Saturday, January 12, 2013

Go to The Ground?

  Having read numerous system's combative strategies, one of the more popular (of late), are those that advocate moving both participants of a conflict to be on the ground.


  This whole “strategy”(?) was began with a L.E. Report (made during the late 80's-early 90's?) that was evaluating the officer's performance and conditions during a typical arrest occurrence. The “Go to the Ground” nonsense was based upon the fact that the report stated that 80% of arrest situations are completed upon the ground.


  This report was corrupted, in order to be interpreted as being that 80% of all arrests “go to the ground”(in conflict), which was only correct, in the literal sense. A (very) common arrest will have the suspect placed upon the ground (in a controlled manor, and on their chest), while the officer hand-cuffs them.


  Oddly, the part of the report that mentions that fact, isn't typically included when those “Ground Fight” advocates are making their cases (for emphasizing ground fighting instruction).


  The incidence of a suspect resisting, can (and does, LOL) occur at any time before, during or after their hand-cuffing begins. For L.E., this fact is countered by the fact that the officer is armed, and is under no obligation to not escalate (in self defense).


  The argument that these individuals present is (IMO) actually misleading in numerous ways. By misleading the student into believing it necessary to engage in these “ground wrestling” tactics, they are implying that physical prowess will always dominate a defensive situation (hence, you need to learn their techniques and tactics).


  It's a cute argument, but until they can show me that a 55 yr. Old female, can defeat a 25 yr. Old male (using their tactics), I can't buy it. In fact, the entire argument for going to the ground is (IMO) stupid. In my own experience (and granted, it's only 40+ years) I have never gone to the ground (during a confrontation) unless I choose to move it there.


  Additionally, I've never wanted it to go there (too high of a risk factor, IMO). Person's who begin physical confrontations certainly don't do so, unless they feel it would be easier to continue their pummeling of the defender (not exactly the common desire of a criminal, seeking to rob someone, but more akin to an emotionally motivated assault).


  Criminals (usually) want to “get in, get out” and do so as quickly as possible. Taking someone to the ground is time consuming, and provides the opportunity for the victim to retaliate (or even defeat the aggressor). Someone committing a crime, doesn't want to waste their time, and/or take the risk of anyone else coming to the victim's aid.

  As a defender in a (violent) physical confrontation, there is rarely any need to prolong one's defensive actions. There are situations that could be aided by their being prolonged, though I can't think of many, LOL. 

  In Taika's art we teach that a rapid defensive response is necessary to prevent any (further) opportunity being gained by the aggressor. Our defensive actions are based around a 5-15 second defensive action (including any immobilization's). 

  To extend a confrontation would serve little purpose (as a rule). By causing a confrontation to be contested (with both individual's) upon the ground is counter-productive and extends too many opportunities for an aggressor to gain an advantage.


  Even in the MMA circuit(s), the biggest ground-fighting advocates (the “Gracie's”) got out of these sporting events (as soon as the competition figured out how to beat them), they avoided participating in any more competition's and (now) only teach their seminars
  The only thing these "competitions" have proven, is that one is still able to perform debilitating techniques when they are on the ground. At our school we train student's in how to (safely) take an aggressor to the ground while maintaining control over them until they can be immobilized and/or subdued
  We choose to take an aggressor down (making them prone upon the ground) in order to aid (us) in their immobilization. Once there, they have fewer options available to them to offer resistance to that restraint.

 Choosing to do so (in this manner) does not equate to the (same) "ground-fighting" tactics that are being taught within the industry. Much of that manor of training is a variant of the (standing) "sparring" practice that (IMO) is corrupting the industry as a whole.



Joe said...

First I want to say that I really enjoy reading your blog.
I was going through your Dojo;s website and found this statement "Every fight usually ends up on the ground..."
Would you mind elaborating on this within the context of the above post.


Openhand said...

Well, let me first say "thanks", and regarding your comment.
(I believe, LOL) the statement Actually made is “ should usually end up with the opponent on the ground”.
What's being implied (through context) is that they are being placed there in a controlled manner. This is a different situation than what's being done in the MMA types of instruction (where they are choosing to continue, if not begin the altercation upon the ground).
Since "I" didn't write all the commentary upon the website, if I'm referencing a "different" statement (than the one you saw), let me know (then I can read what was written and define it further if necessary).

Joe said...

I've pasted the full sentence along with the preceeding one below:

"Many schools do not deal with the ground in general Karate, however we do. Every fight usually ends up on the ground and our hope is that we can prepare you for this inevitability, and teach you how to control the "how" of getting to the ground. "

I believe I understand your point.
You want to end the fight with the opponent on the ground instead of taking the fight to the ground and continuing from there.

I appreciate your time and attention.