Brian Kagen pick: “Alpha Male v Predatory Threat”

“I’ve seen a lot of conflicting theories and approaches for a whole range of ‘attacks’ somebody may use. It seems that there is a different counter required for every possible technique an attacker may come at us with! If this were true, it would make the area of Self Protection a very complicated field… Luckily, there ARE some smart people out there who simplify things and make them more likely to succeed under pressure.”

Brian Kagen is an avid web researcher with a particular interest in martial arts. His training background includes both judo and aikido. He has contributed hundreds of article links over the years for AJ readers.

Click here to read entire article.


  1. There is a third, The protector or warrior or T cell. He exists to keep these other two in line. That’s a science that devolves into strategy and preconditioned response when it comes to the crunch.

    You can’t fight from ideas, only real ability. Hence training the variables. Training variables is not for purposes of intellectually remembering anything, but for gaining experience in simplicity.

  2. bruce baker says:

    Whatever happened to the sheep dog who protects the weak? Yeah, the sheep dog who is among the sheep and is the warrior because of some type of training, or the parent/ elder who gets between trouble or danger despite the fear they feel.

    Some of these are articles are so one dimensional!!

    Sometimes we jump between danger and those endangered with no thought of alpha male or predatory threat to ourselves and it is the a completely different situation.

    There are many situations where strategy is overturned by pure instinctual emotion. Nothing is simple. We try to simplify the complicated because it i easier for our minds to comprehend.

    My question is …. will you be confused by over-thinking or will you have trained to sufficiently think-out the complicated as you respond in a proper manner to what MUST be done?

    Did you try to gain some skills and familiarity with the possible scenarios that might present themselves at some future date and time by training in various martial disciplines like … for instance … aikido?

  3. There is a level of gaining technical skill. If you train hard, eventually you acquire those skills. That is, technique comes pretty much automatically. The general committing an army doesn’t (or shouldn’t) have to worry about the soldiers knowing how to shoot. At any instant good generalship is committing the forces at your disposal effectively. Aikido is a high-risk/high reward strategy. Think Patton. For better or worse, there’s no Eisenhower to restrain you. If you haven’t walked into a punch yet, you might want to look at your training system.

  4. Hi there,

    Thank you all for taking the time to read my post on Alpha Male v Predatory behaviour.

    Yes, the post does try to simplify things into just two types of threat. That is all. Another website I read, Hoplology, goes into this area in much more detail. You can check it out at


    There are other types of people such as the sheep dog, which is the idea popularised by Dave Grossman and it is a good one. However, the sheep dog is not a threat, he is an ally. The post was about threats. We do not really need to concern ourselves with the sheep dog.

    It was my attempt with the post to try and simplify things as I feel that sometimes we overcomplicate things for ourselves and sometimes give the ‘bad guys’ too much credit. At the end of the day, one type of attacker is a bully and one is a coward. By understanding this we can better detect a threat before it becomes physical and avoid it altogether.

    Like Sun Tzu said, “to have 100 victories in 100 battles is not the highest skill, to subdue the enemy without fighting is the highest skill”.

    An Alpha Male needs to be dealt with in a different way than a Predator. What works for one may antagonise the other. By identifying a threat early, we can deal with it appropriately. Before it comes to blows.


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