(courtesy liveleak.com)
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In the liveleak.com video below, a police officer tries and fails to subdue a suspect. Repeatedly. Eventually shots are fired and the suspect is perforated. Whether or not the officer faced an imminent, credible threat of grievous bodily harm, justifying lethal force, is a separate question. My enquiry here . . .

Are you ready to go hands-on?

You may find yourself in a fight where your firearm is either unavailable or undesirable. If so, you need some sort of hands-on self-defense skills. Simple, effective techniques that allow you to end a fight or, at the least, escape. Quickly.

I recommend Krav Maga. You don’t need to be particularly fit — although it will help get you there — or coordinated. You don’t need years of training to learn something useful to do in a physical altercation.

The basics of going hands-on are basic enough: attack! And then leave. The longer a “situation” lasts, the worse your chances of emerging unscathed. Or relatively unscathed. Or, indeed, alive.

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  1. Nice rosary beads.

    Oh, and to answer your question: my body is long past the ability to go “hands on”.

  2. Krav Maga? I learned way more useful techniques in Brazilian Jujitsu and Boxing then Krav Maga offered. Admittedly I might’ve had a lackluster instructor but I’ve yet to find useful martial arts outside of the general umbrella of what is commonly used in MMA.

  3. I’ve been a practitioner of the ancient art of Ching-Ching-Pow for many years. Haven’t seen much need for other skills, other than the most rudimentary of disarming or escape skills.

  4. 3rd degree black belt in TanSoo Do, 30 years of experience in various other martial arts. Now i have a triple bypass and atrial fibrilation. I just got on SS. I carry concealed always, even if just a pocket knife. The only good thing about getting old is that it beats the alternative.

  5. Something that the ‘Cult of Might Makes Right’ aka the anti gun crowd doesn’t acknowledge is how are we older folk supposed to go hands on with the young and strong bandit class? Or younger folks with limits on their physical capabilities? Or women, that inspite of hollywoods bs, are going to lose against a young, healthy male?

    A J frame in the pocket beats fifty years of martial arts training if you’re old enough to have put in the time for that training.

  6. I used to be ready for hand to hand combat…not now. I’m ALWAYS armed with “something”. Old age sucks…

  7. @ J Ed*

    Marine Corps Martial Arts Program (MCMAP) is a lot like Krav Maga, and it is better or the Marine Corps would do something else.

    One of the reasons it’s ‘better’ is the reduction of the need to memorize “stances” or “moves”. Another is a more efficient use of bodily energy. Another is Krav Maga relies on movements that your brain/body group are going to try to do anyway in your fight and flight responses.

    It’s not at all “showy” (it doesn’t make for pretty commercials) and it is effective.

  8. Truth: Six months of proper training in a real martial arts school and in a useful art makes the average 17 year old girl able to successfully fuck up a much larger 30 year old opponent with surprising ease.

    Further, this is something a lot of POTG don’t want to admit.

    Even further, there are times when you have to fight and you can’t legally justify a deadly weapon or cannot deploy it. In that situation a huge majority of the “I carry a gun for this shit” crowd are going to get seriously fucked up because they know exactly fuck all about actual fighting.

  9. “Krav Maga? I learned way more useful techniques in Brazilian Jujitsu and Boxing then Krav Maga offered. Admittedly I might’ve had a lackluster instructor but I’ve yet to find useful martial arts outside of the general umbrella of what is commonly used in MMA.”

    Those are both sports, along with Taekwondo and Japanese forms that end in “do”. You won’t find guys walking down the street with 16oz gloves. UFC rules were basically set up by the Gracies to advertise the effectiveness of BJJ. Taking an opponent to the ground and applying a rear naked choke is a good way to get the $#!+ kicked out of you by his buddies (no ref, and bad guys don’t play fair). Krav Maga was developed for armed forces that had universal service by both sexes.
    It’s not a martial art — it’s unarmed combat and literally means “Contact Combat.” No special strength or flexibility required. No mysticism or katas. It teaches how to deal with opponents armed with knives, guns, bats, etc. It’s not for tournaments, and it teaches the stuff they ban – groin kicks, throat strikes, eye gouges, etc. It also addresses weapon retention if the school follows a military/law enforcement cirriculum. It unapologetically steals what’s effective from other schools, such as BJJ (with an emphasis on escapes and getting back up). There are other fighting systems out there and KM may not be the best, but it’s the one I’m familiar with (although I don’t practice anymore). The US Army and Marines have similar combative programs, although they also have boxing as a sport/conditioning.

  10. People just like to say “krav maga.” Most important thing I learned when i had to take on a mean ex-con 25 years my junior is to make quick work of it, however you can, the wind is gonna go quick if you’re not a runner.

  11. Learning to work on “pressure points” for compliance is a waste of time and outright dangerous in my opinion. (While you are busy applying pressure your attacker can be reaching for knife or handgun and fatally injure you with it.)

    The only moves that I see being of value in a real street fight are how to:
    (1) deflect punches while juking.
    (2) strike with your elbows.
    (3) strike with your knees.
    (4) strike with your forearms.
    (5) strike with your palms.
    (6) strike with your fists.
    (7) strike with your feet.

    And you can learn highly effective versions of those basic strikes in about three months of a good martial arts discipline. (I like Tae Kwon Do personally.) And then it would be helpful to spend a few more months working on sparring with others to hone and refine your ability to avoid your opponent’s strikes.

  12. Due to the lack of ability to reply directly to comments:

    Anymouse said, in reference to BJJ: “Those are both sports, along with Taekwondo and Japanese forms that end in “do”. You won’t find guys walking down the street with 16oz gloves. UFC rules were basically set up by the Gracies to advertise the effectiveness of BJJ.”

    Bullshit. Unadulterated bullshit. I don’t know who told you this but they’re either retarded, lying or sick of getting their ass kicked.

    MMA these days is mostly a mix of BJJ and Muay Thai or another form of Kick-Boxing. Muay Thai will fucking kill you because that’s what it’s meant to do. Real Muay Thai used to use gloves, forearm covers and shin guards made of bamboo which dipped in glue and coated in broken glass (more recently) or other sharp shit like thorns/improvised nails etc on a fucking battlefield. Yeah, real pansy shit there. Even without the glue and glass it’s meant to dispatch people from this realm with haste, as are ALL forms of kick-boxing unless they’ve been neutered for competition or are coming from some McDojo “safety first” nonsense school. This is hand-to-hand combat shit meant to augment your ability to fight with a sword and dagger. It’s meant to kill, period.

    BJJ was designed to kill as well and doesn’t involve wearing a Gi. What you see in the ring is sport BJJ which is completely different from actual BJJ which is far, far more violent and doesn’t involve “Taking an opponent to the ground and applying a rear naked choke…” against multiple opponents. It involves throwing the first guy into the ground so hard that he is incapacitated by the impact and has a better than 90% chance of dying in that spot. That’s the difference between “sport” and “street” BJJ. Street BJJ is quite literally about killing your opponent as quickly and efficiently as possible. I’ve had more shit broken and twisted up in BJJ than I really care to think about. I’m still healing up five ribs I had broken in a BJJ match just after Christmas and let’s be clear that was SPORT BJJ in street BJJ that would be getting off easy, really easy.

    I don’t know if you ran into some sort of McDojo or were just fed lines of bullshit but both BJJ and Muay Thai, in their unfettered form, are EXTREMELY effective and LETHAL martial arts. On top of that, until you’re goddamn good at pretty much any art if you run into the hypothetical multiple-attackers scenario you propose you’re probably fucked any way. It takes quite a while to train up in any art to the point that you can Bruce Lee multiple people who are intent on hurting you. Interestingly though, multiple pro-MMA fighters have done so on camera using… Muay Thai and BJJ! Weird huh?

  13. Hand to hand westling match with my older brother
    and taught me fight dirty foot meet kneecap. Will not hesitate to use teethe and fingernail.
    There’s an Australian chap out there who learned contrary to what his friends told him, not all American women are “easy” Bit his lip until it he got off of me
    Also carry everywhere except polling places, no need metal detector and armed LEO on Election Day and when Count is is session
    BTW: Same brother is my best friend and no one ever bullied me at school

  14. Daughters BF has brown belt in Krav Maga, was in JR Olympics in boxing , curent MMA fighter .he seems to do well and is big on Krav Maga . Purple Hearts and Bronze Star as well.

  15. I just don’t like the word Krav-Maga. It’s sounds like the name of. . ANoITHEr FcKNG POLYyMEr FraME PIStoL.. The new Krav-Maga, it shoots bullets the same caliber asl Gocks do

  16. Lots of arguments about what martial art is best here.

    Physical superiority is best. It’s that way with animals, it’s that way with people. Krav Maga is mostly just aggression, but it takes a lot of aggression to overcome a stronger, faster opponent. It takes a lot of technique to overcome a stronger, faster opponent. It takes a lot of strength and speed to overcome a much *bigger* opponent.

    The most significant and immediate gains you can make toward success in an unarmed fight are being stronger, faster, and more aggressive than your opponent. Learning some basic striking and grappling are a good idea, too.

    So, if you’re a physically fit young male, you’re good to go!

    What if you’re 80 years old? What if you’re a 4’10” tall woman?

    Weapons. Sure, they’re not an excuse not to be in the best shape you can be or not to aggressively resist with physical violence, but tools get the job done. They’re what set humans apart. We wouldn’t be hunting other predators just our hands, feet, and teeth.

  17. There’s a lot of garbage Krav Maga out there. Many organizations specialize in shake and bake instructor certifications. I just visited a school where the owner was talking about finding some people to send to a week long training seminar to expand the number of Krav Maga classes he could offer. Would you take Muay Thai or boxing from some guy who’d only done a week long seminar?

    If you’re looking at Krav Maga look for instructors who have legit backgrounds in other disciplines; boxing, jui-jitsu, muay thai, etc. Look for people who’ve been trainers in Isreal or for the IDF. Lineage and legitimacy in Krav Maga is a dumpsterfire of bullshit claims, do your research. Avoid any school that doesn’t spar, doesn’t push you to failure in conditioning, and puts stuff like knife and gun disarms and improvised weapons front and center.

    If you’re in the SF bay area, seek out this guy.

  18. The “style” doesn’t matter, as long as you practice full force, maximum intensity – that means real full contact sparring and combat such as you’ll find in boxing, kickboxing, judo or jiujitsu (judo was actually derived from jiujitsu to specifically allow its students to practice 100% with a reduced risk of injury).

    Most Krav Maga classes I’ve seen are basically “here, no grab my hand, no, grab it the other way, ok, wait, ok now let me execute this technique against you while you’re resisting me 50%.”

    I’m not saying there aren’t good krav maga or aikido or whatever the heck you want to train classes out there, but if you’re not routinely getting punched in the face and thrown to the ground you’d be better suited practicing hand to hand combat somewhere that will give you 100% resistance and 100% force.

    Source: Competed in international sport fighting for 14 years. Have been punched in the face, repetitively.

  19. Since now even the “reply” part of the comment section here no longer functions:
    “my body is long past the ability to go “hands on”.”

    No, it’s not. With the proper techniques; age, strength, power, dexterity, even overall body condition, are not really relevant. All of those are pluses, but good technique will win out, even over a much younger and stronger opponent. My Sensei had a saying: “Do you know how many of you strutting young roosters I’ve seen?”
    Now that I am old and an instructor myself, I, too, use that line all the time. Krav Maga will get you there, but it is only a modern, westernized corruption of the techniques of the Okinawan Kempos. Much better, IMO, to go to the horse’s mouth, and get the information straight, instead of corrupted. Don’t take this as an indictment of Krav Maga, it is one of the best of the Westernized Martial Arts. Those to really avoid are those who teach some variety of: ‘There are no techniques. Only weapons and targets.’
    Those who say things like that simply don’t have the knowledge of what a technique even is, thus they wouldn’t recognize one if it bit them in the hind end. Beware of such ones, no matter how many belts and titles they have awarded themselves.

  20. In response to Strych9, I can tell you with almost absolute certainty that your comment about young women with proper training being a match for a man is utter bullcrap. Now, my sample size is one, but when I was a freshman in college (and a bit gun averse, I will admit,) I decided to take an intramural “course” on self defense taught by a relatively well known female judoka. The first day of class, she asked if there were any volunteers who would like to go toe to toe with her. Out of politeness, no one raised their hand, but she eventually chose me. At the time, I stood 6’1″ and weighed a bit north of 200, not a whole lot of which was muscle. She was 5’6″ or so and a buck forty soaking wet, probably a bit less. Still, her reputation preceded her and I was fairly intimidated. She was much faster than me and was able to get me into an odd grapple, but was subsequently unable to flip me when I threw my body back and put her a bit off balance. I wasn’t able to get a pin, but I did get both her arms pretty firmly and kinda swept her leg back from under her. At that point, it was a game of weight versus weight and I won. Granted, perhaps judo is a much more showy MA than most and maybe she went easy on me, but I can never take the assertion that a well trained woman is a remote match for the average man without heaping helpings of salt.

  21. My 2 cents here:

    Many martial arts are BS for street combat. Many started out OK but got watered down. As many here have already pointed out you have to train full force.

    What has not been pointed out is unless you already possess great physical prowess you better be able to strike hard and fast. If you cannot physically incapacitate a larger opponent with a strike you are on the cliff of screwed. Even more so if you are facing multiple opponents.

    You are not going to “out box” (trade) with an opponent and wear him down. Grappling is good, especially against a dumb opponent – but it only goes so far. If your opponent has some experience and is physically superior (but you still have more skill) you are probably going to lose.

    Most, if not all, of the good fighters I have seen (both famous and not) have been great strikers. Even the good/better grapplers I have seen tend to use grappling moves to set up strikes.

    Striking speed and power (and increasing it) does not get near the attention it deserves in most martial arts (including MMA). It is the difference between pissing a guy off and laying him out on his back.

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