Handling Fear & The Chemical Response

            Fear, what is it good for?  To misquote Frankie goes to Hollywood.  Well, quite a lot.  It can be thrilling.  Make us feel alive?  Keep us alive? Get us killed.  Oh wait, that’s the bad one.  And that is the problem with the perception of fear, it gets a lot of bad press.  But without fear “man would have survived in the world only four minutes, not the four million years we have supposedly walked the earth”, to quote Peter Consterdine.

            Before I continue, I must stress that whole books have been written on this subject and will cover the topic in far more depth than I intended to in this article.  (A selected list of recommended books will be at the end).  Obviously, we are looking at fear in respects to personal protection.  What fear is, what happens within the human body and what we can do to mitigate its effects. 

Before we get to that, I want to mention, the two rules that Gavin De Becker puts forward in his excellent book, The Gift of Fear.  In it he states:

            “There are two rules about fear that, if you accept them, can improve your use of it, reduce it frequency, and literally transform your experience of life…

Rule 1.  The very fact that you fear something is solid evidence that it is not happening.

Rule2.  What you fear is rarely what you think you fear – it is what you link to fear.”

That’s fear in the large, take chances in life kind of way.  Not the dry mouth, sweaty palms, feel the need to relieve yourself, when faced with some scumbag spiting and shouting in your face.  Fear keeps us out of situations and consequences that would cause us harm.  Fear is what made our ancestors run when a sabre-toothed tiger jumped out in front of them.  We come from a long line of survivors.  There are no future generations from the humans, when faced with that sabre-toothed tiger, went “Oh what a pretty putty cat”.  Our ancestors were already running away, knowing they didn’t have to out-run the tiger just the schmuch who stood still a fraction of a second too long admiring it.

We come from a long line of survivors.  Its built into our DNA.  Our ancestors listened to their instincts, their intuition.  Something modern society is less good at doing.  Anxiety and stress are ripe in our culture as people worry, make themself sick, and live in “fear” of things that may never happen.  The downside of this is people wander around, never listening to their instincts, ignoring the signals fear is sending them, until a threat appears in front of them and they become a victim of crime.

Fear is now a weapon of the criminal.  Fear of violence or violence itself causes fear.  And fear is a powerful emotion that can seriously affect how we perform (or not) in a violent situation to tragic results.  There is nothing wrong with fear, as I teach in our word of the week program, courage is not the absence of fear, but continuing despite it.

Fear can be a good thing, it keeps us safe, given time is allows us to weigh up options and stops us putting our lives in danger.  In life it is sometimes seen as a good thing to face your fears, causing us to learn from those fears and rise above them.  Fear of failure, fear of loss, the fears we associate with our identity can cause us to push ourselves to stive to do and be better.  It all depends how we manage fear.

An attacker uses fear and surprise to hurt us.  To cause panic, diminish resolve, make you feel helpless and in general freeze.  But we can cause him to freeze when we explode into action, bust his nose, reset his OODA loop, and make him freeze.  If we can manage our fear. 

The more awareness we have on the street, the more time/distance we will have to observe a threat, the more we observe the less we will be taken by surprise.  The less surprise the better we can handle the fear.

It is important to understand the difference between the emotional effects of fear and the chemical responses of adrenalin.  We call it adrenalin, or the adrenalin dump, but in reality, it is a cocktail of chemicals that floods the body.  Under extreme stress various glands in your body release hormones into your bloodstream that have a profound effect on you physically and mentally.  This is one of the hardest things to address in training.  The mind you train with will not be the one you have when attacked. 

This means skilled techniques degrades under stress.  And it degrades a lot.  This means trained martial artists degrade more than untrained people.  This sound counter intuitive but here is why.  If an untrained person gets attacked, freaks out and flails about wildly.  Their drop in skill is small because they had no skills prior to the attack.  However, if a martial artist is attacked, someone with good “fighting” skills, and they freak out and flail and flap about wildly, their skills have degraded more because they were supposed to be a good fighter.  Evolutionarily there may be a reason for this, “no amount of fine and complex motor skills will drive that sabre-toothed tiger away, but flailing (gross motor activity), focused (tunnel vision), repetitive (behavioural loop) attack might”, says Rory Miller in Meditations on Violence.

The reason for degradation is the chemical cocktail in the body.  And they can produce some profound effects both good and bad and ugly.

The good

  • Increased heart rate
  • Increased blood flow to major organs
  • Increased glucose for immediate energy
  • Increased awareness
  • Increased sweating to warm the muscles for action.
  • Less bleeding, as blood is pulled from the limps into vital organs.
  • Less Pain.
  • More speed.
  • Increases strength.

The bad

  • Dry mouth.
  • Decreased blood flow to the skin.
  • Increased pupil dilation.
  • Broken or high-pitched voice.
  • General clumsiness from loss of motor skills.
  • Muscle twitching and shaking.
  • Peripheral vision is lost, resulting in tunnel vision.
  • Depth perception is lost or altered.
  • Auditory exclusion occurs.
  • Blood pools in the internal organs.
  • Perception and memory can be wildly distorted.
  • Time seems to slow (tachypsychia).
  • You can have irrelevant thoughts.
  • Behavioural looping is quite common.
  • Out of body experience can happen but is uncommon.
  • Post incident fatigue.

Let’s look a little closer to the chemical cocktail.

Adrenaline – This hormone increases the heart rate, air supply to the lungs and blood supply to the muscles, also promoted the supply of glucose into the blood for immediate energy.  In effect it prepares the mind and body for immediate action and help counter some of the effects of fear, stress, or violent exercise.

Endorphins – These natural painkillers are produced at times of stress such as trauma, and strenuous exercise.

Dopamine and Norepinephrine – These natural “uppers” bring the brain to full attention and speeds up nerve impulses in the part of the brain that controls muscle contractions. 

Noradrenaline – causes vasoconstriction and raises blood pressure.

Cortisol – Reduces the effects of shock.

The combined effect of all this on an untrained person with no time to fight or flight is to simple freeze.  There is an optimal stage of adrenalization.  Bruce Siddle, author of Sharpening the warrior’s edge, has listed stages of adrenalization and indexed them by heart rate.  He states that around 115-145 BPM reaction time and fighting skills are maximized.  Knowing these numbers won’t help you if you are taken by surprise and your heart rate hits 220 BPM.  If we have conditioned an effective response, one our attacker does not expect (because of their poor victim selection) it can kick their heartbeat off the chart and level the playing field.

If we have not conditioned a correct response fear and adrenalin will result in stoppers.  Therefore, we train action triggers.  Predetermined response and decisions made well before any assault.  Deciding what is worth fighting for, a spilt pint, hopefully not, your life, hopefully yes.  Decide to get angry.  Anger can suppress fear.  Break the freeze and get you moving.  Remember self-protection is 90% mental.  With decisions made possible years before an assault ever happens.  So, flip that switch in your head now to decide to fight for yourself, that you are worth fighting for.  Practice hard in the dojo but also get used to doing it in the dojo.  Here your kata and partner drills come into the fore.  You bow at the start of your kata and immediately switch to a focused, determined, aggressive mindset until the kata ends.  The same must be done within partner drills.  Of course, practice is essential but also essential is doing it for real with the correct visualisation.  Our brains are not good at differentiating between real and imagined.

Proper training and or experience can maintain a good level of skill in an encounter and beat the freeze.  If you have trained for the real things, understood what happened within your body, why you behaved a certain way, that you tactically did the correct thing, escaped (relatively) unharmed, that you did not choose this encounter, that it was forced upon you by a criminal, these things will severely reduce the PTSD you will feel after a violent encounter.  And unless you are a psychopath you will experience negative feelings after the fact.

Understanding fear and the chemical response should change the way you train, change the way you react in a real encounter, and change the way to deal with the aftermath.  All in all, a vital piece of information.

Recommended Reading

Streetwise by Peter Consterdine

The Gift of Fear by Gavin De Becker

Meditations on Violence by Rory Miller

New Procedure for Dojo Elite Karate Academy

  • If you have a fever, fatigue, cough or generally feel unwell, stay away.
  • Social distancing will be enforced. 
  • Hand sanitizer must be used on entering the dojo
  • Temperature will be taken on entry.  Anyone running a temperature will be refused entry
  • Masks will be optional and can be bought at the Dojo
  • Students will not be required to log in for class.  Sensei will do this
  • All students must come and go in their Karate suit
  • There will be no toilet or changing facilities for the foreseeable future.  Please insure younger children go before leaving the house and they understand this rule
  • No spectators allowed.  If you are waiting for younger students, you must wait outside
  • All students must queue outside (socially distant) until previous class has left or wait in their cars
  • No car-pooling
  • Classes will finish 5-10 minutes earlier depending on class size to accommodate a smooth change over.  Please insure you are there to collect smaller children
  • In the short-term there will be no partner work training.  When partner work training resumes, students must train with the same partner for the whole class   
  • Communal focus mitts, paddles, pads, and gloves etc will not be available.  All equipment we use in the Academy is available to purchase from the Academy.  Going forward all students will be required to have their own
  • Lockers will not be in use for the foreseeable future
  • You will enter and exit through different doors
  • Learn to respond, not react
  • “Come to the edge,” he said.  “We are afraid,” they said.  “Come to the edge,” he said.  They came.  He pushed them.  And they flew
  • Like the mother of the world, touch each being as your beloved child
  • Your future does not have to be the same as your past
  • Seeing is not believing, believing is seeing
  • Our own worst enemy cannot harm us as much as our own unwise thoughts.  No one can help us as much as our own compassionate thoughts
  • In the intervals between battles the warrior rests
  • The trouble is you think you have time
  • Most people fear rejection
  • Why questions lead nowhere.  Great men ask different questions, they ask “how” & “what” questions
  • There is the path of fear and the path of love.  Which will you follow?
  • A day spent judging another is a painful day. A day spent judging yourself is a painful day. You don’t have to believe your judgement. There simple an old habit
  • Karma is the pain, the suffering that results from clinging to the static patterns of the world.  The only exit from the suffering is to detach yourself from the static patterns
  • Stay centred, do not overstretch.  Extend from your centre, return to your centre.
  • Know the importance of intuition
  • Know you have much to be grateful for
  • The assimilation of learning is called knowledge and the proper use of that knowledge is called wisdom
  • Don’t keep searching for the truth, just let go of your opinions
  • Each morning we are born again.  What we do today is what matters most
  • Take time every day to sit quietly and listen
  • Abraham believed by virtue of the absurd
  • Whatever the mind can conceive and believe.  It can achieve
  • Mistake upon Mistake.  Not failure but continuous practise
  • Do one thing today that makes your life better
  • To thy own self be true
  • Don’t sweat the small stuff and remember it’s all small stuff
  • What would I do if I knew I couldn’t fail?
  • No man is an island
  • Remember to smile and say “I never did mind the little things”
  • Simplicity brings more happiness then complexity
  • Generosity brings joy.  Honesty brings peace
  • They conquer, who believe they can
  • All things are like a river.  We never enter the same river twice
  • Love in the past is only a memory.  Love in the future is a fantasy.  Only here and now can we truly love.
  • Everything that has a beginning has an ending.  Make your peace with that and all will be well
  • In the end these things matter most: How well did you love? How well did you live? How deeply did you learn to let go?
  • The heart is like a garden.  It can grow compassion or fear, resentment or love.  What seeds will you plant there?
  • Sometimes you can’t make it on your own
  • A gem is not polished without rubbing nor a man perfected without trials
  • Principles emerge from ritual, not the other way around.  We don’t perform religious rituals because we believe in God.  We believe in God because we perform religious rituals
  • Avoid the company of deluded people when you can.  When you cannot, keep your own counsel
  • Joy and openness come from our own centred heart
  • Karma can change life like the swish of a horses’ tail
  • Give before you are asked
  • Things to do today.  Exhale, Inhale, Exhale, Ahhh
  • To know the outcome, Look to the root.  Study the past, to know the future
  • Hope is a good thing, maybe the best of things, and no good thing ever dies
  • Learn to let go.  This is the key to happiness
  • I am capable of creating abundant wealth, health and happiness in my life
  • A warrior of light does not always have faith
  • Seek not to know the answer but to understand the question
  • If you wish to know the divine, feel the wind on your face and the warm sun on your arm
  • Two roads diverged in a wood, and I, I took the one less travelled by, and that made all the difference
  • At the bottom of things, most people want to be understood and appreciated
  • People do not achieve what they are capable of, but what they belief they are capable of
  • All of the circumstance in your life are a reflection of your subconscious beliefs
  • No one can make you feel inferior without your consent
  • Friendship doubles joy and halves grief
  • It’s not how hard you can hit.  It’s how hard you can get hit and keep moving forward.  That’s how winning is done
  • When you get to the end of your rope.  Tie a knot and hang on
  • Be the change you want to see in the world
  • Yes, I am an agent of Satan, but my duties are largely ceremonial
  • Achievement requires effort, determination and commitment
  • Life rewards action
  • If you wish it, it is no dream
  • The only reason people get lost in though is because it’s unfamiliar
  • Miracles happen to those who believe
  • There is no reality, only perception
  • For every minute of anger, you lose 60 seconds of happiness
  • Life is a journey not a destination
  • I stopped fighting my inner demons.  We’re on the same side now
  • The map is not the territory
  • Enlightenment is always preceded by confusion
  • The person with the most flexibility in a system influences the system
  • There is no failure, only feedback
  • People are more than their behaviour
  • Your unconscious mind can’t process negatives
  • Your values can either drive you towards pleasure or away from pain
  • If you do what you always did, You’ll get what you always got.  When you know better, you do better, and you get better
  • A warrior of light knows that they have much to be grateful for
  • The warrior of light is a believer
  • The assimilation of learning is called knowledge and the proper use of that knowledge is called wisdom
  • Seek not to know the answers but to understand the questions
  • There is power in forgiveness
  • You create your own experience
  • You are now accountable.  You have always been accountable.  You will always be accountable.  That is how it is.  That may not be how you want it to be but that’s how it is
  • People do what works
  • You cannot change what you do not acknowledge
  • Life is managed; it is not cured
  • We teach people how to treat us
  • You have to name it to claim it
  • You are the most powerful magnet in the universe
  • Thoughts become things
  • You either get it or you don’t

Book One in the series : Martial Arts & Mental Health Kindle or Paperback

What does success mean to you? Health? Wealth? Relationships? Happiness? Success is a mindset. Successful people control their minds and create the life they want. Do you want to be a healthier, happier more successful you? Let me show you how.

Your mind can make your life a heaven or a hell. It can push you to the heights of success or sabotage your dreams. Does life feel like you are swimming upstream not with the flow? Life can damage your self-confidence, self-esteem, relationships, physical fitness, and mental health. Martial arts are renowned for the physical prowess but also their personal development and mindfulness. Let me show you the secrets.

Are you interested in improving your mental health?

Do you want to learn why martial arts are great for improving self-confidence, self-esteem, self-control, and self-discipline?

Do martial artists have super mental abilities and how do you get them?

Would you like to learn the secrets of the martial art without ever having to train?

Then this book is for you…

Over 35 years, the martial arts have changed my life and made me a better person. Martial arts increased my confidence and made me a happier, stronger, and calmer person. Every success in my life came from the lessons the martial arts taught me. I have taught thousands of students how to succeed in life. Now I want to teach it on to you. Buy this inspirational and motivational book now.

Do you want to learn why martial arts is great for mental health?

Do martial artists have super mental abilities and how do I get them?

Are you studying a martial art or thinking of starting?

Then this book is for you…

The Japanese usually refer to people having 3 masks or faces. The first mask (public) is the one we show the world. The second mask (private) is the one we show to the people closest to us. And the third mask is who we are inside. This is our authentic self. Our true self. The one with all our strengthens and weaknesses, all our good points and bad, all our desires, loves and hates. When your authentic self, behaves in-line with your public and private masks then you will be at peace, you will be happy, and life should feel easy. If, however your authentic self is at odds with the mask you show the life may feel like you are swimming upstream not with the flow.

This book aims to show how correct training in the martial arts can improve your mental health, your relationships and improve the way your interact with the world around you. It will show how martial arts can increase self-confidence, self-esteem, physical fitness and mental abilities. How students all over the world become calmer, more centered, self-disciplined and self-aware. It will show how perception is different to reality.

This book is available as both Paperback and as Kindle e-book. Click the kindle link to read a sample. Available in the dojo for €29.99

Book Two in the series : Lessons From The Mats Kindle orPaperback or in the dojo for €19.99

Revised and extended: Now with more chapters

“If you do what you always did, You’ll get what you always got. When you know better, you do better, and you get better”

Your mind can make your life a heaven or a hell. Life can take its toll on your self-confidence, self-esteem, relationships, physical fitness, and mental health. Martial arts are renowned for the physical prowess but also their personal development and mindfulness. Learn the life lesson of the martial arts without the need of blood, sweat or tears. Let me show you how.

This book brings together in small easily digested chapters life lessons taken from over 35 years training in the martial arts, covering topics such as, mindfulness, perseverance, inspiration, motivation, and character education. Life lessons to live your life by and make your dreams come true.

Over 35 years, the martial arts have changed my life and made me a better person. Martial arts increased my confidence and made me a happier, stronger, and calmer person. Every success in my life came from the lessons the martial arts taught me. I have taught thousands of students how to succeed in life. Now I want to teach it on to you. Buy this inspirational and motivational book now.

This book is available as both Paperback and as Kindle e-book. Click the kindle link to read a sample.

Book Three in the Series : Love You Love Life: 5 Stages To Create The Life You Deserve available here or €19.99 in the dojo

Your future does not have to be the same as your past. What would you do if you knew you could not fail?

How can you learn to be the best version of YOU? How can YOU learn to be happier, healthier, and calmer? Do you wish for more in life?

In this book, martial arts 6th Dan Gareth FitzGerald answers all of these questions and more. Having spent 35 years studying martial arts and their mental abilities and teaching these lessons to thousands of students, he now draws from his personal journey and wisdom to inspire you to :

Reclaim your authentic self and become a shining light to others
Motivate and inspire health goals and the mindset that guarantees success
Change your beliefs about wealth and how to create it
Develop positive lifestyle habits, including mindfulness and meditation
Change perceptions and explain basic life laws
Live with gratitude and flow with the universe

In this book, Gareth FitzGerald will show you that when you change the way you think, feel, speak, and act, you begin to change the world.

All 3 Life Lessons Series Books Now Available In The Dojo

As you may have heard Clondalkin St Patrick’s Day parade has been postponed.  So the Academy will not be walking next Tuesday.  There will be no classes on St Patrick’s Day, all other classes continue as normal next week.

Unfortunately this years Expo will have to be postponed until later in the year due to the Caronavirus. I have taken a provisional date of July 5th as our alternative date.  I have no plans to close the Academy at present, especially due to the small size of most classes.  However any students presenting with flu like symptoms should avoid classes until the feel better.

The gradings in April will go ahead as before.  Students will grade in their regular classes the week of the 7th of April.  Grading in their 1st class and results and certificates in their 2nd class that week. 

The list of those eligible to grade that was sent out last week was based on students having completed near or all the required time between grades.  Students still must meet the required standard of their respective grade.  Some students on the previous list will not be eligible to grade, if the are not of the required standard regardless of the length of time since their last grade.  Please check with Sensei if you are unsure if you or your child can grade.  Below is the minimum time requirement for each grade.  Checking in your attendance every training session is vitally important to insure you can grade.

Yellow tip -Yellow belt must do min of 15 classes and 45 days between grades

Orange – Green Belt min 25 classes and min 90 days since last grade

Blue – Brown Belt min 50 classes and min 180 days since last grade

Brown Belt + min 110 classes and 265 days

The sparring competition will also continue this month in class, but the finals will be held over until the Expo goes ahead.

27th February 2020

Lesson 1

Dictionary says it means “soundness of character”. Character is the typs of person you are, good or bad, trustworthy or not, loyal or not.

Integrity is our last word of the week because it has to do with how well your using everything you learned about all the words of the week. If you have integrity you are someone who is courteous, respectful, honest, and humble etc.

We teach our students that “Actions speak louder thsn words”. You cant always tell what type of person someone is by what they say, but you can bt watching what they do. Someone without integrity will say one thing but do another/

Lesson 2

Having integrity means people will respect you and look up to you. But only you can make yourself a person of integrity. Its not what you do when everyone is watching, but what you do when no one is watching.

Esteem, give it to others, earn it for yourself.

Lesson 1

This relates back to our 1st word of the week, Courtesy. This is an extra special courtesy. Self-esteem means you feel good aout yourself and esteem for others means you look up to them.

We ask who deserves our respect? We talk about how parents spend most of their time and effort taking care of us. Working so we can have food, a house, taking you to school and karate lessons etc. They deserve out thanks. and we could never get a job and be able to repay them for all they have done. |So we repay them by showing them respect. So we follow their rules and treat them with respect.

Lesson 2

So we know showing respect is important but what is the best and easiest way to show respect? It’s when we use our courtesy words. What are they again? There are other ways of showing respect, like listeing when someone is talking, making eye conact when you are listening, sittig still and using black belt focus.

Definition “That which is known” “applied knowledge is power”

Lesson 1

We explain that knowledge is everything we know and learn. We ask how do we get knowlede? We learn in school, from other people, from TV and movies. We gain knowledge by studying martial arts. We teach our students that “Knowledge is Power”. Knowledge allows us to do great things. By gaining knowledge in school and getting good grades, which can lead to going to a good college and then getting a good job. The more knowledge we have the more choice we have on the sort of life we want to live.

Lesson 2

We teach our students that reading is one of the best ways of getting knowledge. Reading is like riding a bike, it can be hard at first but gets easier the more you do it. It doesn;t matter what you read once you read. And when you learn to read you have a gift for life. We teach that in some parts of the world people don’t get the chance to learn to read. Imagine if you could not read a street sign or sign your own name? We encourage students to learn to read and try their best.


Welcome to our New Year Newsletter for what will be a special year for our Academy which celebrates its 10th anniversary this year.

This email newsletter will hopefully keep you up to date with all you need to know about what’s going on in Elite Karate Academy over the coming months of 2020.  Please feel free to share this newsletter with family and friends, I hope you find it informative.  Feel free to comment on our Facebook page with comments and be sure to like our page while you’re there.  Or follow us in Instagram here.

News – Updates – Events At A Glance

  • Elite Karate Academy Expo on Sunday April 5th, 2-6pm, Clayton Hotel, Liffey Valley.  All students including beginners will be taking part on the day, with either/both gradings and demonstrations.  See below for more details.
  • Sparring Competition in March more details next month
  • St Patricks Day Parade.  Come walk with us.  Find out more below.
  • Raffle & Cake Bake Sale.  Can you donate a prize?  Bake something?
  • Academy 10th Birthday Party in September

Elite Karate Academy Expo

Our 10th Elite Karate Academy Expo will take place on Sunday 5th of April between 2pm-6pm, in the Clayton Hotel. Liffey Valley.  Doors open at 1.30pm. All students will be taking part, those not grading will be involved in demonstrations.  All students must wear their karate uniform.  The aim of the Expo, as always, is to allowing students demonstrate their skills and abilities to their family and friends, whilst educating parents about the aims and ethos of Elite Karate Academy, in a relaxed fun environment.  This event is open to anyone, so extended family and friends are welcome, this year’s Expo will include;

  • Grading (students will be informed closer to the date)
  • Club Sparring Competition (semi-finals and finals only)
  • Demonstrations (Instructor & Students)
  • Award Ceremony (Grading, Competition, and Special Awards, including Student of the Year)
  • Unveiling of Elite Karate Academy’s 1st Junior Black Belt?
  • Bake & Cake Sale. Why not bake something to bring on the day?
  • Raffle (asking parents to donate a price if they can, donations can be brought to the dojo)


For those few students who were unwell and missed their Christmas Grading or those that are eligible to Grade. The next grading will take place within class the week of 27th January 2020.

Finn Murphy, Amelia O’Reilly, Sean Power, Courtey Gorman, Niko Popardowski, Gloria & Adonai Vey, Marco Li, Eva Kelly, Aleksander Samatyja, Fares Okasha, Douglas & Zack Martin, Amberleigh Dowman, Oscar McNeive, Alberto Cimpoesu, Ronan Beech, Markas \Koskus.  If your child’s name is not and the list and you think they are eligible, please contact Sensei.

Sparring Competition

The early rounds of this non-contact 3 points-wins tournament will take places within your child’s normal classes and is completely voluntary.  With the semi-finals and finals taking place at this year’s Expo.  All students must have their own sparring gloves & boots,  which can be bought in the dojo, this is for your child’s safety. Only students who have graded Yellow belt or higher, may take part in this tournament.  All details will be given out in February

St Patrick’s Day Parade

Once again this year the Academy will be walking in this year’s Clondalkin Parade.  Students, families, and their friends are all invited to join us on the day.  So put it in your

Character Education Program

Once again, we are running our Word of the Week program in class.  Our specially designed word of the week program teaches 14 core values to your child in a 5 minute ‘mat chat’ within their normal class. Your child will grow as people not just stronger and fitter.  No other club offers this type of program.

Our 14 words are: Courtesy, Growth, Honesty, Obedience, Courage, Sincerity, Humility, Perseverance, Honour, Loyalty, Self-Control, Knowledge, Respect, Integrity.

Each week these lessons will be posted on our Facebook page or the full course can be viewed here in our blog section of our website.  I strongly urge parents to get involved with their child’s learning by reading these posts or discussing after each class what they learnt.


Check out our blogs on our website.  Click the link to read about them

Dojo Kun Programme – Most club’s dojo rules consist of no shouting, no chewing gum etc. Our Dojo Kun program teaches your child 25 rules of life. These rules teach your child how to follow and make their dreams come true, through hard work, passion, and dedication.

Elite Mental Training – This program teaches students the mental strategy of fighting, topics introduced can be used in all areas of life, reducing stress, and increasing mental wellbeing. Read some lessons covered in our blog section below.

Anti-Bullying Programme – We teach your child how to deal with bullying in a non-aggressive way without having to resort to violence. A great program for boosting confidence and self-belief. 

Online Self-Defence Course – Information on realistic self-defence, mentally, tactically, psychologically.

Newer material will be shared weekly on our Facebook page, much will be of interest even to those who don’t train.

Coming later in the Year

Other events coming up this year after the Expo, will be our 10th anniversary Summer Birthday Party in September.

Testimonials Request

That so many of you praise our Academy is huge source of pride to me.  Please write a review/testimonial here.  They will then be added to our website.  Student / parents or both may write a review and you may write a new one if you wrote one before.

Zen Tip

Thoughts Are Not Facts

You are walking down the road. When you see your friend on the other side. Unable to cross the road, you wave and call their name. Your friend continues to walk on. How do you react? Many people have different reactions when told this story. Some accept that their friend simple did not see them and thus continue their day. And if they remember they may mention to their friend that they saw them, the next time they speak. Other people feel slighted and ignored. Wondering what they did to their friend to deserve being ignored.

Convinced their friend is not talking to them. They race off upset, determined to phone their friend and find out what they did. Thoughts are not facts. That you think something does not make it true or real. Put emotions, feeling, rationale, and assigning motivations to people without the full facts, makes you react to situations that are not happening. Recognize that thoughts are not facts and learn to respond rather than react for a calmer heathier life

Self Defence is an open system. In a closed system there are known factors and there are right and wrong answers based on these factors. In an open system there are many ways to be right and wrong .

The difference between self defence tarining and martial arts training is that self defence teaches students and martial arts teaches subject matter. 2 simple examples are; self defence teaches power generation, martial arts teaches multiple different strikes or self defence will teach a 20stone man differently then a 8 stone female, martial arts teaches everybody the same syllabus. The reason for this is a 20 stone man doesn’t need to worry about being draged into the back of a van and raped, a 8 stone female will not need advice with how to deal with a monkey dance.

Self defence training must give each student the tools and freedom to solve their problems in their own way.

To understand and defend yourself correctly on the street you must understand the difference between social and asocial violence, and the tactics that must be used to deal with each.

Social violence = the monkey dance, the interview, sparring/dueling, sorting it outside, have a knockabout. Social violence is violence used for social status, dominance or to teach a lesson. Examples Dave’s mad he took on that huge bouncer last Friday, or how dare he do that, I’ll teach him.

All predatory animals have social violence or some sort of play fighting. Think dogs, foxes, lions or tigers wrestling and playing. This is how they learn to fight, hunt and display dominance. It is never lethal Humans social violence is designed not to be lethal and when it is it is usually from falling and banging their head. With social violence it is for dominance/status or to teach a lesson, ie punching someone to teach them to show you respect. The mindset for this has to be justified. You will subconsciously be hitting to communicate, not to eliminate,

Asocial violence = the group monkey dance, violent crime, a predator. If you go to kill an insect do you need to get worked up or get angry? Do you need to convince yourself that this is a bad insect? Do you need to justify it like its justice? Do you give the insect a chance and fight it or just kill it. This is asocial violence. This can be lethal. Experienced violent crimals have gotten past this and treat people like animals, which gives them a huge advantage. Most people defending themselves cannot. Unless you train to flip the switch.

The things that can prevent or de-escalate social violence can invite asocial violence and vice versa. In a predatory approach you must be able to distingush between a crime motivated by cash from one motivated by cruelty.

Bad guys don’t fight, they’re not in this to lose. They use surprise or bitz attacks. Martial arts work well in social violence where you have time and choices. Asocial violence comes as a surprise and you will be surprised, don’t kid yourself that you wont be surprised.

Self defence is not a physical skill its an emotional skill, it is all about how fast you can recover when injured or surprised. What to do is almost never the problem. Actually acting or beating the freeze is the issue.

See other articles on the monkey dance, the group monkey dance