About Us

About Immediate Self Defense

Immediate Self Defense is part of
Martial Arts Academy 武術学院 Bujutsu Gakuin Wushu Xueyuan
Proud to be a 501c3 non-profit corporation serving our community

maa-logoSelf Defense is an incredibly important topic.  Can you imagine if you needed to defend yourself and you did not have the skills to do it?  Even worse if you needed to defend your loved ones and did not have the skills, yes?  What we are trying to do with this website, the book, the videos, and the live training we offer is to give you the edge you need to survive in a real violent encounter.  I looked for years to recommend a self defense book to go along with the workshops I was teaching, however, I never found one that was appropriate for my audience: regular people.  After some time, my students started asking me to write a book, and when I found the appropriate mentor (Raymond Aaron, a New York Times bestselling author, I finally did).

I have found that many well-meaning people teaching self defense are themselves perpetuating myths and non-workable concepts (except perhaps for highly trained individuals, which most common people are not).  It is not malicious, they are just teaching what they have learned, and they do not realize how ineffective those strategies may be for the average person.  What we need is a revolution in understanding based on modern knowledge of adrenaline and stress response.  Immediate Self Defense addresses these concepts, and puts them into simple language and drills that are easy to understand and use.

Young women (under age 25), are especially vulnerable, and suffer more violent crime than other groups.  Our vision is to have a licensed Immediate Self Defense instructor at every college in the United States and beyond.

Our mission as a non-profit is to “Share the Benefits of Martial Arts with Everyone”, and our mission with Immediate Self Defense is to make quality self defense training available to everyone, immediately.  Whether you are a business owner or professional, a teacher or a student, a parent or a coach, you need to learn self defense so you can protect the people you love.


Tony Johnson

About Tony Johnson

I am dedicated to teaching self defense to as many people as possible, because not knowing these skills can change your whole life in an instant.  Self defense isn’t nearly as hard or time consuming to learn as you might think, you should get started immediately!

This website is designed to disseminate my experience to as many people as possible.

However, many of you may prefer to work with me hands on personally.  That’s great!  Hands on personalized training is how I learned everything, and it’s the best way to learn.

My time is extremely valuable, as I am sure yours is too.  I love to work with dedicated people who are eager to learn.  If that’s you, let’s talk.  Don’t worry if you are not in Northern California, I love to travel.  Write me and let’s work it out.

My teacher is Sifu Tim McFarland, an accomplished master of many different arts, especially the 7 Star Praying Mantis Kung Fu System from Shandong Province in China.  He has recently retired, and it has always been his wish that I take everything that he has taught me, and spread it as much as possible to benefit people everywhere.  He has also introduced me, sponsored me, and encouraged me to find the best and most accomplished teachers everywhere.

With his help and encouragement, I have worked with a number of amazing instructors in many arts, including 3 who have been named ‘Intangible Cultural Asset’ by the Emperor of Japan, and my most recent certification was in Qigong (Breathing and Exercises from China) with the Chinese Health Qigong Association, headed by the retired technical director of all martial arts in China.

I have crystallized the sum total of my experience into an easy and accessible method based on what comes naturally to the body’s nervous system under stress.


As a member of the Rotary Club, an organization which believe in ‘Service Above Self’, I’d like to thank you for this opportunity to serve you.  Thank you for trusting me to share my experience with you.  Your time is valuable, so I will always try to be brief and clear.

Tony’s Qualifications (Selected CV)

  • Over 20 years of Martial Arts study
  • Over 10 years teaching full time
  • Certified 4th degree black belt with USA Karate
  • United States Olympic Committee Safesport Certified
  • February 2010 – Shaolin Temple Martial Educators Award
  • August 2009 – ICMAC International Chinese Martial Arts Judge
  • January 2004 – Senior Instructor, Chinese Athletic Arts Academy
  • December 2002 – Official Judge, USA Wushu Kung Fu Federation
  • April 2002 – Certified Instructor, 7-Star Praying Mantis Kung Fu System
  • April 2001 – Instructor of Yang Tai Chi Chuan