You are here:

Self Defense/womens self defense


Hello and thank you in advance for answering my question. I wanted to get an opinion   about teaching women self defense if I'm not a black belt?I am a good teacher and pretty confident but I am only a greenbelt. my goal was not to teach the entire Karate art from beginning to end but merely focus on the defense technique simplified. In an easier format. I am suprised at how many women dont know any real forms of self defense. But traditional Martial Arts takes a lot of time and money shunning people away from it. I think I could do a good job at it but wanted another persons opinion Most teachers are Black belts but as I mentioned I would not be teaching Karate in it's pure form but defense techniques i have learned and trained in more simplified. Any feedback is appreciated.thank you.

Thanks for the question. As I read your entry, I actually hear several questions in there. The main one's being:
1) Is green belt enough rank to teach?
2) What info should be taught?
3) Am "I" good enough to teach a program?

First, let me address the belt ranking system. I personally do not give much weight to belts, I have experienced dozens of "black belts" who shouldn't be teaching nor can they fight their way away from a wet napkin. Often, the belt system is designed for progress of children, or is utilized as a monetary tool to keep students or generate cash flow for testing, and in some instances is simply bought by "highest bidder", meaning basically sold to someone who is willing to pay. Furthermore, many traditional styles base their belts on the memorization of forms, and passing tests like breaking boards...neither of which have any application in real life combat.

Secondly, although all training is good, Karate as it stands in the general market today doesn't truly add up to much. Most folks view it as something to put their youngsters inso they can develop discipline, character, etc.  

Why am I telling you this? Because I want you to understand one main thing....self defense is NOT martial arts. Self Defense is doing the bare minimum to escape the threat/situation. Martial Arts is about personal development, and has a "compete" mindset, with a punitive end such as points, or knockout, or submission, all regulated by judges and referees. Combat has the mindset of life or death. (Check out my podcasts at to hear more) So having a belt, or training in xyz martial art really has nothing to do with teaching or in specific, teaching female self defense. However, having an education in the martial arts CAN help you teach a more functional program.

As for being green belt, well, in the realm of traditional martial arts it is still considered a lower ranked belt. So typically it is not advised to be teaching at that level. However, belts do NOT represent your ability overall, or your life experiences. So the color of cloth designed to keep your hakama/gi closed is the least influencing factor, unless you are teaching a specific system or style.

Have you thought of these other questions....
1) What do YOU want for your client
2) What do THEY want for themselves and from YOU
3) Will this be an ongoing class or a seminar format
4) Can you get them to "do" what you're asking them to "do" in the time frame you set
5) Are you teaching them a real life usable skill, or simply some techniques that they probably can't do 1 year, 2 years, 5 years down the road
6) Is the material you want to teach "proven" to work, or are you using theory
7) Do YOU believe in it
8) Why should they learn from YOU versus the next person? And have YOU used this information
9) Do you understand the needs of your client
10) DO you have experience in meeting those demands

You see, there is much more to teaching women's self defense than just a belt, or style. When I designed "Fighting Chance" my women's self defense program, I didn't just take a few things that I thought would work, or a few things that would work for ME... I spent years working with domestic violence victims, sexual assault victims, women of different backgrounds, sizes, ages, and experiences. Then I took everything I knew and made a package specific for them. That includes teaching methods, drills, skills, techniques, and most importantly...emotional stresses. Women "FEEL". Very different than men. So it is your responsibility to handle that.

You also need to account for what violence for women is like. It is NOT a bar fight with punches and kicks like men. Men will fight and most often everyone goes home with bruised egos and black eyes. Women get raped, assaulted, kidnapped, murdered, torchered. Totally different! So what you are teaching them...BETTER DEAL WITH THAT VIOLENCE! It has to be appropriate for them! They will demand it from you...and they trust you to that what you're teaching them will work against a real attacker. That becomes YOUR responsibility if they get assaulted and end up in a worse situation just because they tried doing a front snap kick that you taught them ad ended up face down with an aggressor on their back with a knife to her throat.

Teaching Women's Self Defense for some people is a business service, they bring women in to their dojo, then teach them poor information with a false sense of security, then sell tem on some other program. It is irresponsible of them! If you are going to teach anyone anything, you'd better address their needs.

All this being said, I encourage you to follow your passion. It is of my opinion that you aren't quite ready for it yet, but I can only go off what I see/hear from your original post. Please do not take this response as me slamming your art, or belt, or judging you. It is my goal that you DO go teach, but to do so with a solid understanding, research, and capability.

I wish you the best of luck. And please let me know how your progress goes.


Sifu Nik  

Self Defense

All Answers

Answers by Expert:

Ask Experts


Nik Farooqui


Although I can offer expertise in several areas of "self defense," the following are some frequent questions I often answer. These are just a few examples, and my experience takes me much further than these questions. 1) What exactly is Jeet Kune Do and how does it apply to today's self defense? 2) What is women's role in martial arts/self defense and why should they learn? 3) What kind of things can I do to AVOID combative situations? 4) Is there a particular art or style that I should know? 5) What kind of weapons are involved in self defense tactics? 6) What precautionary measures can I take at home to prevent intrusion? 7) How do I know what techniques I should be using? 8) How will learning self defense change my life beyond just physical gain? 9) How has Jeet Kune Do evolved and why? 10) I've never been in a fight, so why should I train now?


1) Owner/Chief Instructor of Xtreme Training Academy, and S2 Strategic Defense. 2) Fully Certified Jeet Kune Do/Filipino Martial Arts Instructor under Sifu Paul Vunak, Sifu Thomas Cruse, Sifu Harrinder Singh, Sifu Roy Harris and more. 3) Fully Certified Instructor in Edged Weapons tactics 4) 20 years total martial arts experience including Muay Thai, Boxing, Jiu Jitsu, Kali, FMA, Southern Praying Mantis Kung Fu, White Crane Kung Fu, and more! 5) Teaching elite military/law enforcement groups since 2004. 6) Teaching civilian classes since 2000. 7) Teachng domestic violence victim programs since 2002. 8) Over 100 seminars taught covering various subjects in 16 states, and 3 countries. 9) First JKD instructor to bring a JKD seminar in Puerto Rico 10) Featured multiple times in SWAT Magazine, Black Belt Magazine, and others 11) Member and Instructor at International Law Enforcement Educators and Trainers Assoc 12) Featured Speaker at events such as Int'l Chief of Police Conference, Chicagoland Gun Show, and more 13) Recipient of Instructor of the Year, LEO Instructor of the Year, and Achievements in Martial Arts awards. 14) Program and Business coach to nearly 12 martial arts academies/academy owners.

Author of upcoming book "The JKD Chronicals"

Bachelors Degree in Accounting 3 year technical degree in Construction Management

Past/Present Clients
Ballistic Fighting Methods has nearly civilian 100 students including business owners, housewives, sales personnel, computer professionals, college students, police officers, lawyers, ex-military personnel, and more. I would be happy to put AllExperts in touch with several students upon request.

©2017 All rights reserved.