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Col. Cooper's Color Codes of Awareness

White: Unaware and unprepared. If attacked while in this condition the only available action is to react, which could mean that the damage is done. As is stated in the military's officer's school's, and I am paraphrasing, "it can be understandable to be defeated, but to be surprised is unacceptable."Type your paragraph here.


Orange: Condition Orange is any change in the environment that we find ourselves in while in Condition Yellow. Say for instance that someone enters a room we are in. We simply address this change and determine if something need be done. A knock at the door is another way to look at Condition Orange. We immediately analyze the situation, something that we already do, and determine what should be done. If we are driving and we see we have a green light, we see a car approaching perpendicular to us. It only makes good sense that we address it and determine if we must take action to avoid a catastrophe. Same with a self-defense scenario; if our situation changes, do we say "hello" or do we have to potentially act to save our own lives.

Personal Safety Training in Danville

Red: Condition Red is the "flight or fight" response. Notice that I did not add in "freeze" into this condition. Freezing is a response of surprise and entering mentally a condition of a mental loop of analyzing the situation. This condition can stem from a lack of proper training and preparation. In Condition Red is we have seen that change in our environment and we must address it, we must act, if you will. The car approaching is obviously not stopping and we must slam on the brakes in order to avoid a crash. Perhaps at the mall someone has followed someone from store to store. Noticing this, and we notice this person seems intent to make some type of contact, we feel compelled to do something. We may simply say "hey, what do you want?" or maybe something more compelling. In Condition Red, we begin to prepare to fight or flight. "If this person does "this" I am going to respond in "this" matter." It may not all be about being a fight. It may mean that we find an authority figure, or leave the area. Not fighting is always an option if it is still available. If it is the only recourse, please review "Principles of Personal Defense".

Black- The United States Marine Corps uses Condition Black as "being in the fight". We are engaged and some manner of force is being used.

Type your paragraph here.

The Principles of Personal Defense


Jeff Cooper's "Color Codes of Awareness"

White- Unprepared. Left to only react to a lethal encounter.
Yellow- Comfortably aware of ones surroundings. Who is around me and what are they doing?
Orange- A change from our environment. As simple as someone walking into a room you occupy.
Red- That "change" in orange is a problem that must be dealt with.


Selecting a course of action and being prepared to see it to its conclusion.
Following through until the fight is over.
Doing what ever it takes to win, but staying within legal boundaries.


Drive on! Do not accept losing.
Keep fighting until its over. There is always one more thing you can do.


Speed comes through perfect practice.
Whom ever gets there first with the most typically wins.


Developed through both mental and physical perfect preparation.
There is always time to panic AFTER the fight is over. Save it for then. If you panic you simply add complexity to an already complex situation.


Basically meaning to stay on task with no external interference.
"Do unto others before they can do unto you!" JRH


Use the OODA Loop

Observe (Remember the Color Codes above? Use them to see the threat first)
Orient- Move to safety, which could simply be a step to draw, but keep moving and keep fighting.
Decide- If its a problem that must be dealt with, make the decision sooner rather than later.
Act- Act on your plan and follow it through.

Yellow: A relaxed level of alertness. Condition yellow has really nothing to do with a pending attack, or that there is necessarily "going to be trouble". This condition is simply being confident in ones abilities and ability to handle any given situation that may arise. From handling traffic to being in an unfamiliar place, condition yellow simply means that one is aware of who is in the immediate area and what are they doing. Not making assumptions and not rationalizing potential problems into non-existence.

"Attitude certainly puts the "steam" in S.T.E.A.M."