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The Ambush Pt 2: Consent Implies Preparation

Consent Implies Preparation.

This is important.

Even if you thought you were prepared and dramatically discovered you weren’t because you got your ass kicked, the fact that you agreed to the fight meant that a part of you thought you were prepared – and that made you a little safer.

A truly violent encounter is an ambush, impacting our nervous system differently from organized combat sports.

The assumption that our physical skills can easily be applied to a truly violent encounter is a dangerous assumption.



Me: Wanna spar?
You: Sure, but I forgot my mouthguard.
Me: No prob, let’s just go to the body.
You: Ok cool.

This short conversation is a metaphor.

It includes the consent and awareness connection. Once that happens, we get ready (preparation). *Hopefully, you have some background so you know what you’re doing – if not, let’s train! Links at the bottom.

When you agree to a fight (any fight, ring, cage, sparring, street), your brain switches gears.

This is what I mean by ‘consent’.

Consent activates ‘awareness’.

We begin looking and thinking, visualizing and planning.

Awareness enhances preparedness.

All good – but beware of the blind spot, which is assuming our consensual training means we are prepared for anything we meet in the street.

While many great assets and attributes can be developed from training, these skills are not the same as responding to sudden violence.

When we agree to fight, consent appears first. Then we assess the situation.

If you’ve been reading my newsletter for some time, you may recall the ACP Model: AWARENESS, CONSENT & PREPAREDNESS.

*Notice the sequence is slightly different.

This is intentional.

For real violence, I’ve switched the order so it begins with ‘awareness’.

The reason is deep and logical.

If I have no awareness, I have no chance.


Sudden violent confrontations don’t take place in safe training spaces like a dojo, ring, cage, or mat room.

Even though there is often risk and danger, these contests are not the same as a surprise violent encounter. And this includes consensual street fights (which are immoral and illegal – my .02).

 – Real confrontations often take place in confined and dangerous places.

 – Real confrontations often erupt while you are unaware and unprepared.

 – Real confrontations impact us at a neurobiological level, and our access to the complex motor skills we thought we’d use aren’t anywhere to be found (until we regain emotional self-control).

So for real violence, awareness must be in the mix early. Make sense?

Effective awareness allows me to switch mental gears and select strategies to avoid or engage. This I call consent (which is philosophically a form of acceptance, meaning you’ve avoided denial). Now you get ready (preparedness).

Chew on this a bit. It’s an effective meditation that will help your mind think and decide faster.

Stay safe,

Coach Blauer


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