Saturday, February 11, 2017

From the Barber's Chair: A True Life Application of Tactical Breathing

Wednesday afternoon, I received a phone call from my barber that caused deep concern. "I crushed my hands this morning, and I'm checking in to the hospital right now for emergency surgery." He did not have time to explain, but did ask for prayer. You may wonder what this has to do with tactical breathing.

Well, the next day I spoke to him again on the phone and found out that although he suffered a lot of painful soft tissue damage in both hands, the only bone fractures occurred in one finger of his left hand. He then related to me the story of his hospital visit.

"You took away my gun and pants and made me wear a dress," he joked with hospital staff, "and you wonder why men don't want to come here." He underwent surgery with only local anesthesia, and as he lay in his "dress," his legs began to shake uncontrollably and his blood pressure went up -- signs of adrenaline stress.

It was then he began to concentrate on tactical breathing, because he knows that breathing and heart rate go together. As he slowed his breathing, one of team commented, "Your blood pressure is going down." Adrenaline dump managed.

He should be back to cutting hair by the first week of March with a renewed sense of God's providence in good and bad life experiences and a cracker-jack story about tactical breathing for adrenaline stress management.

So, stop his shop in few weeks. The story is a lot better when he tells it.

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

A Link for Improvised Weapons

A Christian lady lawyer from Texas shared this link on Facebook, and I like the article's approach that you can turn virtually anything into an improvised weapon. Some of its ideas are more practical than others, but it's all there to inspire the MacGyver in each of us.

How to Turn 12 Everyday Items Into Improvised Weapons

Saturday, January 21, 2017

Why You Should Learn Wrist Escapes, 3

Continued from "Why You Should Learn Wrist Escapes, 2"

In the last post, I told about how leverage provides an efficient means to escape a wrist grab. It allows you break free from the strongest grip effortlessly.

Today, I want to point out that you must apply this leverage not only efficiently, but also effectively. Beginning at 2:30 in the video below, the instructor shows the use of leverage to efficiently break a wrist grab. As you watch, can you see the woman putting herself in a more vulnerable position?

As she pushes her elbow forward to touch her attacker's forearm, she get close enough for him to punch her upside the head with his left hand. She needs a means to apply the efficiency of leverage in an effective manner.

She can do this by changing the orientation of her elbow. Instead of pointing the elbow down toward the floor and leaning directly in where he can reach her, she can go to the side. The following video illustrates this, beginning at 1:00 and running to 2:44.

This application not only removes your wrist efficiently from your assailant's grasp, but also effectively gets you out of the way of his other hand. Additionally, it sets you up to deliver a judo chop to his face, throat or neck, if necessary.

Thursday, January 19, 2017

Why You Should Learn Wrist Escapes, 2

Continued from "Why You Should Learn Wrist Escapes"

Last week, I published a post that included an Attackproof video demonstrating that wrist escapes won't cut it in the event of serious violent attack. (CLICK HERE) While in full agreement with that premise, I then wrote an article that explained why wrist escapes serve a valid purpose where less-than-lethal force is called for. (see link at top of this post)

Now, I would like to address the subject of learning and practicing efficient wrist escapes. First, if your instruction in escaping wrist grabs included any reference to "pulling against the attacker's thumb", you did not learn an effective/efficient technique.

While it is correct that the thumb is the weak link in  grip, pulling against it may not work in 5-10% of cases. You see, there are some immensely strong orcs out there with huge hands, and while you concentrate on pulling against the thumb, they will clock you with the other hand just to stop you from squirming.

The key to an efficient & effective wrist escape is leverage. If you know how to lever your way out of an assailant's grasp, your moves don't need to be fast, sharp or strong.

In the Attackproof video you see an example of an efficient (but ineffective) wrist escape. Note the victim -- how she pushes her elbow in toward her attacker.

In terms of a lever, the force is her body weight applied at the elbow through her upper arm (humerus). The thumb is the load, and the fulcrum is at the web of his thumb.

If she has a short forearm, the distance from the elbow (where force is applied) to the fulcrum may be only 12 inches. But the distance from the fulcrum to the thumb is even less -- perhaps a quarter of an inch.

Thus, if she applies only 25 lbs. of force on the elbow side of the lever, that translates to 600 lbs. of force against the thumb. Not many orcs can withstand 600 lbs. with their thumbs.

When my third daughter was about 12, it took less than 5 minutes of instruction & practice for her to arrive at the point where I could not, with all my strength, hold on to her wrist. She did not have to pull or tug; she merely leaned her elbow toward me to lever out of my grasp.

We continued the practice for about 15 minutes to neurally imprint the technique. When we finished, the skin of her wrists was all red from the friction of my grasp. The point is that I was holding her tightly, and I towered over her, yet she could easily lever out of my grip.

Now, I mentioned that the wrist escape portrayed in the Attackproof video was efficient but not effective. In the next post I will tell how to make the escape effective as well as efficient.

Monday, January 16, 2017

Why You Should Learn Wrist Escapes

In  my previous post, Attackproof vs. Wrist Grab Escape, I featured a video that shows a woman who finds herself helpless against a large male attacker that has grabbed her wrist. The message of the segment is that when your life is on the line, you do not want to fool with partial or ineffective measures. While that is true, I will tell you why you should learn wrist escapes.

The main reason I believe a woman -- or anyone, really -- should learn simple wrist escapes is that not every man who grabs your wrist is bent on rape and murder. In fact, the great majority of unwelcome force that most people encounter will happen at lower levels, incurring mainly indignity rather than physical injury.

I'm talking about the jerk who grabs the waitress's arm or the brain-dead in-law who tries to pull a woman into his lap at a party. You may feel that such Bozoes deserve an all-out attack, but the judge may take a dim view of women who put them in the hospital.

Guys like that may be a pain in the neck -- and most of us have a much lower opinion of them -- but a deftly executed wrist escape followed by assuming the non-threatening, non-aggressive defensive position (just in case the low life decides to escalate the situation) may be all that's necessary in most less-than-life-threatening situations.

Also, in my opinion, the video does not show what I would consider the most advisable and effective execution for escaping a wrist grab. Maybe I'll write more on that another time. 

Saturday, January 14, 2017

Attackproof vs. Wrist-Grab Escape

As many of my longtime readers know, I do not endorse any self defense system or instructor lightly. After looking over the Attackproof training manual and a couple of their DVD's, I have decided they have a lot of good instruction to offer, so I'm featuring one of their videos on the Wrist Grab Defense

The video below comes from Attackproof's website. (See comment below)

This video's offers excellent instruction, as far as it goes. Even though I acknowledge all the mentioned deficiencies of leveraged wrist escapes, I believe they belong in every self defense repertoire. Can you tell me why? I hope to address this in my next post..

Saturday, December 10, 2016

Psalm 72

James Montgomery penned the words of "Hail to the Lord's Anointed," as a Christmas song based on Psalm 72., This Messianic Psalm's expectant mood fits the season of Advent well.

As with so many songs based on Messianic prophecy, this one rings with the notes of victory.

Hail to the Lord’s anointed, great David’s greater Son!
Hail in the time appointed, His reign on earth begun!
He comes to break oppression, to set the captive free;
To take away transgression and rule in equity.

He comes in succor speedy to those who suffer wrong;
To help the poor and needy, and bid the weak be strong;
To give them songs for sighing, their darkness turn to light,
Whose souls, condemned and dying, were precious in His sight.

By such shall He be fearèd while sun and moon endure;
Beloved, obeyed, reverèd; for He shall judge the poor
Through changing generations, with justice, mercy, truth,
While stars maintain their stations, or moons renew their youth.

He shall come down like showers upon the fruitful earth;
Love, joy, and hope, like flowers, spring in His path to birth.
Before Him, on the mountains, shall peace, the herald, go,
And righteousness, in fountains, from hill to valley flow.

Arabia’s desert ranger to Him shall bow the knee;
The Ethiopian stranger His glory come to see;
With offerings of devotion ships from the isles shall meet,
To pour the wealth of oceans in tribute at His feet.

Kings shall fall down before Him, and gold and incense bring;
All nations shall adore Him, His praise all people sing;
For He shall have dominion o’er river, sea and shore,
Far as the eagle’s pinion or dove’s light wing can soar.

For Him shall prayer unceasing and daily vows ascend;
His kingdom still increasing, a kingdom without end:
The mountain dews shall nourish a seed in weakness sown,
Whose fruit shall spread and flourish and shake like Lebanon.

O’er every foe victorious, He on His throne shall rest;
From age to age more glorious, all blessing and all blest.
The tide of time shall never His covenant remove;
His Name shall stand forever, His Name to us is Love.