The “Test” According to LtCol Rex Applegate, Hand to Hand Pioneer

Lt.Col. Rex Applegate, the pioneer of Hand to Hand Combat in the United States, had a “test” for a system. His test was this:

“Will this [fighting system] work so that I can use it instinctively in vital combat against an opponent who is determined to prevent me from doing so, and who is striving to eliminate me by fair means or foul”.

Col. Rex Applegate

Col. Rex Applegate (Makes GI Joe his bitch)

It really does NOT matter what style, system, method, or technique you MAY wish to apply to your personal survival training. What DOES matter is, if “whatever” you choose passes the TEST.

This requires HONEST self-appraisal. Forget how you would LIKE the world to be, see it as it really is and look at yourself in the same light.

I’ve learned thousands of techniques over the years. I practice about a dozen (striking and grappling) on a daily basis. I have been ruthless in rejecting ANY technique or method that DOES NOT pass Applegate’s “test”.

We can take a page from combat sports here:

MMA, boxers, wrestlers, and Judokas ALL have that one “Sunday punch”. That one technique that they have drilled and practiced, and drilled and practiced and generally these “techniques” as applied to each specific sport are repeated over and over. Why?
Because these methods have the BEST overall track record of success. There is only one reason you see the same group of techniques over and over again in sport competition: they work. Watch hundreds of MMA, wrestling, judo bjj and boxing bouts and you will see a definitive pattern of decisive winning techniques and they are very few in number.

The same goes for street fighting.

Georges Carpentier was a champion Savateur [French kick boxing] and boxer. He was known for his right hand KO power and technique. He called this punch his “whip punch”. His bread and butter, his Sunday “best”. He said that it took him TEN years of hard work before he felt he really “mastered” this ONE technique!!!!

Georges Carpentier, Savate fighter

Savate fighter, Georges Carpentier…don’t let the hair fool you.

There is a vital fundamental lesson there. It took a professional fighter 10 year to truly perfect one technique. The definition of perfect being that you could use it with satisfactory results the majority of the time.

This is the purpose of the Self Defense Training System ( was to only use techniques and tactics that PASS THE TEST and train them until you find YOUR favorite technique, your Sunday’s Best. Then you learn how to adapt your favorite techniques to any situation.

At the end of the day, it’s not about style, how long you train or how many medals you have, the only thing that matters is will it work against “instinctively in vital combat against an opponent who is determined to prevent me from doing so, and who is striving to eliminate me by fair means or foul”

So the next time you “learn” some technique, put it thru the “test” and be honest about it.

To get started with the most devastating self defense system on the planet, go here:


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