This last weekend was spent down at Crossfit Rubicon attending the Personal Defense Readiness (PDR) 28 Instructor Certification Course, and it was quite the weekend. It would be near impossible for me to attempt to describe everything that was covered during the 2 and a half days spent in the course, but I’ll share some of my thoughts.
First was the wide variety of people attending the course. You had people from a civilian background through law enforcement and the military present. You had some like myself where this was their first time attending the course to some that attended the very first PDR course. This in itself says something about the program. How many courses are there that you have people returning multiple times? I should add that part of the reason is that this isn’t a static program, it is a continuously evolving program. You also had people from various backgrounds in the martial arts; Karate, Muay Thai, and many other martial arts.
Tony Blauer, founder of the PDR program, was the main speaker during the course. Listening to Tony speak it is easy to tell that he is passionate about the program. Tony covered the history of the program and the tenets of the PDR program. To sum this up briefly all I can is my brain is still processing all of the information covered. Even the day after the program I woke up with thoughts of materials and drills covered going through my head. Not to leave people out, but I’m probably am, Tony was assisted by Jason Dury and Eric Walker during the course.
Besides lectures we also had some drills we we taught, and later on had to teach to the rest of the class. These weren’t secret ninja techniques designed to stop a mob of angry attackers with one move, but rather drills used to teach the principles of the SPEAR system. The SPEAR System is the building block for the PDR program, and the easiest way for me to cover this subject is to point people towards Tony’s website on the SPEAR System. What was nice during the drills is we were able to work with returning instructors that offered us tips and constructive criticism on how to improve ourselves. This was helpful during the teaching mode where first we worked one-on-one with a experienced instructor and then teach one of the concepts to the entire group. Mistakes were made by all of us new to the system, but the environment was a friendly and helpful one in helping us out.
At the end of the last day we were treated to a speech from Kyle Maynard. This was the second time I’ve heard Kyle speak and if you ever get a chance to hear him speak I would highly suggest you take advantage of the opportunity. Kyle has an incredible story to tell and a great inspirational speaker too. I enjoyed how Kyle was able to tie in his life experiences to those we had this weekend at the PDR course.
Overall it was a great experience. Had a chance to meet people I’ve seen before, meet people I’ve only talked to online before, as well as meet totally new people. It was interesting talking to some of the other new people and hearing why they were at the course. Even in this area there was a wide variety of reasons. I know I didn’t absorb everything covered this weekend, hopefully my notes will fill in some of the gaps. I look forward to attending another PDR course.