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Old 03-14-2007, 12:57 AM   #1
Kevin Leavitt
 
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Re: Non-cooperative tanto-dori (Discussion)

Good stuff Kit. One thing that we have noted in the Army is that we have these guys that carry the big knifes (not so much anymore), and ask them calmly in a "what if" experience what they would do if the enemy closed and could not fire weapon, they say i'd pull my knife.

In reality, most do not. They have not developed a game plan for using that weapon, they have it in the wrong place, it is the wrong size, they cannot activate it....most importantly...

we find they forget about it in the heat of battle and become focused on the part of the body of their enemy that they fear most. Usually it is the hands...and then the struggling begins!

So, I stress to them if they are going to carry one for personal protection, they need to develop the instinctual muscle memory necessary to use it when certain triggers are pushed....without thinking about it.

Really if you think about it, this is all our training is designed to do anyway, to put things in our muscle memory so that when certain triggers are pushed we instinctively act in a certain way.

As Larry says, everything else is mental masturbation

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Old 03-14-2007, 01:37 AM   #2
KIT
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Re: Non-cooperative tanto-dori (Discussion)

Same with cops, Kevin. Though folders are usually the blade of choice, when you see where and how some cops carry their folders you know that they won't be able to reach them under pressure, as in a weapon retention situation.

We've done classes on folder deployment, but some people just don't think that way no matter how much you try to show them.
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Old 03-14-2007, 11:41 AM   #3
Kevin Leavitt
 
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Re: Non-cooperative tanto-dori (Discussion)

Actually I carry my M9 on my left side as I carry an M4 on my right side and it is easier to drop when my weapon is jamed and draw. I also carry a folder cliped to the front of my left side on the "strong side" which is my left side (because my pistol is there).

In the event of a jam of my rifle, or too close to shoot scenario and I get into the clinch. I drop back my left side, form a frame to gain space, then draw knife, flip open, stab kidneys, kick away, draw pistol, shoot, reholster pistol when safe, clear jam if necesary...and repeat.

A small 6 inch spiderco, or Gerber works best...the ones with the little belt clip that you can clip to the your pants and flip open with your thumb.

Ka-bars are so passe, and SO Marine Urah!

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Old 03-14-2007, 12:43 PM   #4
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Re: Non-cooperative tanto-dori (Discussion)

Kevin, this is a tanto dori thread, if we are talking about military blades I have a preference for a good old foot long bayonet, it is the closest thing to a tanto so modification of aikido training is not necessary. I have never had any of the problems drawing and using it simultaneously that you list. I would get something like the lil loco or clinch pick in the hardware section of the shivworks site to clean my nails though,lol. Seriously, shuriken serve the same purpose with the added benefit of being a superior projectile weapon.
Kit, I have never met anyone less prepared for their work than cops. Most I have encountered detest martial arts,compliance,combatives,scenario based or weapons retention training of any kind. They think a gun and backup officers make it unnecessary, but still avoid target practice at the shooting range. Since we are going off topic I would say that aikido techniques are better suited for defense against arrest. I do not view them as effective hojo jutsu regardless of the Tokyo riot police adopting Yoshinkan for this purpose,
How is the shodothugress video good randori? Uke is using the same telegraphed attack with a visible weapon from an unnatural stylised stance over and over again. Uke also wades right into kicking/striking distance with munetsuki, this being the reason for resistance and the need for roughness and lack of fluidity in nage's response.
Lynn, how is munetsuki an attack aimed at an area not covered by kiku?The byotoji okegawa do would protect that region!
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Old 03-14-2007, 01:00 PM   #5
Kevin Leavitt
 
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Re: Non-cooperative tanto-dori (Discussion)

Mike,

Could you give us a little bit of your background?

What is your experience with military or police?

I am not going to say that there are military members and police officers that don't fit the bill that you describe, but to make that blanket statement, you must have some experience in which to base it on

I personally have issues with a bayonet. One you cannot carry it on your front, it must be carried on the side. In the clinch you must reach back to grab it instead of underneath. you have to unclip it from the sheath, and then there is the foot that you have to pull out of the sheath which essentially telegraphs what you are doing. Then you must proceed to stick not 3 inches or so into a kidney, but a whole foot. They are not sharp, they are heavy, unwieldy, and the blades are too thick.

I prefer a small folding blade.

Personally I don't find much value in tanto dori other than to teach proper aikido foot work and body positioning. Not very good IMO for actual weapons training for me at least...but I train for specific reasons.

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Old 03-14-2007, 01:58 PM   #6
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Re: Non-cooperative tanto-dori (Discussion)

Family members were cops or worked with them. Trying to convince them or their colleagues to get on the mat was like pulling teeth.
I can carry a bayonet on the front, I'm not using it to stab at close quarters,senban type shuriken are used here, I never find myself in a clinch/hug. What do you mean by unclip it from the sheath?Mine pulls right out like a tanto. Would you consider a iaido draw a telegraphed movement? My bayonet is very sharp, the longer and heavier the better,more damage done, the quicker you drop someone.Unwieldy, no, intimidating, yes. Should distance be created, but not enough to use a fire arm, would you rather have a 3inch bottle opener or a foot of steel? Don't you find it difficult fumbling with folders,even the ones you can open with the thumb of the same hand which is holding the handle awkward in comparison to a battojutsu type draw?
What is the extent of your aikido training,which shihan did you practice with?
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Old 03-14-2007, 02:14 PM   #7
KIT
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Re: Non-cooperative tanto-dori (Discussion)

Quote:
Mike Balko wrote: View Post
....I never find myself in a clinch/hug....
Really? Your military background?


Given a preference, I'd go with the small fixed blade, or assisted opening folder. The issue of extra manipulations with the folder is a very real one.

Carried closer to center, at the belt line or just above ideally. Off side of the sidearm for police, because that is most likely the weapon they will be protecting and thus the hand closest to the knife will be busy when worn same side as the holster, though best case the blade should be accessible to both hands.

This allows you to draw while in clinch without having to drop a hand back behind you or to the side to access a weapon, or to disengage a hand that might be protecting the sidearm from being drawn.

My post above links to information regarding creating the same lines throughout your combative platform, and that is what it is referring to. I don't want to carry any weapons in a way that requires me to alter my other skills in order to access the weapon: i.e. having to put a hand behind me to get to the blade. I shouldn't have to turn, twist or bend to get to it either, though I should be able to get to it if turned, twisted or bent based on the situation.

There are other things you can do to maximize weapons accessibility "in fight," which is where you'll see more aikido stuff come out. Kinda "aiki in the clinch," or perhaps some would say it was just jujutsu. Either way, the idea is movement efficiency.

That efficiency must be tested in live randori incorporating weapons.

Agreed with Kevin re: tanto-dori.
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Old 03-14-2007, 02:24 PM   #8
KIT
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Re: Non-cooperative tanto-dori (Discussion)

Guys - just another note: when talking about distance "not enough for a firearm" we mean a long gun, right?

You can draw, shoot and keep a handgun retained at chest to chest contact, if you do it right. There are a few approaches to this, and I've done a couple methods in FoF with Sims and they work quite well. Kevin, that's the stuff I was PM-ing you about.

If your AARs are indicating that when our guys are getting up close and personal, they don't use their handguns, this training might be interesting to them.

The average police shooting is within 7-10 feet, and frequently hand to hand fighting immediately preceeds going to gun(s), often during the actual arrest attempt. So shooting at body contact or near body contact is a regular occurrance.
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Old 03-14-2007, 03:49 PM   #9
Kevin Leavitt
 
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Re: Non-cooperative tanto-dori (Discussion)

Mike, you carry a bayonet really?

My experiences are with our service bayonets, ka-bars, or the like, obviously I don't like them.

All my reasons to use a knife pretty much involve the clinch. If I am pulling a knife, many, many things have gone very wrong and now we are into a position whereas this has to happen. If I have control and a half a meter or so distance, I am drawing sidearm and firing.

Dropping guys with knifes, maybe, maybe not. I have never done it in real life, thank god! But, I count on the guy NOT dropping right there for a few seconds, more as a disruptive technique to move on to something else.

Aikido Shihan? Mitsugi Saotome Sensei and Aikido Shobukan Dojo and the many, many instructors and wonderful students there, and several of his senior students, Bob Galeone, 5 Dan, Jimmy Sorrentino, 5 Dan, Mike Lasky (on occasion), 6 dan. Off and on over the last 12 years or so as my career lets me!

BJJ/MMA, last 3 years with Rodolfo Amaro, 1st Dan, Gracie Barra, Jacare Cavalcanti, 6 Dan, Rolls Gracie, Roberto Traven, 3rd Dan, Alliance BJJ (Jacare), Steve Van Fleet professional fighter...and any one else I can roll with!

Learned my combatives training through the U.S. Army Infantry School. Level I instructor, Modern Army Combatives, Army Ranger, Class 10-96, various CQB/CQM courses. Light Infantry Platoon Leader, and many, many Urban training operations with the Army over the past 4 years in my current job.

Currently teach BJJ and Army Combatives here at my training center in Germany to U.S and NATO troops as necessary.

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Old 03-14-2007, 03:56 PM   #10
Kevin Leavitt
 
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Re: Non-cooperative tanto-dori (Discussion)

Quote:
Kit Leblanc wrote: View Post
Guys - just another note: when talking about distance "not enough for a firearm" we mean a long gun, right?

You can draw, shoot and keep a handgun retained at chest to chest contact, if you do it right. There are a few approaches to this, and I've done a couple methods in FoF with Sims and they work quite well. Kevin, that's the stuff I was PM-ing you about.

If your AARs are indicating that when our guys are getting up close and personal, they don't use their handguns, this training might be interesting to them.

The average police shooting is within 7-10 feet, and frequently hand to hand fighting immediately preceeds going to gun(s), often during the actual arrest attempt. So shooting at body contact or near body contact is a regular occurrance.
We are cretins when it comes to handgun techniques compared to police, we simply don't train them enough, but I am trying to do more of this.

Long guns. yes, that is what i am talking about. Our entry techniques we use M4 carbine preferably, as it is shorter than the old M16s. In our practice we work on scenarios where you enter and someone approaches typically from around 45 degrees and either grabs rifle, or clinches up on it so you can't use it, from there you drop back with strong side, draw knife or handgun, depending on situation/availabiltiy/accessibility and go from there.

Anyway...this is getting off subject I suppose from non-cooperative Tanto Dori.

I think that we have ascertained and discussed where it is important for police/military tactical applications.

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Old 03-14-2007, 04:23 PM   #11
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Re: Non-cooperative tanto-dori (Discussion)

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Kevin Leavitt wrote: View Post

All my reasons to use a knife pretty much involve the clinch. If I am pulling a knife, many, many things have gone very wrong and now we are into a position whereas this has to happen. If I have control and a half a meter or so distance, I am drawing sidearm and firing.

Dropping guys with knifes, maybe, maybe not. I have never done it in real life, thank god! But, I count on the guy NOT dropping right there for a few seconds, more as a disruptive technique to move on to something else.
Probably moreso for police RE: knife. Really wrong. But it has happened.

Unfortunately, its maybe/maybe not a stop with handgun, too, which is why counting on him NOT dropping is important. Good stuff.

Quote:
Kevin Leavitt wrote: View Post

Long guns. yes, that is what i am talking about. Our entry techniques we use M4 carbine preferably, as it is shorter than the old M16s. In our practice we work on scenarios where you enter and someone approaches typically from around 45 degrees and either grabs rifle, or clinches up on it so you can't use it, from there you drop back with strong side, draw knife or handgun, depending on situation/availabiltiy/accessibility and go from there.

Anyway...this is getting off subject I suppose from non-cooperative Tanto Dori.
Us too, and a few of us still the MP5.

We are on pretty much the same page RE: long gun - I think people don't realize that when you are clearing tiny homes or trailers with long guns that people averting your muzzle or clinching on the weapon is not unusual.

As far as off subject - I think we can make a good argument that these things, at close quarters, are interconnected.

The long guns, kit mounted fixed blade knives, etc. probably have little relevance to most readers, however.

Quote:
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... Rolls Gracie.....
Did you really train with Rolls Gracie!?!?
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Old 03-14-2007, 05:12 PM   #12
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Re: Police/Military Blade Tactics

Heck No! Rolls Gracie passed away in the mid eighties! Jacare was awarded his black belt by Rolls. Didn't mean to give anyone that impression, just that Jacare, got his black belt from him.

I see the thread has been moved to a more appropriate place. Thanks Jun, and sorry for the diversion.

Buildings and trailers and what not are messy. I always use the scenario as why it is important to train ground fighting. You enter a building with night vision googles on, you cannot see well, you trip over the crap on the floor stumble in the room fall down and wham, the guy is on top of you. Your buddy comes in next, can't see hears you yelling and struggling, you hold the guy there in the guard or something until they can secure the room and then he helps you. all this in under 20 seconds!

Here is a good article as an example on MSG Anthony Pryor, 5th SFG.

http://www4.army.mil/ocpa/read.php?story_id_key=1689

A good example of an army multiple opponent scenario.

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Old 03-14-2007, 05:23 PM   #13
garry cantrell
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Re: Non-cooperative tanto-dori (Discussion)

[quote=Kevin Leavitt;172004]Mike, you carry a bayonet really?

Aikido Shihan? Mitsugi Saotome Sensei and Aikido Shobukan Dojo and the many, many instructors and wonderful students there, and several of his senior students, Bob Galeone, 5 Dan, Jimmy Sorrentino, 5 Dan, Mike Lasky (on occasion), 6 dan. Off and on over the last 12 years or so as my career lets me!

Hey Kevin,

Off topic:
Where's Mike Lasky these days? I haven't seen him in forever.

Garry
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Old 03-14-2007, 05:32 PM   #14
Kevin Leavitt
 
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Re: Police/Military Blade Tactics

I am not sure EXACTLY where. I am in Germany so last time I saw him was in Arlington VA at the dojo last year. I believe he is still round the area. Robert Rumpf, and Jimmy Sorrentino will know where he is. I love training with him!

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Old 03-14-2007, 09:37 PM   #15
Jim Sorrentino
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Re: Non-cooperative tanto-dori (Discussion)

Hi Garry,
Quote:
Garry Cantrell wrote: View Post
Off topic:
Where's Mike Lasky these days? I haven't seen him in forever.
Mike is the the Technical Advisor at Aikido of Northern Virginia. He usually comes down four days each week. Sometimes he teaches, sometimes he takes my class (or the class of whoever is teaching). He is a major asset to the dojo. The fact is, there are no other American aikidoka, apart from Saotome-sensei's wife, Patty, who has taken as many classes from Saotome-sensei as Mike has. Please let me know the next time you are in town, and I will make sure that Mike is on the mat.

Jim
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Old 07-24-2010, 10:15 AM   #16
Russell Davis
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Re: Police/Military Blade Tactics

Fighting knife? my own preference is a Kukri, I hit you with it once, you go down, second time your dead! (if missed first time)
Also have a back up boot knife (gerber) H2H is not for the faint hearted, lots of blood, screaming, the guy who stays cool and relaxed will win over a bigger stronger guy who is panicking or scared. Pistols unless its a head shot wont do the job! Tora Bora caves was pitch black and you couldnt see shit, (no NVG) I had to do it all by feel!
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Old 07-24-2010, 12:38 PM   #17
SeiserL
 
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Re: Police/Military Blade Tactics

Some friends on mine in a FMA study group visited a gun show recently. At a knife booth they asked about training blades. The owner said that was the most dangerous thing he had heard in a long time, some one actually practices.

Lynn Seiser PhD
Yondan Aikido & FMA/JKD
We do not rise to the level of our expectations, but fall to the level of our training. Train well. KWATZ!
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Old 07-24-2010, 07:14 PM   #18
mickeygelum
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Re: Police/Military Blade Tactics

Greetings All,

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8avJQRr0PME
This video is of Tuhan Jon Holloway, of Albo Kali Silat, demonstrating Khukuri as a hacking and cutting weapon.

Train well,

Mickey
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Old 07-24-2010, 08:13 PM   #19
DH
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Re: Police/Military Blade Tactics

While Kukris are my favorite as well, I am not really sure how they fit into a modern fighting knife description. Then again to me a fighting knife seems weird. Wouldn't they want a best all around tool? How often would you use a knife....as a weapon?
I never go camping without a kukri as they are a good machete/axe/draw knife (an aspect rarely talked about) and fine knife as well when you know how to use the blade. Why there is a tendency to shy away from large weapons may be more of an "in thing" in the military than in real life. When men used all around weapons and tools- they were not usually small.
So how does that work in modern combat? I'll leave that up to the professionals..I've have no idea.
Long extended outdoor trips, I'll take certain large knifes everytime.
Hiking? I use a 3" folder. who need the extra weight.

That was a fairly decent video demonstration, minus some body placement issues. His noting the difference between the short and large knife is very true and that Kukris have tremendous potential for damage and work in a tighter cut as well as in a spiraling flurry of cuts and in stabbing. I was surprised to see something so decent.

Couple of points about his discussion of hacking, and chopping:
Kukris were not originally intended for fighting but were an all around agricultural tool. As an agricultural tool you could swing the blade in a manner that did not require that same firm grip. That grip actually reduces rather than enhances the knifes real cutting power. By keeping the knife loose in the hand, you could use the rings on the handle to pivot and snap the blade in your own hand. This allowed gravity to move the blade forward and you needed no where near the energy he is using to cut through large objects.
This method has been used for generations in domestic use to cut all day with much less fatigue.

My favorite example of this is when I had a bunch of guys test cutting on live trees on my property. They were using Katana and Naginata I forged and cutting through 1 1/2" to 3" trees. They were all pumped and having a great time and talking about "the power" and the mystery of the katana.
I walked up and took out a kukri I had forged ( a narrower surupeti style) and started cutting through a 3" tree cut after cut. With one hand I managed to "out cut" what they had been doing with two hands and a 30" sword.

Because I had no need for retention- I could use the blade/handle in a more relaxed manner and pivot it to let the blade do the work than what I saw there. Yes, I am aware of the Bando and other type use of the firm grip.
Anyway, I think Kukris are one of the best cutting tools (used as weapons) in the world, not the best stabbing.

Indigenous blades and why we should not take a cultures ignorance in their forging practices as gospel
The thick spine he shows is really a poor choice that they made as a trade-off for not hardening the spine. It is ridiculous to be mentioned as a plus. Most of these knives are made out of Springs (older ones out od railroad track) I or anyone of about 300 American smiths could produce a knife half that width that will outperform it in all aspects.

Modern Kukris forging is crap. They do not harden the spine at all, and compensate for it's inherent weakness with thickness-not a good choice. There is much debate among current Kukri makers about that very thing. And the way they harden the edge is atrocious. They have a tradition of:
1. Heating only the edge to critical temperature
2. Not soaking at temp. at all
3. Then pouring water over the edge to harden it.
4. Then tempering in an open flame.

This results in an incredible inconsistency. I own quite a collection of antique and new kukri, spanning about a hundred and fifty years. I have tested them for Rockwell hardness and in edge flex tests and they are ridiculously inconsistent. Further, the edges are not hardened through some are barely surface hardened, and years of use and repeat sharpening would see them reach the softer unhardened steel in the center.

I also make them. Were they to use modern methods; soak at temperature and then quenched in oil and temp soaked in an oven, they could then flame draw or heated copper black draw the spines back to spring temper and have both a a consistent and hard edge but also a tough back and be thinner and a far more effective knife.
There are many traditional, cultural based methods for making blades. It doesn't make them the best process...or even good, just tradition.

Dan

Last edited by DH : 07-24-2010 at 08:25 PM.
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Old 07-25-2010, 01:40 PM   #20
Benjamin Green
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Re: Police/Military Blade Tactics

Quote:
Dan Harden wrote: View Post
While Kukris are my favorite as well, I am not really sure how they fit into a modern fighting knife description. Then again to me a fighting knife seems weird. Wouldn't they want a best all around tool? How often would you use a knife....as a weapon?
Different knives are meant to do different tasks.

They make long knives to go between the ribs and take out the heart, or down through the collarbone at the right angle to separate the throat from the lung/sever the subclavian artery. Heavy blades can go for the back of the neck - instant ragdoll, very quiet kill. Short knives that go in the underside of your belt to be pulled in a clinch and driven up into the soft areas.

The best way to use one depends on the task at hand and the characteristics of the blade. There's no all round best tool.

Generally people who know how to kill with knives will have a survival knife they use for regular stuff and a knife they use for their preferred method of sneaking up and killing folks.

Last edited by Benjamin Green : 07-25-2010 at 01:43 PM.
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Old 07-27-2010, 08:27 PM   #21
Mark Jakabcsin
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Re: Police/Military Blade Tactics

Kevin,
Here are some interesting training drills on knife deployment from the clinch:

- #1 has a knife somewhere on his body (change it up frequently), #1 & #2 clinch and grapple. When the instructor claps #1 must draw the knife and cut/stab #2, who is trying to keep #1 from drawing.

- Same set up but now when the instructor claps #2 must draw #1's knife, #1 is trying to keep that from happening but must remain grappling (I.E. Controling).

- Now #1 and #2 both have knives, upon the clap either can draw and cut, go until the first cut.

- Same but you cannot draw your own knife you have to draw the other guys knife.

- Add in striking to increase the intensity.

- Do these drills while on the ground.

- 2-on-1 versions are also delightful

There are many more variations. Some keys are to be patient when drawing. The person that draws immediately upon the clap generally doesn't do so well, especially when striking is involved. Smaller drawing motions are generally more successful (learning to draw with the wrist/hand instead of the elbow shoulder). Learning to cover small deployment motions with larger body motions is helpful, especially when the larger motions assist the deployment activity.

Try to not be overly competitive. Maintaining a constant steady speed builds smoothness.

Enjoy.

Mark J.
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Old 07-28-2010, 11:06 AM   #22
phitruong
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Re: Police/Military Blade Tactics

Quote:
Mark Jakabcsin wrote: View Post
- 2-on-1 versions are also delightful

Mark J.
hey! i remembered the 2-on-1, especially, when the one backed against the wall or the corner. it sucked, but love it!
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Old 07-28-2010, 02:14 PM   #23
mickeygelum
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Re: Police/Military Blade Tactics

Quote:
How often would you use a knife....as a weapon?
HUH?...
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Old 08-01-2010, 12:34 PM   #24
KaliGman
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Re: Police/Military Blade Tactics

Quote:
Dan Harden wrote: View Post
While Kukris are my favorite as well, I am not really sure how they fit into a modern fighting knife description. Then again to me a fighting knife seems weird. Wouldn't they want a best all around tool? How often would you use a knife....as a weapon?
I never go camping without a kukri as they are a good machete/axe/draw knife (an aspect rarely talked about) and fine knife as well when you know how to use the blade. Why there is a tendency to shy away from large weapons may be more of an "in thing" in the military than in real life. When men used all around weapons and tools- they were not usually small.
So how does that work in modern combat? I'll leave that up to the professionals..I've have no idea.
Long extended outdoor trips, I'll take certain large knifes everytime.
Hiking? I use a 3" folder. who need the extra weight.

That was a fairly decent video demonstration, minus some body placement issues. His noting the difference between the short and large knife is very true and that Kukris have tremendous potential for damage and work in a tighter cut as well as in a spiraling flurry of cuts and in stabbing. I was surprised to see something so decent.

Couple of points about his discussion of hacking, and chopping:
Kukris were not originally intended for fighting but were an all around agricultural tool. As an agricultural tool you could swing the blade in a manner that did not require that same firm grip. That grip actually reduces rather than enhances the knifes real cutting power. By keeping the knife loose in the hand, you could use the rings on the handle to pivot and snap the blade in your own hand. This allowed gravity to move the blade forward and you needed no where near the energy he is using to cut through large objects.
This method has been used for generations in domestic use to cut all day with much less fatigue...

Indigenous blades and why we should not take a cultures ignorance in their forging practices as gospel
The thick spine he shows is really a poor choice that they made as a trade-off for not hardening the spine. It is ridiculous to be mentioned as a plus.

Dan
Hello Dan,

I have to say that I agree with quite a bit of your post, but there are a couple of things to consider. You already mentioned the grip on the khukuri and how you were not worried about retention. Since I was showing combat methodologies, I was, of course, very much concerned with retention. Having been in the law enforcement field for the last 18 years and having dealt with a few violent and overall "interesting" situations, I am always concerned with the retention of any weapon or tool that could be used as a weapon which I carry, and the location of any weapon that the miscreant happens to have on his person. As for body positioning, note that, when cutting, I demonstrated our methodology and methodologies that we do not advocate in my art, and that I was not doing any footwork. As for use of the knife as a weapon, I find this to be a key skill that needs to be developed. After years of real world experience in violent situations and having been attacked with knives, firearms, bludgeons, empty hands, multiple attackers, etc., as well as teaching and training law enforcement officers and others for years, I have never seen someone who was really good defending against a knife who had not spent considerable time learning how to use a knife to fight. I am sure that there are exceptions to this "rule," but I have personally never seen one to date. I have lost count of the fencers, kendo players, wrestlers, pugilists, soldiers, police officers, and various and sundry martial artists who I have worked with who thought they knew how to defend against a committed knife attack who could not when the training knives came out and a moderate speed attack was initiated. Based on my experience in subduing and arresting criminals and in investigating criminal attacks, I believe a knife attack is something that one should be profficient in defending against, should one be concerned with personal safety and defense when practicing a martial art, rather than spiritual or other development only. This seems especially true to me, since a recent study published in the Law Enforcement Bulletin used Uniform Crime Reports data to determine that knives are the second most used weapons, following handguns, to be used in criminal homicides in the United States, and that the use of knives as a tool to commit murder outnumbered the use of all shotguns, rifles, and other shoulder fired weapons combined.

As for heavy chopping blades and thick spines, I lean more toward your view than does the "sharpened pry bar" crowd. I will say that there are advantages, for some uses, in the thick spine, regardless of forging methods. A thick spine means a heavier blade and, for many who are looking at a khukuri as a substitute for a camp axe or a fun way to cut and split wood around the house (probably the majority of the market, other than collectors, when it comes to the Himalayan Imports blades), the weight helps relatively untrained persons use their big blades to split and cut wood, and the wedge affect" of the thicker blade forces wood apart. Many who praise the HI blades see them as compact "splitting axes." Personally, I prefer the lighter, thinner, better slicing, blades, and to me they are better balanced if they are thinner. A thinner, better slicing edge is not as durable as a thicker edge in many "hard use" and outdoor tasks. I, and probably you, would rather just refresh an edge that had been dulled and have something that cuts better than a thicker edge, but some do not feel the same way. For the price, and with the replacement warranty they offer, the HI blades are, in my opinion, a good value for someone who wants a "heavy chopper." Personally, I far prefer other large knife types for combative purposes, and generally carry much smaller knives. Wearing a bowie with a ten inch blade while dressed in a business suit can be a bit silly, especially since I already have a handgun and spare ammunition, flashlight, a large folding knife or two and other items on my person, and have an M-4 and/or MP-5 in the trunk of my issued vehicle.
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Old 08-01-2010, 10:04 PM   #25
DH
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Re: Police/Military Blade Tactics

Quote:
Jon Holloway wrote: View Post
Hello Dan,
I have to say that I agree with quite a bit of your post, but there are a couple of things to consider. You already mentioned the grip on the khukuri and how you were not worried about retention. Since I was showing combat methodologies, I was, of course, very much concerned with retention. Having been in the law enforcement field for the last 18 years and having dealt with a few violent and overall "interesting" situations, I am always concerned with the retention of any weapon or tool that could be used as a weapon which I carry, and the location of any weapon that the miscreant happens to have on his person. As for body positioning, note that, when cutting, I demonstrated our methodology and methodologies that we do not advocate in my art, and that I was not doing any footwork. As for use of the knife as a weapon, I find this to be a key skill that needs to be developed. After years of real world experience in violent situations and having been attacked with knives, firearms, bludgeons, empty hands, multiple attackers, etc., as well as teaching and training law enforcement officers and others for years, I have never seen someone who was really good defending against a knife who had not spent considerable time learning how to use a knife to fight. I am sure that there are exceptions to this "rule," but I have personally never seen one to date. I have lost count of the fencers, kendo players, wrestlers, pugilists, soldiers, police officers, and various and sundry martial artists who I have worked with who thought they knew how to defend against a committed knife attack who could not when the training knives came out and a moderate speed attack was initiated. Based on my experience in subduing and arresting criminals and in investigating criminal attacks, I believe a knife attack is something that one should be profficient in defending against, should one be concerned with personal safety and defense when practicing a martial art, rather than spiritual or other development only. This seems especially true to me, since a recent study published in the Law Enforcement Bulletin used Uniform Crime Reports data to determine that knives are the second most used weapons, following handguns, to be used in criminal homicides in the United States, and that the use of knives as a tool to commit murder outnumbered the use of all shotguns, rifles, and other shoulder fired weapons combined.

As for heavy chopping blades and thick spines, I lean more toward your view than does the "sharpened pry bar" crowd. I will say that there are advantages, for some uses, in the thick spine, regardless of forging methods. A thick spine means a heavier blade and, for many who are looking at a khukuri as a substitute for a camp axe or a fun way to cut and split wood around the house (probably the majority of the market, other than collectors, when it comes to the Himalayan Imports blades), the weight helps relatively untrained persons use their big blades to split and cut wood, and the wedge affect" of the thicker blade forces wood apart. Many who praise the HI blades see them as compact "splitting axes." Personally, I prefer the lighter, thinner, better slicing, blades, and to me they are better balanced if they are thinner. A thinner, better slicing edge is not as durable as a thicker edge in many "hard use" and outdoor tasks. I, and probably you, would rather just refresh an edge that had been dulled and have something that cuts better than a thicker edge, but some do not feel the same way. For the price, and with the replacement warranty they offer, the HI blades are, in my opinion, a good value for someone who wants a "heavy chopper." Personally, I far prefer other large knife types for combative purposes, and generally carry much smaller knives. Wearing a bowie with a ten inch blade while dressed in a business suit can be a bit silly, especially since I already have a handgun and spare ammunition, flashlight, a large folding knife or two and other items on my person, and have an M-4 and/or MP-5 in the trunk of my issued vehicle.
Hello Mr Holloway
Welcome to the forum. Just a few quick replies
Grip
For the most pasrt I don't disagree with your point.
When it came to the Kukri as weapon versus it's use as a tool, I thought I was pretty clear in differentiating between griping and why. I think you will see that if you review.

Thickness and weight and reasons for balance in use.
Thickness and weight are not the same issue (See attached).
You correctly note the value of a "splitting effect" in wood with certain edge profiles, however edge profile and weight are not mutually exclusive.
To that end, knives have been made with a thick spine and edge profile and the body mass cut away through fullering. This method has been used in many swords, axes and kukris as wel for generations. The fullering allows the smith a balance between edge thickness and profile and true weight, leaving quite a bit of leeway in design.

All if that goes back to my comments about design and potential in service use. "all around tool versus tactical weapon" and how much you would use a knife in a combat situation.

Quote:
Michael Gelum wrote: View Post
Quote:
Dan wrote:
How often would you use a knife....as a weapon?
HUH?...
While we all train and practice with weapons I was not discussing that. I was discussing use in percentages in the military. Perhaps you missed that.
Were I to be considering field carry, day to day, I am sure I would be considering overall needs. Among which; slicing, cutting, chopping and general use as a tool, and the percentage of time spent using the knife as a tool would be balanced between how much time I would spend using it as a weapon. In that regard, weight, profile, length, and grip material type are serious considerations.

I have made blades for a lot of people, and I have known and still know men with decades of experience in various spec forces. I have never heard anyone contradict the above statement, nor have I met, read of or seen of a significant percentage of men choose overly large blades for carry. There was always a balance of use issue. I am sure those who favor larger blades will cite various examples to validate their opinions, but once again I am talking about percentages. Kevin's comments seem to be more in line with my experiences with professionals.

Again, I would question the kukri as anything other than a narrow niche market for the military, even though I consider it one of the best overall knife designs the world has ever known. I think guys will opt for an axe as an axe when they need it and a lighter knife for general use.

While I agree with much of what you say, I'm just not entering into the discussion of effective knife fighting. While I share your views on martial artists and knives, and have my own experiences on the business end, I have also met knife fighting "teachers" who fall apart when faced with someone with real skills who can deliver. I think weapons are a discussion that most martial artists really have no part in.
Cheers
Dan
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