Al Ridenhour.
Article Type: Interview
Subject: Police (Training)
Pub Date: 03/22/2012
Publication: Name: The Forensic Examiner Publisher: American College of Forensic Examiners Audience: Professional Format: Magazine/Journal Subject: Health; Law; Science and technology Copyright: COPYRIGHT 2012 American College of Forensic Examiners ISSN: 1084-5569
Issue: Date: Spring, 2012 Source Volume: 21 Source Issue: 1
Topic: Event Code: 280 Personnel administration
Persons: Named Person: Perkins, John
Accession Number: 280966767


Guided Chaos is the essence of what people expect to get, but often don't receive when they study a martial art. It is a no-nonsense, reality based, non-sportive combat martial art created in 1978 by former Yonkers Police Officer and crime scene expert John Perkins. It is unique m that the focus is on principles of body movement dynamics that allow you to adapt and improvise to the ever-changing and chaotic nature of real life and death combat instead of using patterned, often unrealistic, techniques for saving your life.

From an early age John Perkins was trained by his father and uncles in the fundamentals of what was known as World War II close quarters combat methodology. This training established the foundation of what would become a life-long odyssey to create the most effective self-defense system for surviving violence as t actually exists--not the way we'd like it m be or as it's depicted in movies. Through the years, John would have the privilege to study under the likes of Hapkido Master Ik Jo Kang and Tai Chi Master Waysun Liao (author of "Tai Chi Classics") along with others,

As a young police officer in the early 1970s, John's beat included some of the worst neighborhoods in the New York metropolitan area where he routinely worked backup units responding to the most violent crimes "in progress." He eventually was involved in over 700 arrests, at least 100 of which were brutally violent arrest scenarios where people routinely ended up in the hospital or morgue. Having grown up in the area. I can attest to the nightly news broadcasts and police blotters of death and mayhem. For example, while the "Son of Sam" killer was garnering all of the headlines in the summer of 1977 there were neighborhoods in New York City that on a weekly basis averaged nearly the same number of total homicide victims Berkowitz had.

Later Under Dr. Peter Pizzola (former director of the NYPD Crime Lab--now retired). Perkins went on to work in the Yonkers, New York Crime Lab. There he became an expert m blood-spatter pattern analysis and the dynamics of violence. Working both in the crime lab and as a police officer reinforced his fighting experience, providing him the perfect crucible for creating Guided Chaos. Despite training in nearly a dozen martial art systems, he clearly understood that fights to the death were a far cry from the contrived notions taught by traditional martial arts. It was this understanding that became the impetus for breaking away from all classical and modern systems because of what he perceived as critical flaws in their perceptions of violence, and thus their survival solutions and training methods.



The insights that John gained from his work in bloodstain and spatter interpretation and other crime scene investigative experience reinforced his knowledge regarding how real life and death altercations went down. It didn't take long for hint to realize that fights to the death did not happen the way people thought. I can recall numerous conversations with Perkins as we compared notes based on things I had seen overseas with his experiences on the streets. Our early assumptions about violence were quickly shot down once exposed to reality.

For example, the notion that all people go down after being shot once with a hand gun or that knife-fights are these cool-looking, fluid encounters like you might see in a Steven Segal movie were summarily disposed of. That you can easily disable, flip, or knock out an enraged attacker with one punch to the face even if they're high on some sort of drug is just utter nonsense. However, striking people across the throat or neck or just behind the ear at the base of the skull in most cases takes the wind our of their sails, usually putting them down for the count. Of course this is assuming you are able to get those strikes off effectively, but the same ix true for using a handgun. Sure you may be a good shot on the known distance pistol range--but can you gun fight?

It's sort of like the old military maxim that "no battle plan survives initial contact with the enemy." The same is true When trying to apply many popularly taught martial arts in the real world. This is an important point because all too often many martial arts techniques are developed in a vacuum free from the unpredictability of a real altercation. The techniques are taught as if on some level cooperation can be expected from an attacker. Unfortunately in a real fight, whether in war or on the streets, the bad guy gets a vote and is probably not in sync with your plan. If you're hoping that your techniques will work as they do in the dojo, I have bad news. Hope is not a plan. It is this understanding where Perkins' knowledge of scientifically verifiable crime scene violence, along with his street fighting experience, qualifies his self-defense system above all others I know of.


As a corollary to this I want to point out that just because someone has been exposed to violence does not mean that they understand the dynamic nature of violence. Context is also important when analyzing such things. While experience is usually the best teacher, if one does not understand the phenomena in proper context they can derive the "wrong understanding as to how a violent act took place, as well as potential counters to such things. I also want to point out there is a school of thought out there that, while it at least acknowledges that you must damage your attacker because they understand some of the science as to how to damage the human body (i.e., scientific methods of fighting or target focused strikes), it erroneously asserts that all you need to do is strike the vulnerable areas and people just magically fall down. They are assuming in many instances that the bad guys are going to stand in front of you in order to set up your perfect throat chop. Okay, how do you do this when they are moving? This is a foolish assumption to make.


I love telling this story because it really sums up the essence of what generally happens to people who consider themselves skilled fighters when they first experience Guided Chaos. It also reassures them that if they seek a truly complete system and martial art for realistic fighting they have come to the right place. My first brush with the martial arts came when I was in college. I always had a desire to learn a martial art, having wrestled in high school and done some boxing, so you can almost say that I was naturally drawn to the martial arts.

Although I had instructed Marines in unarmed combat for my unit, and had the privilege to continue my studies when time permitted while stationed on Okinawa as well as see other arts while deployed to the Far East, I always had a sense that something was missing within my previous art. Granted, there was no question in my mind that the instructors were skilled at what they did, but there always seemed a logical disconnect between many of the techniques they taught and their practical application. During my time m the Marine Corps, every time I was home visiting my Dad on military leave I would get together with a good friend of mine. Dennis Capalbo, who was also a martial arts instructor holding black belts m a number of arts.

Dennis was an excellent instructor, but moreover he was a hard-nosed fighter who always sought out the knowledge of other fighting arts and was proficient in more arts than I can recount here. During the last few years while I was on active duty, Dennis would always tell me about this new system" he had found and how skilled the practitioners were. He would make comments such as, "Al you cannot believe how well these people can fight, not just the instructors but even the students..." Granted. anyone who has been in the martial arts long enough has heard these fantastic tales of legendary instructors whose abilities seem to defy logic. If it came from anyone else besides Dennis, I probably would have ignored them and went on about my business. But after all of the glowing reports from Dennis, I told him that once I left active duty I would check it out with him at the first opportunity.

Herds where my story seems to slip into the realm of your classic "skeptic meets mysterious master, gets beat up and becomes a oval student..." A few months after getting off active duty and settling down, I ran into Dennis at our local gym with another friend of mine. After hearing he was on Iris way to Perkins class we decided to tag along and see what all the fuss was about. When I first arrived it was not what I expected. Many of the people were generally older than what you see in a traditional martial arts school, and there was a very informal, casual, almost jovial atmosphere.

While meeting with John Perkins, he gave a general overview of the art and then proceeded to give a demonstration. I'll cut to the chase here: be basically let me try "anything" that I wanted on him, and he quickly showed me "what's what!" None of my powerful athletic moves worked. Granted, I looked good doing them, but that was about it. At one point I could swear I saw him crack a wry smile right before blasting me in the chest. Once he allowed me to catch my breath, he then demonstrated the "Drop Punch" on me. I don't know which was more humiliating: being so our of breath in such a short time, or getting the breath knocked out of me from being hit literally from no distance or with what John called the "No Inch Punch."

What I didn't expect was what happened next. He let me work with some of the female students. For the sake of my dignity, let's just say that the harder I tried to hit them. the more elusive they became which only fueled my anger, causing their strikes with their little hands and pointy shoes to hurt even more. Okay, now people will say in a "real" fight I could probably take them (maybe). However, there was no question m my mind that even ill was victorious they would have gotten a piece of me that I wasn't getting back (especially some body parts I wont mention).

When people half my size and physical ability from John Perkins' school could strike me at will with "penetrating force," yet remain elusive to lily own strikes, I knew I had found the right self-defense system. I knew there had to be something to it because what happened shouldn't have. Even though I'd traveled extensively with the U.S. Marines and trained with a variety of U.S. military and Asian martial arts instructors, my first thought was "if this works for Perkins' students, it'll work for me." I resolved then and there to learn and, if possible, master this art.



The mindset we try to instill in the Guided Chaos practitioner is one of "perfect moral clarity" with regard to the use of deadly force. We want people to Understand that they have a basic right to Self-defense and their life is worth something; no one has the right to take them away from their family and loved ones. You see the only thing we truly own are our lives. It is not a house, a car, or what is in your bank account, but your life and that of your family and friends etc ... You take that away from a person, and you take away all that they have. Beyond that, everything else pales in comparison and quickly shrinks to insignificance.

The first step in this process is to dispose of any preconceptions about being politically correct with the enemy/attacker, or the notion of training in a martial art, yet not being willing to use it when required based on some bizarre philosophy of "Budo" or some other self-limiting, convoluted way of thinking. People need to be prepared to utterly destroy the attacker, because anything less than possessing the "moral will" and mindset to take them out may get them killed.

This includes sportive, grappling, classical or any other restrictive, stylized method of self-defense which in fairness may work if they're not trying to kill you. Sportive techniques and skills arc fine for what they are designed to do, and that is to be used in a sportive venue where there are rules. However, on the street there are any of a number of variables and unpleasant choices, such as going to the ground on asphalt or cement or "who knows what" else on the ground. This adds an additional dimension of lethality that enters the equation and negates a lot of cool-looking, flashy moves. Also, if weapons are introduced, they quickly multiply the potential danger by several orders of magnitude.

In Guided Chaos, we have an analogy we like to use called the "Louisville Slugger" mentality. Think of it like this; if you were going to get into a fight and you could only choose from one of two weapons, a Wiffle Ball bat or a Louisville Slugger, which would you choose? Of course you would choose the baseball bat because you intuitively know regardless of skill level if you have to kill you can go for the "homerun," or you can "bunt" with it if you only want to injure. However, I don't care how proficient you get with that Wiffle Ball bat unless you get lucky and poke them ill the eye you're in serious trouble. If you posses some real "martial skill." you can always deescalate your self-defense, but you cant ramp it up if you've never developed it in the first place.

Second, we all need to accept the simple fact that all violence is chaos and any attempt to impose a stylized, patterned, or sportive solution against it will meet with disaster. For most people conditioned by television or trained in a technique-based martial art, this unorthodoxy is a mind-blower, because people have a near-religious view regarding their particular martial art or previous training. So with that, the next step is to help them develop their awareness in the proper context or mental framework to help focus their mind on what is real_ but not in a manner that makes them paranoid.

I want to emphasize that last point because I have observed over the years that there are a number of self-defense training programs that end up creating a lot of paranoid people rather than training people m have a healthy focus on a given threat. In the military we have a saving: "If you try to be strong everywhere, you are strong nowhere." The same is true for self-defense awareness: if everything is a threat then nothing is a threat.

In doing so they are able to develop a set of simple mental triggers or what I call "invisible trip wires." In other words, as long as a person that they're sizing up doesn't cross a certain threshold then there are no issues. However, if they do cross the Rubicon then you will unleash hell, holding nothing back.

For example, suppose you spot someone while walking toward them on the street and for some reason they give you a bad vibe. For whatever reason, you are both in each other's path and finding another route is not an option. The skill that we teach is to maintain your "Sphere of Influence" and give them space as you pass, but keep an eye on them in your peripheral vision. This forces them to suddenly have to turn toward you if they are going to attack, thus giving away their intention while providing you enough space/time to react.

This is just a small example of a multitude of possibilities_ but the point is without the proper understanding of awareness, you're already in trouble. The reality is that even when you do everything "right" you still may have to fight because the bad guys still get a vote in a confrontation. It's sort of like football, you can be the best college football team m the country, but you know the other team from time-to-time, is still going to make their plays. It is what you do about it that counts.

One thing I do want to point out is that we try to stay away from complex "escalation of force" models or "escalation ladders" as they are commonly referred to because they are too complex even for trained professionals n the short time frame you may have to decide and act. We try to keep it simple so that you can focus your attention outward rather than contemplate some multi-step process when you should be looking at your surroundings.

While man v of our students are people involved in law enforcement corrections or have prior military experience, the majority do not. So for many people the notion of using force that can seriously injure or possibly cause death can be a little disconcerting. I've run into a number of people over the years when inquiring about the art, wanting to learn how to fight but nor injure people. They leave a little disappointed to find out that such skill only exists on TV. Even the act of applying controlling techniques often involves causing pain m the person you're controlling, and there is no guarantee that you will not permanently injure them while applying such techniques.

This brings me to another concept we commonly refer to amongst our students that we define and explain in greater detail in the second addition of our book Attack Proof, which is "Ruthless Intent." Ruthless Intent is but an extension of your will, and is more mental than physical. Providing that you have trained your body in the principles of Guided Chaos, it is totally achievable for the average person. This is not to say that if you solely practice the principles you will be able to levitate a 300lb prison-trained monster, but that you'll have a chance of surviving a brutal confrontation with one. In a real fight when your life is on the line, you must be able to strike to penetrate people with the moral and emotional will to cut through them. Your intention must be to destroy them, and you must set it in your mind beforehand that no matter what you intend to take them out.


First, Guided Chaos has no forms or set and sanctified techniques, no prearranged specific responses to a given number of specific attacks, no learn-by-the-numbers Choreography to clog the mind and the reflexes with unnecessary strategic calculations. I think this quote from President Lincoln pretty much sums up the philosophical difference:

"Character is like a tree and reputation like a shadow. The shadow is what we think of it; the tree is the real thing."--Abraham Lincoln

No greater words could have been spoken when describing what the vast majority of people think about when discussing the martial arts. For many people, even in this day and age of instant media and 24 hour news cycles where the most horrific crimes can be beamed into our computers and TVs on a daily basis, there are still people who cannot or better yet refuse to see the difference between real martial arts training and nonsense. As with the famous quote above from Abraham Lincoln you need to think of it like this: Guided Chaos is like "the tree," firmly rooted in principles based on reality and based on the laws of physics and human physiology. You can touch it and more importantly "feel it," As you nurture the tree (i.e.. you) with proper training the tree not only gets bigger, but stronger, the roots firmer-deeper, the branches more expansive, more intricate and resilient.

Whereas most martial arts systems, when it comes to training for real fighting are like "the shadow of the tree" yes, you can see it, but in truth there is nothing to it. There is no depth, and there is nothing solid about it. It has a form of substance, but in reality it is "pure illusion." And for those who have experienced the reality of violence when the world of illusion collides with the real world, reality is often a cruel teacher.

Something else I warn to point out is that too many people want to put Guided Chaos in a box. They look at it and try to compare it to "this" art or "that" fighting system. They do this because they want to put it into a context that conforms to their mental template. The truth is, because we focus on principles more than techniques, "it isn't anything." It's what you need, when you need it, where you need it.

During a real fight for your life, it is virtually, impossible to deliver a stylized technique effectively; the speed, chaos, viciousness, confusion, and utter terror associated with a real fight prevent this. Your nervous system simply becomes overloaded with the flood of sensory stimuli. You can't treat your brain like an electronic dictionary of self-defense responses and expect it to select the right "technique" to counter a matching" attack under extreme duress and help you escape. It simply doesn't work that way. If you've been programmed by training a specific response to a specific attack, your self-defense will fail if the attack changes in the slightest from the way you've trained.

This is true whether you know one technique or one thousand. It has been proven through exhaustive experience, countless police and morgue reports, and testimonials by police officers with high-ranking belts from various styles whose classical training failed them when the moment of truth arrived. On top of this, a major flaw of even the most popular systems out there today is that they fail to take into account the fact that even if you develop devastating strikes, no one is going to just let you hit them! In real violence, attacks change moment-by-moment. Guided Chaos teaches you to sense these changes and adapt accordingly by providing you a modality of training to develop this from the very beginning.

Some o f the other components of Guided Chaos include Modified Native American Ground Fighting (which emphasizes mobility, evasion and ground-kicking, completely different from modern MMA) and Combat Boxing (so-called "dirty boxing" using illegal strikes, targets, and delivery systems). Finally, Perkins teaches gun, knife, and cane fighting that arc similarly based on practical skills rooted in the same concepts and principles of bare-handed combat.


Most martial arts focus on teaching tools or techniques instead of developing the skills and attributes that would make them work. For example punches, kicks, elbows, knee strikes, and blocks, along with all of the variations of them are tools. If techniques are taught, the method of how to use them is usually based on contrived assumptions of how they can be applied. However, they are often taught under static conditions and not dynamically. The question is will you choose the right tool or matching technique when required? Can you deliver it effectively on the move against someone who is resisting?

Alexander the Great said it best when he stated, "The most well-made tools are worthless in the hands of those who are unskilled in their use..." In other words, owning a hammer doesn't make you a carpenter. Simply put, there is a level of skill and touch one must develop in order to use said techniques or tools effectively. In Guided Chaos, we try to make people into carpenters, metaphorically speaking, so that whatever tool or technique they pull out of their toolbox they can use with effectiveness. This is accomplished by training in what we call the dynamic principles of violent movement, which accelerate learning and adaptability.

There are five basic principles of Guided Chaos: balance (equilibrium control), looseness (or pliability), sensitivity (kinesthetic touch) and spatial (hand-eye, sub-cortical vision), body unity (proprioception) and spontaneity (anything goes or adaptability). By focusing on principles in their proper context versus a specific technique, they eventually lead to total freedom of action and creativity. There are other "sub-principles" or attributes that are developed through various drills and exercises such as "Drop Hitting" combined with the simple deadly strikes of Close Quarters Combat developed by Fairbairn, Sykes, and Colonel Rex Applegate and proven in World War II. Memorized motion as in "if you do that then I'll do this" is eliminated--as well as the delay it causes.

Through proper training in the principles of Guided Chaos you are able to develop the subconscious attributes of total freedom of action and creativity. One of the most critical exercises toward developing this is "Contact Flow," which is designed towards developing spontaneous adaptive movement. Contact Flow (as opposed to Wing Chun's "Chi Sao" which it is often compared to) is a total free flowing exercise which, as described in Attack Proof, is designed to train your mind and body on a subconscious level to develop the feel or "touch" necessary for dealing with another person's motion.

What Contact Flow is not is a set of preordained patterned movements that only serve to "lock" your mind taro one idea or type of movement (brain lock) Nor is Contact Flow the slap happy standoff movement that some have tried to imitate. It is close-in movement with another human being--in many cases in their most intimate personal comfort zone. Unlike other arts that rely on touch for development. Guided Chaos' Contact Flow has absolutely no prearranged movements or drills. It is an exercise that allows your mind and body to develop an infinite number of possibilities within various body positions throughout your movement while dealing with another human being. It is this lack of preordained movements and freedom of action during the exercise that enables people to develop the adaptive qualities necessary for dealing with the ever-changing nature of a real fight. This is accomplished because your brain is now free to adapt and create on the fly, rather than look for the patterned matching response to a given movement. This occurs once you gain some proficiency in Guided Chaos which, believe it or not, takes months instead of years as m most other arts.

As stated above, nor only do we train people n principles, we ensure they are trained in the proper context. Everyone's body is different and since size, speed, and strength do matter in a real confrontation, it is important that people understand how the principles work with

regards to real fighting to ensure they train properly. For example, there arc some who think that balance is just about leg strength, so they focus on lust making their legs stronger to improve their balance. Some think that speed is purely about moving Faster than the other person, so they do speed drills from here to eternity.

The truth is both understandings are limited in that they rely on the same things: muscular strength, or that you will always have a physical advantage in some way over another person. However, balance is about developing control over your equilibrium so that you ark always able to maintain balance m an ever-changing environment. Sped as it relates to fighting is basal more on neural muscular coordination and timing (Body Unity).


Aside from helping you stay alive in a real confrontation_ Guided Chaos provides you with a training modality to develop lethal fighting skills and attributes within the body you already have. Sure, there is some development that is required bur nothing like doing a thousand knuckle pushups or breaking bricks with your head. Rather, you develop the ability to remain "unavailable" to the strikes of your attacker while for him your strikes are "unavoidable." You are able to move and strike without set up or stance from virtually any position with little or no thought.

The phenomena of applying the principles and skills are son of like driving a car. When driving your car you generally think of where you are going, along with probably listening to the radio and five other things you probably shouldn't be doing while driving. When you are first learning to drive, your movements are choppy and you tend to over steer the car and depress the break and gas pedal too hard. Once you learn the actual "physical act" of driving a car, it becomes totally transparent and subconscious without thought. When you drive you don't think about driving but where you are going, and as you maneuver the car when turning the wheel you don't turn the wheel all rile way, but just enough to negotiate the turn. This is probably the best description of what it is like when moving and striking regardless of speed when applying principles of Guided Chaos.

The same is true within Guided Chaos: after some time, when performing Contact Flow you just "know" where the caller person's arms and weapons are in relation to your body without thought. There are some people who, from applying Chi Sao or Sticky Hands, achieve this on some level. However, from my observation it is rare. For many people who have applied the skills in real life, and in some cases deadly confrontations, they describe the feeling as if they were watching other people almost move in slow motion, while they could feel their own body go into action with little to no thought as to what they were doing.

Through the development of the principles of Guided Chaos, what appears like a simple natural movement on the surface has the crushing force of an ocean wave crashing against the rocks, of lightning splitting a tree down the center. All systems that attempt to structure the fight through forms or rigid structure are actually moving away from the natural, wild, free-flowing motion of what your body is capable of, and barely scratching the surface. It is in this natural motion where the deadliest applications of human movement are found. Through Guided Chaos training, you are able to harness these lethal qualities and focus them with little or no thought.

Since the principles of Guided Chaos are rooted in physics and human physiology, they are universal and always present; they are available to anyone to develop, provided they're willing to put the rime in m work at them. The key path toward developing them is through training, but even this must be done with the proper mindset. Over time one begins to develop a natural, relaxed way of moving. Each movement is fluid and free flowing, so while it may not look pretty it is often more efficient and powerful than the flashy cool looking stuff. Cool will get you killed. This is because the natural movement that is emphasized within the art is seamless and fluid, whereas structured movement as taught in many arts is stiff, choppy and predictable. Through the development of the principles one is able to be whatever they need to be when they need to be it.

As Miyamoto Musashi would say in "The Book of Five Rings," natural movement comes from "The Void" of limitless possibilities. The more natural and coordinated the movement, the more likely it will work. The more structured or unnatural the movement, the less likely it will work. Structured techniques place imitations on movement, making rite techniques unsuitable in an environment where tire movement dynamics are virtually limitless.

The bottom line is you don't know what you have to do until you have to do it. While this sounds like one of those Yogi Berra sayings, regardless of the fighting system, all arts that train skills in the absence of the proper mindset are kidding themselves. In a real fight you have to be able to naturally move, improvise, and adapt. You don't know what you have to do from one movement to the next until you have to do it. If you knew what another person was going to do before they did it, then you would be clairvoyant and wouldn't need anyone's system of fighting.


The services have their own programs, but l do teach many military members and law enforcement officers privately.


Grappling Is a sport. Like all sports there is a certain expectation that as you enter into contact with an opponent they arc not literally attempting to murder you. The whole purpose of competitive grappling is to win by getting the opponent to "submit" without killing them. Although it may feel that way, no one is trying to fight for their lives--you're both voluntarily staying within a ring and rules. By contrast, in Guided Chaos, we use our feet like sledge hammers: sweeping, cutting, and breaking in order to create the ideal opportunity to regain our feet or keep the person off of us long enough to get to a side arm or knife.

In real violence there are no rules and your primary mission is to survive and escape If that means killing to survive, then you want to do it as ruthlessly and efficiently as possible. Not to mention that if you grapple one person, don't be surprised when his friends show up to kick your brains in.

Another thing l want to point out is in order to sport fight, one must be fit as well as possess some measure of physical talent to succeed. A champion boxer, MMA pro or Olympic caliber wrestler might be able to make such techniques work for them in a real fight. But unless you're one of them you're going to have to figure something else out, because the speed and chaotic dynamics arc lust too great for such limited techniques to work for the average person. I also like to point out chat to think that you can be like them without training as hard as they do is an insult to their hard work and God-given talent.

Thank you for allowing me the opportunity to share our art.



* Guided Chaos principles are grounded in physics and tried-and-true reality and not some intellectual exercise or contrived nonsense

* Guided Chaos is not concerned with theoretical combat or quirky moves from other arts but only in that which works

* Guided Chaos is not for sport or fooling around with your friends to show them how "cool" you are

* Guided Chaos is not designed to play around with bogus macho challenges, but is exclusively designed for life and death combat which is why we also train with guns, knives, and other improvised weapons


Co-author of the best selling self-defense book Attackproof: The Ultimate Guide to Personal Protection. Former forensic homicide expert. Twenty-two years law enforcement. Body Guard to Malcolm Forbes, Israeli Prime Minister Moshe Dayan. Former Pit Fighter. Trained with U.S. Marshall Thomas Loughnan, the fastest man in the world with a Colt 1911.


AL RIDENHOUR is a self-defense instructor in the greater New York metropolitan area. He holds a Seventh-degree Black Belt Close Combat Karate and Guided Chaos and is the Co-Author of Attack Proof: The Ultimate Guide to Personal Protection, 2nd Edition (Human Kinetics, 2009) and the Co-Author of Fight for Your Life (June 2010). He has lectured at John Jay College of Criminal Justice in New York and has been featured several times n Black Belt Magazine and Blitz Magazine, and has appeared on NBC TV New York with Chuck Scarborough for in-flight anti-terrorist defensive techniques with bare hands and common objects as well as Channel 12 News Long Island. Al Ridenhour is a member of the International Combat Martial Arts Federation (ICMAF), Marine Corps Association, Marines Memorial Association, Military Officers Association of America and the Marine Corps League of Westchester, NY.

Al Ridenhour is a graduate of Southeastern Oklahoma State University in Durant, Oklahoma, with a B.A. in criminal justice. He has over 20 years of service in the U.S. Marine Corps and is a veteran of Operation Desert Storm, Operation Iraqi Freedom and Operation Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan.
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