Likes Likes:  21
Page 1 of 2 1 2 LastLast
Results 1 to 15 of 26

Thread: Enhancing Close Quarters Capabilities

  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Posts
    1,166
    Likes (received)
    336

    Default Enhancing Close Quarters Capabilities

    Over the past several years I have been implementing a training program for our team that is aimed at enhancing close quarters officer survival. This is my personal "recipe" based on different programs disciplines I have been involved in, especially Extreme Close Quarters Concepts and Arrestling, combative sports and martial disciplines I have studied over the years. I have integrated some kogusoku from traditions I have learned, but I don't couch it in classical terms - I translate it for the modern context. In some cases there is very little adaptation needed.

    Yesterday had an opportunity to run a drill where a full spectrum use of force response to a problem, solo officer, in which a variety of members with varying levels of experience and exposure to what we've been doing were assessed. There were a variety of responses from different operators but within the spectrum of teaching.

    It should be noted that while these officers are highly motivated, generally quite fit, and overall proficient in tactics and decision making, the level of exposure they receive in the enhanced close quarters package has been 2-3 sessions a year for several hours each only. Those trainings have focused on a few kata that are most important, in this case to the armed and armored operator carrying a long gun.

    The basic kata that are trained, that build upon one another are:

    Consistent drawstroke with sidearm regardless of whether the threat is in contact or twenty meters away.

    Long gun weapon retention and transition to sidearm.

    Transition to belt- or chest- mounted edged weapon.

    Hand Control and Clinch Basics for the weapons-based as opposed to the combat sport environment.

    Ground Survival for same.

    That's pretty much it. Drawstroke is trained cold and on the range live fire. Clinch was trained first "slick" (no armor or weapons) then with armor and sidearm and drawstroke integrated, then with long gun integrated, then with edged weapon integrated. Ground is trained the same way.

    They have NOT done much equal armament stuff yet: most of what has been taught is relevant to what is likely to happen: weapon retention with long gun and/or handgun. We have done some close distance work with unequal armament: example - operator with long gun makes entry, muzzle of long gun is controlled by suspect who then begins stabbing with a knife or produces a handgun, or also attempts to disarm operator's handgun.

    Drills have been done from cooperative kata to progressive levels of force on force resistive grappling. Contextual elements are added in entry and other use of force scenarios that include marking cartridges, which brings in a new facet: malfunction clearance under duress at contact distance. Due to this group's facility with firearms that aspect has only seen limited instruction.

    The problem solved in this case was addressing a contact weapon threat with a rifle, rifle malfunctioned and due to interval is grabbed with the muzzle averted, and a full force on force fight ensues. If exposed to the threat a disarm of the handgun was also attempted and this occurred in a few cases from the holster and in others in hand. One operator used a knife as he controlled both rifle and handgun from disarm attempts.


    I was pleased with the results; some guys that have been around the longest and seen the most of this material (a few sessions a year over the past two - three years) are embodying the primary elements and either establishing position of advantage for eventual control (at times with no use of lethal force), position of advantage disengage to weapons access, or achieving enough of a positional advantage to access weapon as a force multiplier: responses were full spectrum and included striking.

    My observations were that a relatively small curriculum with a paucity of efficient techniques, with clearly established technical touchstones, an emphasis on physical organization as a foundation, and that are adaptable across the demands of a varied platform are a good way of inculcating effective combative skills even without a great deal of repeat exposure. With more exposure, skill level and efficiency can increase, but the basics remain the same.
    Kit Leblanc

    In Harm's Way

  2. Likes TonyU, mkrueger liked this post
  3. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    Bellevue, Washington
    Posts
    62
    Likes (received)
    9

    Default

    Mr. LeBlanc, I have no LEO or military background so forgive my ignorance. I am curious if you noted any patterns in stress response. I though of saying adrenal response, but stress is more open and more to my question. As you added either steps to be completed or more resistance, what emerged?

    Regards,
    Stephen Baker

    "Never cruel nor cowardly, never give up, never give in." Doctor Who

  4. #3
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Posts
    1,166
    Likes (received)
    336

    Default

    Stephen

    It should be noted the particular group I am training here are more highly trained and experienced that your average officer, many have many years on the SWAT team, more as police officers, several are decorated military combat veterans, and with multiple critical incident responses. They process stress better than the average bear. The mindset they bring through the door on these drills is also of a different order.

    Still, my experience has been that the close quarters stuff does tend to create more of a stress response than the drills at distance we do more often with marking cartridges. If the use of "Sim" (properly Simunition FX cartridges) creates more stress in the form of a greater anxiety and reactivity, or at minimum an elevated heart rate (from stress, not from physical exertion), closing the distance creates more. I prefaced this particular training with a "no surprises" speech and basically told them what would happen; however the addition of force on force cues "the role player WILL actually try to take your weapon" does tend to up the ante. This group is also familiar with the material I present and the role players I tend to use, including myself, and we have successfully provided rather intense training experiences in the past. There is some memory there, but I think it also serves to achieve a greater stress inoculation than situations which the officers are exposed to with more frequency.
    Kit Leblanc

    In Harm's Way

  5. Likes TonyU, mkrueger liked this post
  6. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    NJ
    Posts
    301
    Likes (received)
    23

    Default

    Very nice, Kit. I runs things similarly.
    When I started out I would not ambush them. In other words, if they did everything right, they would win. I would not set them up to fail. Many times I would play the role of the bad guy so I would stress that I would only capitalize on their mistakes.
    After that, once everything starting clicking then I would ramp it up.
    Also, I've learned that if you take your training seriously, and have had some hairy experiences, it tends to bring the stress level up considerably.

    Case in point, while I was not a gamer, the first time I was put in front of a F.A.T.S. machine (Fire Arms Training Simulator) it felt like a big video game and I felt like I didn't get anything out of it.
    After a period of being on the streets and dealing with a few situations I had an opportunity to train on a similar machine. After three scenarios I had to take a break, I was practically hyperventilating my stress level was so high.

    In short, you have to want to do it and you have to take it seriously.
    Tony Urena

  7. Likes mkrueger liked this post
  8. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    Bellevue, Washington
    Posts
    62
    Likes (received)
    9

    Default

    Thank you for sharing your insight. Have you ever worked anything in the civilian world?

    I have spent most of my time in small martial arts clubs (private, no profit - probably loss for the instructors, etc.) and every one stressed (pun intended) that "application" is a whole different reality. That did not sink in for me until the first time i was really hit and suddenly all my (at the time) college age wisdom collapsed. I took my training much more seriously. I have been mugged twice and walked away safe and alive twice. The first, there was no weapon of which i was aware. The second, 4 guys, gun 3 inches from my eyes. The latter was the test. As a civilian who did not train regular mugging situations i had two wins (1 no bladder leakage, 2 mind calm enough to hand over wallet and keys no problem and stay calm enough to not enrage anybody and just survive). I shook for probably a day after. If i panicked I think i would have been harmed. If i was a "tough guy" i would have been dead. I hope to not rack up more experience here but the events have left me intrigued with how to keep safe and able enough to keep safe. I have added some stress when training with some partners (all non firearm situations) but would love any thoughts on whether there a way to help ordinary non-LEO, non-military overcome some of the range of responses that might occur.
    Stephen Baker

    "Never cruel nor cowardly, never give up, never give in." Doctor Who

  9. Likes mkrueger liked this post
  10. #6
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Posts
    1,166
    Likes (received)
    336

    Default

    Whilst I do run ambush drills and scenarios it is only one of various options. Decisive counter attack in an ambush situation is important to train, especially these days for police officers.

    This one was not that, more intended to address a specific threat using a platform of integrated options. Those options have each been developed separately and in combination in prior work, including separate technical drilling. Mindset addressed both being decisive and articulation of use of force.

    Tony your experience with FATS is a great illustration of the point of stress inoculation training. There is a place out here where we have done some training with a similar technology. They have a small belt that goes around the torso that administers a small electric shock when rounds could potentially be impacting, adding something of a pain penalty and additional stress inoculation. Saw one deputy react so violently to the shock, while attending to the encounter happening on the screen, that he staggered back and almost fell off the platform of the machine.

    Goes to show how much stress can be induced from such training. I find that full profile force on force training with marking cartridges is even more effective for this.

    Stephen, I have taught civilians, in a prior private group of concealed carry permit holders that engaged in similar training for the private context. Don't really do that now for time and schedule reasons. I do some citizen group training but only at the threat management/confrontation communication level.
    Kit Leblanc

    In Harm's Way

  11. Likes TonyU, mkrueger liked this post
  12. #7
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Posts
    1,166
    Likes (received)
    336

    Default

    Since the discussion has veered toward the elements of training mindset I'll address it further. First:

    Master the Fundamentals

    The physical elements need to be in place first: I want to see basic weapons manipulation at a functional level, and this is not always the case with non-tactical police officers or civilians. By basic I mean the ability to draw from holster, challenge, put rounds on target, immediately clear a malfunction of whatever kind, maintain muzzle discipline, and re-holster while engaged in some other task, integrated with verbal commands and decision making. If not at that level, I either work on tuning this up (cops) or work unarmed stuff. Essentially, when stress spikes manual skills often degrade. If someone is not at the level that they can manage a deadly weapon when under minimal stress, they need to wire that tight before moving on to higher level operations.

    Next is the basic grappling body. Far more events happen at close contact and are more akin contextually to grappling or to iaijutsu (which I've commented on elsewhere) than they are to striking arts or "duelling" of any kind. As for grappling, this would include striking and hand fighting/hand control - a prelude to weapons access. These are developed in purely physical drilling. Then honed in targeted grappling situations. One way to think of it would be, for example, to take an old school jujutsu kata and grapple from there, versus from a randori, competitive standpoint. So, live grappling, but with an asymmetric start point. I am more and more convinced that a major problem in police hand to hand training, aside from the minimal hours and lack of a force on force component, is that they derive directly from a one on one, shared initiative, duelling/competition base. Some get the force on force in, but do so in a way that is barely different from competitive fighting, which is contextually not appropriate.

    So, mindset begins with developing physical skills under realistic speeds and force dynamics. There are some Force Science reasons for this in terms of motor skill, attention, etc. that are not so much mindset as brain set, if that makes sense. This is where the bridge is built between the warrior mind and the warrior body.
    Kit Leblanc

    In Harm's Way

  13. Likes mkrueger liked this post
  14. #8
    Join Date
    May 2000
    Location
    Baltimore, MD
    Posts
    520
    Likes (received)
    72

    Default

    Hi Kit,

    Great posts as always. This isn't meant to be snarky but how do you even get cops to train in something, anything (even sport TKD or karate), beyond the academy and lowest common denominator in-service once a year? My Sgt and I have tried to get our squad to train some basic drills for roll call once in a while and I've offered to work with folks after the shift and it is like pulling hens teeth. I imagine dealing with tactical officers it is a much easier sell but for patrol officers who work in a relatively low stress community I feel like it is near impossible. Thoughts? Sorry for the thread hijacking.
    Christopher Covington

    Daito-ryu aikijujutsu
    Kashima Shinden Jikishinkage-ryu heiho

    All views expressed here are my own and don't necessarily represent the views of the arts I practice, the teachers and people I train with or any dojo I train in.

  15. Likes mkrueger liked this post
  16. #9
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Posts
    1,166
    Likes (received)
    336

    Default

    Chris

    I no longer worry about getting people interested in training, I only train those who already are.

    I do kinda specialty stuff and don't do standard in service training.

  17. Likes mkrueger liked this post
  18. #10
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    NJ
    Posts
    301
    Likes (received)
    23

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by StephenBaker View Post
    Thank you for sharing your insight. Have you ever worked anything in the civilian world?
    I just recently started to. I recently started working with a local gun range. Currently I'm just teaching weapon stuff, but eventually would like to expand on that.

    Quote Originally Posted by Kendoguy9 View Post
    Hi Kit,

    Great posts as always. This isn't meant to be snarky but how do you even get cops to train in something, anything (even sport TKD or karate), beyond the academy and lowest common denominator in-service once a year? My Sgt and I have tried to get our squad to train some basic drills for roll call once in a while and I've offered to work with folks after the shift and it is like pulling hens teeth. I imagine dealing with tactical officers it is a much easier sell but for patrol officers who work in a relatively low stress community I feel like it is near impossible. Thoughts? Sorry for the thread hijacking.
    Ha! Easier said than done. I am in charge of qualifications and training for my department. To get people to take the training seriously let alone do it on their own is like running into a brick wall multiple times and hoping it will eventually crumble.
    Tony Urena

  19. Likes mkrueger liked this post
  20. #11
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Posts
    1,166
    Likes (received)
    336

    Default

    To continue with the topic of mindset and its development, I've found the following elements to be key aspects; these are based mostly on my personal experience in the field, and in analyzing the modern and traditional training and research from the classics to Boyd and Force Science and bringing it together. Most of these are interrelated and inter-dependent.

    Up-thread I talked about mastering the fundamentals to an automatic level. This is for me the first element of mindset, and is important because it frees the "cognitive workspace" for the functions here:

    - Awareness/situational awareness including the understanding of menace. My interest at this point is focused on truly deadly threats, and the psychological environment surrounding when deadly threats are immediately present, presently being used, and have just been used.

    - Facing said menace with equanimity.

    - Attention remaining in the present moment.

    - Decisive Intention.

    - Initiative.

    - Interval (understanding its relevance in the present situation).

    - Adaptability.

    - Harmony with the Environment.

    - A "never say die" attitude.
    Kit Leblanc

    In Harm's Way

  21. Likes allan, mkrueger liked this post
  22. #12
    Join Date
    Mar 2001
    Location
    B.C., Canada
    Posts
    239
    Likes (received)
    11

    Default

    Kit,

    In what particular ways have you investigated and applied various breathing techniques to these pursuits? Which, if any, have you found fruitful?

    Thank you for sharing these insights as you have been doing.
    Al Heinemann
    www.shofukan.ca

  23. #13
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Posts
    1,166
    Likes (received)
    336

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by allan View Post
    Kit,

    In what particular ways have you investigated and applied various breathing techniques to these pursuits? Which, if any, have you found fruitful?

    Thank you for sharing these insights as you have been doing.
    Of course, man, helps me organize my thoughts!

    Breath is a vital component, link between mind and body and between many of the elements above. Most basic is simple diaphragmatic breathing, but then I add a vocal element. Then I address what I call the Voice of Authority which is essentially a kind of way to use kiai. NOT screaming war cries, though, more command presence and vocalizations.

    Some of our guys recently brought back something from Rickson that I have been considering how to "martialize."
    Kit Leblanc

    In Harm's Way

  24. #14
    Join Date
    Mar 2001
    Location
    B.C., Canada
    Posts
    239
    Likes (received)
    11

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Hissho View Post
    but then I add a vocal element. Then I address what I call the Voice of Authority which is essentially a kind of way to use kiai. NOT screaming war cries, though, more command presence and vocalizations.

    Some of our guys recently brought back something from Rickson that I have been considering how to "martialize."
    Kit that sounds very interesting. I have yet to explore an authoritative vocal component other then when I practice my "tape loop" and such things. Definitely haven't brought it into breathing practices.

    For my own part, to contribute more than queries to the discussion, some years back I began to practice breath counting and awareness, simple deep breathing and brief mantra recitation. This was mostly done in the context of a "formal" practice.

    Last year, through reading Ellis Amdur's Safety at Work, I began to tie a very particular breathing technique into a particular physical-mental state of relaxed and ready body combined with deepened situational awareness. I try to only use that technique when I want to cultivate that state (intended for readying myself for potential threat as opposed to simple relaxation or de-stressing). Though I need to put a lot more work into it I quickly found this practice useful. Pretty straightforward battle breathing really.

    Most recently I have begun to use some of Mark Divine's techniques from Way of the SEAL such as "box-breathing" and "spot practices" to develop a more "informal" practice of breath work. What I mean by informal is that it is not necessarily tied to sitting on a cushion or a certain environment and can be practiced for short periods throughout one's day. This has helped me to be able to tie some of the more formal breath practices with the kinds of mindset goals that Kit outlined above. In short I am finding very fruitful connections between formal and informal breath work and the ability to perform under stress and threat.

    To wind this post down, there is so much depth to this stuff that it is quite amazing. Any techniques that help to develop the functions that Kit outlines in post #11 above are worth a good bit of work.

    Moderators, if this is too much of a tangent please move it to wherever it's appropriate.
    Al Heinemann
    www.shofukan.ca

  25. Likes mkrueger liked this post
  26. #15
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Posts
    1,166
    Likes (received)
    336

    Default

    Al

    Personally I think this is the exact right place for your comments.

    The "tape loop" is a different thing, though what I am talking about with Voice of Authority is also used during that. Its more the qualty of the voice and presence when commands are issued. There are some people who will give up simply when a proper command presence and verbal commands are demonstrated.

    Your exercises are a great starting point, there is nothing fancy or secret. Its how you utilize it when say, under fire and having to communicate with others, chasing someone, having to order a threatening subject to comply, etc. Using the vocal chords is a fine motor skill. One of the things we all know goes out the window with spiking stress is fine motor control. This is obvious when you hear what is going on with a person's voice when experiencing stressful situations. Police officers see it all the time amongst our peers with screaming of commands, unintelligible communications, voices rising up in register, etc. Why does this happen? There is a mindset issue that translates to poor management of stress that translates to poor breathing that translates to, well, I guess we could call it the Voice of Anxiety.

    Conversely, learning to manage breathing has the effect of calming our stress response which in turn helps bolster mindset. Sometimes that starts with simply a deep belly breath prior to communicating on the radio (thus making one of the exercises you noted more applicable in a "live" setting, being mindful of breathing when responding at high speed to a shots fired call, and cycling breath with focus when stacked on a door ready to make an entry....the application is obvious.

    As well, you in particular see the fitness component to it. While the stress response we are talking about is NOT due to physical exertion, if breathing is out of control to start with simply due to poor fitness, when you then add more stress things are not going to get better. In my experience the effect on people is very clear when undergoing officer survival training (often people holding their breath) or dealing with stuff on the job - command presence rapidly dissipates if you are out of breath, screaming on octave high, and huffing and puffing and can't speak through an inability to control your breathing, or not communicating at all because of overload.

    And it can change in an instant, some seasoned officers even will be doing fine until a shot rings out, or someone suddenly flees or assaults them, and then things go haywire...
    Last edited by Hissho; 25th February 2015 at 21:39.
    Kit Leblanc

    In Harm's Way

Page 1 of 2 1 2 LastLast

Similar Threads

  1. Close Quarters Pistol: What NOT to do...
    By Hissho in forum Firearms
    Replies: 7
    Last Post: 15th December 2013, 05:20
  2. Close quarters grappling in sword schools
    By Endboss in forum Sword Arts
    Replies: 22
    Last Post: 6th May 2009, 18:27
  3. So Close
    By JimGould in forum Member's Lounge
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 5th October 2003, 11:11
  4. Sep Issue of Close Quarters Combat Magazine
    By Jeff Cook in forum Close Quarter Combatives
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: 5th September 2002, 12:11
  5. Subway Violence...Or real close quarters violence
    By TommyK in forum Close Quarter Combatives
    Replies: 15
    Last Post: 27th August 2000, 03:17

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •