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Scaling Force: Dynamic Decision Making Under Threat of Violence

4.41  ·  Rating Details  ·  95 Ratings  ·  20 Reviews
Bronze Winner 2013 eLit AwardsFinalist 2013 Next Generation Indie Books AwardFinalist 2013 Book of the Year Award by ForeWord MagazineConflict and violence cover a broad range of behaviors, from intimidation to murder, and they require an equally broad range of responses. A kind word will not resolve all situations, nor will wristlocks, punches or even a gun. In Scaling Fo ...more
Paperback, 342 pages
Published October 16th 2012 by YMAA Publication Center (first published October 1st 2012)
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Bert Edens
From my book review blog at:

I was provided a copy of this book by YMAA Publication Center for the purposes of reading and reviewing the book. While it was provided to me at no cost, I am under no obligation to give a positive review.

That said, go out and buy this book. Now.

Unless you live in a bubble and never interact with others, which not likely the case if you're reading this blog, you have the opportunity of interacting with others in a potentially vi
Rob Robideau
Jun 01, 2013 Rob Robideau rated it it was amazing
Chock-Full of Practical, Eye-Opening Advice

Don't read this book if you are looking to extend your fantasy of glorious, heroic, movie-like violence because this book and its experienced authors will blow a gaping hole in the side of that ship.

I picked up this book because I saw Rory Miller's name on it, but I almost gave up on the book half-way through reading the first forward which I found to be overly braggadocious and unnecessarily crude.

I am certainly glad that I hung on and persevered! The
Theo Karner
Apr 09, 2013 Theo Karner rated it it was amazing

An excellent book that I would recommend for anyone in security or self defence, or looking to become a more 'complete' martial artist or fighter.

Rory does an excellent job outlining what violence is, the types of violence you may encounter, and the levels of force that can be used (the majority of the book covers the levels of force). He outlines legal issues you should consider and also gets you to think hard about what your actions would mean from a physical, mental, and legal point of view
Kimberly Gallagher
Jan 28, 2013 Kimberly Gallagher rated it really liked it
Rory Miller is a well rounded expert on the subject of self defense. Scaling Force is a great read with a wealth of useful, practical, and realistic information. He emphasizes the importance of understanding the brutal reality of violence and how it can affect you in an attack, from freezing up to the over application of force. I felt that there were many parallels between this book and his other book, Facing Violence (which I preferred more), though both books address important points not inclu ...more
Feb 06, 2015 Raven rated it really liked it
ObDisclaimer: I know the author, not on a "personal friend" level, but I have gone to several of his seminars. So weigh that in your opinion of my opinion. [grin]

I have enthusiastically recommended some of Miller's earlier books for people who are looking for a self-defense primer. They're not meant to teach you how to fight, but they are meant to help you spot, avoid, and tailor your response to the signs of trouble. This book is also not meant to teach you how to fight, but it's one I'll be re
Joyce Reynolds-Ward
Dec 22, 2012 Joyce Reynolds-Ward rated it it was amazing
Excellent, pragmatic, and quite good assessment of the dynamics of making self-defensive decisions at all levels. A must-read for anyone engaged in a workplace or other situations which could turn violent without warning. Should be read by anyone wanting to sound off about preventing other situations like Sandy Hook.
Jun 17, 2013 Rsoeffker rated it really liked it
Great book that was largely a "copy paste" from his other works. Some original and interesting parts though.
Michael Philliber
Apr 03, 2015 Michael Philliber rated it it was amazing
Self-defense instruction, martial arts, and Krav Maga are selling like hot cakes on a Saturday morning! Why? Some folks simply want to enhance their self-confidence; others have had their peace of mind stolen by the viral fear-breeding in our culture; a few are mesmerized by the glamorous brutality of “Olympus Has Fallen” or “Die Hard”; and then there are those who have been real victims of violence who never want to be victimized again. Into this mix of motives comes a sensible 342 page paperba ...more
Jul 27, 2013 Rich rated it it was amazing
Excellent book on the levels of force, the first 4 of which folks don't normally associate with the word 'force'. Rory Miller has worked in jails and prisons with the worst of the worst for 20 years and seems to have escaped being jaded by the experience. His writing is at all times professional and while he doesn't sugar-coat his advice, is nevertheless very direct. He dispels a great many myths and misconceptions. Even for the reader who's only interested in the initial 4 levels, I would recom ...more
Steve Scott
Mar 30, 2013 Steve Scott rated it it was amazing
To date this is the best martial arts/self-defense book I've ever read.

Both authors understand the nature of violence and how best to deal with it. Refreshingly, they spend a good deal of time going over methods of avoiding violence before it occurs. They also discuss the social dynamics of violence, something most self-defense books don't do.

The book is candid...even necessarily harsh. The language is often vulgar. The descriptions of violence are graphic. If you can't handle such stuff, I'd m
Nick Turner
Jun 06, 2013 Nick Turner rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Practical readable guide to dealing with the risk of human-human violence and the threat of violence, without losing your head, your life or your liberty. There are simple alertness and defensive drills everybody can practise and frank case stories in first-person and third-person (bystander) situations.
While this is most relevant for readers in a civil security force such as police and security guards, self-defence is discussed and basic techniques may be applicable to everybody. Readers with a
Jul 17, 2014 Marci rated it it was amazing
Shelves: martial-arts
This may be the most directly applicable to my own practice of Miller's books that I have read so far. (I have not read Kane's book, but I am familiar with him through his podcast, so can't compare it to his other written work.)
Feb 01, 2015 Mike rated it really liked it
A great companion to In the Name of Self Defense. Scaling force explains the use of force and give information on when to and when not to use force.
Henrik Kamstrup-nielsen
Feb 14, 2015 Henrik Kamstrup-nielsen rated it it was amazing
I'm a big fan of Miller and this is another great insight to the world of violence. What to consider and how do deal with potentially violent situations - and how to deal with what comea after. Highly recommended to the student of human behaviour, violence and aelf-defence.
Feb 28, 2013 Storyteller rated it it was amazing
Written by the best, Rory Miller and Lawrence A. Kane, two authors that know more about violence than most will find in their life time. The book cover says, "Use too much force and you are going to jail. Use too little force and you're in for a world of hurt." I don't think I could sum it up better. This book focuses on how to stop violence BEFORE it happens, how to choose the appropriate response to violence, and how to avoid going to jail for defending yourself. It's smartly peppered with sho ...more
Tina Richard
Apr 20, 2015 Tina Richard rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Must for martial artist who train or teach self-defense

It gave me refreshers and pointers for self-defense training. I also found new subject matters to add to our women's self-defense classes especially psychological factors and preparedness to violence. I look at my training different understanding the true severity of damage I can cause so I will teach class with better warnings of damage and legal responsibility. Teaching how to scale violence thus your level of force is a must to avoid send
Gail Scaryblondechick
Jan 09, 2014 Gail Scaryblondechick rated it really liked it
Helpful for those who wish to understand how force decisions are made by the pros - the police - either from a professional standpoint or from the standpoint of a civilian who may be impacted by those decisions. Good information generally for anyone who may be involved in a force decision capacity. Rather technical and specific - not exactly layman's reading. Miller's writing is straightforward, well informed and experienced, and carefully reasoned.
Shawn Mcvay
Aug 07, 2013 Shawn Mcvay rated it it was amazing
The title clearly says what the book is. This is a guide, to use of force, when certain levels are appropriate, and a guide to what the consequences of using those levels of force will be. Every martial artist should read this, and every citizen could use the information contained within.
Feb 27, 2013 Robert rated it it was amazing
If you are a martial artist or carry a weapon you must read this book. It is extremely well written, insightful, and informative.
Apr 08, 2013 PWRL marked it as to-read
Shelves: 2013-new
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Sergeant Rory Miller is a corrections officer, a martial artist, and an instructor in both of those areas.

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