Validility of Martial arts for CQB

Wing Nut

Active member
I am interested in your views on how useful martial arts really are when you are in a close quarter battle (focusing on hand to hand combat but not excluding any other situation)? Any pro's/cons of learning a martial art?

Wing Nut
the art of judo is very useful in CQB and parts of it are taught in BT i believe. in judo the key is to take down your opponent and focusing on counterattacking.
i think the marine corps hand to hand combat would be better..its a Mix of Ju jistsu, Tik Won Do (think thats how you spell it), Judo and a few others i believe.
if you had two guys in combat, one who knew martial arts and the other with a gun, i know which one i would prefer to be.
Most military CQB are based on different forms of Martial Arts, where they have picked out the "moves" that suits that type of combat best.

I've been instructing in unarmed combat a few years, and the form we use here are based on Kickboxing, Krav Maga, and many others.

But you can pretty much forget about the high kicks, jumps and other "fancy" moves that looks good in the movies.
They are pretty much useless when you're wearing your BDU's, Helmet and full combat gear, and you haven't got much sleep or food the last 7 days..
Then it's just not possible (or practical) to kick any higher than the groin.. :twisted:

But if you know Martial Arts before you join, then my experience is that you'll learn unarmed military CQB much faster/easier, since you know at least the basics.
Hmmm, my DS staff have always taught that when it comes to "hand to hand" combat, that any training goes out the window, and it comes down to hitting each other with what ever you've got... it's pub brawling at it's worst. To win you've gotta be the dirtiest fighter.
AussieNick said:
Hmmm, my DS staff have always taught that when it comes to "hand to hand" combat, that any training goes out the window, and it comes down to hitting each other with what ever you've got... it's pub brawling at it's worst. To win you've gotta be the dirtiest fighter.

a bar fighter will lose evertime to Chuck Liddell (UFC fighter). the key to professional training in the martal arts is that it gives you sharpened instincts. take school fights for example. you see a whole bunch of haymakers flying around looking for a one-hit-wonder. someone that was trained would easily dodge them and give one quick upward jab to the nose and its all over. (because the nose breaks into the sinus cavity and the eyes start watering so much that he wouldnt be able to see)
Thanks for the interesting comments.

Through my training I have found that martial arts can be both a help and a hinderence.

They help as they (generally) inprove reaction time, equip you with a greater veriety of skills which should be more deadly/cause more damage than what you naturally have. It should also add to your speed and power from the repetative training.

Bad points are generally martial arts spend their time focusing on Forms and routines instead of real world application and the drilling of these techniques. Also they tend to preach peace and avoidance of violence to appeal to parents and to give a good impression.

What I have been finding out is that in a fight one of the most important factors is your mind set. It is important to be able to go all out when you need to. Many martail artists (me too many years ago) think it's like the movies and get their arse whipped by an avarage Joe. This I believe comes down to the prementioned mind set.

"the martial artists will be left trying to figure out what the attacker will do in which case putting him at a disadvantage having to watch and wait for the attacks to come. While the attacker is going for attacking and violent action. "

If your mindset is on defence, which is what is normally taught in Martial arts schools (to the general public) I think that you would end up at a disadvantage, with the possible factors of, Fear of getting hit, or hurt. Anticipating the attackers moves, and the unrealistic idea of what I fight is gained through the ever popular point sparring.

If your mindset is on attack, maybe you will get hit, but it will not make you loose your concentraition your determination to finish the attacker you will not be waiting or antisipating his moves but forcing him, dictating to him how to respond to you thus putting you at an advantage.

Well these are my thorst at the moment. Anyone agree, disagree???

Wing Nut
The hand to hand I got in basic was not as violent as the stuff the Wing Nut does in training. And Nick, it is pure violence, no rules, no bs, face smashing knee breaking stuff. Shifu was Chinese recon in '79. I am double his size and even with all my grappling training and the fact he is over 45 and lost most of one leg to a mine does not give me any chance of whipping his arse. Training consists of 1/3 "show and tell" and 2/3 "now beat each other" hehehe. Bruising is fun my :cen:!!!

I still remember senior drill one day laughing at another drill who was a black belt and teaching us hand to hand. He came over and quietly told our squad "Privates, I will tell you the secrets to hand to hand fighting so you will always win... Don't ever lose your weapon and never run out of ammo."
take school fights for example.

Pfft, what ever. School fights, give me a break.

As for hand to hand combat. It is the bloke who smashes the other guy with his entrenching tool, or splits his head open with his rifle butt that wins... not the guy who has his footwork and punches just perfect. Given the situation of a battlefield (the stress, noise, heightened adrenalin etc) it is just not practical. We aren't talking about sparing in a ring (or god forbid a school yard punch up), we are most likely talking about to blokes fighting tooth and nail for their lives in the bottom of some slimey ditch. Put it into perspective, it's not a computer game.

You both mention some good points..

School fights are just that, nothing really all that serious to worry about. What I am on about is more life threatening situations. Such as squaddies might come into contact with while "on the Job" or when down the bar the random guy comes across with a bunch of his mates saying you were talking shit about his bird.

Although I train martial arts, (and personally think the way I train and what I train has a lot of real world applicable stuff i.e. no fancy stances, no jumping spinning twirling fliping kicks. no unrealistic he will puch at you with a reverse punch from the him kind of stuff) I am finding that mind set is more important. I have seen in fights, someone who is although not very skilled in fighting having the full on determination to beat the person/persons attacking him, he will fair much better than if he was worried about defending himself.

I also find that most martial arts classes do not teach this mind set but rather stop its development. putting the student at a serious disadvantage when he or she fights as he or she will hesitate. (and in a fight, be it fists, knives or with guns, hesitation can mean life or death).

Auzzy Nick has a point. one important factor of fighting I feel is violence of action. By this I mean not standing up clearing a space making sure the other person is ready to go, bringing in some mates to moderate the fight etc.. If you are in a position where you are going to have to fight you should do it there and then, bamn.. nutralise their attack before it starts if possible.

Even in hand to hand combat weapons are a very serious issue. everywhere around us are things that can be used as weapons. The pint glass in your hand at the bar.. etc.. all come into consideration..

I guess my point is really what is the important factor. Skills, mind set or a bit of both?

Wing Nut
Speed and agression is what wins hand to hand (warlike) combat. If you jump into a gun pit, face to face with an enemy... hit him before he hits you, simple as that. Whether you punch him, head butt him, hit him with your rifle, put your bayonet through his throat or just tackle him it doens't matter... but you'll get the upper hand.
i think that martial arts and that sort of thing will come in handy to escaping POW's because they don't have any available weapons, but they do have their body, so then knowing at least the basics will help them out tremendously if they try to escape, it could be the difference between freedom and continued imprisonment

You need to KNOW you will win, not think or hope... you need to commit to ending the bastard's life right NOW. Training instills that in some people and some people are born that way. I do think that if you are trained to fight when the time comes you will not hesitate and you will have confidence in your ability. A soldier, who in combat, hesitates rarely gets the chance to learn from the mistake.
That's right. It is he who doesn't hesitate, and lays in with everything at hand that'll win. Strike first and strike hard.
Never, never let hand to hand be the last resort. There are too many good boot knives and OTF switchblades to let yourself have to depend on taking down an oaf twice your size. Put your blade in him as many times as possible until one or the other of you ceases to move.
I dont know about knives, they tend to be dangerous to both sides. A byonet is good if you are given one, I guss. The Israeli Defence Force uses Krav Maga, naturally, and people who trained with it can and will take on peopletwic their size. I have a friend who is a black belt in Krav Maga. He is about 1.65 meters, probably weighs about 60 kg. I am 1.77 meters and I weigh 70 kg. I would never, never, never pick a fight with him for real. Training counts for a lot, espcially in stressful situations. He knos how and where to place a puch and how to block twis and breake the opponents arm. In violent situations Im a very violent person, and usually in fights i have used anything at hand, and also bit, scratched and spit my way into causing as much damage as possible. So what? one fist by hi mto the right place and im opn the floor crying like a todler.
Kinda like me, 1.89m and 105 kg and shifu is 1.7 and soaking wet he weighs in at maybe 60kg and its no contest... for him. :roll:

I have recently discovered another point at which wing chun training would be of use in hand to hand combat. There is a practice of toughening up the arms that renders them able to stop a blow from a solid object without pain or damage. Its no bs, I am a real skeptic about this stuff so I wouldnt have believed it if I hadn't witnessed it. And now going through the undoubtedly painful and bruising process of getting to that level. :cen: