Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Why what you train in matters

I am aware of the fact that there is only one Masada Tactical out there...for now.  And people who are seeking training and can't come to MT need to train in other styles and locations.  I often say that any training is better than no training.

I heard Lt. Col. Dave Grossman say this before and I have always expressed a similar sentiment: your choice of recreational activity should in some mean enhance skills that matter.  For most of us this means skills that can help us survive!  This means that when we choose to do something, we may as well do something that will make us better: strength training, hunting, self-defense training, orienteering, etc., all are good examples of activities we can do for fun and will enhance our survival skills one way or another.  One of my favorite quotes by Mr. Grossman is: "Golf is a complete wast of time.  Every golf course is miss-use of a perfectly good shooting range!".

So when people go and train in any martial art I think it is great.  Anything from traditional Japanese arts to Thai-Chi will have some benefit to it.  That said, there is an inherit risk in training in an art that may give its practitioner a false sense of confidence.  We see this most often with MMA fighters.

I have the utmost respect to MMA fighters.  They train hard and in a variety of disciplines to make them better rounded fighters.  However, from a self-defense standpoint, MMA lacks certain skills and attitude.  MMA fighters like the ground, we try to stay off of it.  MMA fighters go for points and submissions, we go for a complete annihilation of the opponent.  MMA does not teach how to address weapons, while we do.

The problem comes up when an MMA fighter tries to use his skills to defend a threat that is not subject to the rules of the ring.  This video shows an individual who decides to react to a subject with a handgun.  The defender uses kicks to defend himself against a handgun.  End result, he is shot in the left shoulder.
Handgun disarm with a kick?!?

So, although I encourage training, in whatever you can, keep in mind our goals in training, and if self-defense is what you are trying to accomplish, choose a school and system that will provide you with those tools!

Stay safe!

Tzviel 'BK' Blankchtein
Masada Tactical, LLC

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