There are many great martial arts clubs out there, so what makes us different?
I’m not a street fighter, nor am I an ex doorman/military/”insert ‘hardcore’ profession here” (you can check out my actual credentials and bio on the coach page), but I do know what it feels like to be the little guy, and I am totally open and honest about what a normal everyday person stands a realistic chance of achieving in a self defence scenario, because lets face it, plenty of people who want to learn self defence aren’t looking to become world class fighters, they’re just looking for the skills and confidence to make sure they can get home in one piece. I have no time for egos or politics, I analyse everything to look for flaws, I teach only what I honestly believe in within the context of self defence, and will point out things I don’t believe in. I do this not in the interest of belittling other people or what they teach, but simply in the interest of ensuring that neither myself nor anyone who I coach falls into the trap of a false sense of security that can result from learning visually impressive but fundamentally flawed or out of context techniques. I’m also not afraid of tackling difficult questions that don’t have an easy answer, or of pointing out when a scenario has gone to a point of no return and simply doesn’t have a magic technique to get out of it
Less is more
So you want to learn dozens of fancy techniques to impress your friends and send people flying with one hand tied behind your back? Well you’ve come to the wrong place…
Imagine you have a toolbox with 10 slightly different hammers in it, each one designed for a slightly different type of nail. Now imagine you have been challenged to hammer in a series of different nails that will be put in front of you rapidly one after the other, and you only have 10 minutes to prepare for this challenge. So, do you try to study and learn the subtle differences between all 10 hammers, their placement in the toolbox and which one matches which nail, so you can try to to pick the right one at speed? Or do you just throw away 9 of the hammers and work on using the remaining one? Because at the end of the day, a hammer’s a hammer and a nail’s a nail
We believe in the single hammer approach, why learn loads of different ways to defend against several similar attacks, if one fundamental approach will work and provide a solid jumping off point to deal with all the variables. By focussing on that core approach, it will become far more effective in the same amount of time that would be spent training multiple different techniques
Something for everyone
There are those who dedicate huge amounts of time and effort to their training to reach as high a level as possible, but a lot of people can only spare an hour or two a week and train as much for the fun factor as they do the personal safety aspect, and neither way is right or wrong, there is only what is right for the individual. Our classes are largely based on what an average person can realistically expect to be able to make work in a high pressure situation, male or female, big or small. So whether you’re a total novice looking to try something new, or an experienced martial artist looking for a different perspective on self defence, we may be able to offer what you’re looking for. We also encourage a friendly and good humoured training environment, we may be tackling a serious subject, but there’s no reason we can’t have fun with it. Plus, sometimes we have cake!
Suggestions from our studio audience
I believe that when teaching, people shouldn’t just do what I tell them because I’m the one wearing the coach t-shirt, they should understand and agree with the logic behind what we’re doing. In many classes it would be deemed disrespectful to question what the instructor is showing, whereas I actively encourage people to ask questions about techniques and approaches until it makes sense to them, or challenge it if they’re not convinced (who knows you may have thought of a variable that nobody else has though of before which breaks the technique!). I also encourage suggestions for scenarios to look at, whether a situation you have been in yourself or something you’ve seen in a video, if you’ve ever wondered how you could deal with a particular scenario, I’m all ears
Tried and Tested
The unfortunate fact is that a lot of self defence being taught in the world today is either fundamentally flawed or taught in the wrong context, meaning it only really works within a cooperative class environment. One of the core principles of the FRACT Tactical system is that we don’t just do something correctly to prove that it works, we pressure test and try to break it to prove whether it holds up. I may not have tested my mettle in street fights like some people boast, but I’ve trained with some of the best, approach the subject of self defence with a sense of utmost honesty, and everything I teach has passed the FRACT break test