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Born to Be a Badass

Mar 30, 2020

Lisa Abbott started in the martial arts in 1982 in a traditional system that was rooted in Kyokushin. The dojo that she trained in as a brown belt was in a nearby town and she was encouraged to open up a branch of that school. She and her husband built a school on their property in 1990. After 20 years with that school, she left the traditional program, realizing that it was incomplete as far as self-defense is concerned. She began searching for somebody to learn from and received her first self-defense instructor certification from Phil Messina of Modern Warrior Defensive Tactics in Long Island, New York. He recommended books by Rory Miller, and after reading Meditations On Violence, she started training with Rory in 2010.She has been teaching Self Defense seminars since 2004.


In this episode, Lisa and I discuss:

  • How martial arts gave Lisa a grounding point and an outlet for dealing with pain.
  • The gaps that needed to be filled in between martial arts and self-defense.
  • The importance of trusting your “bad feelings”.
  • Uncovering myths and bad tips about personal self-defense.


Key Takeaways:

  • Women are not attacked in the same way as men, so self-defense needs are different. 
  • Be aware of not only what to look for, but how to see things that are not quite right.
  • It’s about having the skills to de-escalate or to change the dynamics of a situation.
  • There are many helpful tools and tips out there, but the key is to have an arsenal to use when you need them.


"Part of the difference between martial arts and self-defense is absolutely the alpha skills – the listening to your intuition, the training of us females to be able to stand up for ourselves in more than just the physical realm." —  Lisa Abbott


Connect with Lisa Abbott:







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