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Principles of Unarmed Defense

InSights treats every fight as a multiple assailant fight. You're fighting the immediate threat in front of you "plus one" you don't see. If you're a peace officer and see only one suspect, you have to be prepared for the other suspect in the getaway car. If you're a private citizen dealing with a lone drunk in a bar, you have to assume that any of the bystanders might join in at any time.

This "Plus One" rule has implications throughout the course, as every technique taught has been devised with multiple attackers in mind. For example, InSights believes you shouldn't plan on "finishing your opponent off" because that means sticking around longer than necessary. Instead, you might only fight long enough to stun your opponent so that you can get out of there before others join in.

Muggers and other predators may not have formal training in conducting ambushes, but they understand the concepts. When you get jumped on the street or in the bathroom at the local bar, don't stay in the "kill zone" keep moving! This will prevent your attacker from getting "set" before his attacks, and also make it harder for any accomplices to corner you.

Natural weapons are the fairly indestructible parts of the body that make good "clubs", such as the palm, the elbow and the heel of the foot. Punching can easily result in a broken hand, which could prevent you from being able to use your sidearm if you need to.

To illustrate this point, walk up to a brick wall and consider if you'd rather punch the wall full-force with your fist or a palm strike. If you're like most people, you'll see that a palm strike is less risky, and will allow you to throw more power into the blow because you're not as afraid to hurt your hand. What applies to the brick wall also applies to your opponent's jaw or skull: Use the palm strike.

Conversely, the most damaging blows you can receive are blows to your head. To minimize that risk, InSights teaches you to bring your chin down, your shoulders up, and to raise your elbows above eye level with your open hands touching over your head. From this position, you can protect your head against attacks from all angles (remember that second assailant?) and still execute powerful palm strikes.

Your attacker can run forward faster than you can run backwards. When under attack, avoid the natural instinct to retreat along the attack line. Instead, InSights teaches moving laterally to avoid the attack while still being in a position to attack back.

Body strikes, even to the groin, can be effective but many times are not. With adrenaline, PCP, or just physical size, many assailants will not be fazed by a good body blow. Even a groin strike takes twenty to thirty seconds to produce maximum pain, and football players, and other athletes routinely "suck it up" and keep functioning. By attacking the body's "computer", the head, either directly or by striking the base of the skull, face or throat, you can stun your opponent regardless of size.

Firmly giving verbal commands can mentally disrupt your attacker or even discourage the attack. Setting strong boundaries being direct with your communication is a mind set that can help you de-escalate a situation or control the perception of others who might be witneesing an attack. Develop a specific set of commands that you can train with to ensure your commands are injected with confidence.