23 May It’s What You Don’t See That Kills You!
One of the many perils of any combative/self defense measure is the variable that we all know as the “unknown.” Often, a good samaritan will need to engage with an attacker in efforts to preserve their life, home, or safety only to find out that the level of violence has escalated and they are unprepared to respond. What do I mean? Check out today’s popular video sharing websites and you can find hundreds of videos where there is a confrontation, and in the middle of the entanglement the aggressor pulls out a knife, a gun, an improvised weapon then begins to mutilate the victim.
Even trained people often forget how things go from bad to worse. They have spent time on the mats training against known variables, in known ranges, with known attacks. They’ve programmed a muscle memory type response by seeing the same stimulus over and over. Don’t think that I am bashing on this method….it is a valuable training system that is imperative in all kinds of training arenas. But it is not the end all be all!
When you spend time training in anything…hand to hand combat, edged weapons, grappling, firearms, impact weapons, conflict avoidance etc…you also need to add in the element of surprise at times. Just as you are programming the body to respond, you have to train the mind to assume that every single person is ARMED with something. It can be a knife, a gun, a home made shank. It’s important to develop a training platform that allows for these kinds of variables to be thrown in. Understand that the body is a mere vehicle of delivery for the brain. If the movements become 100% autonomous, the brain can go on autopilot. Don’t allow that comfort to settle in too often, challenge the brain and body by introducing a progression of variables that need immediate attention. This is how you sharpen the reflexes, and also keep the mind’s eye awake!
Stay Sharp! And assume everyone is armed!