Self defense lessons from the Beijing Olympics

My last blog about safety highlighted lessons from long ago – The fall of Constantinople. Today I would like to talk self defence lessons from a much more recent event – the 2008 Olympics held in Beijing.

No doubt you are wondering what the Olympics, hosted thousands of miles from here, has to do with self defense lessons in South Africa? Don’t worry I won’t keep you in suspense for too long!

If you managed to watch at least some of the Olympics on TV then you will no doubt agree with me that we were privilaged to see the worlds finest athletes in action – and my impression was that many Olympic and World Records came tumbling down.

What astounded me (and here we are getting to the heart of the self defense message) was the disparity between the Gold Medal winners and the last-placed person in the finals…never mind the heats or qualifying rounds!

Now I find this last point quite intriguing if I consider:

A) The time, effort and dedication to training an Olympic athlete demonstrates; &
B) The great lengths that the Olympic Committee go to to ensure a level playing field. No one should receive any advantage and competition must take place within the rules. Obviously this also means that athletes are screened for drugs and other performance enhancing substances.

Thank you for bearing with me thus far –  I believe I have set the scene sufficiently to highlight the key self defense lessons that watching the Olympics reminded me of.

Unlike the Olympics:

1) In real-world self defence there are no judges and committee’s to ensure that everyone fights fair!
2) The criminal will do everything to gain an advantage – from superior numbers to drugs and alcohol to make them meaner and stronger.

Just like the Olympics:

1) Career criminals train! (And average Joe Citizen doesn’t).

In order to survive you must:

A) Cultivate the correct mindset;
B) Acquire the necessary knowledge;
C) Train.

Let me leave you with one final thought.

You may train with passion, energy and dedication – and just like the unfortunate Olympian – you may not win the race…but I can virtually guarantee you one thing and it is this; if you fail to train you won’t even make it to the games!

You want to survive? You must train! Will it ensure victory? Maybe not – but failure to train is a certain recipe for a self defense disaster!

Stay Safe!