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Are you a resident of La-La Land?  As in living in some fantasy world where everything is good, nothing can go wrong, or "that can never happen to me"?

Unfortunately many people live in this world.  And therefore grossly unprepared to cope when things go horribly wrong.  Case in point - Acapulco.  Let's say you happen to decide on a well-deserved vacation to this tourist hot spot with your spouse, SO, and/or family.  Then this storm comes, the SHTF and things go from bad to worse.  Looking past the obvious needs for food, water and shelter, can you protect yourself and loved ones?  
 
Chances are you haven't been able to travel with a firearm.  Do you have basic empty hand skills?  How about if you need to kick it up a notch?  Can you
wield a stick?  What about a knife?  Or machete? There are some that question the need to spend time on these  "traditional" martial arts in the time of modern firearms.  But I'd sure like to have some basic understanding on how to keep a crowd at bay or protect my family with anything I could get my hands on.

But where would I even get those weapons?  Where's the housekeeping closet in your hotel?  Do they have brooms or mops?  Many have handles that are metal, but even wooden ones are better than nothing. Have you eaten in the resorts fancy restaurant?   I'll bet they have wooden handled steak knives.  Wouldn't be a bad idea to "acquire" one of those in advance, just in case.  If not, do you know how to get to the kitchen?  Chef knives, cleavers, carving knives - anything sharp and pointy.  Is there a local hardware or supply store?  Maybe not at a resort/tourist town, but if you're out in town, keep your eyes open.  In many other countries a machete or brush knife is a common household tool.  Also might be worth acquiring one in advance. Think that's unrealistic?  Think about Rwanda in 1994 (not that long ago).  500,000 - 1,000,000 killed, many with
machetes.
 
So, not to be paranoid, but use your head and be prepared.  As demonstrated in
Acapulco and elsewhere around the world, most places are only 72 hours from
chaos when the "normal" social systems break down from any reason. Get some training.  Firearms are good if you're so inclined and have legal access.  Stick skills like those offered by the Dog Brothers or machete/sword skills as proposed by James Keating.  Hopefully you'll never have to use the skills you develop, but it's better to be prepared.  Besides, it's fun and adds another dimension to your current skill set.
 
In closing, stay out of La-La Land, face some cold, hard facts and be prepared.  

Now get out there and train.


 
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Good article in Feb 2012 issue of the Strength & Conditioning Journal that discusses specific needs for female Mixed Martial Artists.  In general, a focus on increasing lean body mass, upper body strength, and preventing injuries, especially in the knee. 
  
In an effort to increase LBM and testosterone  levels, the authors (Schick, Brown, and Schick) emphasize multi-joint lifts  (squat, clean, deadlift etc.), decreasing rest periods between sets, increasing
sets (at least 3) and increasing intensity.  Makes sense, but it never ceases to amaze me the number of folks that seem to emphasize single joint, machine based “weight training”. Unless you’re trying to rehab an injured part or you’re prepping for a bodybuilding competition, I don’t know why you’d consider most single joint exercises or a
machine.

I really liked a couple of their interval training examples given.  The first was a Circuit
weight training session.  Meant to be done 3X with a minute rest in between (to mimic an MMA fight).  

Exercise            Reps/duration
Jump rope                 1 min
BB rev lunge              10-12
Push Press                 4-6
Bent row                    8-10
Hang clean                 4-6
Deadlift                       6-8
Med Ball jump squat    6-8
Med Ball rotations        20
KB swings                    10-12
Plank                            1 min

The second included MMA specific exercises and requires a partner and/or grappling dummy.  Each technique done for 30s ea, 3 min total, one minute rest between rounds.

Round 1
Shadow Box; Takedowns on dummy; Guard passing drills; Ground & Pound; Arm Bar submission drills; Triangle Submission drills

Round 2
Kick heavybag; sprawls; punch heavy bag; knees in clinch; elbows drill; shrimping drill

Round 3
Kickboxing with pads; tie ups; knees in clinch; sprawls; isometric bridge; ground & pound
 
I liked the focus of this article.   It’s one of the first I’d seen specifically targeted at female MMA.  With the rise of athletes like Ronda Rousey, I think the trend for female participation in the combative arts is likely to increase for the foreseeable future.  



 
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Lessons learned from this recent incident in NASCAR truck racing.  Key event is approx. 50 seconds into this video:

1) The open hand slap is an effective technique.  There are
many that prefer the slap vs. the punch as an offensive technique.   Much less risk to hurting your hand on someone’s cranium.   Anyone can apply it without specialized training or hand conditioning. 
 
2)The preferred angle of attack on the jaw is from back to front.  This makes it most susceptible to break or dislocate.

3) Don’t piss off the girlfriend.  If you do piss off the girlfriend, don’t block with your
head.