Developing fight skills is the crudest pursuit of the martial arts. That is just one area of the entire spectrum of 'Low Tech Combat'. There are many other, much more beneficial attributes a serious martial artist needs to develop.

The following 13 things a martial artist needs to know are areas a serious practitioner needs to look at and fill holes in his/her arsenal.

1. The first priority should be to learn how to defend yourself against an unskilled attacker as that is the most likely threat.This can take some time depending on natural skill and talent and any relevant experience. This is the area most martial artists exist. Many will never leave this area.

2. Understand that there are just two types of attacker. The Alpha Male and the Predator. The Alpha Male wants to fight you. He is typically intoxicated and wants to prove his manhood to all who are watching. His intentions will be obvious, he makes no attempt to hide it. The Predator wants something from you. Often this could be a wallet, laptop, phone or shoes or anything. He will loiter and attempt to blend in. The Predator is an ambush attacker. The attack will be sudden, and the Predator will try to finish it very quickly to get away.

3. Know what to look for. With an understanding of the above, the serious martial artist needs to learn what to look for with each type of attacker. Learn the signs and pre attack indicators for each.

4. Know your environment. Know that the street is the highest risk area for robberies (committed by Predators) and Assaults mostly happen at home and in entertainment areas (by Alpha Males).

5. Know how to diffuse a situation and use verbal tools and body language to prevent approaches going physical. While appearing confident and like someone who will fight back may deter a predator, it will likely antagonise and aggravate an Alpha Male.

6. Understand that an edged weapon (knife) is the most likely weapon you will face on the street. Except in the US where a handgun is the most likely weapon you will face, followed by a knife. You need to learn how to use and defend against these common weapons.

7. Engage in the full spectrum of fight skills. Against the most likely attacker as well as the worst case scenario. Also learn how to fight skilled opponents. Go to an MMA gym and have a few wrestling sessions and sparring matches. Learn from it.

8. Stress testing. Its one thing to spar in a relaxed learning environment but another thing altogether to spar when under hard pressure against one fresh opponent then another fresh opponent and so on. It involves stepping outside your comfort zone or being pushed out of it. This is mental training.

9. Scenario training aims to closely replicate the environment and situation that a likely encounter will happen in. It involves role players and starts at the pre-attack stage of an encounter. What happens during the pre-attack determines what happens in the attack stage, much like the real thing.

10. Advanced first aid is a priority. If you can cause damage, you should be able to treat damage. It is also a good balancing skill to have. Advanced first aid includes treating burns, fractures, bleeding as well as resuscitation methods. You never know, it may just save someone's life one day.

11. Learn about home security. Do you have the numbers of utilities and the local police station up on the wall near the phone or on your mobile? Do you have a peep hole through your front door? What will you do if someone claims to be from the electricity department and wants to talk to about some matter relating to the electrical supply and wants to come inside? Where is your home most vulnerable to forced entry? Do you know where that is and what have you done to strengthen it? Consider home security issues carefully. Your home is your last stand.

12. Safe overseas travel. The best thing to do before going overseas is to go to your federal government website (like the CIA World Fact Book, British Foreign and Commonwealth Office and Smart Traveller). They are treasure troves of information. Simple things like not wearing your expensive watch and other accessories, not flashing a lot of cash around at shops and toning down the clothing are all universal tactics to limit the attention of a countries underbelly.

13. Your Health should be looked after. Why go to all the trouble to learn how to defend yourself for years and years, in order to live a long and drama free life, when you let your health deteriorate and die at the age of 45 from a heart attack? Pointless.

This list of 13 things is not exhaustive. If you have only been doing one or two of these things, hopefully this article will open your mind up to different areas to learn and fill your chinks in your armour.

Author's Bio: 

This is just one example of the type of article that can be found at . Low Tech Combat is a Web 2.0 Magazine which features real news stories and analysis of real attacks, posts and commentary of ALL different areas of the full spectrum of self defence and martial arts along with numerous videos and images and a whole lot more!

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Thanks for reading.

Adam @ Low Tech Combat