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18. What Every Martial Arts Instructor MUST Know about the Law of Self-Defense

As a martial artist, you train in self-defense to protect yourself and your loved ones, but what really happens in the court system when a martial artist defends him or herself?

This episode of The Truth About the Martial Arts Business will help you to understand and prepare for the legal battle that happens after an attack. The first fight is for your life – the second for your liberty. 

Andrew F. Branca, a renowned expert in self-defense law, teaches you how to make quick, effective, legally appropriate decisions in life-and-death situations. 

The Five Elements of Self Defense

2:50 Do I have to wait for the bad guy to hit me first?

3:40 Can I use a weapon in my defense?

4:00 What it cost to defend a self defense case

4:25 How is “Deadly Force” defined by law?

4:40 Does the court look at a trained martial artist differently than an untrained defender?

5:55 What influences juries in regards to martial arts for self-defense?

6:05 Will your defense attorney use your martial arts training as a defense or suppress it from the jury?

6:15 How can martial arts help your defense?

6:40 The Three Fights

9:30 Use of Force Expert

’10:15 Can the prosecution include the defenders instructor?

11:00 Can an instructor face criminal charges for the actions of his or her student?

13:05 Element 1: Innocence

14:27 How a victim loses their claim of innocence

14:45 Element 2: Imminence 

15:20 Element 3: Proportionality

15:45 What if you have a gun and his attacks you with his fists?

16:46  Element 4: Avoidance

17:00 Is Stand Your Ground just in Florida?

18:07 Element 5: Reasonableness 

19:30 The danger of CCW

21:00 Why students get so stressed at Andrew’s seminars, that they can’t remember what they just did.

Recommended Resources

Map of State Self-Defense Laws

The Law of Self-Defense on Amazon

Deadly Force – Understanding Your Right To Self Defense

The Psychology of Self-Defense

Featured Guests

Tony Robbins

Tony Robbins

Master Motivator

A black belt under the late Jhoon Rhee, Tony Robbins views martial arts as an excellent way to improve your life or a poor excuse not to.

Brian Tracy

Brian Tracy

Master Teacher

Brian Tracy is a mentor of John Graden’s. Brian credits much of his self-discipline and drive to the principles he learned as a martial arts student and instructor.

Bernard Kerik

Bernard Kerik

Master Leadership

The police commissioner during the 9/11 attacks, Bernard Kerik began his taekwondo training at 14 and has traveled the world to improve his skills.

The Truth About the Martial Arts Business Podcast

Learn the hard truth about the martial arts business from the man who led the industry into the modern era.

Join the martial arts Teacher of Teachers, John Graden as he explores important and controversial questions about martial arts instructors, schools and the business.

In this hard hitting podcast, he pulls back the curtain to reveal The Truth About the Martial Arts Business.

John Graden challenges conventional tradition and the mindless acceptance of some of the outlandish theories associated with the martial arts.

John Graden

Widely credited with leading the martial arts school business into the modern age, John Graden was first called a visionary by MASuccess editor, John Corcoran. Also a world champion kickboxer, John was dubbed the martial arts Teacher of Teachers by Martial Arts World magazine.

John is also the author of many of the best selling books on martial arts business and personal development.

Now the Executive Director of the Martial Arts Teachers’ Association (MATA), John’s bold leadership has landed him on the Dr. Oz Show, the Wall Street Journal, the A&E Network and many more international media platforms along with many small podcasts that only his wife listened to.

A Tampa Bay, FL resident, John Graden is married with two children.

The Martial Arts Teachers Association (MATA)

MATA is a professional association for martial arts school owners and instructors. It offers the leading course on martial arts instructor certification (MATACertification) and rank advancement (MATARank).

Members have access to a massive library of professionally designed marketing materials in the Marketing Downloads section.

Other sections include:

  • Martial Arts Summer Camp
  • Martial Arts After School
  • Planning Your Martial Arts School
  • Staffing Your Martial Arts School
  • Financial Control 
  • Interviews & Courses
  • Facebook Marketing for Your Martial Arts School
  • Online Marketing for Your Martial Arts School
  • Pro-shop Sales for Your Martial Arts School
  • Curriculum Concepts Your Martial Arts School
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John Graden


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