1. Nobody cares about who’s the better fighter it’s only about winning
Gathering achievements in martial arts is an incredible feat. The discipline, mental toughness, and skills it takes to become a combat sports champion is amazing. That said, violent criminals don’t care and they’re going to do everything in their power to cheat to win. They will ambush you, attack in unfavorable environments, use a weapon, setup ruses, pretend to be your friend, attack while you’re sitting, etc. Therefore, don’t assume the martial arts event you’ve become experienced in dealing with is an accurate representation of a self-defense emergency.
2. Weapons are your friend and never leave home without them
The days are gone where two people could walk outside and engage in fisticuffs to settle a dispute. The reality of violence today is that it’s likely you could be the victim of a stabbing, close-quarter gun encounter, or attacked with a blunt force object. So it’s important you train with similar vigor for weapons-based skills as well.
Also, learn to integrate your hand-to-hand skills with your weapons so you can effectively get to them. The weapons combat crowd tends to forget the most important word in gun-fight/knife-fight is the word FIGHT. So, understand even if you have a weapon you’ll likely have to fight to get it out in the first place.
3. Real-world assaults are often far more brutal than any sporting event of match.
Talk to cops and you’ll get a realistic picture of how violent assaults can be. This might be hard to believe, but the brutality and pain people can survive and deliver under adrenaline is astounding and exceeds any match fight. For example, I’ve heard of people being shot in the heart only to keep fighting, guys falling from two-story buildings, and keep running as nothing happened. I even heard of a guy on drugs mutilating his own face with a knife before giving three cops the fight of their life. It’s brutal, it’s nasty, real, and traditional/sporting classes don’t replicate it. Lastly, thinking they’re the same thing can lead to a level of overconfidence that can get you killed.
4. The cops ain’t gonna help you. You’re all on your own
Criminals don’t expect help because they’re….criminals. But you shouldn’t either. Unfortunately most departments are run extremely thin especially now. So that means it’s very difficult for police officers to get to you EXACTLY when you need them. You must become self-reliant and be capable of wadding off threats long enough for professional help to come.
5. If you’re on the ground it’s stomping time
Criminals tend to stomp people when on the ground. If you take them to the ground their friend comes and kicks you in the head. I know this is very crude but this is really the extent to most violent individuals ground training. Intuitively, they know not to go there and if they do they’re not trying to submit anyone. They stomp the person or have a friend in a position to do the same. Therefore, you’re ground strategy has to be simple and able to not get you killed by multiple people.
Hope this helps! Happy training!