combatives

How do U.S. Army soldiers handle opponents armed with knives? Their top combatives expert (who just happened to write their modern hand-to-hand combat manual) shows you three methods he's taught them.

Editor's Note: In this exclusive close-quarters-combat video, Matt Larsen — Modern Army Combatives Program (MACP) creator and author of the critically acclaimed book Modern Army Combatives: Battle-Proven Techniques and Training Methods — discusses and demonstrates training protocols for assessing and responding to opponents armed with edged weapons. Modern Army Combatives Trains Soldiers to Efficiently Employ Self-Defense Moves for Any Situation Knife fights don't really start in the way that a lot of people train for. They don't start, for example, with the knife in somebody's hand. They start just like any other fight, only one of the people has a knife on his or her person. So the first thing is: How do you know whether the person you're fighting is armed with a knife or a gun — or anything? Most of the time you don't, so you have to fight everyone as if they're armed.

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Knife fighting has always been one of the most misunderstood topics in self-defense. Although everyone agrees that the knife is a potent weapon, there's no consensus when it comes to effective edged-weapon tactics. Some practitioners swear by the traditional European and Asian systems. Others look to military combatives as the ultimate source of blade techniques.

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Christian Defense & Safety Solutions

In Part one of this series, I discussed the preparation you can do even before you leave your home in terms of clothing worn, vehicles used, weapons carried, and touched on whether or not you have the training to use any tools…

I also discussed that there is a Timeline of events surrounding a confrontation. In this installment, I want to discuss some elements of the next phase of that Timeline.

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Intellectualization is defined as a defense mechanism that entails using reasoning to avoid unconscious conflict and its associated emotional stress — wherein thinking is used to avoid feeling. It involves removing oneself emotionally from a stressful event.

Increasingly, I notice the trend in combatives and other self-defense "systems" to intellectualize — actually, to over-intellectualize. The definition of intellectualization that appears above perfectly captures the meaning as it applies to fighting.In an effort to avoid the pain, consequence, damage and stress of fighting — whether in training or for real — instructors use constructed language to describe the impossible (what's expected in the moment) and use pseudoscience to justify what they're professing.Those of you who have read this column for any length of time have heard me say over and over that if you want to learn to fly, at some point, you have to actually take off and land. The same is true of fighting: If you want to learn to fight well, you have to spend a significant amount of time actually fighting. There is no replacement for this.

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Many people look to go to some form of martial arts class to improve their self-defense skills. This could be very formal and stylized in a Traditional setting, more casual and physical in a combat sport environment, or something 'street', wearing regular clothing and featuring brutal 'dirty' fighting (more on dirty fighting in another blog!).

To a certain extent this is a valid path and I'm sure the readership of Black Belt Magazine will all veer towards one form or another of the above examples. However, there are some things that can be done which are ultimately far more effective at self-protection than any physical class can give you. The trouble is they don't 'fit' into what most people think of as self-defense and so they are often ignored or overlooked. The good news is that these are fairly simple concepts to learn and can be done at any time. But they aren't necessarily easy. As with most things worthwhile, they take practice.

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