In reality self protection training the ultimate goal is to prepare your students for the realities of Violence and give them the tools to successfully deal with it and go home safe. In this statement lies the question . . . how?
Yes with tools & tactics, yes with combative fitness . . . but understanding the mentality that drives it is what will make it applicable or irrelevant. To create a training environment that facilitates this mentality means to design as realistic stimulus as you can safely create to replicate the emotional and psychological realities of a “REAL” threat.
Here lies the dilemma . . . no matter what you do, it’s always just training. You know no one is there with malicious intent, no one is trying to take your life.
The goal is to flip the switch from prey to predator or “Access State” (harnessing fear & adrenaline to enhance performance rather than allow it to degrade it. It’s having the ability to dehumanize your attacker and do whatever it takes to eliminate the threat. )
I believe to create state, you have to have a scenario that merits it . . . to me, there is no better way than AGGRESSION!
Creating drills to access aggression vs. drills that merely exhaust are far more beneficial to “Accessing State”. Now with that said, I’m not saying that exhaust ion drills are not useful, but I think they are better for those who have the ability to “Access State” .
New students, who have never accessed state, don’t yet understand the dynamics, so exhaustion drills simple just point out that when you are tired performance degrades . . . . I think we can all agree that we all know that already. When you have a student access their “Inner Mean Gene” you open their eyes to what they are capable of in “Survival Mode”.
With an understanding & ability to “Access State” exhaustion drills are a great way to really push students to their limits. Hope for the best, but prepare for the worst . . . or better yet
SI VIS PACEM PARA BELLUM (if you want peace, prepare for war)
When you train, understand why you train, understand that going through the motions is NOT an option, understand that you are training for worst case scenario. Train hard, be vigilant!