I first met Rob Pincus in 2006 during a magazine writer’s event at the Valhalla Training Center in Colorado. Rob, then Valhalla’s Director of Training, and I immediately hit it off and had many opportunities to discuss our respective approaches toward personal defense training during that week-long event. The more we talked, the more it became apparent that we shared a lot of common ground when it came to practical defensive skills.

After leaving Valhalla and establishing his own company, I.C.E. Training, Rob contacted me and told me about the video series he was producing to be marketed to the NRA. He sent me several of the early videos in the series and I was impressed by both the production quality and the practical, no-nonsense approach of the instruction. Rob explained that the goal of the series was to provide sensible instruction in all aspects of personal defense skills, including the use of contact-distance weapons. He asked if I would be interested in doing videos on the practical use of edged and impact weapons and I jumped at the opportunity.

Practical Blade Defense presents the fundamental logic of the MBC system using a pace and style that I have found ideal for shooters and gun-oriented self-defense proponents. After more than a decade of teaching MBC for a variety of different audiences, I have “tuned” the style of my presentation to suit my audience. I have found that traditional martial artists respond best when taught one way, while eclectic martial artists respond better with a slightly different style. Similarly, shooters, who are used to addressing problems from a comfortable distance, seem to learn best with a specific style of instruction. That’s what Practical Blade Defense provides.

So how does Practical Blade Defense differ from the Martial Blade Concepts video? Mostly in the style and depth of instruction, as well as the use of graphic overlays in illustrating some key points—like angles of attack and zones of defense. Since I edited the latter video personally, I took the time to include those. Martial Blade Concepts also focuses more heavily on reflex training or “flow” drills to provide a platform for skill repetition—something that would appeal to seasoned martial artists more than true novices. Which video should you buy? That depends on your background and physical attributes. The good thing is that both titles provide solid, logical instruction and—you have a choice.