Are You a Fighter or a Victim if Your Surrounded and on the Ground?

There is a belief within the martial arts that once you get to the floor you need to be a grappler to survive. It is an understandable belief based on the success grappling arts have had within events such as the Ultimate Fighting Championship. 

Brazilian Jiu Jitsu is an amazing art and so are catch wrestling, Judo and Traditional Ju Jitsu​ however there is one issue that changes the dynamic of every self defence situation and that is numbers.

There are some amazing grapplers out there however what happens when you add more than one opponent? The dynamic changes completely. Have you ever heard the saying by legendary Brazilian Jiu Jitsu expert Carlson Gracie where he says " punch a black belt in the face he becomes a brown belt ​punch him again purple". Its a saying that I am sure has its variations across the world but the theme is correct. However I would add that if you have 2 people punching a black belt in the face or even stamping on their head their skill level reduces a lot quicker.

But what if you add 3 opponents, 4 or 5? What if you are attacked by a gang of 7 and you are forced on the floor? Experience tells us that these things happen, YouTube is littered with video footage ​of incidents such as that. However it still begs the question, what do you do? Just how do you deal with incidents when you face incredible odds?

The answer is not easy to find, your back will be on the floor as an angry group attacks you possibly for no reason other than 'fun'. ​ As part of the Defence Lab training process we investigate these situations within our training. So what have we learned?

Exploring Uncomfortable Situations​

Footage from our DNA Training product

You don't need to be an ​expert to realise that when a gang attacks you then you face punches and strikes from 360 degree's. You might be looking at one person with a bottle or glass in their hand and then get punched from behind, from a person you never knew was there. If you end up on the floor it is even worse. Your vision is even more obscured.

As much as we would like it, we simply do not have eyes in the back of our head.

The above shot is a from our DNA On line training which you can check out here, it is a tiny glimpse into the type of training we do, exploring new angles and working from uncomfortable positions. We aim to push our training beyond conventional boundraries

It would be easy to ignore 7 on one gang attacks in training but why would instructors ignore these situations?

Because those types of odds are difficult to deal with, because traditional training doesn't like to place us in positions we may not be able to win?

These may be some of the reasons behind this, however ​at Defence Lab we want to stare into the abyss that makes others uncomfortable, we explore the situations where your back is on the floor, where you have been punched really hard and put on your back or where you may be bleeding and have one eye swollen shut!

It is only through exploring these situations can you discover that there are ways to both protect yourself and also mount and offence even when your back is flat on the floor and you have a gang around you!​

Its Not Easy Fighting a Gang​

We know its not easy fighting a gang but you do have options, you can fight back and not just be a victim! At Defence Lab after years of testing Andy Norman has created a training system that has evolved the ability for a person to protect themselves against a group on the ground. If you are a member of our DNA Training pack then last week we delivered a bonus example of this type of training. You can still purchase this now​ if you click here.  

We don't make promises that our training will teach you to dispatch a gang of 7! That would be foolish, however our training will teach you how to be offensive within these situations of extreme defence, and experience tells us that if you manage to hurt one or 2 of the group then the others may start to back away as they consider their own safety.  People attack in gangs because it gives them safety, they feel any chance of them coming to harm gets reduced. Its true, but just imagine what could happen if you changed that dynamic, and you could actually hurt one or two?

Protect the Head​

Dealing with gang assaults ​starts with protecting yourself as much as you can.

Protecting the brain is a key part of this because if you get knocked out then you lose the ability do anything and are at the mercy of the attackers. And as we know attackers show little mercy!

Our shape shifting style​ has been specifically developed to help you survive incidents such as gang attacks, even when you end up on the floor.  To finish off we have included some CCTV footage showing a young couple that get attacked by a gang. We are not showing this to shock you however this footage shows that in a multiple attacker situation you need to protect yourself from all angles, and be able to fight back from all positions!

​I hope you have enjoyed this little post from Shape Shifter and it re enforces why DL training is so special and at the same time so unique. 

Our training is ideal for all martial artists including grappler's because the training drills, techniques and strategies are unique and will add value to your existing training So if you are already an experience grappler or striker then come and try DL and find your nearest Lab at ​ You will find that it might just enhance your current training programme and take your individual skill to the next level. 

Happy Shifting and very soon we will be bringing you amazing news from the Labs across the world and DL HQ​

Accelerated Skill- How Defence Lab Students Develop Skill Faster Than Average

So here I was a few weeks ago at the Defence Lab Instructor training weekend when I saw a guy training. His movement looked really sharp, shifting shapes like a true veteran but his face didn't look very familiar to me and I wondered why I hadn't seen him before?

I got asking some of the team how long he had been training to which they replied "2 Months!"

This is not uncommon with Defence Lab students, I  have seen it time and time again. People moving through the various ranges with real style after just a few hours. But how does a Defence Lab Student develop these skills faster than the average martial art? What makes them different?​

Andy Norman

​If you have ever met Andy Norman the founder of Defence Lab you will understand why so many people follow him. He is the real deal when it comes to martial arts but some would say that his real genius is that he is able to create training programmes that take  people from zero experience and give them exceptional self defence skills in the shortest time possible and then the training just grows and grows. It is these results that are keeping DL students coming back for more. 

When people pay money for a service they expect results and when it comes to DL people dont just see the results they feel them. The training programmes created by Andy and his team have been forged with many hours of training often in the middle of the night with Paul Strauther and Grek and the rest of Team Storm. It is this refining and experimentation that has created the DL training programme that exists and expands across the Labs today. 

There is a mistaken belief that it takes a life time to develop skill​.  People such as  Tim Ferriss have turned this idea on its head. It is through optimised training programmes that skill can be acquired quickly through regular practise. We have seen people with no experience in martial arts look amazing after a months of training, and after a few years? Well lets just say that we have seen a few jaws drop when they start to shape shift and go through the gears

However even if you are already a DL student you can still make huge gains in your training on top of our optimised training routines​. How? By keeping a training journal.

Your training journal or diary really can make a difference in how you process the training you have received ​in class. I have done this personally for years no matter what system I have trained in. 

Our advice is for you to go out and get yourself a note book. This book is your own personal interpretation and is for your eyes only. Fill it in after class and with as much detail you can recall about the drills you did, the techniques you worked on and ​how you felt.

Then during your off days you can refer to this training diary to do some home practise if you want to. Before your next class you can look at your diary and your mind is refreshed and is ready for training​. This soon compounds over time and before you know it your skills are soon improving at super speed.

Defence Lab uses some really cutting edge training tools. From our regular instructor weekends where we deliver training to ensure we maintain and improve our standards to our on line university (which is out soon) and of course our on line DNA Pack​ which you can purchase on line today. Quality runs through everything we do. Take a look at the youtube video below to see action from one of our instructor events.

So if you are thinking of coming to a DL class you will be amazed how quickly your skills progress, and for those already training ​and looking to advance even more quickly then use a training diary and also consider the on line material we supply. 

However ultimately a lot comes down to having the right attitude, one that makes you open to learning and one that I'm glad too say is embedded ​in DL training from the outset. 

So do you have a training diary or are you considering buying one? If so feel free to comment below.

Welcome To Shape Shifter- The Blog of Defence Lab


Hi folks, and on behalf of the Defence Lab Team we would like to officially introduce our newest member. Our Shape Shifter blog.

This is the new on line hub to communicate to the world our vision for Defence Lab. This is where we will build our ever growing on line community, after all great relationships are built by great communication and this is what this blog will achieve. 

Shape Shifter will tell the world more about Defence Lab because we know there are a lot of questions and huge interest from across the globe

In  2 years Defence Lab has grown from a small number of schools or ‘Labs’ as we call them to a global brand. We now have Labs across the world in places such as Rome, New York, Spain, Mexico and of course the UK.  

The purpose of this blog is to bring you cutting edge articles, to tell you about events going on and of course to get you involved. 

So what do we have to offer you all today. Well you will be able to follow us on Google plus, Like us on face book and also subscribe to our YouTube channel all with the click of a few buttons simply by clicking on our social icons on the top right of this post.

You can also sign up for our newsletter by signing up in the boxes on display when you access our site and also in the right column. By being on the newsletter you will be getting more information about DL, you will never miss and article and from time to time we will let you know of any special offers we have. 

You will find a great deal of information about DL across the social pages and we will be bringing you the first of our articles later this week. 

So once again welcome to Shape Shifter, this is just the beginning!