Archive for the ‘Training’ Category

The troubling rise in campus violence and crime continues. Are you sending your children to college this fall? Send them prepared.

Most college assaults can be avoided. AWARE focuses on reducing the likelihood of an attack by being in tune with one’s environment and learning to recognize danger before a physical encounter is unavoidable.

This is NOT a martial arts class and it’s NOT your typical self-defense class. AWARE is an intuitive response approach to personal safety that emphasizes avoidance rather than engagement. Should you be unable to avoid a physical assault, you’ll learn practical, natural physical techniques that work…whether you’re a trained martial artist or not.

While this session will emphasize the transition to college or an urban environment, this seminar is also perfect for business professionals and travelers who want to be safe away from home.

Follow this link to register. Save $25 on early registrations: Enter the discount code: EARLY 25

For more information call 721-0299…

Save $25…Enter discount code: EARLY 25 when you register NOW!

Read Full Post »

Amazing story from FOX News. Black Belts – these takedowns should look familiar after last night’s workout!

Click here for video…

Read Full Post »

You just made it through the holiday season…now do something for your SELF!

Now through February, FREE martial arts classes for adults at Northern Chi Martial Arts Center at the Black Belt Mindset Institute in Brunswick, Maine!

PLUS…for every class you attend now through February, you earn a chance for great bonus prizes including:

  • Full ONE YEAR adult program!
  • Discounts on full year programs!
  • Uniforms & martial arts shoes!
  • Signed copy of THINK Like a BLACK BELT!

Forget about resolutions…this year strap on your belt and get to work! We’ll help you reach all your fitness and personal development goals!

Call 721-0299 today…

…or drop by our Brunswick center at 25 Stanwood Street, across from Brunswick Home & Garden.

DON’T WAIT! Every class you attend gives you another chance to win our great prizes!

*New adult students only. Cannot be combined with other offers. Offer expires February 28, 2012…

Read Full Post »

At the Black Belt Mindset Institute, we are blessed to have some of the best instructors in Martial Arts.  Here’s an inside look at some of the things they work on in their Leadership Team training.  You may find these tips useful in your business or personal life as well!

Here’s what our instructors think about before they take the floor each day:

  1.  Am I motivated to do the best I can for my students?
  2. Am I aware of any health or behavioral issues my students may be facing?  Can I confidently address those issues in an emergency situation?
  3. Do I know where to find the first aid kit?  Is ice available?  Is water available?  Do I have immediate access to a phone?

Setting the Tone:

We always think of our students first. We want to challenge our more Advanced students without intimidating our Beginners.

  1. We choose drills appropriate to the group skill level.
  2.  We keep an eye on people and tailor the intensity level to insure success for all!  We offer modifications when necessary.
  3.  We provide a safe environment.
  4.  We always provide plenty of water breaks!

Our Tips For Success:

  1. We learn by watching as well as doing.
  2. We know our material and how to present it – We never teach something we don’t know.
  3. We have a lesson plan prepared, and we’re always ready to change it!
  4. If a drill is not going well we move on to something else.  We like to keep the class flow going.
  5. We know our “room”.  We’re aware of the class tone and energy each time we step on the floor.
  6. We consider each student as an individual.
  7. We ask questions;  we let our student find the answers.
  8. We teach, re-teach & review.
  9. We walk the walk;  We keep our own skills and material fresh and current.

Any teacher should remember — students take their cues from us. It’s our responsibility to create an environment that is safe, positive and enjoyable!

Read Full Post »

By Jim Bouchard

When we face a tragedy like the Tuscon Shooting most of us, particularly martial artists, will ask ourselves how we would act given that scenario?

Would you run?

Would you hunker down and hope for the best?

Would you do what four incredibly courageous people did and charge the shooter?

As the debate rages over the causes of Jared Loughner’s shooting spree and what, if anything, could have been done to prevent it let’s not lose site of the heroic actions of the people who kept this from being an even greater tragedy.

By all accounts, Loughner was an effective shooter who was committed to killing as many people as possible. He was prepared with nearly one hundred rounds of ammunition in 3 magazines. Multiply the damage he did with one and you can see that had he not been stopped, it’s likely he could have killed and wounded two to three times as many people. Given his profile, it’s very likely he would have started to shoot people who were lying on the ground taking cover.

What is particularly remarkable is that the heroes in this instance were quite ordinary people. This is not a story of off-duty cops or Green Berets jumping into action; this is a story of everyday people who chose in an instant to charge head-first into action to protect others. From Rudabeh Shahbazi and Brian Webb at ABC15.com in Arizona…

One of those people, 74-year-old Colonel Bill Badgers, was grazed in the head by a bullet fired during the rampage.

“I dropped my head about six inches and felt a burning, I knew I’d been hit,” he described.

Badgers said he heard 18 to 20 shots and when the gunfire stopped he stood up, not knowing the shooter was right beside him.

That’s when someone else grabbed a folding chair and hit 22-year-old Jared Loughner on the back of the head. Badgers and another man held Loughner down for five to 10 minutes until authorities arrived.

The other man Badger is talking about was 24 year-old Joe Zamudio. Zamudio was prepared to act in this type of situation…

Zamudio was not even at the scene when the suspect opened fire, but he ran towards the spray of bullets to tackle the gunman to the ground.

“I was at the counter, and I heard the shots ring out,” said Zamudio, who was on a cigarette run. “I had my hand on my gun. I was ready to just end his life.”

Though Zamudio himself was armed, he did it all without pulling his gun or taking another life.

“It was horrible,” said Zamudio. “It was gruesome. It was like organized mayhem — so many people hurt, so many people crying, just people looking for loved ones, and people finding them and people not finding them, and people freaking out.”

In seconds, lives were lost, victims were injured and people like Badgers and Zamudio became heroes.

The third person who subdued Loughner was 61 year old Patricia Maisch. Though since the shooting Maisch has done nothing but downplay her role; her quick actions in grabbing the next magazine Loughner was attempting to load no doubt helped to prevent other casualties.

What would you have done?

The colonel obviously had military training. There’s nothing to indicate that Maisch or Zumudio had any experience in hand-to-hand combat.

Heroic courage is dependent upon opportunity. These heroes had the opportunity to act with courage in the face of highly unusual and unlikely circumstances and in an instant they controlled whatever fears they might have had to do what was necessary.

Many will argue that there is little or anything you can do to prepare yourself for such an encounter. I respectfully disagree with that point of view. Your mind is extremely powerful and how you train and condition yourself to respond greatly increases your capacity for heroic action should you be called to act in the face of danger.

New troops, rookie police and fire personnel do not run from their duties when they face their first action. Rookie fighter pilots don’t ditch their planes the first time they attempt a landing on a pitching aircraft carrier. Why not?

Because they train.

I believe that courage is our nature. These very ordinary people with little or no training acted with courage and saved lives. You can greatly increase your capacity to act as these heroes did by sincerely embracing your training.

I hope you’ll never have to face a situation like the Tuscon Shooting; but if you do- I’m confident that you too would act courageously.

Read Full Post »

By Jim Bouchard, founder & Master Instructor of Northern Chi Martial Arts Center; speaker, medial personality and author of “Think Like a Black Belt.”

On Tuesday, December 14th a man named Clay Duke interrupted a school board meeting in Panama City, Florida. He walked in with a can of spray paint and a handgun.

Duke was upset over the school board apparently firing or laying off his wife. They had run out of unemployment benefits and according to Duke, were broke.

Ironically- we had scheduled a special gun defense session that very evening for the advanced students at Northern Chi Martial Arts Center. Let’s analyze this encounter and see what, if anything could have been handled differently.

First, watch the following video. WARNING: This is unedited footage of the shooting incident…

Training for defense against a handgun, one of the first topics we talk about is intention. How can you possibly determine the exact intention of the gunman in this type of situation?

Obviously Duke was upset and probably deranged; at least in the moment. He enters relatively calmly and gives no indication that he is feeling anything but in complete control of this encounter from the outset.

Our first assumption must be that the gunman intends to use his weapon and that the likely outcome is that someone is going to get killed. You cannot assume first that the attacker will not fire the weapon- his intention may be other than shooting and killing people; but if someone threatens you with a gun the first assumption must be that he will use it.

Here’s how this scenario played out. Timings refer to the video above in minutes and seconds.

1:00- Within a minute of the situation developing, a very brave woman who had left the room returns and attacks Duke with a purse trying to dislodge the gun from his hand. Had she been trained in the tactics we worked on last night, she may have had a chance to end the situation immediately. From this footage you can see the importance of gaining control of the weapon. Striking at the weapon may have simply gotten her shot, violating our first principle of weapons defense: “Don’t get killed.”

One could argue that her actions were dangerous, even foolish- that was her assessment of what she did as she recalled the events for the press today. However, she did attempt to do something. Her courage is admirable and indisputable.

1:30- Duke tells the board members, “I’m gonna die today.”

You don’t need any other clues as to the gunman’s intentions. He is obviously deeply disturbed and he has stated that his life, at the moment, means nothing. What other indications would you need to determine his state of mind?

2:40- Negotiations continue…

The remaining board members in the room, led by board chairmen Bill Husfelt fully committed themselves to negotiation.

There are dozens of verbal and non-verbal clues in any encounter like this and we of course have the luxury of analyzing this event in safety and retroactively. Fear and concern for the other people in the room are obvious emotions that affect the choice between negotiation and attempting to physically stop the threat.

Listen carefully to the negotiation. The board members remained as calm as could be expected and genuinely attempted to reason with Duke.

Should they have asked Duke to lay his weapon down as a condition for continuing to talk? Was their negotiation effective for a time, or were they simply delaying the inevitable?

As the negotiation continued, Duke approaches the dais several times from various angles. Our training teaches us that controlling and disarming an armed attacker is a close encounter. Unarmed, it’s nearly impossible to close distance to control or disarm someone with a gun from anything but extremely close range.

Was Duke close enough at any moment to make a tactical move possible? Should someone have made a move rather than trying to reason with the gunman?

3:30– We hear the voice of a man who identifies himself as the school safety officer. Since we can’t see him at the time, we don’t know if he’s armed. Since only a couple of minutes passes from this moment to the time shots are fired, I am assuming he was armed throughout the encounter.

The officer asks Duke, “Is that a real gun there?”

Would it make a difference? In a situation like this, how can you determine whether or not the gun is real? Does the lack of that knowledge change your tactical response?

To put it more bluntly- should you be worrying about whether or not the gun is real?

4:40- As negotiations continue, Husfelt offers himself to be the sole object of Duke’s attention. He asks that the other board members be allowed to leave. He personalizes his appeal by taking responsibility for the firing of Duke’s wife.

Not only is this an amazing act of unselfish bravery, but obviously Mr. Husfelt is placing the value of the other board members above the value of his own life.

Would you do the same given these conditions?

5:58- The situation escalates- Duke raises his weapon at Husfelt and fires the first shot even as Husfelt pleads for his life.

Remember the safety officer- when should he have fired his first round? While it’s never “too late” if one can prevent further harm, should the officer fired long before the situation got to this point; or did he do the right thing in waiting to see if things could be resolved without bloodshed?

6:06- The safety officer fires and hits Duke. Duke has fired two shot up to this point. He continues to fire, getting off a total of 4 rounds- one of which is he fires errantly into the floor (the second) before getting the weapon on-line again and sending his last two shots at the board. He is hit after his second shot, we hear two quick reports from the safety officer’s weapon, at least one of which hits the mark sending Duke to the floor where he is hit once more. According to reports he then shoots and kills himself.

The entire firefight is over in 11 seconds.

There are no “right or wrong” answers to any of the questions I posed here. There are tactical “rules” we can practice and scenarios to rehearse, but only the people actually involved in the encounter have all the information they needed to make decisions throughout.

Tactically, I’ll offer these opinions:

  • If some of the people in this encounter were trained, any number of them had the proximity and opportunity to make a legitimate attempt to control the weapon and stop the threat. That does not mean negotiating was the wrong decision- it simply means that had someone decided to fight there were several good opportunities to do so.
  • The safety officer, if we assume that he was armed throughout the encounter, would have been justified in firing at Duke as soon as he saw the gun in Duke’s hand. In my opinion, that may have been the most prudent action; but no reasonable person wants to harm or kill another human being.I have to respect his decision to let the scenario play out despite my own feelings. On the other hand- before you commit to carrying a deadly weapon for self-defense, make the decision that you will, if necessary, use deadly force to defend yourself or others. If you’re not comfortable with that decision- do not carry a handgun.
  • At the very least, Duke started to raise his weapon at 5:58. He fired his first shot at 6:01- 3 seconds. If the safety officer had Duke in his sights, he should have fired at the very least the moment Duke started to raise his weapon. It is a full 7 seconds, and Duke fired twice in that time, before the safety officer’s first shot.Of course again we have the benefit of hindsight- watch the video again and notice how long 3 seconds is when you’re watching dispassionately. Time was no doubt moving much faster for the officer and the others in this room and there is a traumatic delay when we see something our mind may register as unbelievable. If, on the other hand, the officer deployed his weapon at that point he did an admirable job of deploying his weapon and making a relatively clean shot.

I’m not judging the actions or decisions of anyone in this room. These were ordinary people placed in extraordinary circumstances. They all demonstrated heroic courage.

In the end, all but the gunman left this encounter unharmed- the results could have been much worse. Fortunately the only fatality was Duke himself; and even that is regrettable as he was not to the best of our knowledge a criminal, but a desperate man in dealing with difficult circumstance who unfortunately resorted to desperate measures. He paid his price.

Think of how you might have acted in this situation. This video provides a valuable window on what really happens under this level of threat.

Most of all, this event highlights the value of training for a worst case scenario. I doubt anyone going to the Panama City school board meeting would imagine in their wildest dreams that they’d be facing death at the hands of a gunman yesterday- yet there they were facing their worst nightmare.

NOTE: Northern Chi’s tactical curriculum for defense against an armed attacker was developed by Doug Young. His video on the tactical response for handguns, “Your Worst Nightmare” is available from Amazon.com and at Northern Chi Martial Arts Center.

Doug is available for seminars and workshops for martial artists and law enforcement personnel. You can reach him through Northern Chi Martial Arts Center at 207-721-0299.

What would you do in if faced with an armed attacker? Train for this and other real-life self-defense situations at Northern Chi Martial Arts Center!

Now through December 17th- $500 for a FULL YEAR program! (New members only.) Call 721-0299 for details!

Read Full Post »

The Kubaton is one of the most effective weapons ever developed for self-defense- and one of the easiest to use!

  • Requires minimal training to be effective.
  • Can be carried legally anywhere.
  • Is always at hand- literally!
  • Inexpensive and needs no maintenance.

Originally developed as an equalizer to help women prison guards deal with larger male prisoners, the kubaton is now readily available to anyone who wants a simple, effective weapon for personal protection.

One of the best features of the kubaton is that the chances for collateral damage is virtually non-existent. A stray round from a handgun can be lethal. Over-spray from a chemical weapon can blind everyone in the area, including the defender!

In one hour you can learn how to defend yourself with a kubaton. That one hour could save your life!

THIS STOCKING STUFFER COULD SAVE YOUR LIFE! Looking for a last minute stocking stuffer? Pick up a Kubaton for someone on your list- Just $19.95 and…

…Includes a one-hour AWARE Self-Defense Kubaton Class at Northern Chi Martial Arts Center! Get your Kubaton today and call for class dates and times: 721-0299!

Read Full Post »

Older Posts »