IF the self-defense style doesn't have competitions, it can't be good and evolve... Really?


I have been around martial arts and self-defense training for a long time. The phrase above is something that makes me LAUGH! 

Just outright we should then state that the Law Enforcement Use of Force training can't be efficient since there are no "Police Use of Force Champion of The year" competitions😂

No it's not about the rules or no rules, there's always rules and limitations, if not anything else, legal boundaries and the individual's actual capacity to use violence. It is about the set up and mindset.

Let's think about what would be self-defense or use of force competitions be like...

I wrote earlier about "What is effective self-defense training made of" and touched a bit about competitions there also. In any combat sport/competition the key thing is that both participants know what's the name of the game. 

But in self-defense or use of force situations, this is unclear. Unless someone already took the initiative and outright attacked us.

Now we are in the "competition mode". So since the defensive techniques in self-defense systems and use of force are found in all around martial arts and combat sports, the thing we must determine is that what sort of active, initiative techniques could be allowed?


Competition formula for any self-defense system (sarcasm warning)

The self-defense championship games include the following sections:

Awareness - walk in the park full of dangers, how well does the competitor observe and react to these? Hard to put competitors against each other though😎

Tactics - one-on-one or one-on-many threat situation in which the tactical skills of positioning, communication skills and taking advantage of the environment. How to measure success?

Physical self-defense - one-on-one or one-on-many starting point? The game starts while the competitor is unaware of the intentions or the attacker and then the game starts. The game doesn't end until the attacker or defender is unable to continue or the defender manages to escape the ring/cage/room/parking garage or what ever is the environment chosen to be the set up environment. 


Aren't these set ups trained in self-defense training in scenario-training all the time??? Yes, but since they are not competitions, there can't be development!!! 

So now all self-defense systems, start handing out medals after each session and then you're fine😂😂😂😂😂 

Analyzed Contact drilling equals competition

Now if you want to test whether your self-defense system movements (techniques) are feasible, just start doing contact drills and analyze them. Take videos, assess the reactions and movements. 

Yes, if you don't use active attacker methods in the basic movement training and implement resistance in everything you do, there is a big chance that you're wasting your time. 

The best part of this is that everyone can participate and there is "competition" part in every training!


The fact that in some, or not any, self-defense systems don't use competitions as part of their training, doesn't mean they would not be feasible to train and use. Since the competition form of these is MMA, I Think it is "lame" to formulate a self-defense style X competition format, that looks like MMA but holds a different name and uses perhaps different outfits. On the other hand it would be great to have jeans, t-shirt, cowboy boots series and then the "captain sweatpants" -series 😂😎

Put the focus on how you train and coach and develop the system - delete what doesn't work and add new aggressor behaviors to describe the threats. 

Train Smart!

Tommi Nystrom, Head Coach, Krav Maga 5th Dan