A retired Oregon cop on James LaFond’s blog describes the mindset of big-city East Coast police. He explains the need for combatives training. James LaFond’s book “The Violence Project” provides the best roadmap for finding real combatives instruction. I supplement his advice with a recommendation to lift weights since strength is worth about a judo brown belt. Cops who lift weights agree with this advice. If I had to pick one thing to do first, it would be to lift weights. It’s much easier to find a barbell and some plates than find a martial-arts coach with real street violence experience. If you’re a young, unmarried man, muscles put you far ahead of your peers with the ladies. They are biologically hard-wired to find healthy-looking, muscular men attractive since it indicates you can procreate and protect. Former athletes are usually good providers too. As the cop on Johnny Pain’s blog explains, there’s less need to escalate to deadly force the bigger and stronger you are. For civilians, this is even more true since you’re not wearing a blue uniform. Solving problems with the minimum of force is the best, most-legal way to go. Further, what if you’re in a situation where you’re not legally allowed to carry or even own a gun, much less use one? You’re not absolved of your duty to protect yourself and others in this situation. Lift weights; learn combatives. Guns for show, knives for a pro.