In this issue…….
Out Numbered in a street fight,
South Wales Police
Editid by Detective Constable Chris Ayre of the South Wales Police Child Abuse Investigation team
What does the Krav Maga logo mean?
The Krav Maga logo consists of the letters K and M written in Hebrew, artfully combined to form the symbol of Krav Maga. The K and M are surrounded by an open circle because the system is open to improvement by adding techniques, exercises, and training methods and by eliminating techniques from the system when there is a better approach. Imi Lichtenfeld, the Grand Master of Krav Maga, said of the logo's open circle: Good things can continue to flow into the system and flawed exercises can flow out.
To begin, I would like to say that out on the street, there is no such thing as a fair fight.
Only under the controlled environment of a ring (sometimes not even then) is there anything resembling a fair fight.
For many, violence may make absolutely no sense except when a person is in defence of God, country and family.
Unfortunately there are others who engage in violence because of peer pressure, ignorance, an inherent streak of meanness or perhaps out of simple boredom. Regardless of the reason, the simple fact is people looking for a fight prefer to do it when they have the advantage. This advantage may be superior weapons, physical strength, numbers or any combination of the three.
In most any self-defence class the instructor will cover basic techniques against a club, knife, gun and a much larger assailant. Unless the class is an ongoing martial arts class, covering more than one assailant often isn’t feasible.
Even with proper martial arts training, the possibility of getting hurt in a fight against more than one attacker is high. Getting past this fear of injury is a must in surviving the confrontation though so remember there is no pain when you are dead.
First and foremost, if you are faced with a confrontation in which you are outnumbered and you see a way out, TAKE it. Run away at the fastest possible speed to safety and yell to attract attention. It is rare that any attacker is looking to be seen during a crime. If you are old enough to remember the old Monty Python movie “The Holy Grail”, think of the knight’s response to the monster rabbit and simply “Run away!” There is no shame in avoiding a needless confrontation and living to fight another day. In these instances, retreat is the better part of valour and it certainly beats a rape, stabbing or a coffin
Just as there is safety in numbers, there is courage as well. When two or more possible assailants are together, they seldom want to appear weak or scared in front of their buddies or you. Whereas one may think better of it if alone, the group often eggs each other along until even tricks or mean spirited fun can turn into murder or serious assault. If this seems paranoid to you just pick up the paper any given day and read the news. Read about the hate crimes that occur in every major city in the country.
When these types of things happen, it is very easy to go from victim to casualty in a matter of moments. There are a few do’s and don’ts that may allow you to go from victim to survivor though. It is to be remembered that no technique will work one hundred percent of the time in all given situations. If running away is not an option, then your only choice in a life-threatening situation is to fight and continue fighting until you are out of danger. A life-threatening situation is not a purse snatching or car jacking. These things can be replaced and NO material things are worth losing you life over.
In June of last year, a woman going to her car in a multi storey car park decided to fight over her purse against two men. This decision cost her life and they still got away with the purse. As of the writing of this piece, the killers still have not been caught.
Whenever you are out in areas like parking lots or garages, parks, on greenbelts jogging or basically in any other environment, try to be aware of your surroundings at all times. If multiple attackers set upon you, keep your wits about you and attempt to locate an equalizing weapon. This weapon can be anything from a piece of pipe to a broken bottle, a curb to trip them over or a potted plant to bash them with. Umbrellas and rolled up newspapers, coats that are carried over your arm or that heavy, precious purse that so often weighs five or more pounds.
Once you have your weapon, try to move in a circular motion to reach it if necessary and also to get your assailants where they must come at you one at a time. If you are unable to get them lined up in the way of each other then start with the one directly between you and the road to your escape and try to punch a hole through their defences by taking out one of the number.
While doing this, remember that they aren’t fighting fair so there are no rules as to your fighting techniques. Hit, punch, gouge, kick, and bite in whatever way possible. Poke them in the eyes, hit in the throat, and pop their eardrums by cupping your hands and hitting both ears simultaneously. Don’t wait for them to strike first, surprise them by taking the fight to them. If you can take out one of them your chances have just increased dramatically.
If you commit yourself to this course of action then I have only a couple recommendations:
1. After you hit him run like hell.
2. Circle try to keep one man in front of the other as you work your way into a position to run
3. After about three steps, it is common to be chased once you run. Keep that in mind and after three or four steps, give out one good back kick and take off running again. True this little move requires practice but it works quite often against over zealous opponents and if you are lucky, your shot may do damage.
Reading these suggestions is all well and good but they will do you no good whatsoever if you lose your head and have hysterics or freeze during the confrontation. In fact, these actions can often have deadly consequences. Even if you are scared to death (and you would be crazy not to be) try not to act it unless you think it may lull your attackers into thinking you are easy prey. If this is the case you will need to strike quickly as soon as you feel you have the opportunity to.
Regardless of what the action film makers in Hollywood would have you believe, it is unlikely that one person fighting two or more assailants is going to come out of the fight without getting hurt. The best you can do is to decrease the number against you and get away as quickly as possible. Remember you are not there to fight, you are fighting to survive.
To lower your risk of these types of assaults, stay aware of your surroundings and don’t take unnecessary risks. Most businesses, hospitals and school campuses have security personnel so take advantage of them. They are there for a reason and you should not be ashamed to ask for their escort.
If no security is available, look around, hold your head up and walk as if you have a purpose or set goal. Before leaving the building or getting out of your car, have your keys in hand because they can make an excellent weapon when needed. If you have pepper spray or a concealed weapon, make sure they are readily available. These items will do absolutely no good buried in the bottom of a purse, rolling around the floorboard of the car or sitting at home on the kitchen table.
When jogging, take a buddy along if you can, if not, leave the headphones at home as these dull the mind and take away your sense of hearing. Assailants dislike any type of dog so get yours up off the couch and get some exercise as well.
BE AWARE BE SAFE.
1. You must think quickly and anticipate the attackers’ moves.
2. Think in terms of striking targets that either stun or are potentially lethal. Consider striking the temple, throat, mastoid, spine, solar plexus, kidneys, groin, and knees. These targets maximize the effectiveness of your blows, thus conserving your strength and energy.
3. You must control your breathing to keep your anxiety in check and your energy level high.
4. Move fluidly with grace and balance.
5. Power can be increased by adding leverage, speed of delivery, and mass.
6. If you are fighting with your hands, be careful not to injure them.
The world-famous bouncer Geoff Thomson states, “it’s all about offence”.
“I have probably been involved in more than 100 fights where the numbers were against me,” he says. “I won because I was first to initiate the physical attack.”
Thompson also fears getting flanked by opponents. “Part of the attacker’s ritual is the pincer movement. One attacker, usually the one facing and threatening you, will deploy your attention while the others attack from your blind side.”
Thompson’s training is traditional karate, boxing and judo. He usually advocates knock out blows.
“If you feel an attack is imminent, attack first. This is the most critical factor in such a scenario,” he says.
“My own pre-emptive strike would be a right cross/hook to the jaw preceded by some kind of mentally disarming verbal communication, hopefully neutralizing the first person,” says Thompson. “Then I would attack with head butts, punches, or kicks to the remaining antagonists, depending upon my distance from them.”
You will need to have superior:
• Movement and evasion skills;
• Striking or kicking skills;
• Knockout skill or ability to render opponents unable to continue in the fight.
The disadvantages of facing multiple opponents are staggering. When we’ve run training drills with two, three and four opponents against one, it is literally a few seconds before the one defender is swamped by the group.
Yes, there are theories that say that multiple opponents get in each other’s way, but my experience is that as you are moving to line up two of them, you end up moving right into one of the other ones.
I recently took part in unarmed defence techniques with South Wales Police, having been battered by three opponents into a corner, I decide to move as fast as possible out of the danger area of being penned in, I moved into a right hook and landed on my arse.
Luckily only my pride was bruised, but think of the implications of being out in the street, curbs to fall over or other unsteady surfaces, you land on your arse you get stomped into the floor.
In the words of the famous meerkat “SIMPLES”
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