Survival Expertise In Demand – Flagstaff Enterprise Information

At Cody Lundin's Aboriginal Living Skills School, people have been prepared for emergencies for 30 years.

When a series of severe winter storms enveloped Texas in February, causing a crippling nationwide electricity crisis that resulted in a lack of water, food, and warmth, a woman in her late 60s texted Cody Lundin from her San Antonio home thanking him for living – Savings skills that she and her husband learned in the Sonoran Desert Daze course they completed at his Aboriginal Living Skills School (ALSS).

“They took out the sleeping bags that had never been used since the class, ate a beef sandwich cooked over a bundle of candles, had their tub filled with rainwater and melted snow that they had trapped, and didn't understand why people had it little water, ”said Lundin. "They had transferred their mindset from fear to coping skills."

The news came as the Arizona outdoor survival teacher was about to start his 30-year business with his Prescott-based school. For decades, Lundin has taught a cave of courses at Prescott College and Yavapai College, and has walked thousands through the rugged desert and cold Arizona highlands. His Aboriginal Living Skills School is one of the oldest survival schools in the United States, teaching outdoor survival skills, primitive living skills, bush arts, and urban preparedness.

“We are in a physiological body, but most of them know very little about its biological needs. Most have no idea where their water comes from, where to find it, how to make it safe, and where to store it. Most don't know how to regulate their body temperature. We are so dependent on the grid and people don't realize how much they rely on it for survival, let alone the complacency that comes with it. This creates the lack of preparation and the feeling of shock when one is unprepared. The body shuts down. "

He says that anyone in a survival situation will be afraid, including himself. “Uncontrolled fear can kill people. Ninety percent of survival is psychology and ten percent is anything like hard skills. I teach people how to be more independent. Once people know how to deal with their needs, it simplifies their thought process – their focus can be limited to what is important to their safety, and that reduces their anxiety. "

Lundin's students range from 7 year olds to 80 year olds, although most of the educated professionals are middle-aged. “The main reason they come to me is because they want to learn to do more with less. This has been true since the school was founded. And the confidence they gain is enormous when you can get someone in the field and bring them back to a more confident person. "

These skills, he says, will be applicable in any stressful situation, be it in the African bush, in the Red Rock Secret Wilderness or in the concrete jungle.

“One of the main causes of survival is the case of a day hiker who is physically, mentally, and emotionally unprepared. These migrations are known to kill people. Suppose you have Jeff from Connecticut traveling to Northern Arizona on business. He is neither familiar with the area nor with the climate. He wasn't hydrated before the hike and didn't bring enough water with him on the hike. He doesn't have the proper equipment and didn't tell the hotel receptionist where to go and when to be back. There are a million ways this can go wrong. When his body temperature rises, he has all sorts of problems, including poor judgment. When a disaster strikes, he gets into some form of mental and emotional shock. "

Lundin draws wisdom from a life in nature and from his insatiable appetite for knowledge, most of which comes from medical journals. The best gift he has ever received was a book, Wilderness Medicine, written by his mother, a pharmacist who worked at Yavapai Regional Medical Center.

In the 1980s, Lundin had a revelation about starting his Aboriginal Living Skills School while hiking in Sedona. “I saw the need to educate people who go into the hinterland. I wanted to be my own businessman and I love the outdoors. I wanted to bond with the natural world and teach others how it can affect them for the better. "

Those who spend time with Lundin can quickly find that he is a partly sturdy caveman, partly an accomplished businessman. Lundin lives what he teaches and has the credibility of the wildlands to do so. He loves nature, lives from the connection to nature and maintains a minimalist lifestyle in his passive underground solar house. Whether he's holding a business meeting, doing a news interview for programs like NBC's "Dateline" or publications like USA Today, or teaching townspeople how to make a fire with a stick and rock, Lundin arrives in a shirt and shorts. His long, blond hair is tamed by braids and a headscarf; His feet are bare and invigorated by the Arizona landscape. His gaze is calm, his intent is focused, his cadence is measured, and his presence is respectful.

"I took an ALSS course because I was always concerned about personal safety," wrote Susan MacIver. “Whether in the city or traveling through the loneliest parts of the wilderness, I wanted to feel like I knew ways to help myself and others should it be necessary. While I don't have much experience in the wild, being stuck in your car in a traffic jam for hours can still be brutal. I really enjoyed the course I attended! I count it as one of the highlights of my outdoor experience. I was on the Save Your Butt course overnight. H. Your car is broken or lost on a hike. It was incredibly informative and Cody was more than professional. In fact, his behavior was such that I knew he was dead serious about teaching us how to survive a potentially life-threatening situation. "

With the COVID-19 cases last year, sales of his bestselling books “98.6 Degrees: The Art of Keeping Your Ass Alive” and “When Hell breaks loose: Things you need to survive when,” also increased a disaster occurs. "In them, he offers a simple scientific account of how the brain works when the body perceives a threat and what happens to the body – how blood vessels constrict, breathing becomes shallow, judgment is impaired – and how hypo- and hyperthermia affect our gross. Fine and complex motor skills.

He also discusses how to control fear, including being aware of our surroundings, and a practice he calls "Cultivating Rational Insanity."

During a survival episode, you will be taxed to the limit at all levels. To overcome and mitigate the panic factor, you have to be cool as a cucumber. You need to approach your situation in a somewhat detached and rational way while preparing your mind and body to reach insanity if necessary to overcome any self-imposed limitations. Conducting the intense energy of madness and combining it with the solid coolness of rational decisions creates a powerful force in emergency scenarios. FBN

By Bonnie Stevens, FBN

To learn more about Lundin's Aboriginal Living Skills School and programs, visit or contact him at 928-713-1651 or

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