What Are You Training For?

I’ve been giving a lot of thought to training lately. Over the years as I’ve learned more about physical conditioning, I’ve seen a significant swing in training philosophies. A decade ago plyometrics were the hot new thing in developing explosive power. Five years ago, core muscle development became a hot item for building a strong foundation for any and every sport under the sun (those core muscles will give you a serious edge in your next ping-pong tournament). In the past year, I’ve begun seeing a swelling in BodyPump / X90 programs which integrate strength training into an aerobic paced workout. At the same time CrossFit is pushing for more generalized training away from the weight room, avoiding specialization altogether.

Last week I talked to an instructor after one of my training sessions and discussing the problem with integrating both martial arts training and weight room strength training during the week. His recommendation was to cut back on the weight training and focus on explosive power training via the CrossFit and plyometrics philosophy, if my training goal was to become a better fighter. Not necessarily bad advice.

Most people who have never fought rounds don’t realize just how physically draining every second in a fight actually is. That said, I’m really not much of a “fighter” anymore. Sure, I still spar occasionally and train weekly but I haven’t gone 4 full rounds for points in years. In fact, the odds of me getting into a 4 round fight in the near future are looking fairly slim. On the other hand, if I had to model what my next fight might look like, it would probably last less than 30 seconds total and maybe even less than 10 seconds. What does this mean for the kind of training I’m looking at?

It means that your training should adequately reflect your threat model. Any training is better than no training and more training is better than less training. Most of the training fads are based on sound principles and have their place in a well balanced program. That said, strength focused weight training alone isn’t going to help you go the distance while focusing on aerobic endurance isn’t going to be much good in a 10 second balls-to-the-wall elbow and fist session in a dark alley. Combat will most likely require a mix of both. Something else to keep in mind is that all other things being perfectly equal (which obviously never happens in the real world), the stronger fighter usually prevails. My advice is to periodically ask yourself, what exactly am I training for? Then adjust your program accordingly.

Have I left anything out? Absolutely, mental training hasn’t been mentioned. Unless you know that you’re in a fight, no amount of physical conditioning or martial ability will do you much good. That training unfortunately... takes a bit more initiative than just going to the gym.


DSA Protest/Counter Protest

I ended up getting there at about 2:30ish and the protest was long over...
It was a HOT day in the midwest today; 93F and REALLY humid. I guess the fun began early around 11 and only lasted about an hour... No media, no nothing.

Seriously, shooting a subsonic, supressed .22 would probably make more noise than what Jesse and Co. were expecting to make in the media...

No pictures. Sorry...


DSArms Protest on the 28th.

Snuffy Pfleger and Jesse Jackson are protesting the "merchants of death" over at
DSArms on the 28th. I'll be there with the NSPPL doing a silent "counter protest".
Hope to post pictures of the action as it happens...


Ok, Last one... Just too good to pass up!

English Self Defense (More Humor)


Wrist Control, then pull your gun...

More on stepping off the X

I will advance the devil's advocate point of view and say that moving off the X itself can actually put you into a worse situation if the movement isn't well executed and appropriately implemented.

Let’s think in terms of boxing. A right handed boxer fighting another right handed boxer with continually move to the left. The reason is that this forces a counter movement by the attacker before he can place the defender at the full extension of the straight right (preferred weapon #1). In addition it puts the defender outside range of the left hook or uppercut (the money shot).

Moving to the right on the other hand puts the defender still well within reach of the straight right. In fact, it may even give the attacker a better angle and slightly more extension. While it may or may not jam the left hook, it does nothing to mitigate the potential uppercut. Since the right handed attacker will drop-step off their left foot (to the defender’s right side), any movement the defender makes to defender’s the right is easier and quicker for the right handed attacker to adjust to.

This is why boxers hate to fight a southpaw. They now have to counter years of training and move in the other direction, to their right (southpaw attacker’s left).

Next time you watch boxing, notice that well trained boxers (like Bernard Hopkins) will slip the straight right to the their left, leaving the attacker crossed up and putting themselves outside of the range of follow up shots while opening up the attackers ribcage for some juicy body shots. This way, they don’t just “step off the X” but at the same time let the attacker step onto the X.


South Narc on P'Kal Folder Carry and Deployment


Tactical State Management

"An increasing emphasis is being placed on awareness and management of the potential negative effects of the “adrenaline dump” on police performance. For example, it has been said that the “holy grail” for firearms instructors is to teach management of the effects of adrenaline on shooting performance (1). That’s a good thing."

Full article here.

Dr. Asken has been working on creating techniques that assist operators who function in high-stress environments deal with the mental aspects of adrenal dumps and high-speed high-stress operations. The concept of Tactical Arousal Control Techniques (TACT) is discussed, and that notion is take a step further into state management; a topic we harp on @ the WCC. Whether the individual needs to be ready for action or ready to relax, Dr Asken is proposing a method for the operator to take control of their internal stimulation dial for maximum effectiveness in any given situation.

authors website: