I teach a seminar called “Cheating”. My colleagues like to call it “Cheating with Tammy” because the innuendo throws rocks at political correctness…and it’s a little funny.

The seminar has a short version and a long version and a more global – less click-bait – title would be Intelligent Self-Defense. I’m running a short version of this seminar in Natick Mass at Metrowest Academy on May 17th and combining it with applying structure the “Intelligent…” title made the most sense.


Cheating as a title is intentionally psychologically provocative. It gets reactions. I keep the title and we use the title when it’s part of the Violence Dynamics events because it goes to the opening series of questions I ask:

  1. Who thinks cheating on your partner is a good idea?
  2. Who is comfortable cheating the elderly out of their remaining life savings?
  3. Who’s cheated on a test?   …. Did you feel a little bad or awkward about it?

All hands in the room go up across the 3 questions. Culturally, we have a hard rule about cheating. It’s bad. Don’t do it. You are a bad person, or at least an immoral one if you cheat.

And when it comes to self-defense situations, getting yourself to safety, you may be required to violate every “good guy” rule you have ever been taught.

It’s easy to say  –  entirely another thing altogether when you are up against it, adrenalized, confused and maybe hurt. The “good guy” rules run deep. Even the founder of Krav Maga, Imi Lichtenfeld, insisted Krav practitioners be upstanding folks, and Krav likes to advertise as brutally efficient. If it’s brutally efficient, it bypasses all the good-guy rules. Krav by itself has its own set of rules, and there may be a point where you may have to violate even the “Krav rules”…Can you? Will you?

“Whatever it takes” (yup, I’m an Avenger’s nerd) – is empowering to say. It requires an unprecedented commitment to your own survival, however, to follow through. We cheat all the time at Kore. We believe it is an essential skillset. Is it really CHEATING then? Come play – you decide.