Fighting in Confined Spaces

Fighting in Confined Spaces

As Murphy's law implies, you will never be in an ideal environment when in a physical altercation on the street. There will not be gloves, wraps, a gi, a cushioned mat, and a referee. More than likely that environment will be confined, like a pub, nightclub, or in or around a vehicle. Hence, you will need to adapt your hand-to-hand techniques to those confined spaces. A person needs to know which hand strikes, leg strikes, and how to use the environment to your advantage, in these situations.

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Know Your Weapons

Know Your Weapons

Often during my Krav Maga classes I not only teach my students different self-defense techniques, but I also stress the different ranges at which certain techniques should be taken advantage of. What are the situations when you are better off engaging in hand-to-hand or knife combat? When should you use a gun or a stick to defend yourself? In order to truly be able to protect yourself, you must understand the advantages and dangers of each weapon and how the distance from your opponent affects each weapons efficacy.

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Let Your Children Grow and Explore by Teaching them Self-Defense

I am often approached by parents that are very concerned about their child's safety and want them to learn self-defense. What they don't realize is that they will receive so much more from their training: self-confidence, independence, social skills, and the ability to function under stressful conditions. 

One of the first adaptations children have from their Krav Maga training is self-confidence. As they are constantly challenged in their training both physically and mentally, being able to do things they could have never imagined. That self-confidence is sometimes more important then the individual techniques they may learn. It creates a victor mentality (instead of victim). This mentality will follow them through everything they do in life, whether it is presenting in front of their class, defending against a bully or applying for a job when they before adults.

The independence that the child builds as a result of their training lets you as a parent have that peace of mind because you know that your child has the tools to deal with various situations they may confront.  This skill will give the child the ability to navigate the world around them, giving you the peace of mind to let them be free and make their own choices. 

Life can be a very stressful thing, especially during the adolescent years. Krav Maga helps the child put things into prospective as they are constantly put into very stressful conditions in their training (both physically and mentally). In fact, the majority of the training is to teach the child to persevere under stress through different drills and games. That ability was instilled in me during my service in the IDF, it helped get through situations that most people will not face in a lifetime. 

As classes are typically taught in a group format the child must learn to get along with others. Of course this transfers to other aspects in life; school, other sports, and general social abilities. In-fact, as an instructors I have seen children go from being very introverted to being very extroverted and participating easily in any activity I may put them through.

Lastly, the above skills and abilities allows for conversation. The child knows that their opinion is respected and valued and in return they will feel empowered. For the parent, it will prevent the child from hiding anything they feel they should not speak up about in order to maintain that mutual respect. 

For more reading on the subject, refer to this great NPR article on how more schools are utilizing self-defense training. 

Thank you for reading, 

Ron Grobman


Tactical Fitness Austin

Streetwise: How do you Defend Yourself Against Multiple Assailants?

One of the biggest dangers in urban environments is an attack from multiple assailants.  It is not just something you see in video games and on the news. It is a serious threat that comes in many forms to lurk around dark corners as well and on well-lit streets. Therefore, anyone who is serious about their personal safety and that of their loved ones should be trained to defend themselves.

While having access to a firearm and being trained to use it is certainly an advantage should you encounter a violent situation, there are times when you might be caught without one. Should that be the case, knowing how to react when unarmed is essential to your safety.

How To Defend Yourself Against Multiple Attackers


The first thing you need to do in order to put yourself at an advantage during an attack is maintain a constant awareness of your surroundings. Always be on the lookout for unusual activity or sudden increases in people, and pay attention to your intuition. It is always right.

Awareness is the greatest self-defense tool that you possess. The priority in any violent situation is to avoid and escape. Being aware of your surroundings allows you to be pre-emptive and spot most confrontations before they start.


Take a deep breath and remember your training. If you find yourself caught and need to defend yourself, the first thing you need to do is assess the situation and develop a strategy.

In situations of intense stress, your behavior is far more likely to be based on past experience and training, so rely on it.

Training teaches you control, and controlling your environment will allow you to set up a strategy for the best possible advantage in a fight. In order to do that though, you need to ask yourself a few questions:

1.     Is there an escape route?

2.     Is there somewhere nearby with more light?

3.     Are there any natural barriers like cars, walls, etc?

4.     Are there any weapons of opportunity available like bricks, bottles, or tables?

Identify the Leader

Who is the strongest or most vocal in the group? This person is your main threat and should be neutralized first. To effectively take the leader out of the game, create a visible injury. Doing this can deter the other attackers in the group and give you time to formulate your next move. Plus, often removing the leader from the equation can eliminate a group’s willingness to fight.


When you are faced with a violent situation where you need to defend yourself, rules of etiquette are thrown out the window. Instead do what you need to do to take your attacker out.

What are some good methods to start?

1.     Target the “Four N’s.”

2.     Make your first strike very visible to the entire group.

3.     Use what you have available as a weapon.

When defending yourself, the objective is to be effective; don’t worry about looking good. Instead, use the resources you have available and remember your self-defense training. Your goal is to immobilize your attackers and get yourself to safety. Knowing how to protect yourself is key to surviving so learning self-defense now could put you at the best advantage in the worst situation.

Jessi Devenyns

Tactical Fitness Austin Marketing