Company: Panther Productions
Name: Combat Shotokan, Self Defense Techniques
Tape Cost: listed at $49.95 in catalog
Length of Tape/Time: 56 minutes
Number of Moves/Techniques: 54
Return Policy: defective merchandise only
Experiences in dealing with this company: very polite and friendly
Instructor: Arthur Cohen
Company's Address: Panther Productions, 1010 Calle Negocio, San Clemente, CA. 92673
Company's Phone Number: 800-332-4442
Web Page: Century purchased Panther's entire library

Primary Grading Criteria:

1. Production/Tape Quality: 10
2. Instructors demonstrated skill level: 9
3. Comprehension Score/Immediate Understanding: 10
4. Degree to which this will make someone a better Martial Artist: 9
5. Score on delivery vs hype: 10
6. Degree to which we would recommend this product: 10
7. Wasted Time ( The higher the number, the less " fluff" /repetition ): 9
8. Playback Score/Watching if over-and-over again: 9
9. Would I purchase more of this company's products:10
10. Overall grade based on cost vs. Value: 9

Grand Total: 95 % ( Good = 3.75 Stars ) Original Grade = 95%

Secondary Grading Criteria:

1. Beginners benefit: Very Good
2. Intermediate benefit: Good
3. Advanced benefit: Good
4. Time to benefit: Immediate
5. The need to buy additional tapes to understand this one: None

Written Summary:

This video was a pleasant surprise. Based on the title I expected to see a lot of hard style karate with horse stances and kia's. What I didn't expect to see were a lot of practical self defense techniques and advice, which is precisely what I found. In this video there are 54 different techniques shown, and in my opinion, most had the potential to be extremely street effective. Mr. Farkas emphasizes over and over that it is his belief that any technique used on the street must be powerful enough to take out an opponent of any size. Power, power, and more power is his motto. The uke Mr. Farkas used reacted realisticly to each of the techniques demonstrated. Thereby providing a unique and refreshing degree of realism regarding the potential effectiveness of the techniques shown.

The video shows defenses against front and rear chokes, various two handed grabs, single and double rear arm bars, front and rear bear hugs, headlocks, single hand grabs, various punches and punching combinations, different kicking attacks, and even a few weapons defenses. Something that really stood out in this video was its demonstration of how to practically apply a spinning back kick against a punch. Also there was some unique and great advice on pulling an opponent's hair. A great deal of effective street fighting advice was mentioned and shown concerning the use of surprise and misdirection to thwart an opponent's attack. In addition, there was an excellent segment on defending against various kicking attacks. There was a lot of great stuff, and I would almost wager that some of the techniques shown will not have been seen by even some experienced martial artists.

The only reason I didn't rate this video higher is because I felt some of the knife defenses shown were EXTREMELY dangerous, and if used against an opponent that's moderately skilled with a knife, could get a person seriously hurt. In regards to those techniques, I would recommend that if they're the only ones you know, or see, they only be used against a knife weilding opponent that's very slow, inexperienced, or drunk. Even then, there may be a high degree of risk as to how effective they'll be, and whether or not you'll be able to walk away from the situation afterwards. Note: There are many videos on knife fighting that provide much better techniques, and I would recommend looking to them for your knife defense. This video scored as it did due to it being "packed" with street effective techniques, minus the knife defense portion mentioned above, which was a small and minor portion of the tape.

We would recommend this video for beginning to intermediate martial artists because of the simple yet powerful techniques shown. Most should be able to improve their street arsenal greatly by studying this video carefully.


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