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PostPosted: Tue Jan 18, 2011 5:28 am 
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Self Defense Report #3:
Combat Training Principles: Secrets For Staying Alive When 'Rules' Don't Apply


It's Either You, or Him

Someone's going to get it right first. Someone's going to get stabbed in the neck, and someone's going to be doing the stabbing. So... In a life-or-death situation, which do you pick?

While 'none of the above' is the hands-down best choice, that's not always an option. So of the two, 'do' or 'get done,' which one is you?

Yes, it's a stupid question--when given such a stark, limited choice we'll all choose to be the one doing it, right?

And yet, unless you're actually training to be the one doing it, you won't pick the obvious answer, even though you know in your gut it's the right one.

When viewed through a social lens, taking into account self-defense laws, societal mores, and even spiritual concerns, 'hitting first' is wrong. It's aggressive, offensive, and only the 'bad guys' do it--it's a defining feature of the violent criminal.

When taken at face value, the facts of violence show that second place is first loser. The first one to get it right--the first one to cause a serious injury and take advantage of that fact--is almost always the winner. The first one to take an eye, break a leg or bounce a head off the concrete usually gets the chance to do it again.

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PostPosted: Tue Jan 18, 2011 5:29 am 
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Training to wait and see, to block and counter is training to die. It's training to let the other guy dictate what happens--it puts him in charge and sets you up for disaster. It puts you permanently a half-step behind.

Such training causes people to try to block having just been stabbed--they get stabbed, they try to block it as he pulls the knife out and sticks it in them again, they try to block that over and over and so on to the inevitable end.

Violence, as a survival tool, has but one purpose--shutting off a human brain. To that end you have to focus your efforts on injuring the other man. Instead of worrying about what he's going to do to you, you want to make him worry about what you're doing to him.

Hit first, break things, and keep going until you're finished with him.

(Now, context is everything--violence, the way I'm talking about it, is only appropriate where you could expect him to do the same to you if you didn't act, and where inaction could cost you your life. It's stupid to do this to someone over a barstool... but it becomes chillingly 'normal' during a workplace shooting.)

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PostPosted: Tue Jan 18, 2011 5:30 am 
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It's simple cause and effect. You can either:

1) ACT to cause injuries in him, or

2) REACT to what he's doing, setting yourself up for failure.

It's funny how when this is presented as it was in the beginning of this letter (stab or be stabbed?), everyone agrees that the choice is obvious; whereas when it's time to train everyone gets into their defensive 'fighting' stance and wants to wait and see what the other guy's going to do.

There is no scale to the facts of violence--either you're the one doing it, or the one getting done. Period. Guns, knives, sticks, fists & boots... it doesn't matter. You're either on him or he's on you.

Injury is the fact that makes the difference. If you don't know how to reliably cause crippling injury, and what to do with it, I don't blame you for wanting to ball up and hang back. Without injury violence is a chaotic crapshoot.

But once you know how to ACT on him to make him REACT--once you know how to injure him & drop him so he can't get back up, once you know how to cripple a criminal who was dead-set on doing it to you, so that he has NO CHOICE in what happens next, well, then you'll understand what I'm talking about and you'll always want to be the one doing it first.

Knowledge breeds confidence--the confidence to be the one doing it instead of the one getting done. Knowing how to injure a man--and knowing what to do with that injury--is the shortest route to victory in life-or-death violence.

Until next time,


Tim Larkin
Creator of Target-Focus Training
http://www.targetfocustraining.com

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PostPosted: Tue Jan 18, 2011 5:33 am 
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Tim Larkin
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In a perfect world, no. In the one we find ourselves living in, it can go a long way toward preserving your own life, and the lives of others. An oxymoron? Perhaps--but not in the way you'd think...

While it's obvious that knowing how to kill another human being with your bare hands might be useful in a life-or-death situation, it's really the long-term effect such knowledge has on how and when you choose to use violence that has the biggest impact. But before we get into that, let's make sure we all have a clear understanding of what I'm talking about:

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PostPosted: Tue Jan 18, 2011 5:34 am 
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Yes, I teach people how to kill. Very specifically. I show them where to strike, how to strike, and what to expect.

(For example, it takes time for a man to die from a crushed throat--it has to swell shut and then he has to asphyxiate, which can take minutes; a broken neck, on the other hand, severs the brain's control of the body, rendering him instantaneously nonfunctional.)

I take none of this lightly. It is with the utmost seriousness and gravity that I present this information. It's not a movie or a videogame. The repercussions can destroy more than just the life that is taken.

But in the end, knowing the difference between lethal and non-lethal can go a long way toward informing your decision to use violence.

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PostPosted: Tue Jan 18, 2011 5:35 am 
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It's only going to be appropriate to use this information in situations where it would be appropriate to shoot someone to death with a firearm. There's a simple equivalency for you. The question you really want to ask is:

"How many of these kinds of situations do I reasonably expect to be in, across my lifetime?"

Unless you have a job that regularly involves violent conflict, the answer is probably close to zero. (At least, we can hope, right?) But should that prove false, and that unlikely situation comes up, nothing else will see you through. If it's life-or-death, you're in your element--you know what to do to survive and win.

My personal hope is that you never need it like that.

So how would knowing what's lethal and what's not make a difference in the rest of your life?

First off, knowing how to kill puts things into perspective. Is that barstool or parking space really worth your life? Or the other guy's?

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PostPosted: Tue Jan 18, 2011 5:36 am 
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If you're trained to consider 'bare hands' as a synonym for 'non-lethal,' then, sure, why not? You can always 'kick his ass' and show him what's what. So you punch him in the face--

--and he falls back and brains himself on the sidewalk and dies.

Think it doesn't happen? Or that it's a rarity? Start paying attention to the news. Especially the small items--it's usually tucked in back there.

A couple column inches for a whole pack of ruined lives--the 'killer' and his family (he's as surprised and as sorry as anyone--he didn't mean for this to happen, and had no idea it could go this way), all suffering as he goes to prison over a stupid bar fight; and the victim's family, grieving the loss of a loved one from the other side.

Start paying attention. This stuff happens about once a month or so. You'd think people would learn. But they don't. And who can blame them? Who can blame you? If you'd never been told that bouncing someone's head off the concrete can kill them, you wouldn't know.

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PostPosted: Tue Jan 18, 2011 5:38 am 
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This is where the right training--where knowing the difference--can save you a lot of trouble. If you need it, for that one-in-a-million life-or-death situation, you know what to do to shut off the other man's brain and end the threat.

But for the rest of the time, the MOST of your time, it's going to save you a lot of wear and tear--and potential prison time--by giving you a realistic perspective on the use of violence to solve social problems.

Namely, that it's the absolutely wrong use for the tool.

One of my favorite quotes on this subject comes from a law enforcement officer, talking about a killing that resulted from social posturing:

"I always tell my son, 'Let the stupid stuff slide.' And guess what--it's all stupid stuff."

I can't tell you the number of testimonials I get from clients who have easily avoided the 'stupid stuff' because they had clear-cut knowledge of the appropriate use of violence.


I value those testimonials as highly as the ones received from those who used the same knowledge to save their lives in life-and-death situations.

Truly knowing how to kill another person places total responsibility on the trained individual, makes you a far better citizen and, in my experience, far less likely to use violence as an answer to any situation that is not life-threatening.

Until next time,


Tim Larkin
Creator of Target-Focus Training
http://www.targetfocustraining.com

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PostPosted: Wed Jan 19, 2011 4:14 am 
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The problem with a lot of Karate training is the mental conditioning. As my students will attest I keep telling them that training in any field or sport requires three simple words: Need, Can, and Want. We teach the student the musical score but not always how to write music.

You "Need" to not get injured. We teach them Kihon, Kata, Bunkai and Yakusoku. Distance timing and defense.

When they "Can" block and counter effectively and have a good understanding of how to move and position themselves.

We then need for them to learn what they "Want" to do. "Tactics" To write their own music. We can use random reaction drills. First strike drills. Any number of techniques. We don't talk enough about "Tsuki Uke" as found in Seisan Bunkai.

This nonsense about no first strike in Karate is misunderstood. Itokazu Sensei taught that it meant to not go looking for a fight but to use Karate only for defense of self and others. But if the attack is perceived and there is no retreat then the immediate threat to yourself or others is the "first strike". Not yours theirs. We need the student to understand this concept.

Tosh used to say that Uechi Ryu is like learning to fight in a phone booth. Elbows, knees, toes, shokens, nutikes boshikens and any other neat thing that comes to mind. It is all there in this wonderful style of original Okinawan Karate!!

After a few light Shokens to the sternum or Sokusens to the inside of the thigh I saw the light. Or were they stars. Well you know what I mean.

If you say or do something that raises the hair on my neck my first response is to walk away. If there is no way this is going to happen, I'm afraid that I'm going to do my best to finish this as quickly as possible and worry about the ramifications later.


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 Post subject: Best way ever put
PostPosted: Wed Jan 19, 2011 6:11 am 
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But if the attack is perceived and there is no retreat then the immediate threat to yourself or others is the "first strike". Not yours _theirs. We need the student to understand this concept.


~~

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PostPosted: Fri Feb 11, 2011 5:23 am 
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I've hammered home the importance of the cold hard
fact: "you do what you train". Anything you do in a
training environment is exactly how you are
conditioning yourself to respond in a life-or-death
situation.

Most of my clients understand this principle in
applying trauma to the body. They are careful to
insure that they strike with a tight fist or make sure
that they complete the rotation of their body to
deploy maximum force upon the given target area of the
other guy.

So where do problems occur?

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PostPosted: Fri Feb 11, 2011 5:25 am 
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Most people train for a one-on-one confrontation.

They are excellent at handling the one guy but add in
another guy... and watch the meltdown occur.

I was training a well-known counter-terror unit a few
years back and let them see first-hand the danger in
this oversight.

They had been training heavily in a well-known ju-
jitsu system prior to my course. This was a combat
sport-based system that is very effective in the ring.

But it does no good to tell people that what they
trained may have problems associated with it because
often they have a strong emotional attachment to the
training. Better to let them see a gap and then offer
a solution.

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PostPosted: Fri Feb 11, 2011 5:26 am 
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So I asked for the best grappler of the group to don
his field gear and go to the end of the training hall.
I then grabbed 3 other members of the unit and had
them do a simple "sacrificial lamb" attack. This is
where one guy engages the prey and locks him up, then
the other 2 swoop in for the kill.

Well, sure enough, the first guy engages and is
quickly taken to the ground by the fighter and put in
a very painful arm-bar. This guy was amazingly good at
ju-jitsu and would be a terror in the ring -- except
this wasn't a ring, and there was no ref.

In fact, no sooner had the arm-bar been applied than
the other 2 were upon him, had his weapons and could
have "killed" him at any time.

This simple gangbanger attack easily defeated a highly
trained operator because he had handled a multi-fight
like a sport competition. In fact, the unit later
confessed that they had never trained with their
weapons on the whole time they trained "hand-to-hand".

The focus had been more to see who could make the
other "tap out" first. This is a dangerous way to
train for a lethal criminal confrontation.

You must always treat every confrontation as having
multiple guys. You need to be instructed how to be a
"360-degree" fighter and to be aware of your
surroundings at all times.
TFT

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PostPosted: Fri Feb 11, 2011 6:23 pm 
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Van Canna wrote:
Quote:
The focus had been more to see who could make the
other "tap out" first. This is a dangerous way to
train for a lethal criminal confrontation.

You must always treat every confrontation as having
multiple guys. You need to be instructed how to be a
"360-degree" fighter and to be aware of your
surroundings at all times.
TFT


I wonder how combat ju-jitsu, the original, differs from modern sport ju-jitsu. I would expect the combat form to focus on quick techniques, breaks and throws, that preserve a fighter's mobility. I can see what sport ju-jitsu emphasizes.

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PostPosted: Thu Feb 17, 2011 3:28 am 
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I think a lot has to be said for the discipline and sacrifice needed to train Martial Arts. Millions sign up and last a few months/years, then life, time or it's just “too damn much” gets in the way. It's a whole lot easier to stop going to class than it is to keep at it, day after day, year after year, pain after pain. It forges our will in ways we sometimes don't realize.

Nobody is ever ready for a surprise attack. Not the soldier, not the sailor, not the butcher or the baker. But the attacker is not usually ready for a man of will to turn into him with fury and purpose. Tables turn easilly, especially when attackers do not have time to take controll of a situation they are used to dominating. As Mark Twain once said, “A man who picks up a cat by the tail learns a lesson he can learn in no other way.” So too, does the bad man learn what it means to attack someone who has forged his will through training, discipline and sacrifice.


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