Improve Your Balance, Looseness, Reflexes & Coordination


Example: Guided Chaos' Unique Use of a Cane for Saving Your Life

"Guided Chaos is one of a select few martial arts and/or sports that you can actually get better at with age."

► Doug Fioranelli, Head Trainer, Masters in Kinesiology and Certified Fascial Stretch Specialist

Guided Chaos offers unique advantages for seniors. In fact, more than most martial arts training systems, Guided Chaos is practically tailor-made to the needs of senior citizens.


Guided Chaos focuses on improving four basic principles in the student: Balance, Looseness, Body Unity and Sensitivity. Beyond their martial application, these principles, properly trained, can help improve quality of life into advanced age. Balance and internal sensitivity (proprioception) often degrade due to physical changes in the body and natural neuropathy. Training to improve these has yielded excellent results in older students, slowing and even reversing the onset of age-related deficits in these areas. Improved balance reduces the likelihood of stumbles and falls, which are major risks as people age. Guided Chaos training related to looseness, sensitivity and posture may counteract age-related decline in movement, reflexes and coordination.


Because Guided Chaos focuses on principles rather than techniques or movements, the student is never asked to do anything that is not natural and safe for his or her body. Many martial arts training systems emphasize complex athletic movements requiring prodigious flexibility and explosiveness. Even Tai Chi forms practice requires positions and movements that may not be safe or natural for all people. Guided Chaos asks the student to execute only movements that are natural and comfortable for the student’s body, and imbue that natural movement with improved balance, looseness, body unity and sensitivity. This yields a greatly reduced risk of injury and discomfort, an  increasing concern with advancing age.


Training systems that force a student to memorize lots of complex, unnatural movements necessitate a long time in training before any improved combative capabilities are realized, if they ever are. Not everyone has time for this, especially as we get older and become more attractive targets for criminals. Guided Chaos training shortens the learning curve substantially. The initial training teaches proven strategy, tactics and a few simple movements to drastically improve anyone’s combative ability. From there, Guided Chaos Contact Flow practice trains the student to spontaneously improvise in combat to adapt to changing circumstances based on the individual student’s natural capabilities and proclivities.


Because Guided Chaos training enhances combative ability through practice and understanding of the principles, rather than through strength, speed or flexibility, it is common for older, wiser, less ego-driven individuals to actually make greater progress, faster, than younger, more athletic people. This often comes as a pleasant surprise for older students who had previously assumed that advancing age meant slower and less complete learning of new skills . . . and a rude awakening to younger people who had assumed that their youth and vigor would always give them the upper hand!


The primary exercise in Guided Chaos, called Contact Flow, is a fun social activity that asks the student to be sensitive to and aware of himself and others while moving in a spontaneously creative, non-repetitive way. This intense social awareness and creativity can greatly improve the quality of life of seniors, while possibly improving brain function and delaying decline.

"Because Guided Chaos training enhances combative ability through practice and understanding of the principles, rather than through strength, speed or flexibility, it is common for older, wiser, less ego-driven individuals to actually make greater progress, faster, than younger, more athletic people. "

►Ari Kandel, Guided Chaos 4th degree,

Boca Raton Real World Self-defense and Internal Martial Arts

"Guided Chaos fosters flowing, responsive movement that can best serve our needs in an altercation. The bonus is, this kind of physical activity is just plain healthy and enjoyable to the part of us that still has not forgotten our connection with nature."


As a practitioner of advanced healing arts for over 4 decades (Structural Integration - Rolfing) - a deep hands-on body therapy, study, research and experimentation with very high-end nutritional supplements, AND years of physical conditioning, my orientation is toward excellent self-care protocols.


In the last few years, it became quite evident that while I have well-developed knowledge on how to achieve and maintain vitality, my ideas about self-protection were pure fantasy. I realized I was going to have to add something very important that was missing in my health protocol.


For years, the idea that I could save my life or that of a beloved by some heroic action in the face of an attack provided false comfort. Some serious research convinced me that the reality is that I needed to equip myself with proven knowledge and training in this regard. This spurred me on to find ways to tip the odds in my favor.


Serendipitously, I stumbled across the Guided Chaos site while doing some research on Werner Erhard, famed for creating the EST training back in the 70's. Werner was a controversial figure, his success attracting the ire of Scientologists and others who wanted to destroy him. When he learned that a killer was stalking him, he hired John Perkins to oversee his protection. I landed on while investigating this.


Curious, I began reading an article about myths of self-protection on the site, and in about 5 minutes, my heroic fantasies were roundly decimated. Because I am the kind of person who wants above all to know truth, however painful that might be, I read on.


My experience in the supplement field has shown me that there are many outright scams and even more low to mediocre products. I found that companies of rock-solid integrity and quality are VERY rare - in my experience they are a small percent of 1% of supplement companies out there. I assume this is true in most areas of interest, with martial arts being no exception. Because of this, I have a feel for what is the real deal. That's why I kept coming back to look at the Guided Chaos site.


Once I started checking out their video clips, I began to feel an irresistable pull to meet and study with Grandmaster John Perkins and Lt. Col Al Ridenhour. The harmonious, unscripted, effective way of moving I saw in those videos was very much in harmony with advanced principles I had learned in my career as a body therapist.


Elmsford NY is 4 hrs distant from home. In early Spring 2018 drove there with my husband for a 2 hr private lesson with Al. The trip proved so worthwhile, I was bound to repeat it. I was amazed at how far we got in our very first lesson with Al, even including some Contact Flow, which I had thought would not happen until later. Al is a great teacher; his enthusiasm ignites our energy, and he is fabulous at explaining and teaching the work. The bonus was, my husband and I had a profoundly great time!

I decided if 2 hrs with Al was that great, I also had to take a group class with John.  I booked a private session with Al right after the group class, and that has been my practice since then. It's like a mini-seminar and makes 8 hrs driving well worthwhile. My husband accompanies me about half the time and we both are very impressed with the refinement of knowledge these teachers have not only about self-defense but about physiology and how our bodies and nervous system need to function for maximum advantage.


The students in the group class are a testament to the skill of the teachers - doing Contact Flow with the students is also a delightful learning experience. What makes the drive even more worthwhile is right from the beginning my husband and I felt quite at home, part of a group of terrific people - with great camaraderie and more than a few laughs as well. Our first time in the group class, John took us in hand for some individual work.


As of this writing, I have done 5 lessons with Al and 4 group classes with John. The group classes are very valuable, as we get to do Contact Flow with a variety of people, mostly men and mostly more experienced.


One of the things I most love about Guided Chaos training is that it always leaves me feeling more vibrant, aware and alive. Al says that we are developing the part of the nervous system that responds even before the brain registers that an emergency response is needed - like when you jam your foot on the brake and turn the wheel even before your brain registers that a car has suddenly swerved into your path.


After the very first lesson with Al, I noticed how much more sensitivity, awareness and responsiveness I gained. Definitely felt a new shift in nervous system functioning! Immersing myself in the training and philosophy of Guided Chaos has already given me a host of benefits listed below - despite the fact that I am very new to it.


I practice much more awareness of my surroundings, even, and especially in everyday familiar places. Intelligent awareness drastically reduces the possibility of being attacked. As Lt Col Al Ridenhour said in the first lesson; 'Don't let that shit happen to begin with!' Makes a lot of sense!


► I find that out on the street, I can be relaxed, yet still observe what's happening around me with a better feel for people and situations. Situational awareness is 90% of self-protection.


My balance and ability to regain my footing has dramatically improved (this comes with practicing many of the unique (and enjoyable) Combat Conditioning Exercises. I highly recommend getting the Combat Conditioning video, which makes it very easy to practice at home or at the gym.


My physical conditioning and coordination are better through practicing the exercises at home and doing the Guided Chaos training at Elmsford.


Not the least, as a person who has rarely been in physical altercations with anyone, I am becoming familiar with and gaining confidence in hand-to-hand combat. Getting acclimated to skillfully moving in on an opponent and finding openings is a new and empowering experience.


Another wonderful thing about the classes - the can-do attitude of the teachers and more senior students is empowering. Rather than instilling fear and suspicion, there is the message that yes, you CAN fight if need be!


I really like the practicality of Guided Chaos. Other methods focus on formulaic sequences and students competing against other students for the glory of 'winning.' Engaging in contests and being judged feels too superficial (and stressful). I didn't like the idea of that and also had friends who got smashed noses etc. because poorly prepared students were going full force. The best possible preparation for the unexpected and the dangerous is the purpose of Guided Chaos. Effectiveness is what I want for martial arts training - not a theatrical display.


Another thing that put me off other martial arts was the need for high kicks and extreme, regimented moves that tighten and strain the body rather than allowing for the unscripted adaptive flow needed in a real situation.


Ellen L., Certified Advanced Rolfer / Health Coach

"GC offers in my opinion a unique and fun way to help seniors develop feelings of self perceived competence, a higher level of situational awareness, and a general well-being both physical and emotional."

Dr. Jan Bloem


Dr. Jan Bloem is one of Europe's leading authorities on martial arts, teaching military and police special operations units; also a forensic expert on physical violence.

"When it comes to the benefits of GC principles for this specific age group for me it is not about the impact or promotion of physical competence when it comes to self defense. For me the true power of GC in this context is the fact that it offers the possibility to enforce the development of both situational and personal awareness. For seniors it is all about prevention and for me awareness is directly connected to this. But this is just one of the things GC is able to offer.


GC principles offer the opportunity to (re) gain trust in one's body, something which is very important at a stage in life where one has to deal with the fact that the body doesn't move anymore like a 20 year old. And although this is true, the body of a senior is still able to develop loose, balanced strength and flexibility but it has to be challenged in a different but more correct way. Different when compared to the way a 20 year old would develop it.


(Dr. Jan Bloem is a human movement and behavioral scientist as well as one of Europe's leading authorities on martial arts, teaching special operations units from both police and military. He is also a forensic expert on physical violence.)

"For me, Guided Chaos is a Battery Booster..."

Matt Kovsky, Guided Chaos Master

"I'm 61 years old and have an extremely stressful day job in live TV News. Even if I'm exhausted both physically and mentally, doing the unique Guided Chaos energy drill Contact Flow never fails to simultaneously relax me and give me an energy boost. How is this so? Why doesn't it drain me further?


► It uses waves of energy generated by alignment, core muscles and the plyometric nature of tendons, augmented by gravity and not gross muscular exertion.

► The relaxation and looseness required relieves stress.

► The free-form creative mind state required for adaptive physical improvisation somehow taps an otherwise inaccessible energy reserve. You just can't get the same results from doing patterned movements such as forms.

► "Listening" via tactile sensitivity to another person's movements and absorbing his strikes not only quiets the noisy, static-filled, judgmental "monkey" mind--but I could swear I'm also absorbing the other person's energy into my own depleted reservoir.

► It's fun!"


Best Guided Chaos DVDS/Downloads for Seniors:

Combat Conditioning

Despite its scary sounding name, this DVD/ Download contains unique GC drills that develop your balance, looseness, coordination, reflexes and sensitivity. Most of them are either easy to do or can be ramped down as necessary.

The Attackproof Companion Part 1

(Companion to our best-selling book "Attack Proof")

The most important parts of this DVD/Download teach you about AWARENESS which is your Number One strategy for avoiding violence in the first place. Also recommended: "How to Fight for Your Life"