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Thread: Now It's Been TWO Years....

  1. #1
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    Default Now It's Been TWO Years....

    It's been two years...plus....since my last thread.

    And they've been crazy as we all know. Especially for law enforcement, which is still my profession, twenty five years on in a few months. I've continued to visit E Budo, where a lot of my thinking was honed, over the years since it "died" and figured an update was in order, and might spark some interest. I don't Facebook, I'm on IG and the latest incarnation of my blog is here. If anyone is interested in chatting hit me up!

    So much for the shameless plug...

    After those 25 years I have been assigned to our Training division. I never wanted to be a "full time trainer" before being tested and proven many times over many years in the actual work. I did more than seventeen years on a regional SWAT team - left just last year, and "worked the road" the rest of the time. That is not a slam on people who try to get into training or desk jobs earlier - but some do so WAY too early. They don't know what they don't know, as readers here know I always say. When that person is the trainer, the supervisor, or even further up the "leadership" ladder the problems only multiply.


    This is obviously a most trying time in LE, some believe in the history of LE in the US, and for sure within living memory. It is markedly different out there, at a time when morale has plummeted, and there is a generational shift in the people leaving and the fewer and fewer that choose to enter the profession. Some enter, but after attending an academy and hitting the streets in their field training phases they then choose to quit. We also see that many senior people are leaving before the juniors (literally - I now train people who could be my children) benefit from their experience. This does not bode well. A huge aspect of the problems with law enforcement has not been racism, but poor hiring and retention, poor training, and a lack of developing composure amongst officers. So now you are about to see a generation of officers who have not learned to de-escalate themselves responding to situations where they are at greater risk than we have ever seen. Not a good mix, especially if you want to reduce the number and necessity of uses of force.


    What does this have to do with E-Budo? Well, this is CQC, which is directly pertinent to police and military combatives. I also have a pretty unique, if I do say so, perspective in that I've done "Budo" for years. I am still convinced that Budo, properly done, offers one avenue for improving police performance, if adequate training time is given.

    Readers here may not be aware that there is a growing movement in policing to "Make Jiujitsu Mandatory." That is, make training in "Brazilian" jiujitsu (that's what everyone calls it. We here at E Budo know better, so from now on I'll just call it jiujitsu) a requirement, even to the point of requiring a blue belt ranking for officers. (Blue belt is the first color belt rank in jiujitsu. It is roughly equivalent to a Judo brown belt in terms of time served.)

    I've taught control tactics for nearly my entire career. I have black belts in Judo and BJJ, and studied in one koryu (Araki-ryu with Ellis) and explored several others before returning to Araki-ryu. I am all for jiujitsu being taught to officers, but modifications and adaptations are absolutely necessary. Unfortunately I often see jiujitsuka, including police officers that hold black belts, teaching a jiujitsu that has barely been modified from the popular competitive version. That will need to change.

    How I have changed it, both in personal practice and in the curriculae I've developed for SWAT and patrol applications, embodies elements of koryu, or at least Araki-ryu in the way Ellis' line does it and we do it in our study group. I have never rolled around with a suspect and tried to get him in a sankaku jime, never thought a jujigatame was a good idea when I had a suspect controlled with a top pin. I have used several controlling positions from Araki-ryu many times over many years in controlling suspects, including some that were armed. While I can't vouch for other ryuha, either what is taught or the way it is currently practiced, I can for what I have been taught and then developed through actual application. In fact, I left the ryu early on in my career because I did not think it would have much relevance, and came back to it when experience showed me it very much did!

    With this baseline, after retiring SWAT I started teaching control tactics on a regular basis to help develop our newest instructors over the last year. We realized the same thing that other "police jiujitsu" (PJJ) programs are finding: reductions in use of force despite an increase in calls for service (only partly attributable to training - after mid-year we had some sweeping changes in law that saw us engaging much less in situations where force appeared to be a potential, mostly for mental health issues and low level crime. That has been for both good and bad.) More interesting was that when force WAS used, there was less Taser, less striking (the spectacle of cops repeatedly punching or kicking people down on the ground is a phase one indicator of how poor police training has been almost across the board: ineffective control holds, "stick fighting," and various other martial arts with next to zero application in policing form the basis of many academy and agency programs), more control holds, more takedowns, fewer injuries to suspects and fewer injuries to officers.

    CONTD
    Kit Leblanc

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  3. #2
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    CONTD

    While other PJJ programs have experienced similar, the caveat I raise is that these numbers don't tell us if officers are adding RISK to themselves by simply trying to wrestle suspects down. Any police training program must both achieve results noted above, AND reduce the risk to officers by addressing weapons concerns at body-to-body contact, and by training officers to remain composed and aware under pressure (a la fudoshin, zanshin, etc.)

    That's where some grounding in koryu could help. If properly done (and that is a big IF, highly dependent on the particular school or group practicing), an understanding of these things can make a big difference in the field. I have direct personal experience, under fire, with that. The concepts need to be translated to a modern format, but the baseline is very much there (and incidentally in my research supported by the ongoing findings in neuroscience relative to performance and even police use of force training). That is another major hole in adopting jiujitsu for policing - this aspect - "mindset" if you will - is not addressed and the competition mindset is absolutely not what you want use-of-force professionals turning on.


    **********

    Just thought I'd share. Been a long time. I know there are some other LE professionals here, maybe still, and maybe some have had their own observations.
    Kit Leblanc

  4. #3
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    Great post Kit. It's time for me to catch up on reading your blog.

    Young people reading this: whether you are interested in policing, "modern combatives" or old school combatives, I strongly recommend that you go back and read Kit's old posts.
    Al Heinemann
    www.shofukan.ca

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  6. #4
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    Hey buddy!

    Thank you. It's nice that people are still reading here and hats off to Cady and Dr. Goldsbury and others maintain this database. I settled upon an approach that integrates "Contemporary and Classical Combatives."

    The adventure continues!
    Kit Leblanc

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