How to Stay Safe with the Same Self DefenceTactics as Jason Bourne

In line with the release of the latest Bourne movie “Jason Bourne” ,Universal Studios  asked us to give a  training course to a number of TV, Radio, Newspaper and Web journalists based on Bourne’s tactics in the movies.

Below I have outlined some of the Self Defence concepts we taught them as well as some videos form our training day…

Situational Awareness

The most effectve self dfeence tactic is prevention.

Always understand your environment. Ensure you know the location of access and exit points while also using your peripheral vision and reflective surfaces to monitor your surroundings. Identify potential blindspots and move or rearrange your environment to minimize them.

Engage in “Active Observation” to predict threats. For example if you are walking home and you see a dark doorway, say to yourself that there is a “possibility of someone hiding in doorway” and act to negate that threat by taking an alternative route or ensuring you have adequate space to react.

Different locations have underlying patterns and rhythms. If you notice someone or something “out of sync”, monitor for more unusual or threatening behaviour.

Beware of people “over concentrating” on activities, for example, in a car park, someone is spending a long time at their car, they may be “over concentrating” on the car to evaluate you as a potential victim.

Trust your Instincts

Your instincts are hardwired to keep you safe and they understand the normal patterns of behaviour.

Oftentimes, your instincts will spot something wrong and convey this warning to you through “gut feeling” or just a sense that something is “off’. Your instincts are “powered” by a part of your brain called the amygdala, it receives information from your environment 10 times faster than your Rational Brain. Part of its’ job is to act as your security guard, so make sure to trust it, if your instincts tell you something is wrong, it is in your best interest to act as if this is true until proven otherwise.

Action Tripwire

The final proof of Assault is Violence, so you cannot wait for this final proof.

We must use “Action Tripwires” to prepare ourselves to act in our own defence. “Action Tripwires” are behaviours or situations that we have prepared for and if they occur we take specific actions.

For example, if someone stands over you on a bus and engages in threatening behaviour or if you feel unwell after taking a drink or if someone is behaving in a threatening manner towards you, these are all possible tripwires to which you should have an appropriate response.

CQC (Close Quater Combat) Tactics

In the event of a situation escalating to physical violence, the focus should be on CQC Tactics (close quarter combat) instead of sport orientated sparring or simply brawling. Close quarter tactics enable  you defend yourself, taking into account the reality of a violent confrontation, where size, strength, surprise and environment are factors, as well the possibility of multiple assailants.

Focus on Prime Targets

When striking the target you should strike ”Prime Targets”, these are targets which will have an affect regardless of strength, size or mental state.

“Prime targets” include  eyes, nose, ears and throat. If prime targets are not available then secondary targets can be attacked, these include groin area, knees as well as fingers, shins and loose flesh which can be pinched or ripped at.

Shattered Rhythm

Real close combat rarely looks good, it is panicky, short, sharp and brutal. The sparring based sports model where points and submission are sought are not as relevant.

Shattered rhythm concepts includes defending and striking at the same times, oscillating close quarter weapons, alternating between low line and high line attacks, as well as gaining forward moment and adjusting tactics to range.