We recently picked up a tactical pen as a souvenir from our trip to Zero Tolerance's Oregon headquarters. This billet aluminum pen makes for a great writing utensil, but its true purpose is that of a self-defense tool. Like any other tool, it only becomes useful when you know the proper technique — swinging it wildly isn't nearly as effective as directed strikes against an attacker. So, we started researching some of the techniques for using a tactical pen for self-defense.
In our search for tactical pen usage tips, we came across a video series from none other than our friend and magazine contributor Michael D. Janich. Michael is a martial arts expert, with more than 35 years of experience with hand-to-hand combat and weapon-aided self-defense. He partnered with Stay Safe Media to produce the two-part video series titled “Focused Impact: A Practical Course in Self-Defense with Tactical Pens”.
These videos — Volume 1 and Volume 2 — have a total run time of over 2.5 hours, but short previews are available on YouTube. Even in these preview videos, it's possible to learn quite a bit about the tactics behind tactical pens. In the first 12-minute preview segment, Michael discusses the definition of a tactical pen, why he carries one, and demonstrates some basic strikes:
As stated in the video above, the obvious advantage to a tactical pen is the ability to carry it in almost any environment. When you're unable to carry a concealed handgun or knife, a tactical pen can be an invaluable resource for defending yourself. In the second video segment, Michael shows off some more advanced methods for using a tactical pen for self-defense. These include facing off against armed attackers, and using your pen while pinned on the ground.