1. When and how did you start training in the Self-defense/Martial Arts/Fitness Industries?
I am not the product of the Martial Arts / Fitness Industry. My experience comes directly from Law Enforcement. I have been an officer / administrator in the field for the past 37 years. My experience not only includes being an officer, but also a trainer for the various agencies I have worked for. In addition, I teach at numerous police academies, which has fine-tuned my skills in the ability to educate others. Law Enforcement officers are required to do continuing education and many of those classes have involved self-defense skills.
I became a C.O.B.R.A. instructor as a result of my wife being an Independent Rep for Damsel in Defense. She found that her customers not only wanted the Damsel products, but they were asking for education and training beyond what she could offer. I would accompany her to vendor events and when customers started asking the “what should I do when” questions, she would turn them over to me to answer their questions. After observing what training and knowledge people were desperately seeking, she realized there was a need for basic self -defense training. She did quite a bit of research, and comparisons of numerous programs, and found that C.O.B.R.A, was the best program available that would give people the type of education and training they were looking for.
2. How has C.O.B.R.A. added value to your training/business?
The program that Chris has developed really does come from the police world. In our profession, we are taught to use pressure points, holds and releases, strikes, gun and knife drills, and ground fighting, just to name a few. Interacting with individuals on the street on a daily basis, with that being the public or the bad guy, gives me even more passion to make my students aware of the dangers of failing to be mindful of potential dangerous situations. One thing I share with my students at the beginning of all my classes is the local crimes / scams that are happening in our area and we discuss how to avoid being another crime victim of these local crimes.
3. What are your training/business goals for the next 3 years?
I have just reached a business goal I had been working on. I just completed the process of getting the Real Estate Agent training CEU certified in Ohio. The next phase of this goal is to kick this training into high gear.
Although I have always offered the Real Estate Agent training, sadly, I found that attending a non-CEU class was not high on agent’s priority lists. Already, I have found that their interest changes radically when they have the opportunity to early CEU’s to keep their licenses active. I would like to thank Mark McKay for his guidance and assistance to me to get this process started, and now, completed.
The next industry I have targeted to earn CEU credits is the Massage Therapy Association of Ohio, thus opening up another at risk profession that I can train to stay safe in the realm of their daily work activities.
4. What do you enjoy most about being a Self-Defense Instructor?
I enjoy seeing the students walk away much more prepared and confident then when they walk in at the start of the class. I especially love the feedback that I receive when I ask them if they feel that they have learned something that will keep them safe in the future.
5. If you only had 5 minutes to train someone what would be the most valuable survival skills you would teach them?
In my classes, I hit social media pretty hard. When they register, armed with their names and approximate ages, I do some research / stalking on social media. I will read a statement or description and tell them that if that applies to them to please stand. I continue on with additional statements and some will remain standing and others will sit. By the end of the game I have only one person who has continued standing. As a result of this “game”, we have all learned a lot about that person, which has all been discovered through social media, and only social media. There are a lot of shocked faces by the end of this demonstration. It is a very powerful example of how social media makes each one of us vulnerable. I believe that making people aware of this vulnerability is critically important to their survival in today’s world.
6. Describe your school, its location and all the programs you/your staff teach.
I currently work out of a studio that I have set up in my home. I have found that I am at a slight disadvantage by not having a visible store front. It has been much harder to promote my business and product, but with a little creativity and with word of mouth referrals, my business is growing. I have also taken my classes on the road for different groups such as Girl Scouts, Blue Star Mothers of America, and the Ohio State University Extension Office. Up to this point, my biggest focus has been on doing the Teen and Ladies Night Out classes as a way of promoting my business.
7. If someone interested in joining as a C.O.B.R.A. Instructor/School what would you tell them?
Just recently I was asked this question at an Outdoor Sportsman’s event that I held three - one hour training sessions in. Originally, I was concerned that the one hour sessions would not be sufficient enough to train or showcase C.O.B.R.A., However, even in that short time span, I was approached by a gentleman who wanted to know how he could become an instructor. I relayed my story to him as to how I got started and explained the process of becoming certified. One of the things I stressed with him, was the support that not only Chris and Mark provide, but the support and knowledge that other owners share as well.
To Contact COBRA-Defense Mentor Ohio / Dave Frank:
Phone # 440-463-5022
Social Media: COBRA Mentor
Website: COBRA Mentor