The class objective was described as a:
Small Impact Weapons Skills seminar is designed for people looking for a tool based less than lethal response to criminal attack.
There were ten clients, eight male and two female, on Sunday. They were the overflow from a Sold Out class of 20 clients on Saturday. Since Impact Tools are not regulated in Georgia, it was a very popular class. Note that Impact Tools are not legal to carry in all States even when Licensed to carry a pistol. This makes little sense but logic rarely applies to the law. Readers are advised to be familiar with the laws of their own State and any State they may travel to.
For those unfamiliar, Jacks and Saps are small impact tools [weapons] that are pocket sized. Although ubiquitous in police work at one time, they are now seldom used. Bulkier and less effective collapsible batons have become the standard impact weapons for Law Enforcement now.
A sap is a flat weighted tool while a jack (blackjack) is similar but round and usually containing a spring in the handle.
Larry had a variety of both Jacks and Saps on display for the class. There is a wide variation in size of both varieties.
Structure of the class
The class started with an Introduction of the instructor. Larry is a retired Lieutenant from the Illinois State Police. He is also a Black belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu and has a Masters degree in Exercise Physiology. An explanation of the tools and their history followed. He then explained the concepts relevant to the class and how the class would apply them.
Once the introductions were over, the class proceeded to practical exercises. The first was the concept of Managing Unknown Concepts (MUC), a paradigm developed by Craig Douglas of Shivworks. Larry is a member of the Shivworks Collective, a group of instructors who teach related skillsets.
MUC is an overlay of verbalization, distance maintenance, and movement when approached by individuals unknown to a defender. It has several very specific verbal interactions when approached. What the clients in the class discovered was that being specific and concise in their verbal interactions is not as easy as it might seem. Numerous iterations were required to get the verbal and movement components correct and coordinated.
Following the MUC exercises, the class moved into physical drills. The first drill was learning the default defensive position to avoid being knocked out in a confrontation. The default position shields and supports the head to prevent concussion. Larry explained the two most important aspects of avoiding serious injury are:
- Remain conscious
- Remain upright
After learning and practicing the default position, the class moved into physical contact drills. The object of the drills was learning to achieve a Dominant Position, another concept codified by Craig Douglas. The Dominant Position is behind an attacker. Several different techniques, such as underhooks and arm drags were demonstrated and then practiced. The mountain goat drill was instrumental in understanding the importance of keeping the Center of Gravity low when in contact with an opponent.
The class then moved on to striking drills with training weapons. The training weapons were constructed of foam and allowed the clients to practice striking each other without creating an injury.
After the striking drills, the class moved into an ‘evolution’ as the final exercise of the class. The evolution is a one on one competitive exercise involving two participants. It takes place in a corner. One person has a foam sap and is placed in a position of disadvantage. The task is to try to reverse Dominance, gain a Dominant Position, draw the sap, and strike the opponent. This was a voluntary drill but everyone chose to participate.
After the evolutions, there was a class debrief. Certificates were awarded, along with educational pamphlets from the Armed Citizens Legal Defense Network.
It was a very physical class. Everyone went home tired but feeling they had experienced a good day of useful training.
Timing, Timing Errors, and Timing Windows were key concepts of the class. These have parallels in firearms training and practice, as well. More on those concepts, their usage, and how they overlap with firearms in Part II.
If you would like to purchase my eBook, Concealed Carry Skills and Drills, the link to the download is here. http://concealedcarryskillsanddrills.com
FTC notice: I introduced Larry Lindenman to The Complete Combatant so I did not pay to attend the class. However, I receive no promotional consideration for my reviews.