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Old 09-17-2009, 08:23 AM   #45
Michael Hackett
Dojo: Kenshinkan Dojo (Aikido of North County) Vista, CA
Location: Oceanside, California
Join Date: Oct 2000
Posts: 1,121
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Re: Aikido - Martial Arts - Fighting

Don,

I disagree with your points 1, 2, and 3. It absolutely depends on where you work. If you work in a moderate to large city, there simply will be more officers on the street during a particular shift and often at least a supervisor will roll behind an officer on a call. On the other hand, the majority of police agencies in the US have ten or fewer officers and it is common to only have one or two on duty at a time. In rural areas, it is often "one riot-one ranger" with assistance many miles away.

1. Most times the officer is outnumbered by the suspects, at least for the critical first few minutes. Think of domestic disturbances, fights, and suspicious circumstances types of calls.

2. Back-up is frequently on the way I will grant you. But distance equals time and the old joke is "when you need back up NOW, it is three minutes out" has a real basis in truth. Since you do BJJ, you know how long three or five minutes can seem.

3. Cops probably have to use their physical skills much more often than even professional MMA fighters, no question. But the primary skill that keeps 'em alive is the ability to defuse a situation. Keeping a tense situation from escalating is a critical skill used far more often than physical force. One major advantage that officers have is their appearance of authority. Most people they end up having to scuffle with are everyday citizens who are drunk or angry and otherwise law-abiding. Most people will submit to the authority the cops represents with a little jaw-jacking.

I certainly agree with the officers in your BJJ academy. Having a grounding in martial arts is a significant attribute for a law enforcement officer. Besides the specific martial skills the officer will develop, he likely will be in much better physical shape than his peers. When we confront guys freshly paroled and buffed out, our biggest advantage is the ability to outlast him. He may be bigger, stronger and tougher for the first twenty seconds, but they don't get to do much running in prison or other cardio exercise.

The last major advantage, one that I don't think can be quantified very well, is the knowledge that we have to win. If the suspect loses the confrontation, the fight is over and he goes to jail. If we lose, we lose everything and we know it. That gives you an incentive greater than that of your opponent.

Michael
"Leave the gun. Bring the cannoli."
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