COMBAT MIND SET Feed

Amazing things happen when preparation meets opportunity. The issue we have is the lack of preparation in professionals as well as private citizens. Oh, they may be well prepared to run a stage imitating an overweight John Wick, but not for what we are talking about. Bruce Lee, in the landmark movie Enter The Dragon (look it up kiddies and watch it), after one of his adversaries broke a board, said simply yet eloquently, "Boards don't hit back". In our study we might rephrase as, "cardboard targets and steel plates...don't shoot back". There is a natural and momentary hesitation that takes place the first time you look over your sights and see another breathing, living human being rather than a training target. It is almost as if the brain is questioning the reality of the very foreign image it is seeing. And then the doubts come in. "Am I correct, and I legal, will I get into trouble, will I be arrested, fired, sued, should I shoot, should I...." At some point along this internal dialog the bad guy realizes... Read more →


TACTICS - THE ART OF MANEUVERING AGAINST AN OPPONENT, AND TOWARD A SPECIFIC OBJECTIVE. Tactics is proactive and preemptive. Tactics is not reactive. We have a set of skills for the reactive event that help prevent you from getting shot when you didn't expect the fight. Combat proven and street tested skills that have kept us and other alive when by all rights we should have died by gunfire. As essential as those are, they are not tactics. Those skills are habituated responses established by extensive repetitions when a stimulus is presented. This is just like the martial arts people have done for centuries. As our respected staff member states, gun-fighting is karate at 1200 feet per second. But karate is not tactics either. Tactics come before the shots are fired. But tactics are not for leaving the fight. As we said, all you need for that is a suspicion and the willingness to act upon it by leaving. Tactics are created and justified by an understanding of both the dynamics of the fight as well as what is justified... Read more →


In a previous life I was hard at work in the study of CQB, and was an Assaulter in my department's special weapons team. During that time I trained with a senior SWAT sergeant at LA County's SEB named Gary Rovarino*. Gary was not only gifted in his craft, but also a student of karate which gave us a common language and made us instant friends. At a regional school he was teaching, Gary defined tactics brilliantly - "Tactics is the art of maneuvering against an opponent, and toward a specific objective". To add to this, tactics is the physical and dynamic embodiment of strategy. Strategy is a thought process and involves thinking and looking forward to objectives. Tactics are physical and involve taking action to cause things to happen. To put it in practical terms, strategies are conceived at the Pentagon, and tactics are developed by the Marines. To examine tactics we first need to establish strategies. And in the context of our discussions, strategies for the lone operator, CCW-equipped, regular guy. Presented with a potential for danger or... Read more →


Uncertainty Kills. That is one of those truths from the street that, being irrelevant on the shooting range, rarely gets taught to students of the gun. Sure, there is lip service to color codes and so forth, but we address all of that in the self-image discussions don't we? Lions need no color codes. Here we are discussing a certainty of position and standing that clarifies the rules of combat - the rules under which you are justified in shooting another man to death - at a deep and almost cellular level. The moment when the pistol is drawn, when the red dot is suspended on the bridge of the bad guy's nose and your trigger finger begins to feel that first poundage of take-up on the trigger is a moment when we need a deep and clear certainty of action. Hesitation is the mechanism by which uncertainty kills. How can we be certain of our position and process of killing another man? And that is what we are talking about. After all the clever euphemisms..."stopping", "contacting", "defending from" are... Read more →


Thusfar I have exposed the myths held onto so dearly by a large segment of the gun world and the CCW world, I have discussed the all important development of the winner's, the warrior's self image. This self-image is of far greater importance than any mind set, color code, or anything else used to skirt the world of the mind in the fight. Now we will discuss how to train to develop the skills of the gunfighter. Gunfighting and Shooting are not the same things. Gunfighting and gun sports are not the same things. I will bet the average thug who has already killed a few other bad guys will utterly trash the average "grandmaster" sport shooter for whom the street fight is a foreign concept. Why? Because the killer knows how to kill and the gunfight is about killing, not about shooting a score. The concept of shooting for a score, or a "running a stage" is actually detrimental to street fighting skills. And doing one will not make you better at the other. Choose what you want your... Read more →


Fear is NOT a gift. Fear, no matter how many books it sells, it is an emotional reaction that leads to poor decisions and to over reaction. What we want instead is coolness under stress...now that is a gift. But far too many gun people are driven by fear. Their training is based on being afraid and their entire defense posture is built entirely on fear because that is what those who trained them knew best. One generally teaches what one knows and understands. But fear-aggression often leads to fear-shooting. And fear-shooting is rarely clean, well done, or justified shooting. The attitude that is most desirable is not the snarling little fear-aggressive dog with the emotionally-driven outburst of words, and often over-reactive gunshots. The attitude that is more desirable is the attitude of the predator. Now by "predator" I am referring to the animal kingdom example that differentiates the snarling little ankle biter dog, and the wolf on the hunt. The Predator does not show emotional arousal, or anger. The Predator does not yell or posture and does not develop... Read more →


I am writing a five part series on "The Secrets". These are those intangible things that can't be quantified in a shooting test or sporting event, yet the very same things that define the difference between victory and death in a gunfight. I will write the five parts out, with my unedited opinions and let the chips fall wherever the hell they fall. If you like what you read, there will be an opportunity to let us know. Here we go. The first installment will discuss the myths of the gun world. These are things that have been accepted as truth because they have been said so often. The problem is that many of those repeating these things have no first hand knowledge and so they repeat what they have heard. A myth repeated often enough becomes a widely held belief...almost a religious belief. yet, it is still a myth, and myths are not truth. Myth Number One - The presence of the gun is all you need, so have a gun. Having a gun is a good thing, but... Read more →


It is not about speed, it is about timing. This is something the speed focused gun sports maniacs will never understand as their only adversaries are the timer and the cardboard. My adversaries...the ones I am training to face are flesh and blood and they hate me and want to kill me. So I am not driven by speed, but rather by timing. What helped me defeat the active shooter, the robbers, the armed home invaders, the gang members, and all the bad guys I faced? I wasn't faster than they were...but my timing in the continuum of the fight was impeccable due to my training and application of concept. Yet another facet of the fight that is impossible to even see in the clinical and isolated world of gun sport. I learned timing from Karate, not from Gunsite. Here is what Karate Timing is like - Go no sen: Go no sen means to "receive" the attack, block it physically and then attack the opponent after their attack has finished. For example, an enemy throws a punch at my... Read more →


Every single fighting system (as you know, I despise the term martial art so I use fighting system instead) loses a great deal of its combat value when it becomes a sport. When something becomes a sport its adherents focus on winning the contest within the context of the rules, and that is far different than combat application. Usually right about now someone will point out how this UFC fighter won a fight against someone on the street, etc. But there have been just as many that have been shot or stabbed because their frame of reference did not include stabbing or shooting. Sport focused systems, whether hand to hand focused or gun related, are not good choices for combat focused goals. The next point is that a system will tend to stay to its roots and its culture. Until Karate and Jujitsu began its transformation to sport and made it to the west, they were combat focused systems and its leaders were extremely hard men who had done their share of beating and killing other men. You did not... Read more →


So reality discussion then - The role of the rifle It is a given that a fight is either reactive or proactive. In reactive, you find yourself there and must fight to win...and live. You have no time to evade, escape, or anything else, move. draw, shoot, etc. It is happening right now! I doubt that you will have anything to fight with other than your pistols...hopefully you have one. In proactive, you aren't in the fight but you choose to go and get into that fight for tactical, moral, or familial reasons. We discuss this in the Interview classes extensively. (Incidentally - Any man that allows a thug to go into a school or public place and kill children when he has the present ability to stop him is repugnant to me). In a proactive event there is a time factor. The bad guy is killing now. While running in with a hearty "Banzai" is not the answer, you really do not have time to "go get" something bigger to fight with. Again, time is of the essence. Moreover,... Read more →