New on the Blog
- Women’s self defense mechanics
You can’t just push into the chest.
Many times we see women (and men) being taught to strike at the chest or push into the chest…but this doesn’t stop an attacker, only pause them.
Women’s self defense requires more tactical understanding.
In this video, Matt works with Sarah Jamieson from http://moveolution.com on proper striking targets.
- New on IG
Sarah Jamieson from Moveolution.com was in Atlanta training with Matt for a few days.
Lot’s of great instructional footage coming…and we put a taste on Instagram.
Putting @moveolution through a strike drill. Chest strikes aren't effective for creating space…in this upcoming video at Pramek.com we go thru how to create space and she explains the spinal mechanics. Thanks @spartantraininggear for the gear that allows this level of impact testing. #fightlikeagirl #pramek #combatives #fight #mma #ufc #martialart #igmilitia #shithurts
- A Student Review of the CLM
A recent review of the CLM from a student, reposted from Facebook:
‘ …To be honest I wasn’t sure I fully understood the core of what you were trying to express in the books initially, but I just decided that I’d give it a shot and try to do it as best as I understood it. It’s worth explaining that since I’m teaching a historical art that has been broken and resurrected that my reason for training isn’t for self defense. If you’re defending yourself with a 3 1/2 – 4′ long sword, you are probably going to jail. So it’s mostly for cultural and historical exploration. That means that altering the techniques isn’t really a positive thing, considering that the point is to study something that existed, and trying to understand it.
That however, is exactly why your process is so helpful. By using the attention weighting, and emphasizing the what it is that the techniques accomplish, what their goal is, the true beauty of the art is made much clearer. When you understand that the system was created with a complex goal, namely control your enemy’s sword, create a safe position to attack from, and stop any potential follow attacks against you, and you see how efficiently each technique works to accomplish that it’s far easier for students (myself included of course) to appreciate what it is that we study.
The part I’ve found most useful thing I’ve found is how it eliminates the ‘analysis paralysis’ problem. One that past training in Japanese martial arts created, and only after a lot of examination of what underlies the technique vs technique mindset, into the core concepts was able to break out of.
Hopefully I can help others overcome or outright avoid this situation in the future, and you have given me a valuable tool for accomplishing that.
Also I’m realizing that it’s broadly useful for life in general. Identify a goal, plan a strategy, use tactics to accomplish that strategy.”
- Failure is an option…
I often hear instructors say, ‘Failure is not an option.’
The sad reality is that those instructors are often times leading their students to extremely bad habits as their students are not trained to know what to do when Mr. Murphy and his law comes calling, things go wrong, and they fail in a real situation. As I often discuss, one of the problems with martial art today is that the Youtube world and social media have put a premium on looking perfect everytime…and assuming the best case scenario.
The truth is – you will fail, you will have a failure moment, you will have momentary failure – the question is: what will you do when it happens?
In other areas of the self-defense world, such as firearms, failure drills are common place. They are looked upon as simply the nature of the beast – you have a machine, it will malfunction and fail. But, how often do we look at martial art, our strikes, or kicks, our grabs and releases…and failure drills? It doesn’t work – what do we do? Usually this only happens in sparring and when a student does something right we say, ‘Oh, you were in a flow state, that’s why it worked!’ but if it doesn’t work, they are told, ‘Failure isn’t an option. You need to work on that technique more…next class do it 100 times.’
I can’t count how many times I have heard this.
We have to stop demonizing failure and see it for what it is: outside of a real life encounter, it’s a learning tool.
Failure is an option – and it’s an option we want to happen often, in expected and unexpected situations. We want to see failure at every turn, every move, every engagement, every disengagement. We want students to fail when they walk in and trip. The reason for this is we want the adaptation after the failure. We want to teach that. As Mike Tyson once said, ‘Everyone has a plan until they are punched in the nose.’ We want plans, yes, but we want students who are experienced in what to do when the plan fails.
When a student is ok with failure they become free to explore and never see a failure as definite. Failure is simply the threshhold between this technique and the next. It gives you a new opening you may not have seen. It gives you an advantage you may not have had. After a period of time we can ask them questions about that adaptive moment…what happened, could they control it…hold it, mold it, make it theirs.
Encourage your students to fail and make them understand it’s part of training…then their failure is complete.
- When reason meets procedure…
If you’ve read the CLM on conceptual learning, you know when I talk about procedural based learning (PBL) I have certain views on it.
One area where I truly believe in and practice it is in firearms.
The fine motor skills required to operate a firearm require PBL. There is no question when you watch Aaron Cowan that PBL is the primary ingredient to firearms mastery. Unlike martial art, firearms mastery is a different animal when it comes to neurology and how you learn.
During our course, we had one student who was firing, and suddenly ran out of ammunition and needed to do an emergency reload. Aaron, ever the attentive range master, did his job. ‘GET THAT GUN BACK UP’ ‘GET BACK IN THE FIGHT’ ‘GET YOUR WEAPON BACK UP’.
But, the student wanted to talk about what the issue was and what he was doing in order to get his pistol back into a firing condition.
In the CLM, we talk about EPL vs. PBL. We talk about the blending of the two.
In some situations, one will be more effective than the other. In a firearms situation, where we are focusing force through a firearm, PBL and learned procedure is vital. The student being addressed had not developed the neuropathways to create an effective reload and therefore was falling behind…they froze, they began to panic, they then began to reason…instead of act. If you have read our previous blog posts regarding the nature of panic at Moderno, you know we understand why this happens.
There is a time for EPL and a time for PBL. When you can’t afford time to do a vital task, you do not want to reason your way through it. You want it to be autonomic…
In martial art, we focus on the formula in our video ‘Technique Math’ posted below. We recognize this level of neurological certainty. So, we teach basics for procedure.
5 strikes and strike defenses
Basic ground fighting
2 releases from grabs – arm grabs, chokes
Basic weapons work against blunt objects, knives, and firearms
Basics control holds
Mindset and Neurology
That is our PBL based learning. We look at a lot of this in the Combative Striking Series, whic is on sale now for $30…
This ensures the student will learn the basics to fight. After that, we use the EPL in order to focus on what the student has learned. When the student is comfortable using these and they are embedded, we test them using the DPT.
Then we come back to these skill sets consistently to make sure they are fresh. Beyond this, we make adaptation to combat fighting our primary goal. We use theory and science to teach adaptation and create a thinking student, reinforce the lessons with the EPL, and then test them with the DPT.
This is the CLM.
There is a time for reason and there is a time for procedure.
The key is to recognize that time and the reason for it – and as we discussed in the CLM that recognition requires a strategy.
- EP 37: Redlines and Technology
- Free video 22 minute – the CLM
Combat – it seems so chaotic. It happens so fast we often forget that it’s two people who are predictable by their actions and mechanics. With analysis, combat suddenly becomes more understandable and organized by systems.
In this free video 22 minutes of the 1.5 hour Organizing the Fight, you’ll see how we begin to organize the fight and win.
- Mechanics you are left with…
We often hear, ‘Sweat more in training, bleed less in battle.’
At Pramek we take the attitude of do it right in training…make it efficient, make every movement a study…so when the real thing happens you are left with the neurology of what you trained on. It’s all about mechanics. In this video, Matt explains why it’s important to make it count in training.
- An unfair advantage
Recently while teaching in Portola CA a student said to me, ‘I use leverage all the time.’ I said to the student, ‘But do you understand it?’
I had him show what he does on a much larger student and it was unsuccessful. He was repeating what he was taught but did not understand why he was taught it.
‘Using’ mechanical leverage in martial art is not enough…for every strong fighter, there will be a stronger fighter.
‘Understanding’ mechanical leverage, we access the greatest equalizer: physics. It is the understanding of mechanics and mechanically based execution that creates an unfair advantage.
The first time I heard the concept of an unfair advantage explained was from a business writer, Jason Cohen. I had seen it commented on with Magpul and other companies, but Cohen nailed it.
An advantage is an advantage, but this can quickly be copied or duplicated. It is only when you have something that can not be copied or easily duplicated that you have an unfair advantage. One that made a lot of sense to me was the concept that if you have an something that is an almost unreasonable obsession with something, for example in the business world, something you will never compromise on while others will…this will become an unfair advantage.
For years I have apparently given my students an unfair advantage…an obsession with their goals. I often put it this way, ‘If you ever get lost rolling, sparring, in a scenario, things are out of control, touch the other guy’s ear. No matter what, touch it. If you can touch his ear, you can pull it. If you can pull it, you can move his head. If you can move his head, you can put your fingers in his eyes. If you can stop his vision, you can win the fight.’
Using something is not an unfair advantage…anyone can, or anyone can figure out how you did the neat trick. It is the single-minded obsession with something we do best, like making our leverage as sound according to mechanical law and physics, that makes it an unfair advantage. I have gotten very good with leverage over time, through learning and experience, and I fall back on it constantly because I know it’s something most opponents have not seen before…they have seen some stuff, but they have not seen my level of obsession with it.
As many students will tell you – what I do hurts. People don’t drop and slap their leg or the mat because they are playing along – most will tell you when I apply leverage it’s different than other people. It is this obsession in understanding what I do, versus just using it, that sets things apart.
- The Wheel and Axle
Our interactive manual, Combative Rotation, raises so many great questions.
Loaded with pages of diagrams, science, and embedded video, it’s a game changer for your teaching and skill.
Recently some of these questions came up at a Pramek seminar, and Matt took two hours demonstrating and helping.
We often just hand students the camera at seminars (or put a go-pro on their head) and let them film and ask.
We have a lot of footage from this seminar, and we want to begin sharing it with you.
Here’s an example:
Want to see the manual?
- EP 36: The Problem with Martial Art
Someone once said…you know you have made it when you’ve been meme’d.
Thanks, ya’ll, I don’t mind a laugh on me – Matt
- The notch strike
This is a fight stopper our combatives fans will enjoy, from our upcoming TLT series.
The strike was done at 40% strength and carefully on a very capable student.
This is a strike you must be careful in training and we assume no liability by your training or use.
- EP 35: 2014 review and how to plan for 2015
- Tactical Movement Transition (Part 4 of 4)
In this 4th video of the series, Matt dives deep into the topic of mechanics and repeatability in tactical movement.
Working with Dr. John Landry of the upcoming TLT (Transitional Lethal Tactics) program, Matt works with Dr. Landry on how to become more accurate in close quarters.
- EP 34: Unplugging to Plug In
- Conversational Hand Placement
Where do you place your hands during conversation?
When we don’t have our hands up, we should have them ready for an incoming push or grab.
In this video Matt discusses low hand placement and how to use it to gain the upper edge.
- Cruiser Ready Releases
Mission Specific Fitness Presents: Cruiser Ready, Levels 1, 2, 3.
Designed by cops for cops, Cruiser Ready is over 42 exercises specifically designed to create a functional fitness program that law enforcement, civilian shooters, fire fighters, and first responders can use to increase:
1. Increased range of motion and power generation, while remaining ‘Sciatica Safe’ and strengthening the back and lower lumbar
2. Enhancing joint mobility to give you greater movement potential, strength, and flexibility
3. Movement coordination, getting quicker in and out of vehicles, and quicker on mission with fast paced exercises and drills
In this product you get:
– Level 1 video – Kettlebell exercises for power generation & range of motion
– Level 2 video – Steel Club exercises to enhance endurance and joint mobility
– Level 3 video – Movement Drills – movement drills combining Level’s 1 & 2
– CR Manual – 13 pages of explanations, a full lexicon of Cruiser Ready work outs
– Three 5 week sample workouts to follow with detailed instruction
– 3 Audio MP3 Lectures on MSF
This is a full workout routine that will challenge beginners and advanced students, while working specifically to make your better on the job and on mission.
- A free download
The grapevine – one of the simplest ground techniques around.
But, what is it in physics?
How can you use physics to make it work?
Click here for your free download of this easy to understanding manual!
- Faster thinking in combat
Can you train your brain for faster thinking in combat?
Can you become a better problem solver?
Applying solutions requires quick wits and the ability to use the mind in the worst situation will give quick superiority in a fight.
To gain this ability, we must focus on:
Mental agility – the ability to make decisions while multitasking
Mental plasticity – knowing our limit and pushing beyond it
Mental toughness – an unwillingness to quit
A slow mind is much worse than a slow body. The body will perform what it is neurologically programmed to do (tap-rack-tap-rack), but accessing the mind and using it to make decisions is more difficult (I have two types of cover available to me…which should I choose?). We have to train the brain with our task in mind to become faster in decision making.
We all know the mind controls the body…
Learn how to control what controls the body. Read more at Monderno.com