AAR: In-Extremis Close ranged Concepts
Who: Myself and 3 close friends, 2 other students.
Adjunct Instructor: Paul Gomez
What: In Extremis Knife fighting, Extreme Close Quarters Concepts I and II.
When: 9-11 OCT 09
Where: Americus, Georgia
On the first day we did a very simple meeting and discussed the concepts we would be integrating into our combative profile. We divided our time very evenly between logic and reason behind fight geometry, how to establish and maintain positions of dominance and how to use verbal and physiological ques to disuade attackers.
Posture and stance were show and we worked with audio-visual ques, defensive positions, quick effective striking techniques and presentation of edged or improvised weapons from concealment when entangled.
Our drills proceeded very quickly from “consentual” to “aggressive” and the effectiveness of the techniques in question were demonstrated and proven in class.
At 0830, we began at the range. Our instructor had us fire several strings of fire and then diagnose our actions, called them into question and presented real world assessments of our bad habits. We spent the next 4 hours learning proper draw stroke, firing from compressed positions and worked a few accuracy drills. All the concepts that we were introduced to strengthened our ability to fight when tangled, and negotiate interactions (such as crowds, mobs etc) with our handguns.
In the afternoon, we began several force on force evolutions incorporating the skills we’d learned and several new techniques, concepts and procedures to help “fight” your way out of a tangle, or criminal attack. We then proceeded to multiple attackers and defending yourself from supine position.
At 0830, we again took to the range, working on firing drills from compressed positions using strong side only and two handed grips while moving. We proceeded to retention positions, extremely close in firing techniques and how to properly distance yourself from the fight while maintaining threat awareness and proper grip and compression on the pistol.
After lunch, we began more evolutions dealing with multiple attackers, ground based fighting with and without pistols, disarmament drills for both clinched and accosted postions and ground based drills in which both students had weapons out, but controlled by their opponent. We continued to dealing with threats from within a vehicle, engaging from the vehicle and force on force inside the vehicle.
Afterwards, we talked at length about the class itself, how we could improve as individuals and how the instructors could provide a better experience.
Of all the courses I’ve taken, I’ve never until this weekend had one that I knew I would need to retake.
SouthNarc and Paul Gomez are both instructors of the utmost professionalism and skill and truly teach from experience rather than lore, myth or assumptions.
During the course I was injured and unable to participate in the final 3 evolutions, but I can honestly say I learned more about myself in three days of training than any amount of diagnostic time spent on the range. The importance of a solid ground game is imperative.
Operating a handgun has the innate risk of instantly reverting to pugilism. To draw a gun without the ability to defend it properly is a concession to the attacker. Transitioning so quickly between empty hands and weapons with adversaries who’re skilled and physical takes a lot of skill and practice. This course offers that.
This class forces you to really become “non-diagnostic” – that is, to have a workable plan ingrained in your very being.
Though very difficult, I’ve never had a more rewarding training experience in terms of instructor/student interface, material and quality of instruction.
In short – this class has forced me to evolve in every way.
I can’t recommend it enough.
Can you describe the ground fighting technique/strategy in more detail….thanks in advanced….Jeff
Sure, glad to!
The main objective of the groundfighting was to create distance and/or establish a dominant position when at a disadvantage.
Our focus was to use our feet, if stuck supine, to attack the vulnerable joints of the enemy, legs to intercept the adversaries hips once clinched, and to use body position to disallow the enemy opportunity to strike, choke or extract a weapon.
These evolutions varied greatly, and there was no predictable outcome.
We would start with one person on the ground with a concealed pistol, being attacked by a “bad guy”, (Pistols used were Glock 17 “Blue Guns” using Simunitions) and with one person on top and one pinned, each with a weapon presented and “held” by the adversary (Picture two guys holding guns on one another with one hand, and holding eachothers’ guns with the “free” hand).
There were also several evolutions where adversaries would begin standing (always from a “casual” position) and would then be challenged by the attacker – the objective was of course to avoid a ground fight by maintaining interval, dominant positions and “creating” a shot if clinched. Most of these evolutions ended up on the ground in a “FUT” or, “Fouled up tangle”.
I learned more about myself and about fighting from this class than any other single experience in my life; it changed my entire perspective of fighting, survival and negotiating potentially dangerous situations.
I hope this answers your question, but if you’d like more specifics, please don’t hesitate to ask!
More information can be found here:
PS – I have videos inbound from our evolutions. If there is interest, I’ll post them for review, comment, diagnostics and general entertainment.
Interesting stuff, Aaron. Sounds like it was a very valuable training experience . (And I thought starting to garden was a big transition!)
Thanks for the info. I have a couple years of ground fighting training in Jiu-Jitsu (pre- Brazilian JJ period) and I have to say I hated every minute of it. Its punishing training, and I quickly learned to respect those skilled in its application. I always left the dojo feeling depressed and helpless. Needless to say it was quite a blow to my ego.
Of course all this training was unarmed, so I can’t even begin to appreciate how weapons could complicate the situation. I’ve always believed that weapons fighting demanded incredible mobility skills. Being mobile on the ground is no easy task. I would love to see some video if care to share it, because I have no experience with this.
The importance of a solid ground game is imperative.
Truer words were never spoken. I have had only a relatively small amount of training in Brazilian Jujitsu and other basic groundfighting (striking and grappling), but in my limited experience it has been one of the most valuable things I’ve learned. I confess that ground-work is still far from my strongest area, but just the modest training I’ve had keeps so many more possibilities open for me. It makes it so I don’t need to fear having the fight go to the ground or panicking when it does (that last seems to be a common reaction for many), and if it does end up on the ground I’ve got a few tools for offense, defense, and creating space to open up other possibilities. I find it fascinating that it’s importance translates so well into close ranged fighting as well.
How much did they cover in the way of incorporating knife techniques in a ground-fighting situation? I can see that being one ground-fighting situation that could be all too common and yet I’ve had little exposure to it.
I would love to see the videos whenever you get the chance to post them…
Thanks for the replies; I failed to mention this, but almost all the techniques we incorporated were BJJ based, be they vehicle borne, ground based or standing. As far as integration of edged weapons in the tangles, we didn’t do any.
The main reason is everyone has to have a training blade before we can really expect people to be able to train in fighting with them, and most people did not.
That said, the principles of having a knife into play are quite a bit different than a pistol, but the concepts about getting dominant positoning before bringing the knife is still relavant.
I should have videos on or around Monday of next week, so I’ll share a few!
Cheers – and happy Thanksgiving!