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Old 04-12-2008, 09:38 PM   #1
Bill Danosky
 
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What is "combat"?

I thought it might be a good idea to distinguish between street brawling, self defense and actual life-and-death combat.

In a one-on-one fistfight, you might decide to do some ground grappling. This is typically about proving who's tougher. You may get some interference from the crowd, but this isn't necessarily influencing your tactics. You can lose and live.

In a self defense situation, you want to decisively end the assault, avert the robbery, etc. and basically escape. Going to ground willingly is probably not a good idea because it's assumed you're against more than one opponent. If you lose you might die.

In a real combat situation, guns and other deadly weapons are in play and no tactic or technique is off-limits. You'll be killed if you lose.

Brazilian Jiu Jitsu dominates the first situation and tends to win the argument about who's the toughest individual. But you're a football for the second, third, etc. opponent.

Krav Maga is combat style fighting. It's about killing deadly attackers.

Aikido is great for things like bar bouncing. Get control of a person or situation with the minimum amount of scuffle and injury.

It seems vital to have more than one skillset up your sleeve. I hear O Sensei did.
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Old 04-12-2008, 09:51 PM   #2
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Re: What is "combat"?

Combat is clearly defined to me as violence commited by one person upon another ( or one nation upon another) with the intent to seriously injure or kill them.

That includes street fights

Bar brawls

Domestic Violence

War

Here's a real life paradox on combat... I know an Aikidoka who died over a parking spot...He tried to reason with the perp... the perp hit him in the face... He fell... cracked his head on the curb and died...

Did the Aikidoka fail to realize he was in a "combat" situation???

Sadly I think so....and so did the justice system so the dude went to jail for murder 2...

William Hazen
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Old 04-12-2008, 10:09 PM   #3
Bill Danosky
 
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Re: What is "combat"?

This is getting close to the point of my post:

I don't think it's all war. Therefore, I think using war waza in every situation is not a good idea.

You can't know whether it's another person's intention to seriously injure you vs. killing you, so you need to be able to adequately control the situation.

Even in the case that someone means to kill you, you may not necessarily elect to kill them if you know you can subdue them with a decisive pin. But if your instinct tells you it's called for, you'd better have some real budo in your repertoire!

Last edited by Bill Danosky : 04-12-2008 at 10:21 PM.
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Old 04-13-2008, 02:06 AM   #4
Walter Martindale
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Re: What is "combat"?

Combat is something I hope never to experience.

Was speaking with a veteran of the Korea conflict recently - he said, among other things, one of the things you rarely read about and don't have in the movies is the smell of a war. The smell of dead, rotting bodies. The smell of boots that you've taken from a dead enemy because yours were inadequate, and then not taken off in 3 months of active duty. He also spent some time in Indochina, and has an interesting outlook. Most of what a pencil-pusher sees as important really doesn't matter, and he has no time whatsoever for bureaucrats. Always looking for an opportunity to crack a joke.

What is combat? Fight. Fight until you're unconscious (I've borrowed this phrase from someone, can't remember who). If you don't end up unconscious and your opponent does, you're lucky - get the heck out of there before he wakes up and sues you or before his friends show up. Hope the heck that a) the opponent doesn't know you for later retribution or legal redress, and b) that the opponent actually does wake up - modern forensic science will find your DNA unless your combat was executed from a significant distance. Some joke that it's better to be judged by 12 than carried by 6, but it's better to be neither - avoid combat where possible. If your life, or that of someone who needs protection is in the balance - that's "self defense" and most likely justifiable.

If you do end up unconscious and, subsequently, you wake up, you're lucky whether or not it feels that way.

If you don't wake up, well, it's over, and it's someone else's problem. If you want to save your loved ones from having to deal with the aftermath of an unsuccessful combat session, avoid it. As Churchill said, "Jaw, Jaw is better than War, War". (Jaw being an euphimism for discussion, in case anyone doesn't get it.)

I hope I never experience combat, no matter how much "self defense" training I do.

W

Last edited by Walter Martindale : 04-13-2008 at 02:20 AM.
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Old 04-13-2008, 03:24 AM   #5
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Re: What is "combat"?

Quote:
Bill Danosky wrote: View Post
I don't think it's all war. Therefore, I think using war waza in every situation is not a good idea.
Somehow I feel like, indeed, all waza is "war waza". Just with a different ending move. But then I never experienced combat so...
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Old 04-13-2008, 07:48 AM   #6
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Re: What is "combat"?

Call it what you want put violence is violence. On the very base level We come up with reasons and justification for doing what we are doing.

The term War is typically used by nations, states, or larger groups of people than smaller. The term war typically means that there is an on-going or protracted plan to dominate or incapacitate another so as you can control or cause him/her to capitualate. (or something like that). It can be as small as a gang in a city.

Wars can be fought for many reasons, of course. The key to them is that they are usually diliberate, require pre-meditation, and usually have a campaign or smaller subsets called battles, skirmishes, or whatever else you decide is appropriate for inflicting violence.

That out of the way......

Bill, I think you are getting somethings kinda tied up together.

Fights, brawls, self defense, and all that...knives, guns etc....it is all violence. One or more parties for whatever reason have chosen to commit an act of physical or mental violence against another.

It may be pre-meditated or not...

It could be a flash of drunken, hormonal emotion like in a bar fight.

There might be some implied rules, or some established rules mutually agreed upon.

Each side may have is own established paradigm about what he or she thought the rules are. They may not match!

Rules, there are always rules. Especially for soldiers in what we commonly refer to as war. LOTS of Rules! More than you care to know...pages and pages of rules. Geneva Convention, Rules of Engagement, Escalation of Force, Memorandums of Understanding, Memorandums of Agreement, Uniform Code of Military Justice...I could go on!

I think it is important to not confuse MACRO concepts with MICRO.

Geneva Convention would be an example of MACRO.

MICRO would be two guys involved in a hand to hand fight with the intent of killing each other.

At that point each is fighting for his life. Rules don't count at the moment of battle, in all cases you can use whatever means to survive. In all cases, to include soldiers, once you have rendered the individual incapacitated or unable to effect the fight, you must stop.

Same rules apply in civilian world. No difference.

Bill,

I also disagree with your generalizations of BJJ, Krav Maga, and Aikido. They are training methodologiess, not defaults for fighting.

A BJJ guy knows as much about multiple opponents as anyone, so to imply that he would not be able to handle himself with more than one is not so.

Krav Maga, certainly spends a fair amount of time teaching down and dirty stuff. However, it does not have the corner on the market of lethality. Ask yourself why the U.S. Army does not train our Combatives this way, when we could have chosen to do that?

Aikido, sure it has somethings in it that are good for Bar Bouncing. BJJ has the exact same things in them, and to be honest may even be better given the closeness of people in bars for the initial engagement. Aikido, especially when you consider Jo Waza, has some very useful things in it for combat that other arts don't practice much.

I see where you are going with the Concept of MMA. Yes all the arts have various strengths that cause one to be well rounded as a martial artist.

If one were to study BJJ, Krav Maga, and Aikido they would be probably more well rounded than someone who did not.

You can also waste a great deal of your time if your goal is simply to be "combat efffective".

the secret to being "combat Effective" is to simply "train as you fight". That is, figure out the strategies and scenarios that you will encounter in combat, and then you focus on developing the skills necessary to exploit them.

difference is Timing, speed, and realism that you add to your training. Known to many as Aliveness.

The more you add, the more experience and skill you will gain, (If you can survive the training ) There are tradeoffs of course.

Once you become focused in the area, it doesn't matter what you call it or what you study, the situation drives the training and your responses and lessons learned from them become your waza.

See organizations like Tony Blauer's company for good examples of training this way.

Is there room for Budo? Most definitely, for reasons other than simply gaining "hard combat/fighting skills".

That is another topic all together though!

Enough of my ramblings.

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Old 04-13-2008, 07:58 AM   #7
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Re: What is "combat"?

Quote:
Alejandro Villanueva wrote: View Post
Somehow I feel like, indeed, all waza is "war waza".
Maybe we could agree that all waza that includes hitting,cutting or stabbing your opponent with any object at hand, breaking their bones, stomping them on the ground, gouging their eyes, etc is "war waza".

I'd even venture that shooting your opponent is war waza. I'm considering here what happens in your mind when you're making your last stand.
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Old 04-13-2008, 08:11 AM   #8
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Re: What is "combat"?

If your contemplating your life as it was...then you know you are dead.

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Old 04-13-2008, 04:55 PM   #9
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Re: What is "combat"?

Combat to me is the implimentation of any strategy designed to overcome or subdue another person or group of people.
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Old 04-13-2008, 05:43 PM   #10
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Re: What is "combat"?

Can it be that we are making too much of cookie cutting? Didn't O'Sensei say there is no difference from fighting one person or many.

Brawling, isn't that shouting, quarrelling, and yelling in a place of worship? We can eliminate that.

Self-defense isn't going to change if your fighting for your life, or fighting to avoid harm. Self-defense isn't going to change if your on the street, in a ring or on a battle field. If your being attacked in your home, or on the street, or on a battle field you fight to protect yourself from harm with all you got, with what ever you got.

Sport fighters fight differently in a ring then on the street. Sport fighters like boxers, and MMA fighters are sport fighters. It is entertainment. The fighters are paid to fight not play a game like football, or hockey, and are under rules in a ring. In a bar fight, a professional sport fighter has an advantage over many, so does a good martial artist, and so does a good scraper. If any of those who are attacked in their home do have a weapon they will use it first before going mono a mono. It would be the same for those trained in martial arts or not.

If your under an attack that isn't a sports fight then your fighting for your life and limb. You fight with everything you got and if you life depended upon it. You may not kill your attacker, or bust him up once you have control over him. That is your choose. But I don't think what your trained in as is important as how hard you fight.

Does MMA fighters fight harder, sure some do. The serious ones, like Dana White said, "to weed out the [wimpy] and the posers" so not everyone in MMA is a tough or good fighter. Not everyone in martial arts are ineffective. Just as there are some street scrapers who are very effective street fighters.

I think you have two areas of fighting, self-defense and sport. That's all there is. You have two types of people. One is those who want to be and can become professional fighters. The other is everyone else. You can find good people in both that can defend themselves on the street, and those who can.

I think MMA fans sometimes are trapped seeing things only in us vs them. That is because of the early BJJ saying stuff to promote them selves. You can train any dog to hunt, but talent is something you can't teach.

You can’t predict what a person will do under duress of a stressful attack. Some people will jump into the fire and save a baby from a burning building. Others will freeze unable to move. The advantage MMA or boxing has when in many competitions you can learn not to freeze. Being a solider in a combat zone where there is real pressure for survival trumps MMA. Or just going out and getting into real fights on the street using your martial arts or street skills, if you don’t become a solider. Again, we have two types of situations real and controlled. It isn’t what you train in, it is who you are. When you in a real life and death situation your under duress, and you will grab the most effective tool to eliminate the threat. You need to be trained to act under duress to use that tool. It doesn't matter if it is from Martial arts, MMA, dirty street fighting or the prefered tool of choice when it comes to saving your life, a gun.
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Old 04-13-2008, 07:28 PM   #11
Bill Danosky
 
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Re: What is "combat"?

I like this observation about sport fighting and real fighting. But I think cops, for instance, have a different mentality and set of techinques than soldiers, so I'd suggest that there are maybe two different levels of "combat". Which is what I'm asking about here.

Since it's established that under stress you fall back on your training, a martial artist might benefit from training under three modes of fighting. Then you'd have different skillsets to resort to, depending on what mentality your instincts trigger.

And yes, it sadly seems like the Aikidoka in William's post misinterpreted his situation. He would have had a much better chance of surviving his encounter had he fought instead of talked.
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Old 04-13-2008, 08:41 PM   #12
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Re: What is "combat"?

I goofed. I didn't pay enough attention to what you said. I think more in undivided terms. There are no levels of martial, it is all martial. I look at it as matching up the circumstances of defense with the circumstances of the attack. I guess you can say blending, harmony or adjusting to the attack with the proper force and application needed to defeat the attack. Gee, I really shouldn't give feedback on this because all combat is combat in my mind. If I thought differently I might be able to give feedback.

Let me added, that it is experience in conflicts that let us know when talking will defuse the situation or to fight. Misinterpreting a situation is easy to do. Most people try to talk a situation down first, and use reason. Most of are taught that in school at a very early age. We carry that through out our lives and it works in many situations. The law tells you that too. We are civilized right? I think the Aikido did what he was trained to do. I don't think he expected to be hit over a parking spot. Why would the Aikidoka attack some one over a parking spot in the first place.

Last edited by Buck : 04-13-2008 at 08:54 PM.
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Old 04-13-2008, 09:40 PM   #13
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Re: What is "combat"?

Most people know assault and battery is against the law. Most people don't do it. Instead we fight with words. The Aikidoka who was killed didn't expect to be hit, because he was being attacked with words. He let his guard down. What killed him wasn't the hit but the impact to the hard ground from being hit. Was he in a combat situation, by having some one argue with him over a parking spot? I am not sure what level of intensity the arguing was at. The other guy may have normally argued over the spot in a common manner that many of us experience in our daily lives. A situation that rarely results in violence. How hostile was the other guy, was he giving any indication he was going to strike? Tough situation to call when you don't have all the facts.

Say your in crowed line and bump in the person behind you accidentally as a result of the crowd. The person you bumped into then stabs you in the back,or less violently punches you with your back turned. Did you know you’re in a combat situation? I don't think the Aikidoka did either. Hind sight is 20/20, as they say. It is really difficult to know what people will do.

We are not super people with super sensory perception telling us we are in a combat situation. We are people. Because we are people the key then is the universal self-defense rule of being aware at all times. Even if you do you are still susceptible. To be attacked in public only requires the attacker to have that right split second to attack.

Really what I am saying is, I am cutting the unfortunate Aikidoka some slack. He was human, and it was unfortunate he died over a paking spot. Honestly, it is a sad commentary on our civilization. I don't think even if he was MMA trained for example it would have made any difference sadly. I think the only difference might have been in his personality and background, and not what art he practiced.

Just my old hayp'ny worth.

What is combat I think is a good question.

Last edited by Buck : 04-13-2008 at 09:51 PM.
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Old 04-13-2008, 09:46 PM   #14
Bill Danosky
 
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Re: What is "combat"?

I've heard a lot of the training Secret Service agents go through is sort-of "spot the loony" in the crowd. So a lot of aggressor profile stuff.

Instincts are a key element of this conversation- As Aikidoka, it's great knowing we have soft options or we can seriously injure an opponent. But then you have a responsibility to correctly surmise which level your encounter is, and mount the appropriate response.

That's why it's so easy to make a mistake, and I bet the Monday morning quarterbacking is relentless if you survive a deadly enounter.

If you're doing a kote gaeshi on a gun weilding opponent, how close to kihon is it going to be? You don't need much discretion to know how far to take it. Against a drunk at a wedding reception, a little softer technique might be in order...
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Old 04-13-2008, 10:00 PM   #15
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Re: What is "combat"?

Bill wrote:

Quote:
I like this observation about sport fighting and real fighting. But I think cops, for instance, have a different mentality and set of techinques than soldiers, so I'd suggest that there are maybe two different levels of "combat". Which is what I'm asking about here.
What is the difference in mentality?

What are the two different levels of combat that you see?

Some clarification of these two points might help me to understand a little better about what you are looking for.

Bill wrote:

Quote:
Since it's established that under stress you fall back on your training, a martial artist might benefit from training under three modes of fighting. Then you'd have different skillsets to resort to, depending on what mentality your instincts trigger.
What three modes are you referring to? Sport, Law Enforcement, Soldiering?

What are the different skillsets you are talking about?

Not sure I understand what you mean by "mentalities your instincts trigger"?

You refer to instincts in your last post, what instincts are you talking about specifically? startle/flinch? or others?

Not trying to be a pain in the butt, but I don't really understand what you are trying to get at...sorry.

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Old 04-13-2008, 11:01 PM   #16
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Re: What is "combat"?

I am sorry for posting so much. What I am getting at is that sure people can say that the Aikidoka failed. If he was using my art, they would say, then he would be alive. Well that is hindsight. Every one can be defeated.

I am also saying combat doesn't have levels, people have levels. A cop doesn't use deadly force on someone running a red light, or when a fleeing suspect is caught by a cop is immediately thrown to the ground, and choked out. Another example is why take a drunk to the ground mount him then ground n' pound until he is K.O.ed, only because he took poor swing at you and missed in a bar? Sport MMA fighting isn't good for public use, it works on one level. The ring level where it dominates. Or when you find yourself on the ground, and the other guy is on top of you.

Aikido works on many levels, but on one level it doesn't work well on is sport fighting. Aikido works well when controling someone is important. I know of cops who use it when they need to cuff someone. I know Aikido is good for come-alongs, and disarming someone, be it a gun or a broom strick. Aikido doesn't work well when your on the ground.

Combat then is any situation where you realize you are needing to defend yourself physically. How you react to the threat is based on your profession if it applies i.e. a cop or solider, personality and background, your martial art and level of training, other training outside martial arts, and the type of situation your are in. To say MMA fits all situations is as wrong as to say Aikido fits all situations. I think combat can be looked as levels two levels, mock which would be things like Randori and ring fighting, and actual combat such as any real situation. Real combat has degrees of intensity, from the awkwardly swinging drunk, to someone shooting at you.

I think some people mix that idea up, and confuse mock fighting for the real thing. In a real fight it comes on quick most of the time. Some fights have the common telegraphing of trash talking, then bumping or pushing, then going to blows. But not every situation follows that pattern. Or it doesn't require the K.O.ing of the attacker. Decernment and having the skills to meet as many levels as possible is what I think helps keep the combat situation to a low intensity level. In that way you have greater control over the situation and being able to managable it better.

Every art and sport has a weak point. Knowing your weakness is a strenght in any combat situation. Not thinking you have a weakness is fatal. Lots of people do make that mistake. For me, Combat is one thing, and not parted out. It is being able to read the combat situation properly and apply the right skills and tools accordingly, that is the key. Not an easy thing to do. People have to train in stressful situations and under duress to be more successful than not. Not everyone has the training for that or does train to do that. And when they find themselves in that situation where they are not trained and are not prepared, they experience fail. Failure can be freezing or over-reacting. It isn't the art then, it is the person who trains to deal with real situations (real combat) accordingly. I am just saying one size doesn't fit all. Just because you train, it doesn't mean you can or you will. Real combat of any kind or intensity isn't in found in ring, or a dojo. A ring is a competition, a dojo is a place to train. Both are different types of training. At the end of the day what really matters?

I could be way off base. I don't want to sound if I am arguing with anyone. It's my hayp'ny thrown in. A different angle.

Last edited by Buck : 04-13-2008 at 11:08 PM.
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Old 04-14-2008, 05:19 AM   #17
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Re: What is "combat"?

I have long said that training is not sparring, sparring is not fighting, fighting is not combat. The difference in intent and intensity.

I am with Leavitt on this one for some obvious reasons.

Lynn Seiser PhD
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Old 04-14-2008, 06:07 AM   #18
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Re: What is "combat"?

I love how mma fighting is always ground fighting. There are plenty of guys in MMA with weak ground skills who prefer to stay on their feet and knock people out with brutal punches and kicks. No different then 99% of all striking martial arts out there with the sole exception of the fact that they actually get to use the tools they develop.

To me it all sounds like elitism. If you say MMA is impractical, then by logical extension, everything else that is used in MMA must be impractical. I submit that TKD, Karate, Judo, BJJ, Japanese Jiujitsu, (and thus by extension all aiki variants including aikido) must all be worthless.

The only difference between sport and street is the regard you have for your opponent and the mindset you approach the fight.

My favorite example of 'real' self defense was a bunch of bjj guys bullshitting after a workout. A few white belts were talking about what they would do if they got attacked in a bar. One talked about his take down knocking the guy out, the other talked about his ground and pound, another mentioned he was more a striker and would punch the guy out. Finally a very experienced mma fighter and blue belt spoke up. He said "I would just try to stay away until the bouncers came and threw him out."

So here we have a bunch of new guys dreaming, and a experienced fighter showing how to use that knowledge. I think he has it figured out much more then 99% of the martial artists out there.

- Don
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Old 04-14-2008, 09:54 AM   #19
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Re: What is "combat"?

Quote:
Kevin Leavitt wrote: View Post
Bill wrote:

What is the difference in mentality?

What are the two different levels of combat that you see?

Some clarification of these two points might help me to understand a little better about what you are looking for...
Not trying to be a pain in the butt, but I don't really understand what you are trying to get at...sorry.
The mentalities are what's especially interesting to me. I have observed that in a low intensity conflict (let's say, the aggressive drunk in a bar scenario) you are in a state of mind where you're operating on some instinct and yet you still have some cognitive influence. You decide how to handle the situation, but the execution of your actions are dictated by your training and habits.

In a situation where your survival might be threatened or you are extremely angry, an interesting thing seems to happen- you revert to what I call "observer mode" where you are acting purely on instinct and are almost watching from behind. It's almost like, "Oh, look what I'm doing. How interesting." Your thoughts have no influence on your actions and probably you have to reconstruct the event later just to know what you did.

I have heard from people who've been there, that in extremely high stress combat (desperate, hand-to-hand combat) there is often yet another state of mind. This is the "last stand" mentality I referred to earlier. Your animal instincts are directing your actions and even though you have characteristically given up your hope of survival and a future, you will do anything just to keep fighting. Time slows down. Nonessential functions are shut down and a strange sense of calm is described by people who've experienced this.

The "anything" you'll do to keep fighting here, plus the actions your instincts direct in the first two scenarios are what I'm getting at. I'm suggesting that if you train distinctly for each of them you'll have clear and appropriate responses and your actions will be optimal, as long as you correctly discern the situation you're in.

What do you guys think?
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Old 04-14-2008, 10:51 AM   #20
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Re: What is "combat"?

Quote:
Bill Danosky wrote: View Post
I have heard from people who've been there, that in extremely high stress combat (desperate, hand-to-hand combat) there is often yet another state of mind. This is the "last stand" mentality I referred to earlier. Your animal instincts are directing your actions and even though you have characteristically given up your hope of survival and a future, you will do anything just to keep fighting. Time slows down. Nonessential functions are shut down and a strange sense of calm is described by people who've experienced this.

What do you guys think?
Have you asked them if they'd like to be there again?

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Old 04-14-2008, 01:14 PM   #21
Bill Danosky
 
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Re: What is "combat"?

I assume you're being smart, Demitri. But there's an interesting answer to your question-
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Demetrio Cereijo wrote: View Post
Have you asked them if they'd like to be there again?
In the first two types of incidents, yes they might. The action can be addicting and those survivors might even become thrillseeking types afterward.

In the third instance- where the likelihood of survival was negligible and the fighting was desperate and dirty- not at all. Those survivors often become lifetime pacifists.

I wonder if that was a factor in O Sensei's famous revelation? I've never heard detailed accounts, but he was apparently faced with death on quite a number of occasions. Even though he was promoting peace when he was travelling in China, his experiences there did seem to influence his philosophies...
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Old 04-14-2008, 01:30 PM   #22
Aristeia
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Re: What is "combat"?

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Philip Burgess wrote: View Post
. Another example is why take a drunk to the ground mount him then ground n' pound until he is K.O.ed, only because he took poor swing at you and missed in a bar? Sport MMA fighting isn't good for public use, .
Are you suggesting that MMA doesn't have good options for simply controlling someone?

It's interesting to me how some of us here sometimes cop flack for talking MMA/BJJ and yet it's never us that brings it up. This thread is a perfect example.

You really don't need to come up with complex theories to explain why training Aikido is a good thing. "I like it and it makes me a better person" should be enough.

"When your only tool is a hammer every problem starts to look like a nail"
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Old 04-14-2008, 02:21 PM   #23
Aikibu
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Re: What is "combat"?

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Michael Fooks wrote: View Post
You really don't need to come up with complex theories to explain why training Aikido is a good thing. "I like it and it makes me a better person" should be enough.
Glad someone other than just me feels this way.

William Hazen
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Old 04-14-2008, 04:00 PM   #24
KIT
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Re: What is "combat"?

Some of the comments on this thread give me the feeling that I have just been stabbed in the eye - does that count??

Seriously, though, I think Bill is closer to my definition of it, if only in terms of the immediate threat to life aspect.

I will leave MMA out of it - I just don't think there is enough background here amongst most of the posters to properly address MMA in its combat-adapted format.

And, ahem, Dana White is NOT an MMA fighter....

Speaking from the LE/tactical perspective, simple threat of violence/presence of violence I do not define as a combative encounter. The potential is always there, but has to be realized in my mind for the definition to change.

I have been within feet of multiple people armed with knives in the midst of critical encounters. ALL were ended at gunpoint without anything more than proning out and a wristlock/pin prior to cuffing. Many, many more involving people armed with firearms, and even shots fired prior to arrival, or even shots fired after our arrival but which were resolved without anyone getting seriously hurt.

Was that combat? I think a Marine with experience in Fallujah would beg to differ.

Those were people who willingly submitted to authority and threat of danger to themselves. They weren't interested in fighting. The vast majority of police arrests involve zero or very little physical force - that isn't even a fight, let alone "combat."

We have a saying - I'd rather have a shooting than be in a gunfight. If I ended up shooting a man armed with an Airsoft pistol, though a legitimate legal shooting if I felt it was real and I was threatened - is that combat?

I think there has to be an imminent, intentional, interpersonal threat of serious bodily injury or death for it to actually be "combat." I think soldier or LE or citizen, if life and limb is on the line, it is combat and there isn't much difference in terms of use of force or mechanics. The rules are no different for a cop, a citizen, or a soldier if you can articulate actual threat - its the level that you are able to respond with deadly force that is different for them, and the type of encounter you will more than likely face.

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Bill Danosky wrote: View Post

I have heard from people who've been there, that in extremely high stress combat (desperate, hand-to-hand combat) there is often yet another state of mind. This is the "last stand" mentality I referred to earlier. Your animal instincts are directing your actions and even though you have characteristically given up your hope of survival and a future, you will do anything just to keep fighting. Time slows down. Non-essential functions are shut down and a strange sense of calm is described by people who've experienced this.
There is another state of mind, but I wouldn't call it "last stand." If I have learned anything from a taste of that mindset, it would be that animal instincts will often get you killed - they are what allows people to be overwhelmed even in stress scenarios with simulated threats, let alone real ones. Besides, animal instinct is to run FROM threats (like gunfire), not run toward them. As a professional you are tasked to run into that gunfire and your training has hopefully prepared you to do so.

Appropriate training is what you must rely on to override animal instincts, while still being informed by them, because there is literally no time to think - all your thought processes must be on the tactical situation, improving it, and keeping from getting overwhelmed by it.

Do anything to keep fighting - absolutely! This is the default mindset and MUST be so ingrained that it is almost instinctive.

NEVER, EVER, EVER give up the hope for survival. Absolute wrong mindset to have. People with minor injuries have given themselves up to die, and done so, or done nothing to mitigate or improve their situation and only survived by luck. But luck more often favors the Prepared.

And would some of us like to be there again? It depends how you define it - like to? No. Willingly do so because it is a professional obligation? Because it validated your training and experience, and "if not me, then who?" Absolutely 100%

It depends on how you process what happens to you - how well prepared you were for it to begin with. Being absolutely willing to do it again is beyond the comprehension of many people that have never been there and never will - even fellow professionals who carry guns and go into harm's way.

Some people get it, and know exactly why.

Last edited by KIT : 04-14-2008 at 04:08 PM. Reason: Readability/grammar
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Old 04-14-2008, 04:24 PM   #25
KIT
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Re: What is "combat"?

These guys might be able to help us define "combat:"

http://www.warriorsthefilm.com/Movie.html

They also shed light on the question of "What is a Warrior?" Something that judging from the frequent threads asking just that question, many participants on martial arts forums seem to struggle with.
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