagnate.

Sometimes we treat life as if it’s one big competition, but it needn’t be that way. You can only truly reach your full potential if you learn to cooperate and collaborate. The most effective people are not completely dependent on others, but they also don’t always act independently.

They find greatness by becoming interdependent – combining their strengths with the strengths of others to create even better results.

4. Embrace failure.

If you train martial arts regularly with the right people, you fail regularly. You are forced to submit or you get caught with a few punches you shouldn’t have. Week after week, year after year; you make mistakes and you lose. And if you’re not failing often, then you may be training at the wrong place.

Over time you realise that the major difference between you and the black belt, is that they have simply failed more. Every time you concede to defeat, you brush yourself off, pick yourself up and go at it again. You stop seeing failure as a negative thing, and instead recognise that it is an absolutely necessary stepping stone to success.

In life, like in the martial arts; you simply cannot succeed without failing many times before. The world’s most successful people have got to where they are today because they failed often, but then learnt from it and kept going. Not many of them got it right first time.

5. Composure.

From my experience with martial arts (especially BJJ), it seems that you are often thrown into the deep end early on. Sparring can be an intense experience, and sometimes things can get pretty uncomfortable.

You’re thrown into the ocean with the sharks, and you haven’t even learnt to swim.

Your neck is getting cranked. You feel claustrophobic. All you want to do is breathe dammit, but you’re pinned and left gasping for any small pocket of air available.

At first, being stuck in an uncomfortable position, exhausted and unable to escape; you’ll probably start to panic (which is understandable). It seems like there is no way out. These situations are quite common in martial arts, but over time, you can begin to relax.

You learn the importance of keeping calm under pressure. You can control your emotions, rather than them controlling you. If you can keep a clear head, you’re more likely to solve the problem in front of you, whatever it is.

6. Non-resistance.

The beauty of martial arts is that the person with superior technique can use their opponent’s strength against them, regardless of how big the opponent is or how much they can bench. They don’t waste energy resisting against the superior force, they instead work with it. They let it flow.

Sometimes in life we come across obstacles and events that seem immovable. Rather than resisting against them, causing undue stress and getting nowhere; we can choose to flow with them like water. We can be flexible with and adapt our approach, until they are no longer an issue.

At the same time, we can also begin to accept those things that we cannot change, those that are outside our sphere of influence.

7. Enjoy the journey.

For me, martial arts practice has always been about the journey. Yeah the new belt promotions and tournament trophies are pretty cool too, but what I have always enjoyed most is the training. The discovering and practicing of new techniques. The gradual process of improvement. The lessons learnt the hard way…

In life we can easily slip into the mindset where we focus only on the rewards, the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. The next salary increase. The few weeks off at the end of the year. We lose sight of what’s directly in front of us, because we’re always peering into the distance.

Instead, I suggest that we turn our attention more towards the journey we’re currently experiencing. Surely it would be better to focus on enjoying each moment, in the present, rather than wishing our lives away into the future?

We can be patient and take things as they are, rather than always being in a rush to get everything done as quickly as possible. Enjoy the process, without fixating on the results.

8. Responsibility.

Although you definitely need your training partners and instructors to progress in martial arts, a lot of the responsibility lies with you. Only you can make sure you turn up, listen and work as hard as you can. I know that if I don’t put the work in, I won’t ever progress, and it’s no one else’s fault but mine.

Sometimes on life we are quick to shift the blame elsewhere for the situations we find ourselves in; for our shortcomings or our unhappiness. “If only my boss would treat me better”. “If only they didn’t always bring me down”. “If only the weather wasn’t so bad”.

We can sometimes be tentative to accept the responsibility for where we are in our life. In reality, we are all completely responsible for how we feel and how we react to any given circumstances. We can choose how external forces affect us, rather than letting them control us. Once you discover this, you realise that you have the power to do great things and live life the way you want.

9.  Dedication.

The importance of hard work can never be underestimated. Quite simply, if you show up and train properly twice a week with all your effort; you will improve. After a few months or years of regular training, when you look back to see how far you have come; you realise that if you really put the time and effort in, you can achieve whatever you want to.

In life we often put limits on ourselves. I’m lazy. I’m rubbish at sports. I can’t do maths. We define ourselves by our past mistakes.

In reality, we are not our past. We exist in the present moment with unlimited potential. If you really do want to achieve something, as long as you can dedicate yourself too it, there’s no reason why you shouldn’t be able to get there.

Go after what you are drawn to, and work hard at it. You have a lot more power than you think.

The Foundation of Self-Defense by: Scott Shaw

It is imperative when choosing to master the science of modern self-defense that you are able to separate yourself from the formalities of everyday life when you are engaged in battle. Confrontation is not kind, nor is it just. It is for this reason that you must never consciously seek out battle — at any level. If it finds you, however, you must enter into personal self-defense at the most appropriate level.

If you hesitate when defending yourself, even for a second, you allow your adversary the potential to destroy you. Thus, in battle fight — in life be kind.

Self-Defense 101

At the foundation of any method of effective self-defense is your own ability to read a situation, decide upon the appropriate action, and then implement successful techniques in order to keep yourself free from injury. In martial arts schools and self-defense courses, you are taught methods of how to encounter the various types of physical attack that may befall you: be they a punch, a body grab, or a weapons assault. It is far better, however, for you to never be forced into physical confrontation at all, for this is your only assured method of never becoming injured. To achieve this, the most basic level of self-defense, you must learn how to read physical and environmental situations and then take appropriate defensive action before a physical altercation ever finds you.


Perhaps the most disconcerting factor of this level of self-defense, especially for those who have been previously attacked, is that there is no one who can teach you a method that will keep you safe from all physical confrontations. This is in no small part due to the fact that each person who would accost you possesses a different look, a different body language, and an undisclosed reasoning for why that person would wish to instigate a physical encounter in the first place. Certainly, there are types who you may come upon who, “look evil,” who speak to you with an intimidating tone, or who act in a specific manner that signals you to move away. In these situations, the decision to walk or run away is obvious. It is the less obvious individuals who pose the biggest problem as you may not know exactly why you want to steer clear of them.

The Tao of Self-Defense

There are countless theories — and the word. “theory.” is used because that’s exactly all that they are — about how you should behave if someone with ill intentions comes upon you. Some of these theories tell you to remain calm, in a non-aggressive mode, that you should speak passively to the person; others tell you to be assertive and attempt to back the opponent down. Still others say you should scream or run.
When you are accosted, no theory will work. This is because each attacker is completely different and motivated by his or her own set of irrational standards. As is the case with all areas of self-defense, you must confront every situation as it is presented to you, and react at your most effective possible level.

There are some standard, commonsense rules for conduct that can hopefully keep you free from confrontation. For example, lock your doors and windows, avoid dark isolated locations, don’t place yourself in dangerous environments where hostility is imminent. If accosted, leave the location immediately before the altercation has the ability to escalate. If an attacker comes up to you in a public place, call for the help of others, and so on.

All of these rules can only be applied, however, prior to a physical confrontation actually taking place or when you are located in an environment where other people are present. The sad fact is that most attackers will not come upon you in public situations. They will wait until you are alone. In these situations, your absolute, full-focused, self-defense is necessary. You cannot think or be concerned about the injurious effect you are having upon your attacker, as he or she is certainly not concerned with your well-being or you would not have been accosted in the first place. For this reason, you must master, and be willing to utilize, to the best of your ability, the most effective self-defense methods available.


Martial Arts Children

Fear is one of the most detrimental emotions you can possess, not only in making yourself an effective self-defense technician, but in terms of the quality of your overall life as well. People carry fear with them. They wear it like a badge. All who encounter them know they are afraid. Thus, they attract those who would take advantage of weaker individuals.

Fear is one of the most common deterrents to conscious self-defense, for if you are scared you can’t function with precise mental reasoning. As such, you will make erratic decisions — attempting to escape from your fear as opposed to encountering your current reality in the most efficient manner possible.

Fear is based in the unknown: a different race, an uncharted geographical location, or a situation you have not previously encountered. Fear is propagated by society, your family, and your friends, who have all warned you to be afraid of a specific group of people or particular locations. By possessing this mentality you never allow yourself to understand that each individual is his or her own person, each sector of a city has its own beauty and attributes.


Fear can be consciously overcome by realizing that what you are scared of is not the reality that you are currently living. Fear is something off in the distance — something that has not and may never actually occur. By encountering your fears with this formula, you will no longer be dominated by this emotion. You can encounter new people and witness them for who they truly are, and view an undiscovered environment and observe its intrinsic beauty and uniqueness.

If you are forced into a physical confrontation you must consciously let go of fear, for fear in battle does you absolutely no good. In fact, in battle, show no fear. An assailant who sees that you are not afraid may choose to leave the altercation altogether, as the assailant will understand that you will not be easily overpowered.

To forego fear, encounter all human beings, new environments, and unfamiliar situations with wonder and respect. Never bring to them unfounded and predetermined suppositions. From this, you will possess no fear and you will be able to live your life with a new level of perfection.

Victim Mentality

Being a victim is a state of mind. It is what you do with the experience of loss, which in turn determines whether or not you become a lifelong victim. A victim is an individual who has lost an altercation and, because of this the person is dominated by that experience for the rest of his or her life. Everywhere this person goes, he or she is scared — expecting a similar negative experience to occur. The victim mentally brings the same situations into the life experience — over and over.

The person who is not a victim may have lost battles in the past, but realizes that life is a step-by-step process. Though he or she may not have liked the experience of losing, this individual has learned what could be learned from it. The non-victim has become stronger, and has moved on with life, becoming a better and more whole individual.

Winning and Losing

You cannot win all altercations. Winning or losing is a state of mind. If you learn from your seeming loss, your are, in fact, a winner — as you have become a stronger, more complete individual. From the opposite perspective, if we have won many confrontations and are constantly seeking to prove ourselves in battle, there will eventually be somebody who will beat us. Thus, the conscious self-defense technician never seeks out battle. If battle is forced upon us, we proceed in the most conscious and effective manner possible. Then we leave the experience behind us, not attempting to gain ego gratification from this seeming victory.

This is an excerpt from Scott Shaw’s book, The Tao of Self-Defense

6 Reasons Why You Lose in a Street Fight By Tony Reyes

Street Fight


Winning a street fight takes more than just taking boxing or martial arts classes. Fighting in the streets is an entirely different animal. There are no rules, no referees and you will most likely lose.

Here are the five reasons why you will lose in a street fight.

1. You let your attacker throw the first punch

Many martial arts schools teach their students to wait for the first punch before attacking their opponent. Unfortunately, that only works in the movies and dojos. When it comes to street fighting, it is a mistake to wait for someone to attack you first. You do not know what your attacker is capable of. He might be faster than you or a better fighter. In either case, allowing him to initiate the first strike allows him first mover advantage, which means you will have to move twice as fast in order to counter his attack and strike back. Such confidence in your ability can leave you laying unconscious in the streets or even worse, dead in a grave


2. You don’t walk away

No one likes to be disrespected, but allowing it to lead to a fight could leave you with a black eye or missing teeth. Many fights can be stopped before they even start. All you have to do is walk away. If a person starts calling you names or cursing at you, leave. You cannot be disrespected if you are not there. Why stand and be a target of a person’s ignorance, just walk away. Yes, he might think you are a coward, but who cares. When did you start caring about what a belligerent stranger thinks of you anyway?

3. You judge a person by how they look

You cannot tell what a person is capable of just by looking at them. What you might think is an easy fight might be the worst fight you ever have in your life. I remember watching one a reality judge show on television. In this episode, a woman suing another women over money. The plaintiff had a large keloid scar across the left side of her face. When asked about the scar, she explained that the defendant smashed a bottle against her face when she (the plaintiff) and her friends tried to jump her. The plaintiff misjudged the defendant because defendant was smaller and outnumbered. As a result, she is now scared for her life. She should have just walked away.


4. You let your attacker get too close.

It is a tale as old as time. One guy disrespects another which leads to a stand off between the two men, face-to-face, and sometimes nose-to-nose, waiting for the other to back down. This is a ridiculous situation to put yourself in. Allowing the aggressor to get too close will leave you open to a blindsided attack. You should never let someone within the reach of your extended arms. This is your fence, a technique created by Geoff Thompson that puts a boundary between you and the aggressor so that you can assess your situation without getting sucker punched.

5. You think that fighting is fair.

While you might fight fair, your attacker will not. People who start fights often do so when they think they have the advantage such as having weapons or friends nearby to help. They are not thinking about honoring any codes or following any rules, just winning by any cost no matter if it takes a gun, baseball bat or knife. Going into a fight with a sportsmanship mentality will leave you at a disadvantage. You need to be ready for anything. Never expect your attacker to do one thing or another and never limit what you are willing to do in response.

6. You got into a fight in the first place.

Finally, the main reason you will lose a fight is because you got into a fight in the first place. Honestly, when it comes to fighting, you lose one way or another. You might win the altercation, but lose in court by being arrested and sued for assault and battery. Also, you could injure yourself during the fight or, even worse, accidentally kill your attacker. You neve

Karate’s long fight to make the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games



Question: Which of the following is not an official Olympic medal sport? Is it A) Judo, B)  Taekwondo, or C) Karate? If you guessed C) Karate, then you answered correctly.

It may come as a surprise to you that karate is not an official Olympic sport, despite its widespread popularity throughout the world. In fact, karate has been rejected by the International Olympic Committee on three separate occasions. However, the upcoming 2020 Tokyo Olympics have created a new movement for official adoption, along with a new strategy.   

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The official GLORY World Series ranking have been updated following GLORY 16 DENVER.

Heavyweight and Welterweight have seen the most movement due to the Heavyweight Contender Tournament and the Welterweight World Championship title fight taking place on the card, which aired live on SPIKE TV.


Marc De Bonte (+183) won a split-decision over Karapet Karapetyan (-89) to take the Welterweight World Championship home. He now leaves the rankings and is elevated above them to sit in the champion’s slot.

Nieky Holzken remains in the #1 slot as the division’s leading contender and ‘Bazooka’ Joe Valtellini moves up one place to #2, while the unsuccessful challenger Karapetyan drops one place to #3.

The division’s biggest mover is Raymond Daniels (+87) His ‘Knockout of the Century’ win over Francois Ambang (-5) means that he rises four places to #8, cracking the Top Ten for the first time, while Ambang remains steady in the #10 slot.

Valtellini will challenge De Bonte for the title at GLORY: LAST MAN STANDING, which airs on pay-per-view Saturday June 21.


Errol Zimmerman (+160) blasted his way into the Top 5 by winning the Heavyweight Contender Tournament with two KO victories in one night.

In the semi-final stage he stopped Ben Edwards (+10) in the dying seconds of the first round, then went on to finish Anderson ‘Braddock’ Silva (+90) with three knockdowns in the first round of the tournament final.

Silva had endured a hard three-round war with Sergey Kharitonov (+10) to win a close decision and take his spot in the final, so he had taken more damage and burned more energy – a bad combination when facing a proven killer like Zimmerman.

Zimmerman now rises four places to the #5 slot and will take a spot in the division’s next Heavyweight Championship Tournament. He has also called for rematches with Daniel Ghita and Rico Verhoeven.

Silva holds steady in the #4 slot while Edwards drops two places to #8 and Kharitonov drops two places to #9.

Rising at heavyweight are Jamal Ben Saddik (+76), who dispatched Nicolas Wamba (0) to snap a three-fight losing streak and take the #13 position, and Benjamim Adegbuyi (+48), who finished Daniel Sam (0) to rise one place to #7.

Pat ‘HD’ Barry made his GLORY debut at this event but was not successful, losing by KO to Zack Mwekassa in the first round. He enters the rankings at #16 and can expect to face a fighter coming off a loss in his next outing.


Mwekassa debuted at heavyweight but, weighing in at 214lbs, it was clear that he could easily make the 209lb weight limit for Light-Heavyweight.

He has talked to GLORY matchmakers and agreed that he is best suited to that weight, so he enters at #11 and sits just four points below #10 occupant Michael Duut.

Other movement at Light-Heavyweight sees Artem Vakihitov (+119) climb three places to #6. He is now 3-0 in GLORY after his one-sided win over Croatia’s Igor Jurkovic (-8), who drops one place to #9.


There are no changes in the Middleweight division. Artem Levin (+34) retains the #1 slot after his win over debutant Robert Thomas, who stays steady at #11.

Had Levin lost to Thomas that would have been to his detriment and would have seen Thomas shoot up the rankings. Instead everybody holds steady as six of the current Top Ten await the carnage of June’s LAST MAN STANDING eight-man tournament.

That tournament will also include two GLORY newcomers, Melvin Manhoef and Simon Marcus, both of whom will be officially ranked after the tournament concludes.


The GLORY SUPERFIGHT SERIES 16 card, which took place before the evening’s main card saw Josh Jauncey make his debut.

While the young Canadian is a GLORY newcomer he has some serious firepower in his corner, being a member of Team Souwer and having former world #1 Andy Souwer as his lead corner man.



Jauncey came through a tricky first round and survived a knockdown to eventually dominate the veteran Warren Stevelmans, who was going through hell in the extra fourth round.

Stevelmans (-21) drops four places to #2 following the decision loss while Jauncey slots into the 155lb rankings at #17.

Note: GLORY ranking points are subject to a ‘Lifetime Rule’, similar to the one used in international tennis. Points lose 1/3 of their value every year. This ensures that inactive fighters do not continue to occupy the top of the ranks year after year.

Karapetyan and Levin both fought at GLORY 7 MILAN in April last year and the points they earned there now lose 1/3 of their value.

Levin scored +87 for his win at GLORY 16 but his overall total also drops -50 due to expiry, while Karapetyan was -69 for the loss to the lower-ranked De Bonte at GLORY 16 but also loses -20 from his overall total due to expiry on his GLORY 7 points.