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Old 09-03-2000, 10:46 AM   #14
Location: Battle Creek, MI
Join Date: Aug 2000
Posts: 30
Aikido for officers

I have been a deputy sheriff for the last 3 yrs. I work inside the jail (houses over 600 inmates) and for the last 1 1/2 yrs. I have been working as the booking officer (where they are brought in after an arrest) and as a rover (person who provides back up for cell extractions, fights, etc.) Unfortunatly because of my job, I have been in over 25 fights. I will try and sum up what I have learned as it applies to Aikido.

1) You will need to learn atemi (our dept. uses PPCT). If you look at Budo, Ueshiba is striking vital points. Most of the time when you go to arrest someone and restrain them, they don't hit back, they plant their feet and try to tighten up so you can't bend their arms etc. Since they are planted you need to use atemi to start their energy going someplace and to loosen them up for a hold or takedown.

2) The shorter the move the better. When you are in a high stress situation, your motor skills decline. So if it requires high amounts of technical skill, it will go out the window. (As time goes on and you are more skilled at fighting, you control the adrenaline dump more and can do things that require higher skill)

3) Come alongs and holds are good for someone that just doesn't want to cooperate, but they are not violent. No matter what some people say, verbal techniques alone do not always work. This is a good time for Sankyo, etc. If the person is drunk or on crack, most of the time they won't even feel the hold. This is when atemi is nice, if the muscle/nerve doesn't work it doesn't matter that they don't feel it.

4) Work on Ikkyo the most. Even the takedown techniques that most departments use are based on ikkyo. They are usually called a bent arm bar takedown, or a straight arm bar takedown, IMHO they are stinky versions of an ikkyo.
As a side note: I recently went to some training where the local colleges defensive instructor was teaching the class and my partner couldn't do the takedown right, so he tried it also and everytime I would end up on my back instead of on my stomach. I then realized it was because the takedown only works if you resist it. If you go with it you end up in a good position with the other person at the disadvantage. So work on what if someone does this to me, what would I do.

5) This is going to sound cheesy philosophical BUT, learn to flow. Most of the time what you do won't work the first time. Learn to go from one thing to another without stopping. I see alot of people (and yes, I've been guilty of this as well) just try to get their favorite hold even though they can't get it.

6) After every confrontation analyze it. Look at what worked and why, and think about what you could have done to make it more effective. If something didn't work look at why. Don't beat yourself up about something, just look at it as a learning experience. You will learn tons of stuff that way.

7) The most important thing, IMHO, is keep a calm mind. I don't mean scared or not scared. But, temper and anger. I have had alot of people comment on that, when I go in a cell on a violent felon that I talk calmly and then take them down without getting mad. It helps you think better and keeps your ego in check which will only get you hurt.

Good luck with your new career and I hope that this helps some. Feel free to email me privately if you want specifics on things like pressure points etc.

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