Essential Self-Defense Techniques - SCARS® Training
SCARS Training Center | Self-Defense & Tactics

5 Tactical Fighting Techniques Every Self-Defense Enthusiast Should Know

Introduction to Tactical Fighting Techniques – The SCARS® way, contrasting typical self-defense theories vs the truth that will save your life!

Tactical fighting techniques are about smart, effective moves that can help you not only defend yourself, but actually surive in sticky situations. It's not just about throwing punches; it's about knowing when to strike, how to move, and being aware of your surroundings. We're diving into a world where staying safe isn't a game—it's essential. Whether you're walking home at night, find yourself in a surprise confrontation, or worse yet a mugging, these skills can be your ally. This is the whole reason SCARS® began developing training programs specifically for the public. Our programs directly address the training you need to immediately handle violent close tactical fighting.

SCARS is brutal efficiency and simple fluid motions, these methods don't rely on sheer strength, or conditioning. They're about using your body, in a simple manner that can handle various attacks. Rather than having to learn hundreds or even thousands of different moves, in case the attacker does something different. So, get ready to explore the tactics that might just save your hide one day.

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The Importance of Learning Our Version of Self Defense, SCARS® Combat Fighting.

Generally, knowing how to defend yourself is more than just knowing a few fancy moves—it's about safety, confidence, and preparedness. Self-defense is essential because it empowers you to protect yourself and potentially others from harm. Attacks can happen when you least expect them, and being prepared can make the difference.

This is all very true, however, we have found that in a true life or death action you must have the ability to eliminate the fear that can overcome you. Knowing you can handle tough situations, comes from both physical and mental training. Both will sharpen your awareness and give you the physical tools to not just escape danger, rather eliminate it all together. Saving your life is a right; it's about being smart, not tough. So, training in real SCARS based self-defense is investing in your peace of mind.

Technique 1: The Power of Proper Stance and Movement

Mastering your stance and movement is crucial in any fight situation. However, at SCARS we know in a real-life attack or mugging you can get killed in the matter of time it takes you to get into a stance to be ready to fight back. We have discovered that you can use simple body dynamics as your foundation; this keeps you mentally balanced and ready to “eliminate the threat” rather than "defend" in a mili-second. Having to get into a "get ready" stance, is a defensive concept, that in our seminars we demonstrate how that concept can get you killed.

Once you begin to learn SCARS, you realize you are always ready.  For instance, sitting eating a sandwich, walking and talking on your phone, in other words, "reality" is what we prepare you to handle, you can be ready without a "comfort zone". Once you begin to "attack the attacker", you immediately begin to use our version of stances built into every one of our movements. These are not new stances, however, we have applied science to discover which of all the stances in the world produce the most amount of power. So, if you are 100 pounds you can hit with 300 pounds of force, which can instantly destroy a criminal, if struck to the eye, trachea, or groin. There's over 170 targets on the body that can maim, cripple or kill in our SCARS target chart

Some basics to know for being able to attack, when standing, never stand with your legs locked out, always keep the majority of your body weight off to one side/leg, and switch sides to keep from getting fatigue. That way, if you get shoved/grabbed from either side you won’t go flying, you will actually end up rotating and gaining your footing/balance much quicker. 

When you strike, you want your legs roughly your inseam length apart, otherwise you are only hitting with the weight of your arms vs the weight of your entire body using a wider stance. Most tell you to stay on your toes to keep agile, but unfortunately that is useless unless you are fighting in a ring with rules and a specific style. You can be extremely agile with a wider stance and you can both move and strike a greater distance than someone using a boxing type stance.

Technique 2: Mastering Strikes – Punches and Kicks

Mastering striking with punches and kicks can get you out of a tight spot. When it comes to general self-defense, the goal isn't a fancy follow-through, it's about effectiveness and rapid response. You want to aim for the attacker's vital spots—think eyes, nose, throat, groin and knees.

For punches, step in and use the full stance we mentioned.  It’s much harder for an attacker to hit you when you are very close or even at his/her/other side. Do not ever stay in a boxing stance with your head past your knees, this means you are falling forward to throw a punch, not driving. That's the reason why grappling is so successful, because no one can punch full force without falling on their face, due to their head being past their knees.  

Use a strong base and rotate your body as you strike. Keep those wrists straight to avoid injury, we say, “squeeze your fists white knuckle tight”. 

When kicking you need to stay grounded and balanced. You're not going for high, movie-style kicks. Aim low, target the knees or groin. Keep your hands/arms in your center, ready to punch. You don’t want your arms out where another attacker can grab one, we always assume you are fighting more than one person.

Remember, proper form is crucial to prevent self-injury and maximize impact. If you can, get access to our video training and enhance your skills at home. We show you how to make strikes seemingly lighting fast, precise, and powerful. Train smart, and those punches and kicks could very well be your saving grace.

Technique 3: Defense Moves – Blocks and Parries = Death

This is where SCARS is based in reality and focused on fighting for your life, you have no time to learn how to take hits and blows. You have no time to block in a fight  We applied science, tested human physicality, and discovered that when you are acting defensive you lose 35% of your power. So, by waiting an putting up your hands, you become weaker while the person striking you becomes stronger.  Therefore, we discovered that if you are in a state of “striking” four things occur, you gain strength, you stop fearing what the attacker is going to do, you stop getting hurt, and lastly you take control of the situation and become the cause rather than the effect. We call this the SCARS “cause and effect rule”. You may always move second, however, you are the first to strike the attack. You become the cause and make the attacker become the effected. This changes everything.  

Obviously, you don’t keep your arms down and wait. You move into the attacker (whether that's forward, back, or sideways) keeping your arms coming up to both strike and protect at the same time. This again, is not a chess game to anticipate your opponent's moves and counter. If you do so, on the street, your one move to strike and survive, instead you attempt to block, and do nothing to harm your attacker, might very well been your last move.  Does that make sense? This is real life training, not your typical self-defense nonsense where everyone can stay in their “comfort zone” and “pretend” they have time to exchange blows or fight for 30 minutes like John Wick.

Technique 4: Close-Quarters Combat – Grappling and Throws “The Huge Misconception”

Because most fighting systems teach you to strike and kick incorrectly, in order to keep distance, they believe that when your opponent gets too close, punching or kicking might not be an option. This couldn’t be further from the truth, with SCARS you can learn to strike while stepping past your attacker, thus allowing your blow to become invisible. However, standard defense believes this is where grappling and throws come into play.

Throwing and grappling is also an option in SCARS (done correctly) however, being tied up on the ground is the worst thing you can EVER do in public! Grappling the traditional way is NOT crucial in close-quarters combat, because there is no time for countering counters. SCARS teaches you how to grab and instantly break a joint, but there is no time to grab and hold an attacker and get him into a position.  Even a choke-out takes too long. You can strike or elbow targets to get an instant effect, rather than taking 6-7 seconds or more and completely losing your situational awareness.

Our method of throws and grappling are instant and immediately cause damage. Traditional grappling focuses on getting a hold of your attacker and controlling their movements. This done by grabbing their clothing, their body, or using a technique like a clinch, where you wrap your arms around them. There is absolutely no time to do anything mentioned unless you are in a sporting ring.  

Throwing your opponent is about using their weight against them and it is much quicker, than grappling. With a proper SCARS throw, you can knock out the attacker, break his neck, back, or just knock the wind out of them. Our throws are made to actually work for real, against a person that knows how to fight and isn’t just going to let you throw them. Remember, the goal is to survive, reality is that attacker is going to do everything they can to stop you so, IT MUST WORK INSTANTLY!

Technique 5: Situational Awareness and Escape Strategies

One thing that’s an absolute is being aware of what’s going on around you, we have a whole write-up on this here. Being switched on to your surroundings can mean the difference between getting home safe and not. We're talking about situational awareness — knowing what's going on around you so you can avoid dicey situations before they escalate. Now, escape strategies don't sound as flashy as a roundhouse kick, but they're gold when you're cornered. It's all about finding exits, keeping an eye out for obstacles, and having a plan to bolt if things get hairy. Think about it, avoiding trouble is always better than having to fight for your life. Plus, getting away safely is the real win in any self-defense scenario. So remember, review our simple personal threat assessment and situational awareness training.

Integrating Tactical Fighting Techniques into Your Routine

To get the most out of your SCARS “self-defense” training, it's key to blend tactical fighting techniques into your routine, which is simply one in the same thing to us. This isn't just about learning moves; it's about making them second nature. Start by training regularly, because consistency is your ally. Use our video on “how to train alone”, and/or better yet get a partner of any size to practice with.  You don’t need a huge guy to practice with, you just need to actually move, period.

Contrary to popular belief, sparring (going at it like a real fight) is a fallacy, going hard does nothing to prepare you for a real fight, unless you are a sport fighter, it's great for conditioning in sport fighting. Until you have learned your movements, fighting hard and fast only trains you to make bad decisions and slows down your learning process. Our scientific studies into your physiology and how you use your five senses to create an action, disproves sparring as a benefit to surviving a real attack.  Note: We do use force, resistance, and train hard after we coordinate to execute.

SCARS training isn’t a singular style. SCARS is a complete training system covering every aspect of fighting, mental training and proper physical fitness. SCARS equips you with a whole arsenal of moves. Practicality over style, always. That’s how you stay ready, and that's how you turn tactical techniques from mere moves into instinctive parts of your survival “self-defense” toolkit.

Training Tips for Self-Defense Enthusiasts

With SCARS, you're training for more than typical self-defense, you’re training for your life, and saving your loved ones that depend on you. We want you to keep it simple and effective. Truthfully anyone can survive using our principles, however it helps to stay fit. You don’t need endurance, strength, and agility to outmaneuver an opponent.  You just need to know our targeting and have the ability to move the way we show you in the videos or in our seminars. Always stay aware of your surroundings too. Situational awareness can help you avoid trouble before it starts. Lastly, learn to eliminate your fear rather than control your fear and adrenaline through our SCARS Offensive Mindset® training. High-stress situations can overwhelm; mastering your fight-or-flight response is crucial. Train hard, but smart. Utilize your time and energy on what gives you the best shot at surviving.

Recap of Key Tactical Fighting Techniques to Practice

Remember, this isn’t about winning a fight or about strength, it's about science. The tactical fighting techniques below are essential in your self-defense toolkit. Always start with situational awareness; knowing your surroundings can prevent a conflict before it even starts. Strike first, even if you move second, and hit where it hurts and/or instantly shuts the attacker down. 

Target their weak points like the eyes, nose, or throat. Keep it simple if need be with straight punches and palm-strikes; fancy moves don't win real fights. Practicing your SCARS power and balance training can't be stressed enough. And finally, remember the element of surprise; attackers don't expect you to attack back effectively, so use that to your advantage. Train using these real survival techniques regularly to become the cause in the SCARS "cause and effect rule". Stay safe out there.

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