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L. A. Kane (Seattle, WA USA)

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Timing in the Fighting Arts: Your Guide to Winning in the Ring and Surviving on the Street
Timing in the Fighting Arts: Your Guide to Winning in the Ring and Surviving on the Street
by Loren W. Christensen
Edition: Paperback
Price: £12.50

16 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wish I had this information years ago, 18 July 2006
Whether you are looking to win a tournament or survive on the street Christensen and Demeere offer solid, easy to understand advice that is well worth following. This excellent tome starts with the nuts and bolts of timing including Hick's law and Boyd's cycle (the Observation-Orientation-Decision-Action loop), explaining these important concepts without a lot of scientific jargon or excess verbiage. From there they go into specific techniques and case studies to help you put these concepts to practical use. There are also some enlightening vignettes from Tai Chi Chuan, The Art of War, and the Book of Five Rings. Their down to earth writing style is refreshing and entertaining. The various examples, stories, and tips make the book fun to read. Even better, the drills and practice scenarios quickly take you beyond the theory to improve your skills in a meaningful way. This book along with Speed Training (by Christensen) is a winning combination that can help any martial artist. I heartily recommend it.

Lawrence Kane

Author of Surviving Armed Assaults, The Way of Kata, and Martial Arts Instruction


Far Beyond Defensive Tactics: Advanced Concepts, Techniques, Drills and Tricks for Cops on the Street
Far Beyond Defensive Tactics: Advanced Concepts, Techniques, Drills and Tricks for Cops on the Street
by Loren W. Christensen
Edition: Paperback

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great book; older but still very relavent, 18 July 2006
My understanding is that the author wrote this one shortly before his retirement from a distinguished law enforcement career, working primarily during his lunch hours. While it is primarily aimed at police officers, martial artists and those interested in practical self-defense can really benefit from these materials as well. The author's experience, sense of humor, and real-life adventures make it a quick, interesting read despite its 200 page length. His long experience training other officers really shines through.

You will learn how to stay safe patrolling (or simply walking) the streets, protect your weapon, deal with multiple attackers, handle stronger, larger opponents, and otherwise deal with deadly threats. It is especially good for law enforcement personnel who do not have a martial arts background. It is a bit more strategic than tactical yet I feel that hits just the right blend. There is an introduction to the "right demeanor" (which is reminiscent of Verbal Judo by George Thompson), a large section on control techniques, principles and concepts, and important insight into the nature of fighting. The various scenarios in the training section are truly excellent. The chapter on how to create a witness is really outstanding, though I do wish it was a bit longer.

Overall this is a great book!

Lawrence Kane

Author of Surviving Armed Assaults, The Way of Kata, and Martial Arts Instruction


Speed Training: How to Develop Your Maximum Speed for Martial Arts
Speed Training: How to Develop Your Maximum Speed for Martial Arts
by Loren W. Christensensen
Edition: Paperback
Price: £20.08

38 of 38 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great for old, slow guys like me!, 18 July 2006
I have a library of over 240 martial arts books. Many are in mint condition; stuff I've read only once, didn't finish, or never got around to. Christensen's are all dog-eared with sticky notes and scribbles in the margins, solid material I read over and over again. As always his advice is practical, useful, and easy to read. I really like the drills he's come up with in Speed Training. I have found them effective not only for myself, but for my students as well. I've been doing martial arts for over 30 years. If he can make this old dog faster, changes are his advice will work for you as well!

Lawrence Kane

Author of Surviving Armed Assaults, The Way of Kata, and Martial Arts Instruction
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Jan 5, 2010 8:35 PM GMT


The Fighter's Body: An Owner's Manual: Your Guide to Diet, Nutrition, Exercise and Excellence in the Martial Arts
The Fighter's Body: An Owner's Manual: Your Guide to Diet, Nutrition, Exercise and Excellence in the Martial Arts
by Loren W. Christensen
Edition: Paperback

13 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent!, 18 July 2006
Ever wish you came with an owner's manual like your car does? Wouldn't it be nice if you knew what, when, and how to keep yourself running at peak performance? Well guess what, the answers to all these questions are right here!

Christensen and Demeere cut through the fads and hype to provide solid, practical, and most importantly factual advice for martial artists and athletes of all kinds. Those of us who train regularly find customized, easy to read and understand support to keep us at the top of our game. This is a great book. Buy it, read it, and take to heart. You will not be disappointed.

Lawrence Kane

Author of Surviving Armed Assaults, The Way of Kata, and Martial Arts Instruction
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Feb 23, 2010 8:37 PM GMT


Iain Abernethy's Combat Drills [DVD] [2007]
Iain Abernethy's Combat Drills [DVD] [2007]
Dvd ~ Iain Abernethy

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Practical, useful, and very well done!, 14 July 2006
This DVD is outstanding work. I'm really impressed! The drills are easy to understand and utilize. It's an excellent combination of explanation, technique, application, and linkage to kata. There is a bit of comparison and contrast with one-step kumite too, a big a benefit for traditionalists. Iain does a very good job of explaining how each of the 20 drills work as well as how one might (or might not) utilize each application in a self-defense situation. The principle of continuous advantage is both explained and shown throughout. He demonstrates where the techniques take the opponent's weapon(s) out of play.

Iain moves very well too, making even the hard stuff look effortless, so that there is realistic flow that students can strive to emulate. I was also impressed by the way he explained the targeting, such as leaning your weight on the other guy's leg for affect so that you can see precisely where to land a kick. The bonus interview and technique were nice add-ons as well.

I'm not generally a big fan of martial arts DVDs. They work well for a lot of folks but the way I learn makes me favor a combination of books and hands-on practice. Having said that, however, Iain's work has made me rethink the value of DVDs. This one is a great tool even for me. I look forward to viewing more of them as soon as I get a little free time...

Highly recommended!

Lawrence Kane

Author of Surviving Armed Assaults, The Way of Kata, and Martial Arts Instruction.


Waking Dragons: A Martial Artist Faces His Ultimate Test
Waking Dragons: A Martial Artist Faces His Ultimate Test
by Goran Powell
Edition: Paperback
Price: £9.99

4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An outstanding resource for serious martial artists!, 4 July 2006
Don't let the cartoonish cover fool you, this tome is as serious and substantive as any martial arts book that I have ever read, and I've read hundreds. It retells the author's pinnacle karate achievement, completing a 30-man kumite during which he successfully fought against 30 progressively skillful opponents in consecutive full contact bouts. Despite the fact that this feat is rarely undertaken, let alone pulled off, by even master martial artists, I found that the accomplishment is far less important for the reader than the way in which he got there.

His martial training began as a child with judo where he learned the fundamentals of fitness, balance, timing, and attitude. As a young man he switched to Kyokushinkai karate, taking on a full contact style that demonstrated the benefits of disciplined training and a strong spirit. Later on, tae kwon do taught him to relax, conserve energy, and flow with his techniques. Switching back to Goju Ryu karate he refined his posture and balance, learned the value of kata, and developed a refined sense of awareness. The sum of these experiences helped him develop the quintessential martial virtue, an indomitable spirit necessary to take on and overcome nearly any challenge, even the brutal 30-man kumite. He compares this spirit to a pilot light. No matter how battered and beaten you may become, with the right mental attitude your pilot light can still burn brightly. No opponent can ever reach in and blow it out.

The author's journey is one in which we can find great wisdom, information that all martial artists should know regardless of the length of their experience, the style they practice, or whether or not they ever intend to compete in full contact events. He makes full use of his formidable writing skills and martial knowledge, aptly demonstrating how he learned and grew through various trials and tribulations in a way that is entertaining, easy to read, and, thankfully, never self-aggrandizing or preachy. He demonstrates how he discovered the secrets of quickness and power, patience and perseverance, body mechanics and technique, in a way that anyone can truly appreciate, relate to, and learn from.

Very highly recommended!

Lawrence Kane
Author of Surviving Armed Assaults, The Way of Kata, and Martial Arts Instruction.


Karate's Grappling Methods
Karate's Grappling Methods
by Iain Stuart Abernethy
Edition: Paperback
Price: £15.99

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An insightful look at karate's forgotten aspect, 18 Sept. 2005
This is an outstanding tome which illuminates grappling, an all too often forgotten aspect of karate. These methods are frequently not practiced in many dojos simply because practitioners do not realize that they even exist within their system. On the street, however, karateka may face grapplers, boxers, and practitioners of a whole plethora of styles. The good news is that we have all the tools necessary to survive or triumph in any violent encounter, be it standing up or on the ground.

In an art which has become overly focused on striking and kicking by many practitioners, this outstanding text will help you to practice the way it was meant to be--as an effective, holistic, and complete fighting system. It is well illustrated, easy to understand, practical, and very insightful. The author not only describes how grappling methods were recorded in karate kata and demonstrates a wide assortment of techniques, but he also describes the principles that make them effective in real-life fighting situations.

Subjects covered include understanding the role of grappling in self-defense, kata and bunkai (applications), close range strikes, throws and takedowns, ground fighting, chokes and strangles, arm bars, leg and ankle locks, neck twists, finger locks, wrist locks, and combinations. Dirty fighting and grappling drills are also covered. As you can see this is an outstanding and holistic treatise on the subject.

Lawrence Kane

Author of Surviving Armed Assaults, The Way of Kata, and Martial Arts Instruction


Throws for Strikers: The Forgotten Throws of Karate, Boxing and Taekwondo
Throws for Strikers: The Forgotten Throws of Karate, Boxing and Taekwondo
by Iain Stuart Abernethy
Edition: Paperback
Price: £9.99

9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A groundbreaking and very worthwhile read, 18 Sept. 2005
Throws for Strikers is another groundbreaking book by Iain Abernethy. Throws aren't only found in grappling arts like judo, jujitsu, and aikido. They were once commonly practiced in striking systems such as karate, boxing and tae kwon do. Mr. Abernethy shows how throws were hidden in karate kata as well as how they were once used by bare-knuckle boxers in their fighting styles as well. In addition to providing instruction on the throws themselves, this book also covers the fundamental principles that apply to making any type of throw successful. Practice drills contained herein will help practitioners of most any martial art develop the competence they need to apply throws in real life self-defense situations and to help them know what to do should things go wrong and they end up on the ground.

Throughout history the striking arts have been taught as fully self-contained fighting systems containing not only kicks and punches but grappling techniques as well. Clearly practitioners have always needed to know what to do at very close-range in case they find themselves tangling with a grappler or for whatever reason their strikes do not end a fight before it goes to the ground. Alas, much of this critical knowledge has been lost. Herein it can be re-found.

Subjects include the use of throws in the striking arts, theory and practice, sweeps, hip throws, cross-buttocks throws, shoulder throws, neck throws, double-leg-lift throws, outer reaping throws, winding throws, tackles, shoulder wheel throws, examples from forms (katas), and what to do if it all goes wrong. As a practitioner of both judo and Goju Ryu karate I find this information relevant, useful, and quite valuable in both arts. As with all his products, Mr. Abernethy's writing is straightforward, easy to follow, and most importantly easy to implement. The photographs are fantastic and really illuminate the materials. This book really is essential reading for serious martial artists, especially practitioners of the striking arts whose training may be deficient in these areas.

Lawrence Kane

Author of Surviving Armed Assaults, The Way of Kata, and Martial Arts Instruction


Bunkai-Jutsu: The Practical Application of Karate Kata
Bunkai-Jutsu: The Practical Application of Karate Kata
by Iain Abernethy
Edition: Paperback

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A must read for all serious martial artists!, 18 Sept. 2005
Bunkai Jutsu is extremely well done. Iain is one of the few authors who truly understands and is able to communicate that martial arts are at their core about combat. Kata is not dance practice nor is it aerobic training (though that may be a legitimate side benefit of performing it). It is the fundamental basis of a fighting art. Bunkai are the kata applications practitioners can use for real-life self-defense. Abernethy provides an easy to read approach to understanding and utilizing these applications.

If you know how to decipher them, all aspects of fighting can be found in kata, including kicking, striking, grappling, strangling, pressure point techniques, and throwing applications. The contents of this impressive tome include a brief history of kata, a treatise on the nature of real fighting, Iain's rules of bunkai (how to figure out what the kata is telling you), pre-emptive striking, entrance and exit techniques, ground fighting, the "true" use of blocks, the purpose of stances, kata-based sparring, and much more. This is all stuff you can use in real life combat. The section on vital points is illuminating.

This book is one of the very few books I categorically believe that every martial artist should own. I heartily recommend it!

Lawrence Kane

Author of Surviving Armed Assaults, The Way of Kata, and Martial Arts Instruction


Mental Strength: Condition Your Mind Achieve Your Goals
Mental Strength: Condition Your Mind Achieve Your Goals
by Iain Abernethy
Edition: Paperback
Price: £9.99

3 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Outstanding!, 18 Sept. 2005
While most of us know that mental strength can be developed in the same manner as physical strength, very few of us really know how to go about doing it save by serendipitous discovery. Based on his considerable success as a martial artist and author, Iain Abernethy lays out a step-by-step methodology for overcoming doubt, building self-confidence, and achieving your dreams. Nothing in this book is rocket science yet his codification of a straightforward, understandable, and implementable process is nothing short of brilliant. As I read through his excellent tome I found myself thinking, "Yeah, that is how I did that" several times. Without knowing it, I've followed his process in achieving most of my major successes in my life, stuff like earning a blackbelt in karate, publishing three books and dozens of articles, gaining promotions at work, and building strong relationships at home. Abernethy's clear, encouraging guidance will show you how to develop a strong, powerful mind, grow your talents, become the person you want to be, and live the life you want to live too. This information is extremely well laid out, masterfully written, and most importantly, it works. Very highly recommended.

Lawrence Kane
Author of Surviving Armed Assaults, The Way of Kata, and Martial Arts Instruction


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