What should I look for in a school or training program that would indicate that I will develop self-defense skills very quickly?

Does my body weight or height or any other physical characteristic impact how quickly I develop self-defense skills?

How does the amount of time that I train (for instance, 6 months attending classes each night, 5 nights a week) impact my development?

  • 2
    This is a commonly misconceived question, but perhaps one that should become community wiki, so I'll post in that manner below.
    – stslavik
    Feb 6 '12 at 16:59
  • Buy a whistle. Instant improvement of self defence with minimal training and cost. Feb 7 '12 at 11:42

Martial arts (excluding combat sports) are not, nor should they be considered, anything other than an opportunity to increase an individual's chances of survival. If a student trains under a quality instructor for a period of time, then, at the end of that period, provided the student is capable of learning, his chances of surviving an encounter that requires the use of force should be better to a degree relative to the period of his study.

The art, in this case, should be considered a complete art, and offer a well-rounded curriculum to create a well-rounded martial artist. If the art, for instance, only taught tackling, then the martial artist may become extremely adept at tackling, but extremely weak in avoiding blunt force trauma to the cervical spine. This is, of course, an extreme example, as no art teaches only one thing (that I'm aware of, though my inbox is commonly flooded with emails to teach me the 1 defense technique I need to know to survive any encounter).

The instructor is key, whereas the art is not. A complete art is made incomplete by the instructors lack of knowledge in one area. Further, the attendance and capability of the pupil is a heavily deciding factor. If the class is moving through a manual of techniques in order with each class, and he covers the curriculum from mukyu (no rank) to ikkyu (1st grade before black) (NB: These ranking systems are used to exemplify beginners classes, wherein more advanced beginners [low dan ranks] would not be learning new material), then he may have had an opportunity to train each technique only a few times in those six months, thus effectively having too little time to develop muscle memory in any one movement. On the other hand, he may train in only one technique for those six months, which effectively makes his training no different than that of the proposed 1 technique art above.

Every art has its strengths and weaknesses. Over the centuries, older arts have filled in the gaps to make them as effective as possible, while newer arts, via one means or another, find themselves functionally similar to these older arts. So long as the art is taught well, the chances of success in self-defense will be greater than the student had prior to his training.


If your goal is to become, very quickly, proficient in fighting / survival abilities, then check out things like Krav Maga, Systema and V-Force.

For the record, this training is most likely going to be incomplete as far as real martial arts go, but it will teach you to defend yourself.

As an addendum, this is likely to overly develop your aggressiveness, which is likely to land you into trouble if you don't check it with meditation.


Martial Arts cannot be attained or achieved all in a night, It requires years of practice. It has to be mastered and it is not book to mug up all in a night, it has to be learned only through practice. Th true purpose of martial arts is to train your body and mind to perfect and healthy. The true purpose of martial arts is to train your physique. Please remember the term slow and steady wins the race. Only the involvement and commitment you give to the art trained will give back the fruitfulness of success. So don't think to learn quickly, it cannot be learned quickly, remember it has to be mastered.

  • 2
    While what you wrote is absolutely true, it does not answer the question :)
    – Anon
    Feb 7 '12 at 18:24
  • Hello Friend, I have answered it correctly. We can't get the self defense very quickly
    – AmGates
    Feb 8 '12 at 8:02
  • 2
    That's not strictly true. It is possible to become efficient at self-defense (though not a very refined self-defense) rather quickly, through regular and constant training that emphasizes the right elements, like body contact, the feeling of danger, and attacks with the right intent. This is not martial arts training - it is self-defense training.
    – Anon
    Feb 8 '12 at 13:08

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.