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"Bernie" Weiss on Self Defense

a series of articles


Bernd (Bernie) Weiss, Ph.D.

About The Author

Bernd Weiss was a psychologist, reserve police officer and college professor. He was chief instructor of the nonprofit Topanga Karate School in California and practiced martial arts from 1955 until his untimely death in November, 1998. He was a 7th degree black belt in Shotokan Karate. His unique mix of skills, training and profession ideally suited him for writing on a topic where body awareness, psychological perspective and physical training are important in the practice of the art. We greatly miss him. Yet, in these articles he has left us with a part of himself to learn from and help improve our lives.

An Introduction

In an introductory overview Dr. Weiss discusses statistics, avoidance, strategies and practice.

The Philosophy of Karate-Do

The practice of karate fosters non-violence. Does this appear paradoxical? Read on...

A Worst Case Scenario - Knife Attack from Behind

In this column Dr. Weiss addresses a situation which we hope we never will find ourselves in. The point is that with some self-defense training, you can increase your chances of surviving even the most drastic of situations. Future articles will deal with more common situations you may encounter. (AW)

Self-Defense Against a Grab

A simple and effective defense that even a beginner can use against an attacker attempting a grab.

Fitness and Karate

A discussion of the cardiovascular benefits of karate.

Prevention: Telephone Tips

How to avoid common telephone pitfalls.

On Domestic Violence

Recognizing the cycle of domestic violence can be an important step in getting help.

Defense Against an Unusual Weapon

An actual defense against an assailant wielding a sharpened fork.

Posture and Attack Prevention

Proper body language and voice can be an effective self defense strategy.

Body Usage in Self Defense

Body usage, or how you hold and maneuver your body, contributes to your ability to perform a specific skill such as a kick, parry, etc., but often we forget how fundamental our body usage is to the effectiveness of the technique.

Child Safety

Helpful tips on child safety in the home and a discussion of child molestation and its prevention.

Self Defense Against a Crowbar Attack

A successful defense against an unprovoked crowbar attack taken from a real life situation

© 1997-1998 Bernd Weiss


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