Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Quit yer bitchin'

In the past I've bitched about how little training Law Enforcement receives.

I've also bitched about the martial artists and combative sports athletes with no practical field experience teaching Law Enforcement and Military Close Quarters Combatives.

So, it's time to quit bitching and do something about it.

Taiho Jutsu Minnesota

To all Defensive Tactics Instructors / Training Coordinators,

Taiho Jutsu Minnesota is a network of police officers and defensive tactics instructors across the state

Tai: Body - Ho: Law or Control - Jutsu: Technique. Simply defined, Taiho Jutsu means control and restraining techniques.

Taiho Jutsu Clubs provide additional training for Police Officers supplemental to their official training. This is an excellent opportunity for Officers who want more than 8 hours of defensive tactics training a year

This training is also designed as Instructor development. Giving trainers an opportunity to brainstorm with and learn from other Instructors.

This training will be made available to active duty military personal and combatives instructors
This training will also be available to civilian martial artists that pass back ground screening and who are willing to teach local Law Enforcement in their area.

There are many martial art instructors teaching many different martial arts to Law Enforcement. Unfortunately the overwhelming majority of those instructors have never worked in Law Enforcement, tried to control a resisting opponent, or been in a fight. Also there are many Officers teaching defensive tactics with no training beyond the minimum 40 hour train the trainer course.

Taiho Jutsu Clubs are run by experienced Police Officers and Operators who use these techniques in the field. 

Training by Professionals, based on real world experience, designed for practical application.  For cops by cops to deal with actual problems cops face.

The training focuses on gross motor, high percentage techniques that are effective for all regardless of size or gender and has an emphasis on ground control, an area where most Law Enforcement Officers need serious additional training.

An individual can test the efficacy of any combat method (martial art) by asking himself this simple question “Will this work so I can use it instinctively in vital combat against an opponent who is determined to prevent me from doing so, and is striving eliminate me through means fair or foul?” - Paraphrased from Col. Rex Applegate’s “Kill or be killed” written in 1943:

Taiho Jutsu Clubs provide reputable schools teaching principles that have been tested over 30 years on the street to work for the officer under pressure against a resisting subject, to be non obtrusive to the public, and defendable in court.

Taiho Jutsu Minnesota meets once a month at rotating locations across the state


January              St. Paul                 Contact Control

February           Mankato               Take Downs

March                St. Paul                  Counter Assault

April                   Alexandria             Weapon Retention SOTA – Special Operations Control Tactics

May                   St. Paul                    Impact Control

June                  Mankato                 Ground Skills

July                   St. Paul                    Contact Control

August             Alexandria               Take Downs

September      St. Paul                    Counter Assault    Violence Dynamics - Marc MacYoung , Rory Miller

October            Mankato                Weapon Retention

November       St. Paul                   Impact Control

December      Alexandria               Ground Skills                O3CT Instructor School – Steve Jimerfield

Our first meeting will be January 14th at 2210 Silver Lake Road New Brighton MN. The exact dates and times for other training are to be determined.

Training sessions will run 3 hours and follow this basic format

Warm Up 30 Min

Training Topic of the month 60 Min

· Technique / Skill Building

Drills 30 Min

Brainstorming / Trouble Shooting 30 Min

For more information please contact :

· Officer Kasey Keckeisen Mounds View Police Department

o 763 717 4078 kasey.keckeisen@ci.mounds-view.mn.us

· Investigator Ken Anderson Douglas County Sheriff's Office

o 320-762-0234 ken.anderson@mail.co.douglas.mn.us

· Shawn Morgan

So any cops reading this in the upper mid west please come and join us.
Any civilian trainers that teach cops (whatever art / system) and want to learn what Operators need for their job please come join us

Train hard, train smart, be safe

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Uchi Deshi

Uchi-deshi (Kanji: 内弟子 Hiragana: うちでし lit. "inside student") is a Japanese term for a live-in student/apprentice who trains under and assists a sensei on a full-time basis.
 Uchi-deshi usually live in the dōjō or the home of the teacher, or in separate accommodations near the dōjō. He serves the teacher all day, every day. Duties may include cleaning and secretarial work. In contrast to uchi-deshi, students who live outside are referred to as soto-deshi (Kanji: 外弟子 Hiragana: そとでし literally "outside students").
Historically, an Uchi-deshi was typically chosen and groomed to become the next head of a school of martial arts when a direct family member was not available.

 In modern times, the role is also referred to as tsukibito (Kanji: 付き人 Hiragana: つきびと literally, "attached person"). Other terms include senshusei (専修生; せんしゅうせい) and kenshusei (Kanji: 研修生 Hiragana: けんしゅうせい "trainee"), although these terms are more general and do not necessarily indicate a live-in apprentice.

Gayku Homma Sensei runs a Uchi Deshi program at the Nippon Kan in Denver.  I knew a couple of guys that spent a summer there and came back much better.

They improved at an accelerated rate, because one way or another they were training nearly 24 hours a day 7 days a week.

I always wanted an experience like that.

I’ve come close to that a couple of times hosting Mark, and Rory but not quite the same.  At your own home you have a certain familiarity and “normal life” leaks in.

Camp Taiho Jutsu

Last week I finally had the uchi deshi experience.  Douglas County SWAT wanted Special Operations Control Tactics training.  They also wanted Instructor development training for their DT guys.  We developed a week long training program.  Steve Jimerfield would run a One on One Control Tactics Instructor Course Monday – Thursday and I would work with the local area SWAT teams on Friday.

(I love my job)

The training took place at Alexandria Technical College (about 2 ½ north of the metro area)

My brother Kent let me use his cabin (his totally kickass resort like cabin)

So living in a cabin 3 hours from home with nothing to do but eat sleep and train.

Great week!  I can see why the Uchi Deshi process accelerates learning.  I learned as much over dinner or watching Kung Fu movies after class as I did the whole day on the mats.

Another cool thing happened last week.  Control Tactics / Close Quarter Combatives were accepted by Mixed Martial Artists.

This is usually the discourse between sport fighting enthusiasts and people who have to use their training to protect their lives while they serve others

Enough to make you want to pull your hair out right?

So when a friend of mine who was a amateur MMA fighter and now teaches Muay Thai and BJJ asked me about how to teach cops I was a little apprehensive.

Gus is a good kid and he has helped me teach SOCT before so I invited him to the One on One Control Tactics Instructor Course.  If you’re going to teach cops there is no better foundation to have.

Jimerfield, Miller, MacYoung all teach:

·         Structure

·         Range

·         Power Generation

·         Movement (Motion defeats strength)

Gus got all of this in the Uchi Deshi experience.  He learned 1st hand what Operators need, and that real world violence has very little to do with the paradigms of sport arts.

Gus wasn’t the only person who learned this.  One of the students also managed Brock Lesner’s private training facility.  When his size and strength were made useless it was very cool to see the gears click and watch him use structure, range, and movement to end violence quickly.

He thought it was so cool he invited us to the training camp to meet Brock

Train hard, Train Smart, Be safe, and - make an opportunity to have that Uchi Deshi experience, it’s totally worth it

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Do you Kung Fu?

I love the Kung Fu Panda movies, and now the very good series on Nickelodeon.  So do my daughters.  So much so that they have been begging to watch all my old Kung Fu movies.  It’s been a blast

Last Saturday I decided to teach some Kung Fu.
Now just so we are clear I don’t know Kung Fu, the formally taught Chinese martial art.

However, I really like this quote from the movie “The Forbidden Kingdom”

Jackie Chan as Lu Yan:
“Kung Fu is hard work over time to accomplish skill. A painter can have Kung Fu, or the butcher who cuts meat with such skill, his knife never touches bone.  A musician can have Kung Fu, or the poet who paints pictures with words and makes emperors weep, this too is Kung Fu.”

So if we define Kung Fu as hard work to accomplish skill, Saturday’s training was bursting with Kung Fu.

Class started with an optional 2.25 mile run.  I don’t think class time should be spent on PT training.  I wanted to run and we were training at a park with a nice trail so I incorporated it into my training.  Students are free to join me if they wish.

I like to run before class for the obvious cardio benefits, but also to loosen up and to tire out before training.  That way it is harder for me to slop muscular strength and I must rely on solid fundamentals.

Saturday is all about solid fundamentals, I focus almost entirely on principles and use very few techniques.  Techniques only being used to demonstrate  / test the principle.

This is also Kung Fu.  How many Kung Fu movies have you seen where the “master” has the student do some menial task (perhaps grueling if done wrong) over and over again to drill a specific principle.  Then when the “disciple” can’t take it any more, the master shows the application of the principle in a technique.  Almost magically because the student understands the principle so well he masters (makes it his / her own) the technique.

Another quote from “The Forbidden Kingdom” I like a lot

Jet Li as The Silent Monk (who oddly enough spoke through out the entire movie):
Learn the form, but seek the formless. Hear the soundless. Learn it all, then forget it all. Learn The Way, then find your own way.

A big paradigm shift for me, and the most fun I’ve had teaching lately revolves around helping others find their own way.

You don’t have to do things the way I do them, but you have to do them well, they have to work.
What makes things work?:
  • Structure
  • Movement
  • Power Generation

So, guess what we worked on? 

1ST Exercise
Rowing exercise
Rowing exercise as its name implies looks like you are standing in a boat rowing with oars
It is a subtle form of power generation.  Shifting your weight as opposed to using muscle.

Here is a video

I don’t like this video, it is the kind of granola eating hug a tree Aikido that makes me puke, but it serves its purpose

For this exercise I used the Frankenstein plyoband contraption I made

This also works structure.  You have to be very strong if you use muscle to stretch the bands.  You can't do rowing exercise using muscle.  You can do rowing exercise if your structure is solid.  If your structure has a weakness you will never be able to shift your weight foreward.  Using resistance students instantly saw their own flaws, then were able to fix them.  Much more productive then me saying something they don’t understand over and over again. 

The woman from the video never would have moved an inch.  I’m sure she has been doing rowing exercise for years with cooperative partners.  Even the “hard” variation.  Training with resistance 5 minutes would have taught her more than doing it perfectly with no structure for years.

2nd exercise
Same thing only this time the pulling motion.  More light bulbs go off, more students - Learn The Way, then find their own way

Then pulling against a push, pushing against a pull.  Good times

This blog would go on for ever if I describe in depth every exercise we did, but I hope it can serve as an example for you to do some principle based training for yourselves.

For myself I think I have found a fun, productive way to teach children that won’t have them maiming their siblings or ingraining horrible habits that will get them killed.

I have been playing Kung Fu school with my own daughters.  We’ve been having a lot of fun and Lauren is really catching on (faster than most cops I teach)

The experiment continues – more to follow

Train Hard, Train Smart, Be Safe

P.S. – When we play Kung Fu my Kung Fu name is Woo Ping.  Woo Ping Yo Ass!