Sunday, August 30, 2015
Lessons from the Pros - tactical baton
Have a look. This video is from Lahnert Tactical and shows applications of the Bonowi EKA Camlock baton - a great piece of kit from a great maker. All rights to the video are theirs. Check any and all related laws in your jurisdiction before choosing to carry a tactical baton or other weapon.
The principal in the video is a trainer for law enforcement and elite military in the use of the tactical baton. There is obvious strong FMA flavor in his movements, and KM students should easily recognize some of the flow. He applies concepts from Hubud, Sumbrada (5 count), and Doce Pares in his responses, and does so excellently.
Beyond this, some other things to note:
Look how he uses his footwork to create and keep distance, or to angle off the center line as needed. Footwork is the cornerstone of effective technique and is just as important with baton/stick/cane as it is with any other weapon. In the video, the principal either 1) closes to CQC range using the punyo or 2) opens to largo using the tip for striking. Medium distance is only ever a transition point to 1) or 2). Note how he uses the tip to push the attacker out into distance as needed. This is a useful technique.
2) LIVE HAND
Note the use of the left hand for checking, parrying and control. This "live hand" is a hallmark of good FMA.
3) CENTRIFUGAL FORCE
The stick is a centrifugal force impact weapon, with the centerpoint at the user's shoulder. Thus, maximum power is derived from impact using the absolute outside of the circle's radius - in this case the tip of the weapon. This is where acceleration is maximized in the swing and where the most impact force can be generated.
For locking, he is careful to use the leverage of the weapon against joints (wrist, elbow and neck). After disrupting the structure, he moves immediately into a finishing technique. The lock is not the end - it is a transition to the finish, used to disrupt the attacker's structure. Locking is not attempted until at least one hit has been made to weaken the attacker.
5) CLEARING AND ZONING
In the baton vs baton flow, note how the Principal clears the weapon away. He zones the opponent's baton offline which opens the center for his own response, while keeping the attacker from recovering. The initial block is DEFINITIVE, stopping the attacker in place for the follow up.
6) STRIKING TARGETS
When responding, he rarely targets the head or neck of his opponent. Instead, he focuses attacks on the weapon arm and leg. Except for a few knee hits, most of his responses are at the upper arm or thigh, where the attacker can be neutralized with only minimal possibility of lethal or permanent injury. Even when the attacker has a knife, he does not resort to lethal force, which is commendable. I highly recommend this muscle memory for everyone, law enforcement or not, for both ethical and legal reasons.
7) KEEP GOING
The idea of "one hit, one stop" sounds great on paper, but the best muscle memory is one that keeps us in motion and overwhelming the attacker until the situation is completely under control. Smoothly chaining together a flurry of strikes is a key component of what makes Kali the effective art it is, and drilling for this is very important.
The Principal uses his voice to ensure the situation is resolved. Voice is a key part of the psychology of control, and the best timing for this is when the initial adrenaline rush has been disrupted. Proper use of the "command voice" can minimize having to use additional force to neutralize an attacker and prevent an attacker from continuing after the initial attempt.
What else can you learn from this?
Let me know if you saw something I didn't.
See you at class,