When I was in the military, an important principle was securing your perimeter. This made it more difficult for an enemy to sneak in and surprise attack from the inside. A secure perimeter kept the enemy at bay, and hopefully combined with good defense never allowed the enemy to enter. That is essentially what The Fence: The Art Of Protection by Geoff Thompson is about. Thompson secures his perimeter by creating what he calls a fence between himself and a would be attacker. This fence allows one to defend when needed.
This is one of Thompson’s thin books, with only 96 pages, some of which contain pictures. So it is a quick read. That doesn’t negate the importance of the concept he teaches. He and many others have used the concept of “The Fence” to effectively protect themselves on numerous occasions. The book is definitely worth a read, and the principle of putting a fence between you and aggressors is a good one to follow.
The principle or concept is explained and different ways of actually performing it (dependent on situations) are illustrated. Thompson then has a chapter on how to knock someone out. Besides hitting really hard (Thompson uses a bit more colorful language choice), Thompson shows the better target to hit to achieve the desired knock out blow. He then discusses some various ways to attack from the fence position. These include punching, other uses of the hands, kicks (he says they are better after the guy is down and not from the fence), elbows, and headbutts, with the punches seeming to be Thompson’s preferred method of attacking and knocking a person out from the fence position.
The next seven very short chapters are examples from how different people have used this concept and the way they did so. He then briefly mentions kicking from the fence again, and choking from the fence before the short conclusion. According to Thompson, if you make the fence your own with diligent practice, you will be a lot safer when violence comes a calling. I agree, this concept can help you stay safe when faced with violence.
Again, it’s a quick book to read, but a good concept to learn and incorporate into your training. Americans might find some of the language a bit different as Thompson is from the U.K., but I’m sure those in the U.K. find our American use of English a bit strange at times too.
Overall, a good introduction to the fence principle and a good addition to anyone’s self-defense library.