Defendo is truly Canada’s only martial art. Underwood created Defendo, which includes fast joint locking, compliance and escort techniques, as a defensive system for law enforcement that could be learned and applied quickly. In addition to its law enforcement and intelligence applications, Defendo quickly became a unique and improved system of self protection for civilians.

Defendo is a martial art and self defense system created in 1945 for law enforcement by Bill Underwood, a British born Canadian. Underwood was originally the creator of Combato a “non-boxing or wrestling” unarmed combat system which he taught in Montreal, Quebec.

Older than many ‘traditional’ martial arts styles, Defendo is the one and only original system that has been foundation of all modern westren Close Quarter Battle for more than 70 years. If you are looking for the last word in Hand-to-Hand combat and Street Proven Self Defense, used by the world’s most highly trained professionals for decades, then look no further.

Combato had its beginning in the Liverpool theatres with jiu jitsu demonstrations of traveling Japanese wrestlers, Yukio Tani and Taro Miyake. As a boy, Underwood idolized these experts, rapidly establishing himself as a prodigy. The name “Defendo” was created on August 15, 1945 in New York City by Pat Underwood, the daughter of Bill Underwood.

Underwood at the time was a quest in the United States training U.S. Army Rangers and for the American FBI in unarmed combat. Bill Underwood was recently requested by American and Canadian Law Enforcement Agencies to teach them his Combato system as the War was officially over but he initially refused on the basis that Combato was too aggressive.

Underwood was asked to modify his system to remove its lethal applications and focus on the Law Enforcement applications of self-defense, compliance and control tactics. He realized that he could not call this system Combato, so his daughter Pat Underwood proposed that he call the system “Defendo”.

From 1945 to 1950 Underwood began to teach his developing self-defense system in Canada and the USA under this name. In 1950 Bill Underwood published under copyright “Defendo, Police System of Self-Defense”. This book became one of the first open-hand Police Tactics manuals for many Police Departments in Canada and the United States. From 1950 to 1969 Underwood travelled in Canada, the United States and in the UK (1965) teaching his system. In 1969 Canada, under copyright Bill Underwood published “Defendo, Occidental System of Self-Protection”.

From 1969 to his death on February 8, 1986 in Newmarket, Ontario Canada Underwood was well known for his system and honoured and profiled frequently by the North American media. In 1980 a short documentary on Underwood’s life and work with Combato and Defendo titled Don’t Mess With Bill was nominated for an Oscar at the 53rd Academy Awards in 1981.

Between 1980 and 1981 Underwood appeared 4 times on the Johnny Carson Show. He also appeared at that time on all of Hollywood’s major talk shows including Real People, That’s Incredible, Merv Griffin etc… on all occasions promoting and teaching his system of Defendo. Combatives

Modern Defendo teaches it’s members to survive real world violence using a combat proven system of physical, tactical, and mental techniques unequaled anywhere. The physical side of our training consists of specific “BRICKS” (BATTLE proven, REACTION for, INSTINCTIVE, CONTROL or, KILL) or modules which integrate to form the world’s most complete and realistic CQB system. The system is scientifically based on proven concepts of real combat, together with universal principles of physics, biomechanics, physiology and psychology. Thus providing our members with the most realistic skill set to effectively deal with real world violence.

Modern Defendo’s physical techniques use simple sets of universal principles consistent throughout the training, creating a seamless integration between individual”BRICKS” . Whether you’re standing or on the ground, being attacked from the front or ambushed from the rear, facing a knife or a stick, the core concepts remain the same. This consistency makes the system quick and easy to learn, and more importantly, easy to remember. This type of training has made it possible for the world’s elite military units to produce highly skilled individuals in relatively short periods of time for more than 70 years.