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The Outfoxxed Program is based on educating and motivating women to not only take a personal interest in their own protection but in empowering them through courses designed at developing a heightened awareness, a better understanding of situational problem-solving, and training the proper, efficient, and effective self-defense

The Fox Stretch - Keeping Him at Arm's Length



The Fox Stretch - Keeping Him at Arm's Length

Michael Joyce

As we mentioned in the video, The Valkyrie and Praying Mantis are essential, need-to-know movements.  But there has to be somewhere to go from there?  If you've got the predator close to you, and you've pulled him down or off-balance - chances are... he's not finished trying to get at you.  Scary, I know! But...

In this bent-over stance that you've put him in, he's basically got only two options:

  1. Abort and retreat from your control (if possible).
  2. Try a last ditch effort to attack your legs or waistline with a tackle or trip.

First of all, there are several things we must train for when we practice each posture.  The Valkyrie should emphasize surprise, the Praying Mantis should emphasize a trapping/control and the Fox Stretch should emphasize the set-up for quick detachment (for striking)!

Let me explain.  Once we have the predator under control - he could, at any moment, do something unexpected and take the advantage back.  Therefore, we must continue to be observant, and proactive.

What do we know?  We know that while he is under our brief control, he is going to be looking for a way to take the advantage.  His arms diving downward to your waist or legs are the only actions available.  It's a great chance for him, really.  But since we know that... we don't allow that to happen.

"The first step of avoiding the trap is knowing of its existence."  - Frank Herbert (Dune).

What do we do?  From the Praying Mantis posture, the hand we are hooking his arm with turns into a claw and grips any part of his arm, shoulder, body or clothing that will keep him from moving closer to you.  

The top hand (hooking the neck) turns into a claw (pronated) as well, but make sure the thumb and nails are able to dig into the side of his neck that are very sensitive.  If your arm is outstretched or fully locked out, there is no way he can get closer to you laterally; he can only retreat or dive to the floor where he is more vulnerable.

I mentioned above that a "set-up for a quick detachment" should be emphasized.  If he moves away from your Fox Stretch control, he'll be easy to off-balance, and you might have the option to push away, run and escape.  

If he hesitates, cowering from the claws in his neck, that gives you a perfect opportunity to rain some hammer fist strikes to the back of his neck/head and follow this up with one or two strong knees. The speed of this detachment will guarantee you the time necessary to get in a few quality shots.  

These attacks are done to ensure your survival.  Remember, we are striving to create dysfunction in our predator, not just pain.  Pain, under the adrenaline response of a real-life situation, is tolerated, expected, anticipated, and dealt with by both combatants. However, since we are fighting back for our very survival - we seek to create dysfunction.  He can not run after you with a hyperextended knee; he cannot see you well with a scratched cornea.  These are just a couple of examples.

In a real life-or-death situation, we strike to the back of the neck/head because it is linked with the occipital lobe, the visual processing portion of the brain.  If he is dazed, or disorientated, your chances of escape are good.  If he goes unconscious from the strikes, escape is a given.

* REMEMBER * Man or woman, we need to understand the law of Use of Force and that whether we are acting in self-defense or not, we need to use good judgement.  If the predator is no longer a threat, proceed directly for an escape and call the authorities.  

What to see it in action? Check out our video on perform the Fox Stretch.

NOTE ON PRACTICE : Aim to hit, but never practice missing.  As we said in the video, always be kind to your partner and use little-to-no contact.  

If you want to practice power, use a grappling dummy, heavy bag, or other training equipment.  

Let us know if you have any questions!

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