John Riddle

John Riddle

Self Defense Specialist - Founder of Riddle Defense / Executive Protection - Private Security / Motivational Speaker


John is a world-renowned self defense specialist, private security professional, motivational speaker / instructor who honed his skills as a member of the United States Air Force, a Police Officer, and a martial artist for thirty years.

During his Air Force career, he earned the title of Combat Arms Training Instructor, acquiring the expertise and proficiency in several weapons systems that he has maintained throughout his career. As a Police Officer, he continued to develop his expertise with weapons and defensive tactics, serving his agency as an instructor in both disciplines. During his sixteen years as a SWAT operator, John conducted well over one thousand SWAT operations, as both a member of the assault team and an observer / sniper. John’s leadership skills were recognized by his appointment as a Field Training Officer and his promotion to the supervisory rank of Sergeant.

As a martial artist, John has excelled, both as a student and instructor. John has been trained by some of the finest fighters in the world, to include Terry Giles, Moni Aizik, Nir Maman, Bill “Superfoot” Wallace, Wald Bloise, Marcus Aurelio, Paul Vunak, Harinder Singh Sabharwal, and Kelly McCann. John has been asked to train personnel from numerous law enforcement agencies, both domestic and international. Recognized as a Grandmaster in Combatives by the World Head of Family Sokeship, he now shares the skills and knowledge that he has acquired at the Riddle Defense training facility in Boca Raton, Florida where he teaches his own hybrid system of self defense.

From the beginning, John’s ability as an instructor / presenter has been acknowledged and utilized by the agencies that he has served. Now, in the private sector, both individuals and organizations continue to benefit from his ability to teach and motivate.


RIDDLE DEFENSE – Founder and Lead Instructor
September 2018 – Present

Founder and Lead Instructor of Self Defense / Firearms training center in Boca Raton, Florida where John teaches Combat Krav Maga: a hybrid close quarter fighting system which merges techniques from traditional Krav Maga, boxing, kick boxing, Jeet Kune Do, Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, and law enforcement tactics. These techniques include various weapons defenses, weapon retention, and defensive use of pepper spray.

For students interested in firearms training, John offers courses for all levels of shooter, from general marksmanship and safety, through advanced combat and defensive applications. John is certified as both a rifle and pistol instructor, as well as in the use of Simunitions, a marking cartridge that is deployed from real, specially adapted, weapons to provide the maximum in realism and training effectiveness.

John’s experience as a martial artist and law enforcement officer and his contacts in the law enforcement community, both domestic and international, make him a sought after private security professional, whether for executive protection or the personal/physical security needs of both individuals and organizations.

John is a seasoned instructor / speaker who can provide your organization with targeted motivational and team-team building presentations, as well substantive instruction in self defense and firearms.

City of West Palm Beach Police Department – Sergeant of Police
January, 1986 – January, 2014 (28 years)

During his career, John served as a Patrol Supervisor, Field Training Officer, SWAT Operator who conducted in excess of one thousand operations, the Department’s Lead Defensive Tactics Instructor, and Firearms Instructor. He has extensive experience in all aspects of police operations and investigations to include narcotics interdiction and tactical patrol.

United States Air Force – Combat Arms Training Instructor
Rank of Staff Sergeant
March, 1984 – March, 1990 (6 years)

Combat Arms Training Instructor, certified on the following weapons systems:
9mm Handgun
M-16 Rifle
M-203 40mm Grenade Launcher
M-60 Machine Gun

John provided instruction in these weapons systems to the Air Force Security Police, Base Law Enforcement Personnel, ParaRescue Operators, and Combat Controllers.

Licenses & Certifications
State of Florida Certified Police Firearms Instructor
State of Florida Certified Police Defensive Tactics Instructor
NRA Certified Pistol Instructor
NRA Certified Rifle Instructor
NRA Certified Range Safety Officer
Threat Awareness For Security Professionals (view certificate)
Operation Underground Railroad Signs of Trafficking Course

Black Belt Magazine Hall of Fame – 2012 Instructor of the Year
World Head of Family Sokeship – Grandmaster in Combatives for Progressive Self Defense Systems

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