When you hear the term “combatives,” maybe you immediately envision a tough, muscular, ex-military brute beating the crap out of you whilst you do everything in your power to cover up and stay alive. Well, guess what? It does not have to be like that and let me tell you why. The fact is, combatives can be trained in a safe, fun and effective way with any martial arts. Here are five things you may not have known about training combatives.
K.I.S.S. and Tell
Combatives training is simple and it should be. When your life or the life of your loved one is in danger, there is no better formula than the K.I.S.S. formula. K.I.S.S. stands for Keep It Straightforward and Simple. An attack outside the dojo or gym often comes by surprise, with speed and violence of action. Your body will dump adrenaline and you will experience a loss of fine motor skills. When it comes to the martial, throw out complicated techniques that require fine motor skills, complex moves and finesse. Instead replace the complex techniques with gross motor skill movements that recruit major muscle groups and are simple to perform.
Work it Baby
Like any skill, combatives requires you to train, train again and keep on training. “I will make you deadly in three easy lessons” is a myth. Improving your odds of surviving a violent encounter will require consistent training. Training can be only ten minutes, three times a week to keep your combatives skills sharp. Remember, it should be easy (so not much time will be involved) but nothing can replace the space, time repetition of consistant training. The consistent training is essential for improving your odds in surviving a violent encounter.
Truth be Told
It is important to understand how street attacks really happen and train against THAT. As a traditional and combat sports martial artist, I instinctively knew that street level violence did not happen the way I was training in the gym, so I studied hours of surveillance and cell phone footage of violent encounters. This was a tool that our martial arts forefathers did not have and hence forth many teachers taught what they thought would happen on the street or they simply taught how to defend against attacks in their own school. But you know what? Street attacks did not happen as we are currently taught in martial arts schools or gyms. When someone attacks you on the streets (based on my research), often times, it will be at a level of middle school kid. Luckily, this lack of “attack sophistication” is easy to predict. It is important that when you train combatives, that you are actually training to defend against common, high percentage type of attacks.
Join the Resistance
Adding elements of mixed martial arts, Muay Thai and Brazilian Jiu Jitsu will improve your combatives skils one hundred percent. From my background in traditional martial arts (5th degree black belt in tae kwon do and sifu in kung fu), I know for a fact that many martial arts do not have a specific method of training from low resistance to high resistance in a safe, fun and effective way. They often go from low resistance (partner throwing a punch and holding it out there) to high resistance (just going full out) and very little in between. This is where the combat sports can help turbo charge a traditional martial arts school. Pad work (like with focus mitts and Thai pads) and protective equipment (like head gear and boxing gloves) when used correctly, will add new life into your combatives training. Adding safe, fun and effective resistive partner training into your curriculum is essential for the modern martial arts school.
5. Plug and Play
Adding combatives to traditional martial arts can be seamless. News flash – many traditional martial arts already train many areas of combatives. Since combatives is simple (see number one above), any traditional martial arts can integrate a safe, fun and effective program into their curriculum to give their members an improved fighting chance. Tiga Tactics is one such program that will help improve the “Martial” in your “Art.” At the Martial Arts SuperShow in Vegas on July 18-20, 2022, I will be sharing how to easily integrate combatives into your curriculum. This is information you can take back to your school and start implementing on Monday.
There you have it. One, Combatives needs to follow the K.I.S.S. formula. Two, the secret to improving your odds of coming out alive in a violent is to train something safe, effective and fun…and keep on training. Three, it is important to understand how a street fighter will actually attack you and to train against those types of attacks instead of defending against what commonly happens in a particular style or sport. Four, have a program that introduces resistive partner training in a safe, fun and effective manner. Fifth, realize that combatives training can be implemented into any martial arts program, seamlessly and in a way that empowers your students. Come and experience the Tiga Tactics Combatives program at the 2022 Martial Arts SuperShow for yourself.