The basic premise is to decide to take responsibility for the safety of yourself and the people who depend on you. You must form your own  personal self defense philosophy. You basically have to follow a  logical evaluation of the world around you. This information is an overview to help you formulate a tactical defensive strategy for successfully defending yourself and loved ones. It is not designed to tell you everything you need to know. These pages will help you to research and develop your own personal plan for tactical self defense. Developing a proper mindset is critical for defending  yourself and your loved ones. This might raise a couple of questions.
1. Why worry about self defense?
Just read the newspaper and look for crime statistics. People are  murdered, raped and robbed daily at home, work, supermarket etc. Part of this philosophy is understanding your enemy. As a law abiding citizen you are probably a person who tries to respect other people, is kind to your family, and obeys the law. You do not consciously look for trouble. I highly recommend Maassad Ayoop's excellent book, "THE TRUTH ABOUT SELF PROTECTION." He examines in depth self defense issues. Basically, you have to develop a  Mindset that recognizes that there are sub-humans who will slash your throat for your sneakers and not lose a moment of sleep. There are people on the street that look like you or me, but are psychopaths. They look at you as a source of food, money and goods. You are the 711 store for them. You need to develop a mindset that if you are faced with the threat of imminent lethal or cripling danger, you will defend yourself with every legal means available. I am not a lawyer but this is the concept as I understand it. If you reasonably feel that you are in imminent potentially deadly danger, then you have the right to employ lethal force to defend yourself. Ultimately, if you successfully defend yourself, a jury of 12 reasonable people will  judge if you did the right thing.
 2. Why not let the Police handle it?
 The police do not have the manpower or the legal right to anticipate and prevent a crime. They can only do their best to catch a criminal after he  has mugged, robbed, raped or killed you and/or your loved ones.
The first step would be to develop the mindset of being aware of your surroundings and more importantly the people around you. This is also called situational awareness. This mindset would be at home, at work and on the street. Many of us go through our daily lives unaware of what is going on around us and are fairly vulnerable. You have to develop awareness of your surroundings. On the other hand, you can't be in a continuous state of hair trigger readiness. The human mind cannot maintain this state for long. A method devised originally by Jeff Cooper (an expert firearms instructor and author) is a color code system. Think of colors as threat conditions.
WHITE, think of being at home in your "Lazy Boy" recliner watching TV. You are in a state where you are not very aware of your surroundings and are quite vulnerable. You hear a noise and go into  condition yellow.
YELLOW, you are listening to the noise and evaluating. You should look around you for visual clues as to your new situation. You identify the potential danger for example, the glass on a window breaks and You go into condition orange.
ORANGE, you should be out of the chair preparing for action. You should be aware of family members in the house, alert them to possible danger and gather them together in your safe room (Bedroom). you should have your defense tools ready. For example, you could have your cell phone in one hand and your (legal) handgun in the other. You see movement and go into condition red.
 RED, you are ready to identify your target and take action. Your adrenalin level is so high now that you will have fine motor skill problems and your training and practice will take over. You will successfully defend with all your skills.
 If you are on the street,  you can follow the same mindset and take appropriate action. For example, you are in condition yellow and walking down the street. You approach a gang of unsavory looking guys drinking beer and looking at you. You should go from condition Yellow to Orange.
    In condition Orange, you cross the street. The group stops talking and crosses the street headed for you. You should be in condition RED at this point and ready to fight or flee. Your adrenalin should kick in at this point.
The second step would be to select self-defense tools and develop  the skills to use them. Here are some choices for you.
 FIREARMS for self-defense.
 First would be to determine if you have the mindset to use lethal force to defend yourself. This is the time to think about this issue  seriously. If you decide to utilize a handgun, get good basic  handgun training and get the required license. A basic pistol course will teach you to develop safe gun handling habits and should also give you hands-on shooting at the range. A good course will also discuss selection issues. For example, type of handgun, Revolver or Semi-Automatic, Fit to your hand and finally power level. This power level is usually measured in ft/lbs of energy. The power  level required to stop an attacker with one shot is important. The FBI recommends no less then 400 ft/lbs. This translates roughly to no less then 9 millimeter or .38 special plus P and ideally .40 caliber or.357 magnum power level. Buy a good quality handgun; go to the range and practice, practice, practice. Shooting skills are ultimately more important than the power level. Power level does not matter if you miss your target. At some point, go to some combat shoots at a local club. Do this all before you  have to use your firearm in an emergency and don't remember where the safety is. Remember that a firearm is a lethal weapon and can only be used in limited scenarios. That is, when you are in fear of  imminent lethal danger.You should have other self-defense tools in your arsenal. Even if you carry a firearm, you should consider carrying a non-lethal or less-lethal defense tool also. You should become familiar with a few simple techniques and recommendations for the item(s) selected. You should not rely on any one element for your safety. At home, jogging, at work etc. select the appropriate action and tools for the situation. You should look at multiple tools and skills. Let's  look at some choices.
 Martial Arts.
It is always a good choice to get some basic martial Arts experience; especially if you are young and limber. Depending On the style, it takes a while to develop enough proficiency to defend against a bad guy with club or knife. A Shotokan based style is good for learning to deliver hard punches, low kicks, elbows etc. Fancy aerial high kicks take a long time to master and may not work on the street. You should look for a style that is reality based, designed specifically for self defense. There are some basic self defense courses that attempt to short cut the process. For example,  for women there is They are good for starting to develop a self protection mindset. Any knowledge is good. but if you don't have the time or are an older person you have several good choices
Defensive tools.
Remember, be legal. You do not want to go jogging with your samurai sword hanging on your hip. Any tool should be an extension of your natural tools; hands, feet, etc.
 You have a choice of  various impact or twisting Tactical tools Kubotans, persuader, mini stick- These are all basically the same device. The Kubotan is a patented plastic or Aluminum stick, approx 5 1/2 'long x 5/8 diameter with  radial grooves. The other items mentoned are similar. They also may double as a key chain  and appear none threatening. They are used for bone crushing strikes with the ends. Pokes to soft tissue and pressure points are effective also. You can use them as a flail with attached keys. With  a little training, you can use them effectively for pain compliance use.
Tactical Flashlights
They are of course carried as a Flashlight and are none threatening. In Court they are usually thought of as just a flashlight and very legal to carry. They are also available in Aircraft quality aluminum construction and are a deadly clubbing and
blocking tool. The Maglite type with regular cells tends to be heavier. A good size is a 3 C cell size. You can use rechargable batterys which makes them slightly lighter.  
The Streamlite type with LED bulbs are brighter and effective at temporarily blinding an attacker.
See the new "DEFENSIVE FLASHLIGHTS" DVD. Self defense with Flashlights, sticks,  Kubotan Key chains and a section on handgun use.
Jogging sticks, Escrima' sticks, kali sticks etc - These are all the same thing, Approx 28" long x 1' diameter rattan. It is a mainstay of Philippine martial arts. They had to develop a style of  martial arts that allowed them to quickly defend themselves against invaders. The emphasis is on basic stances similar to a boxer and multiple alternating strikes/blocks with the sticks. They can be used  Singly or in
pairs and with a little practice you can learn Sinawali; a double  weaving move that is hard to penetrate and good for attacks. Also good for jogging and for protection against dogs, etc. Very legal in most cases.
  See the new "DEFENSIVE ESCRIMA STICKS" DVD         
Fighting Canes
The walking cane is accepted in polite society and generally allowed on airplanes without question. It can also be used as a  powerful self defense tool especially by older people and people with handicaps. My web pages with Custom Combat Canes and Sticks offers a good quality cane at a good price. Also my instructional DVD's  show  easy to learn simple effective techniques. The  "DEFENSIVE CANE 1"  DVD ALSO includes a nice warm up, exercise segment.  "DEFENSIVE CANE 2-STREET TALK" follows up with street orientated self defense techniques, Complete DVDw/Cane packages available also.
 Fighting knives
 Belt knives are better then folders for self defense but can be impractical and often illegal. Folding knifes are  more concealable of course, but may be illegal in certain areas. I  have carried a folding knife most of my life. (It started in the Boy Scouts) :-) But I realize that Knife fighting is an unpleasant situation that may require a lot of skill, training and guts to survive. A threat with a knife is usually considered a lethal attack and may be defended with a gun. If you carry a knife, buy a good quality model. You do not want to bet your life on a $5.00 Flea market knife. You want a quality knife with a tempered steel blade that will not break and if a folder, have a strong hinge that will not fail and collapse onto your fingers. "Cold Steel" tests their folding Knife hinges by applying impact force to the blade repeatedly.

 Fighting rings

These are large, slightly cheesy looking rings.  They have wolf heads and tiger head designs with sharp edges. They are designed to inflict cuts and bruises on your opponent. It may be enough to discourage him. At the least, it is good marking for the
police line up.
 Security at home is an essential element of a self defense philosophy. Taking charge of your own safety should be a multi faceted approach. You should not depend on any one element for your safety . If you ask an attorney, he will probably tell you that have more latitude in a home defense situation. This varies from state to state but most places have special laws covering home defense. They are based on English laws often called Castle laws which give you the right to defend with lethal force in certain situations. Please consult a lawyer for legal advice on this important element.
First step would be to harden the perimeter of your house. Analyze your house for ease of forced entry. Improve lighting around access points. Cut shrubs around doors. Harden access through good locks, window locks/pins etc. Use the  locks even when in the house. The police will usually evaluate your  house for you and perhaps offer good advice. Dogs can offer some  protection. This is a good time to consider installing a high quality monitored home alarm system. (See Below)
Second step would be to formulate a good plan to defend against home invasion. At this  point, it is assumed that you have evaluated self defense tools and practiced the skills to use them effectively. You might select a good safe room where family members would gather. An upstairs bedroom is excellent. A bed is an excellent barrier to assume the ensconced defender position. You should know where all your family  members are and you should have your cell phone handy to call the police. A good quality flashlight like a MAGLITE is recommended. When you call you should give a complete description of yourself and  family members. Identify the problem to the police and explain your self defense tool(s). You could have a registered gun for example and the training to use it effectively. You should have an extra house key on a large key tag to throw to the police when they arrive. The best time to create this plan with the family is before a home invasion.
IMPORTANT, when the police arrive be sure to follow their directions exactly. They do not know that you are the good guy. Just remember that self defense should be a multi level program and you should not rely on one item. I have only scratched the surface on many of these issues but hopefully they will inspire you to research further.
 An important element of Home defense is a good monitored security system from a reputable company. Too many people look for an alarm system after their home has been invaded either while away or worst while they are in the house. A good alarm system will protect your home, family and possessions. If you have firearms in the house, this is especially important. The alarm stickers and signs will often discourage intruders plus installing a good monitored alarm system will give you a discount off your home owner insurance costs.
 Look for an Alarm company that has been in the residential and commercial business a long time. They should have their own licensed installers. You do not want to try your luck with the new alarm guy on the block that may not be in business long. If you are considering installing a home security alarm system, check out the following.
I have partnered with Brinks Home security and you can get a great deal on a monitored alarm system. A FREE installed  system that will include:
            Master Control Panel
            Two door/window contacts
            Motion or glass break detector
            One standard keypad
            Telephone connection
            Labor, etc.
            Lawn sign(s) and decals
  provide our customers with special savings on a monitored home security system. Customers will receive free* installation of the Brink's Home Security standard system. For additional information on this new benefit for our customers you can download the PDF file at
 A free Home Security Needs Analysis can also be scheduled by calling Andy Pachomski at 508-942-6629
            Mention C Davis Group for your FREE Alarm system
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