Review of a 1 to 1 Session

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by Colin McNulty

We were very pleased here at PDRmanchester towers to get this review drop into our inbox from one of our Personal Training clients. Someone who’d travelled up from Birmingham no less for a full day’s one on one personal training with Colin McNulty. This is what he had to say about the day, warts and all:

I came across a website advertising the SPEAR system of self defence. Another ‘ultimate’ street self defence, I thought to my self. Another American martial arts instructor after a quick buck, I thought. I had a read of the SPEAR concept, which sounded weird (you just flinch). The logic behind it made sense. If your going to flinch in a fight, why not use it to your advantage. I wanted to give this SPEAR system a try.

In this day and age, being able to take care of yourself and your family should be a priority for anyone. As someone who had only recently married a few months previously this was particularly important to me. So there’s a handful of instructors in the UK who teach this system. I won’t lie, I went for the one that was closest to me, which happened to be in Manchester.

I met with Colin who is a young tall well built man. He was very pleasant and polite and well spoken. He set up a presentation with a projector and screen (very professional). He went through the reason why the flinch system works. Then we discussed the mindset of good and bad guys, and about fear. Initially I was thinking to myself what a waste of my flippin time (I woke up at the crack of dawn, and drive an hour and a half on a cold Sunday morning for a flippin presentation!). I was wrong.

In fact this was the most interesting part of the day. Quite a few points during the course of the presentation, really made me think differently about the whole process of self defence (e.g. a bad guy only wants 3 things from you, so if you devalue yourself from these three things, you take away his reason to attack you). The presentation was excellent, and Colin gave me opportunities to ask questions and challenge him on any points.

O.k. So what about the action stuff? I learnt the basic stance. The way the flinch should be deployed and how to then keep the attacker away from you. Even though Colin was twice my size, I still managed to keep him off me when I used the proper SPEAR technique. Since it was a one to one session, any mistakes were spotted straight away by Colin, and fixed. He was patient and explained things clearly and in simple steps (so I wasn’t too overloaded with information).

The final half an hour was when we put on the protective [High Gear] suits and got a bit rougher. It was the first time I had been in such a situation so I know I didn’t perform as well as I could have, but it was definitely worthwhile to get as close a possible to a real fight situation without being seriously hurt. It’s better to experience the pressure of the fight situation in training, than in the real fight. I left after 6 hours of intensive training feeling confident that I had learnt principles that would alter how I defend myself from that moment onwards (now that’s pretty amazing).

Would I recommend it to anyone? Only to people who want to learn how to defend themselves and their loved ones in a practical, sensible and effective way.


I don’t think any more needs to be said. Saeed’s reaction is quite typical to be honest: significantly increased confidence in one’s own ability after just one session is the norm for anyone attending a Personal Defence Readiness course or seminar.

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