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Man Skills: The “4-Ds” of combat.

Hey, it’s Jimbo here, on behalf of Bob Pierce and the entire crew. I’m giving you a break from the drumbeat of ominous Coronavirus news which is driving some folks bonkers… while others want more, more, more.

But today it’s all about the “Four Ds Of Personal Combat”, (also the name of my highly-combative barbershop quartet).

This is some advanced stuff here.

The “Four D’s” explains why some guys, (even little guys who look like they’d get pushed around at a quilter’s convention), consistently WIN real-world street fights, even against larger more aggressive opponents. (Because those quilters can be tough cookies).

The “Four D’s” are the meat-and-potatoes to winning a streetfight. Unlike “sport fighting”, these four strategies have very little to do with size, strength, and physical skill, (which explains why my 5-foot tall wife can kick serious butt).

  • Deception: Selling the big lie.
  • Distraction: Get his eye off the ball.
  • Disruption: Fightus Interruptus.
  • Destruction: The human wrecking ball.

Deception: The Big Lie.

Delivering A Line Of Bull.

Deception is just another word for “lying”, (although “deception” sounds so much classier).

If you think you’ll have trouble lying to a guy who wants to hurt you or your family, then you may have trouble with this. But if you don’t mind a little fibbing, (“Hey pal, what’s that behind you?”), then deception could prove to be a powerful tool to winning in personal combat.

Anyone with an interest in military strategy knows that deception allows a much smaller force to take on and defeat a larger, better-equipped enemy.

General Eisenhower used “deception” against the Nazis during the D-Day Invasion, basically faking-out Hitler into believing the Allies would land at Calais instead of Normandy, (and here you thought Ike was such an honest man).

Deception works because it plays on simple human psychology – whether it’s two guys duking it out in a back alley or two hundred thousand troops clashing on the battlefield.

The idea is to trick your adversary into thinking one thing, only to suddenly turn the tables and create a sense of confusion, hesitation, and panic, (like that time the wife tricked me out the remote. So confusing. So scary).

There’s also verbal deception. That is, to tell your adversary the exact OPPOSITE of your real intentions.

Because strangely enough, it’s pretty common for guys to tell their opponent exactly what they intend to do. (“I’m gonna go home and get a bat and then return here to beat you senseless. Does 8:30 work for you?”).

Point is: Never reveal your true intentions.

A better plan is to tell him that you’re “not looking for a fight”, or that you “don’t want trouble”… or even “I’ve got a bit of indigestion and can’t fight right now”.

The idea is to lull him into the comfortable belief that he is in control. And the more he has settled into that mindset, the greater will be his shock and panic when the rug is pulled out from under him. (By the way, has that rug trick ever really worked?)

Here are a couple of methods of verbal deception:

Begging: No, this isn’t dating advice. This is more fun than that, especially if your acting skills are pretty good. Begging almost inevitably gets him to drop his guard while allowing you extra seconds to get into an attack-ready position.

Just as your opponent is sneering and chortling with supreme confidence… you suddenly spring the “big surprise” on him. Instantly puts him back on his heels and panicking. Don’t let up after that or you’ll squander the advantage.

Comply: Requires less acting skills, (so it’s doubtful you’ll win over the Academy), but it’s still very effective. The idea is to simply act as if you’re complying with his wishes.

For example, your opponent demands that you “step outside”.

A comply strategy would be to act like you’re going outside… just before escaping or launching into an unexpected early attack.

Sound unfair? Good… because that’s what you’re trying for.

Remember that a fight — any fight — can result in injury or death, so there’s no such thing as “unfair” fighting. No gentleman rules apply, (“step over this line”), and everything is on the table including hitting people with glasses, biting, hair pulling, eye-gouging, kicking the nutsack, and using small nuclear weapons, (if you got ’em).

Fact is, you want as much of an unfair advantage as you can get. This is your life – use whatever dirty tricks you can muster to end the thing before you end up in the hospital or the morgue.

This is total commitment. You are “going for it” 100% without hesitation and with no intention of fighting “fair”, (whatever that means).

Combat Tip: Here’s a useful technique that will force your opponent to make his intentions known while putting you in an attack-ready position. Here it is: Hold your hands up. No… not straight-up over your head like a train robbery, but in front of you, about eye-level, palms toward your opponent.

Works well when combined with verbal deception… i.e. hands up while saying nice things like “Hey man, please. I’m just trying to work things out here” or some such thing. There are a few reasons this works.

First, it fits well with your “surrender” act. To the opponent, it looks like you’re giving up. It certainly doesn’t look threatening, even though you’ve just placed your hands into a strike-ready position.

Second, your hands become a “forward boundary” to absorb any sudden strikes, (which is better than using your face).

Third, your hands act as a trigger. If he touches or crosses that forward boundary, consider it a cue for immediate action. (And I’m not talking about more begging).

Distraction: Get His Eye Off The Ball.

Gaining That Extra Two Seconds.

The next of the “Four Ds”, distraction, hinges on another quirk of the human brain — its inability to completely focus on more than one thing at a time.

It’s one reason why so many husbands find themselves in hot water during the football season, (“hmmm… what… the kitchen is on fire? Okay honey… great… get to that in a minute”).

The good news is that you can take advantage of this human limitation by redirecting… or “distracting”… your opponent’s attention to catch him off-guard.

The bad news is that distractions are often only effective for a second or two. This means that unless you have an immediate follow-up plan, the distraction is futile.

Here are some highly effective PROVEN distractions that’ll give you an opening to launch your attack…

Cigarette. This may be the one time when smoking is beneficial to your health. Because flicking a lit cigarette into your adversary’s face will definitely distract him for a moment. Again… the key phrase here is for a moment.

If you flick the cigarette into your opponent’s face, then use the next few seconds to enjoy a good snicker, you’re missing the point.

Deception and distraction tricks are to be used only as simple mechanisms to give you one or (at most) two seconds to launch your attack or escape. But when a typical fight only lasts only 4 to 8 seconds, one or two seconds is relatively a lot of time.

Glasses. Reach up with both hands and pretend to adjust your glasses – then throw them in his face. Don’t do this if you’re blind as a bat – you may just end up attacking a nearby tree.

Change. Throw loose change on the ground. Believe it or not, reaction to the sound of coins hitting the ground is practically hardwired into the brain and creates a major distraction.

I expect the more of a tight-wad your opponent is, the better this works. Oh… and don’t expect to see that 73 cents again. Consider it money well spent.

Spill or throw your drink. This is one Hollywood trick that actually works. First, there’s the shock of ice cubes and cold liquid hitting the face… and second, there’s the instant (and temporary) blinding effect. Simply knocking over a drink can work too, (although it’s not as amusing).

I’m sure you can think of a dozen more simple distractions off the top of your head. Keep an open mind and improvise, using anything available to pull his attention away so you can catch him off guard. (“Hey buddy… go ahead and pull my finger.”)

WARNING: Pulling out a distraction technique means “total commitment”. Once it’s in play, you need to take it all the way. Act quickly — whether it’s a follow-up strike or simply escaping.

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Changing The Movie In His Head.

In general, “disruption” is any tactic or technique that messes with your opponent’s plan of attack.

Again, you’re playing tricks on the poor fool using proven psychological head-games.

Because whether your opponent is a Predator, Emotionally Hijacked, or a Bully, one thing is certain: He’s threatening you because he “envisions” in his mind’s eye that this will all turn out in his favor.

The movie in his head, (a poorly-written action flick with lots of cheesy special effects), doesn’t show that he will ever be hurt or killed. Nope. It has a happy ending where he rides off into the sunset with the money and the girl, (unfortunately it’s your money and your girl).

“Disruption” shatters that idea. It knocks the 8-track tape off track. Chews up the VHS. Unreels the cassette. Breaks the needle on the Victrola. (Hope you’re getting the picture because I’m running out of dated metaphors here).

Essentially there’s a sudden and dramatic realization that this movie could end very badly for him — which shifts his focus inward and triggers a negative internal dialog.

This “internal chatter” (sometimes called “brain freeze” or “deer in the headlights”), gives you a distinct advantage since it takes the wind from his sails and strips-away his willingness to fight.

Here are a few ways to “disrupt” his plans.

Surprise – The quickest and most effective method to surprising your adversary is to initiate the attack. In other words, hit first. As one world-class streetfighter put it, when hitting first “you need to demonstrate to your adversary that you have a total disregard for his well-being.” (Kind of a nice way of saying that you’re willing to bust him up bad). So make it count. Hitting first with bad intentions will definitely take him off his game.

Close the distance — If there’s no escape and you’ve determined that a hand-to-hand fight is imminent — you should move-in. It’s a bold strategy that demonstrates confidence. This can quickly turn the tables.

But you can’t bluff. By moving in, you are taking the fight to him with intentions of inflicting serious pain and damage. This is where the rubber meets the road. Look for any open targets and use specific combat techniques to attack those targets.

Okay… I’m making it sound easy, (yeah, just go ahead and knock him out). But the truth is, it doesn’t require a lot of training to nail down the essentials.

But move-in with a plan. Don’t just start swinging wildly, (unless that’s the plan). Keep your head on straight and attack his most vulnerable targets with determination and purpose.

Forward pressure – Research shows that the guy who’s most likely to win is the fighter who uses whatever means possible to initiate surprise… gets his opponent back-peddling… then continues applying forward pressure against his opponent.

You do NOT want to let up.

Keep yourself in a fluid state, firing off continuous shots at open targets, never “letting up” your attack until he’s been removed as a threat or you’ve had the chance to escape effectively.

Watching raw video of real streetfights, (it’s what I do in my spare time, so my life is officially a living hell), shows that keeping a certain rhythm to your shots helps. (Basically, you’re the drummer and your opponent is a set of bongos).

Just keep it going and do NOT pause to “assess” the damage.


Time To Get Plumb Dog Mean And Ugly.

The fourth and final “D” in the “Four D’s Of Personal Combat” is Destruction. This involves breaking down your opponent physically to remove him from the fight using your own personal “arsenal” of fighting tricks.

Okay, sounds like a long way of saying “kicking his ass”, but there’s actually more to it. The better you understand his vulnerable targets and the specific striking techniques to attack those targets, the more effective of a fighter you’ll be.

The two most critical elements for effective Destruction are:

1.) Target selection and…

2.) How you’ll strike that target.

The key is to attack the targets that’ll give you the most bang for the buck – targets that’ll produce instant results with high-damage potential.

Some high-value targets include the eyes, the throat, side of the neck (packed with nerves), collar bone (prone to snapping), inside and outside of the thigh (more vital nerves), and of course the ever-popular ball-bustin’ groin shot.

Even an unsuccessful attack on a high damage target can so “disrupt” your opponent (spinning up his internal dialogue) that you’ve suddenly got the upper hand.

For example, Fight-Fast instructor Tom Cruse, (no, not that Tom Cruise), points out that an “elbow snap” technique (designed to break your opponent’s elbow) often does not actually break the elbow.

But the shock and dismay that sinks in after you’ve attempted to break his arm, is so disturbing to your opponent that his “internal dialog” can instantly turn him into a dazed wad of puddy.

This can all but shut down his ability to vigorously fight back as he unconsciously switches to a more defensive mode.

That’s the value of high-damage targets. If you succeed (break his elbow for example) in most cases the fight’s over right there, (although I’ve seen determined fighters battle with a broken arm flopping in the wind, so don’t take that for granted).

On the other hand, if you don’t succeed, the “shock and awe” triggers a runaway internal dialogue inside his head. Take advantage of his hesitation and continue applying forward-pressure.

Now bustin’-up people is serious business that involves one or more of the following: Blood, hospitals, jails, and morgues. So you must ask yourself a couple of questions. The first question is:

1.) “Am I willing to hurt this person?”

Now I don’t want to get all “legal” on you, but keep in mind how this will look to a jury of your peers, (you know, those folks who couldn’t figure out how to avoid jury duty). If the conflict started over a parking space, and you had a chance to simply walk away, it’s not going to play well in front of a judge and jury.

Of course, if you feel there’s really a serious threat to your life forget all that and do what you gotta do to end the threat.

Sit down with yourself and decide what will trigger an all-out attack from you and what you’ll simply walk (or run) away from. Don’t ponder this during an actual fight. Visualize your “triggers” beforehand, (maybe between songs in the shower).

Okay… assuming there’s a definite threat and you’ve answered the first question “yes, I’m willing to hurt this person” – then you must act quickly.

The second question is:

2.) “What is my target?”

The next question is.

3.) “What is my next target?”

And so on. Keep going until the threat has ended or you have the chance to get the hell outta there.

These are the advanced fundamentals of winning of a fight. But the actual techniques are tough to demonstrate in a written newsletter. (Kinda like learning how to ride a bike from a book).

So thankfully it’s all down on video for you.

If you’re interested in learning some simple and devastating moves — stuff that can end a fight in a couple of seconds, even against larger opponents, then you need to go HERE.

I hope you’re enjoying these Man-Skills newsletters as much as I am, (as you can probably tell, I’m having blast). There’s more on the way, so keep a lookout.

I’ll be back pounding on the subject of COVID-19 next time. Until then…

Stay Manly,

Jimbo, Editor
Man Skills

P.S. Oh… and if you’ve ever wanted to kill a man with your bare hands, (because some people are just sooo annoying), then check this out.

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Legal Disclaimer: Last I checked it’s illegal in most states to snap someone’s neck because you find them annoying, (with the exception of Wyoming where annoying people are not tolerated).

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