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Posts Tagged ‘assault’

What would you do if you were violently grabbed from behind in a bear hug over your arms??? The answer is a throw.   Note,  I had this lesson a few times and today the fundamental lesson finally sunk into my thick skull.  Also, I was back working out with the heavy weights, someone that out weighs me by more than 50 lbs. My partner was Alex, a Romanian Black Jack dealer at the Hard Rock Casino.

Like a guy with a grudge, bam!, into my back, he’s got me in a Grizzle bear hug, my arms were locked down, and I felt that I may be body slammed if I don’t act quickly.  Just like I was taught, I quickly base out. I drop down and curled my arms.  My shoulders wobbled a little bit as he thrashed me side to side.  I shrugged my shoulders up, it gives the space I need, I  step to one side, all in seconds, I then slip my front left leg behind his back knees. From my semi crouched position, I stood up quickly while grabbing his pant legs at his knees while dumping him over my shoulder.  I launched him, off over my back shoulder with velocity, right into the mat.  Actually, I stopped while I had him in the air.

Of course, nobody was injured.   We didn’t actually execute the throw.  This was a typical fundamental’s class.

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Valente Brothers had a weapons self-defense seminar last week. I couldn’t attend; however, it did bring up a bad memory.  At the start of the first Gulf War, I was living as an exchange student in Madrid, Spain.  Every Friday at the University, after the last class, the communist party along with the socialists, would have a parade in protest against capitalism and the US.   It really got heated up when we declared war on Iraq in 1991.  Very very anti American.  One weekend, my friend and I were attacked by a Moroccan guy with a knife in an old part of Madrid, Spain. My friend and I were American exchange students going to the bars. That night, it was the wrong time, wrong place. A guy approached us, I didn’t understand him. We began yelling at each other.  I heard a click, then I saw a six-inch knife blade.  I saw the knife blade coming towards my face in a slashing motion. I pulled my head back. It barely missed me.  I knew this guy didn’t speak English so I told my friend to run in the opposite direction when I tried to draw him towards me.  It worked.

As the knife attacker and I circled each other, my mind was racing.  What should i do? I was thinking about all the possible outcomes. I came to a quick conclusion, there was no up side.  The best decision was to run away.  Could I out run this guy? I took off.  He followed not far behind.  A block later, the attacker was still close. I thought to myself, ” Great, I’m going to be knifed in the back.  Then I heard shouting from the attacker.  The guy had stopped running after me. His hands were on his knees. He was out of breath.  I kept running. I watched him from across the street while I was hidden in the shadow of a building.    It looked to me that this guy was either ill or out of shape. Once everything was clear, I went to bar.  There was my friend.  He was all shaken up and so was I.  We ordered a drink then called it a night.  We didn’t go to the police because nobody was injured, we couldn’t speak the language very well, and we didn’t want other problems.

This week we learned a self-defence attack that may render the aggressor permanently disabled.  I had some ethical questions about learning this.  It is a strike to the ear. When done properly, the ear slap would cause a rupture to the eardrum. Your ear is where balance is stored. I believe it would be very difficult surgery to fix. If the eardrum is ruptured, it would be difficult for that person to maintain balance.

When should you even consider using the ear slap attack?  First, I would quickly analyze the pre fight situation.  Do I feel confident to take the aggressor without this move? Are their multiple opponents?  Second, escalation of violence. Does the aggressor have a weapon? A knife? A gun?  If the aggressor flashes a hidden weapon or I believe he has one then this attack would be certainly justified. If you choice to fight someone with a weapon, you need to take them out.  I maybe able to handle a knife. I may not be able to handle a gun.  Third, if the attacker has a knife, could I avoid the attacker all together by an escape? Could I escape an attacker with a gun?

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It has been a week of self-reflection. Am I too old for this? What if I get injured?  What else am I going to do?  Is this the right place for me?  If I am so fortunate to earn a black belt, then what will I do?

This week, I asked a brown belt, whom is close to earning his black belt, did you ever see yourself as a brown belt before becoming a brown belt? Could you see yourself as a black belt? He laughed when I asked the question then he answered, ” No, it’s a day by day event.”   Like him,  I can’t see myself beyond the next class.

I had a blue belt moment, I learned a technique incorrectly on the A Mas Apon. My choke hand was wrong. I tried it during a sparring session but it wasn’t working because of my hand position.  I gave it up because it looked like I was hurting my opponent. Anyways, the above brown belt was my fundamentals techniques partner that showed me the correct way.  This made me think what an advantage it is to take private lessons. I would like to try a private class but I don’t have the money and I am not sure what I would work on at this time.

This week, I learned that it will take two years to advance to purple.  Basically, I will get a stripe every belt ceremony if I put in the hours of course. That is okay since I am in no hurry. However,  I am a bit upset with myself.   I am going to write an article on mental alertness since I should have asked these questions on day one.

This week, I learned a cool new throw called Soto Makikomi.  Note, the way I learned the throw and the execution is slightly different from the way a judo practitioner would do it.  I would love to use that in the near future, but I am having trouble with the unbalancing of the opponent. I need to work on it. In that same class, I was thrown a lot.  The trick is to not tense up and to not give any resistance. A throw is a good way to gain the top position. A take down will also give you top position and that is where I want to be in fight. When I wrestled in high school, I remember the coach always telling us that the person who executes the take down first usually wins the match.

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What is the best defense in a bar brawl ???  That question comes up a lot during Jiu Jitsu practice.  As a Jiu Jitsu student, you adapt to the situation.  Generally,  I know that I don’t want to take it to the ground. Bars are known to have broken glass on the floor.  If your on the ground, someone could throw a chair on you or you could be kicked in a group attack.  In my opinion, the best defense is not being there.

June of 1987 , Greg S., a friend from high school,  and I went to Ocean City, Maryland.  It was a tradition for recent High School graduates from Baltimore and the surrounding  area. Ocean City, Maryland,  is a small run down family vacation town on the Atlantic Ocean with a sandy beach.   Near the O.C. boardwalk, there was a night club with a dance floor, which allowed 18 year olds into the establishment, but were not permitted to drink. We happily paid to get in and had to wear yellow wrist bands.   Meeting women was on our minds.   Note, we had a couple of beers on the beach before we entered.  To be honest, I don’t recall drinking or how much but it definitely wasn’t an unreasonable amount.

As we were entering the bar, I believe we were being watched.  It was about to get very ugly.  The place was dark.    As we were scoping out the dance floor for women,  a ring of guys formed around Greg.  Greg was in the center and another guy facing him.  The guy next to me said, ” Stay out of this and you won’t get hurt.”  Greg is a big guy and he could hold his own so I didn’t immediately object.  Thirty seconds later, the man who told me to stay out of the fight,  sucker punched Greg in the face.   Just as his hand recoiled, I noticed that he was wearing brass knuckles. Brass knuckle is a small metal weapon; worn over the knuckles on the back of the hand.  Greg was stunned and stumbling.   To make things worse, as Greg stumbled, the attacker in front of him struck him.  There was no time to get help.  I didn’t remember seeing a bouncer at the front door.   I had to act.  Right or wrong, I forcefully grabbed the back shoulder shirt of the guy with the brass knuckles and the other guy  on my other side by his shirt shoulder.  I charged forward while dragging the two guys by the shoulder into Greg and the other guy.  In a second, we were all laying on the floor in a pile and I was on top.  My hope in collapsing the ring was to create chaos so that Greg could escape.  This is when the whole situation gets really unclear.  I don’t know what happened to Greg S. after that point.

My next memory is jumping to my feet after the pile up.  When I got to my feet, there was a guy in front of me with his hands up with clinched fists.   I quickly looked around.   I didn’t see Greg.  I jabbed the guy hard in the jaw.  He returned with a hook.   I immediately felt a cut under my eye.  The cut on my face was from the attacker’s jagged ring.  Blood ran down my face.  I don’t have memory of the events after that.  Perhaps there was another attacker, out of view, that choked me out? I believe I was knocked or choked unconscious at this time.

Next memory, I saw K. Hopkins, she graduated with me and Greg,  standing with her boyfriend in front of us.  Her boy friend was manic, wide-eyed, breathing heavy, and holding a broken tennis racket.  It was weird.    Her boy friend said that he thought he saw the attackers leave the bar.  I don’t know if he came to our aid or after I broke the fight ring, the fight evolved into a brawl.    After that, I remember the sun had risen.  A cop was making a report.  We started making our way to the exit.  Someone yelled, ” Let them go, they had nothing to do with this.”

Next memory, I was in Greg’s car.   Greg was in bad shape.  One of his eyes had a broken blood vessel.  He kept repeating the same sentence over and over. He had a concussion. I wanted to go to the emergency room but he insisted on going home, so I drove him home in his car.

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