I never wanted to be known for coining the acronym TURD, even in a self-defense context, yet here we are.

Violence seems to be normalizing in first world, digital economies, where it has been more recently seen as a viable means to display one’s displeasure (or commitment) – depending on the context.  Even violence against oneself has become a tragic, alarming and growing part of these societies.  And, if you look closely, just behind the fragile veil of your everyday life, you will see violence in your neighborhood, your local schools, throughout your home town and, of course, across the world.   We learn to ignore these signals through selective perception, denial or both.  That’s dangerous.

For example, in some parts of the United States, leaving home in the morning can seem as much like a city wide game of Russian roulette as a drive to work or a beer run to the grocery store.  Violent crime in virtually every major city, including Houston where I live, is up mid-double digits on average with some cities seeing triple digit spikes in violent crime.

As people accept and become more aware of the growing threat, they often find their way to one of my Krav Maga schools.  It’s my job to train them to effectively respond to violence, and one of the key components of effective response is the ability to perform under the extreme stress and pressure of a violent attack.  We call this stress inoculation.  

To be clear, stress inoculation is not fully possible, but developing effective responses that harness the stress response (including an adrenaline dump) is.  I often describe the experience of being engulfed in a violent attack as: 

  • Tense,
  • Uncertain,
  • Rapidly evolving, and
  • Debilitating – both mentally and physically.

This description tends to drive the point home, and if the person on the receiving end of the information is particularly aware, he or she will likely see the acronym for these descriptors spells TURD.

That about sums it up.  A violent encounter is a giant TURD of a situation, and we must prepare for the stress and physical demands accordingly – so train Krav Maga often and embrace high stress drills at every opportunity!

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