The fact is there might be a time when carrying a concealed firearm might not be an option. During that time one could be confronted with a dangerous situation in which “coming to blows” seems inevitable. In most cases if you find yourself in that position, you will be forced to deal with someone who subscribes to the universal fight plan.
The Universal Fight Plan (UFP): Posturing, name calling, someone getting held back by friends, shoving, attempting to hit the other person in the face as hard as possible (i.e. throwing a wild haymaker). If you have ever seen a street fight most of them go down this way with men and women flailing about trying to knock each other out. Inevitably someone who used to wrestle in high school or took a few MMA classes at the gym takes down the other someone and rolling around ensues with both parties getting gassed rather quickly. Usually the tired “fighters” are pulled apart, both bleeding and a little worse for wear. Sometimes additional factors are introduced, friends jumping in and landing sucker punches or random kicks. Most of the time these fights start over ridiculous things but sometimes they can turn deadly (i.e. robberies, attempted rapes). Here are a few things to consider when it comes down to avoiding and if necessary, defeating the universal fight plan.
I feared for my life
If at all possible, avoid the fight. You can do this by avoiding areas with shady reputations or extracting yourself from areas as soon as you see things heating up. If you have to fight it should be for a seriously good reason, you should be able to tell the police that you had to defend yourself because you feared for your life and had nowhere to go. Someone calls you a name? Someone insults your pride? Walk away! Someone bumps into you at a bar? Ignore it and continue walking. These actions do not meet the tough guy code but they do meet the common sense code. What if you do land a haymaker on your opponent’s chin, he falls backwards, cracks his skull open on a bar stool and dies. “I’m sorry officer but I had to, he called me a punk.”
Remember what the UFP is all about (caution for strong language)
If you find yourself in a position where you absolutely have no escape route and fear for your life, you need to remember two things: speed and violence of action. Most of us do not have 10 years of martial arts training but you don’t need that to successfully counter the UFP in a life or death situation. Remember there will be a brief lull before the fighting begins, the posturing/name calling “what you want some of me?” phase. If you are going to strike do so at this point, before the other person has had an opportunity to psych themselves up. Quickly close the distance between you and the other person and end the fight before it even starts.
A wise man once told me
I consider myself a pretty strong, athletic, in shape type of guy. I’ve done some training on the mat and participated in tournaments. I remember training with this massive guy once, probably 6’5″ and every bit of 290 lbs. He absolutely dominated me, the amount of strength he had was so overwhelming I could barely keep up. I asked my instructor what to do about it and he replied: “You might know more Jujitsu than a bear, but it’s still a bear.” Keep that in mind when out on the street and faced with the UFP. You might be a level 57 ninja but you can’t account for everything and you never know what your opponent has up their sleeve, or if 10 of their friends are right around the corner. Don’t let the fact that you have some training cloud your decision making process. Remember only get down if absolutely necessary, walk away if you can.
Rules? What rules?
In sports we embrace rules, often called the fair fight. We want our boxing matches and MMA matches to be fair fights, we don’t want to see anyone cheat. The street is not the same, there is no such thing as a fair fight. If you are fighting for your life you have one goal: win. This means disabling your opponent as quickly as possible by any means necessary. Groin shots, eye gouges, neck shots, fishhooks, all illegal in the cage but totally viable options if out on the street. Going into a fight and trying to be fair means you have already lost the advantage. The extra few seconds you give your opponent because you did take that crotch shot when you could have could provide him with an opportunity to flip open a 4 inch knife. Now what?
Speaking of knives
What’s the best way to fight someone with a knife? The answer is: do not fight someone with a knife unless you have a gun or unless you have Steven Seagal’s DNA inside of you. Otherwise if you are in an area and see someone yanking a knife, get out of there!
Here’s the deal
There are trained fighters out there who could take on 5 guys with knives, disarm them and break several bones in the process. Most of us are not that trained nor will we ever be. Keeping that in mind the best course of action is to avoid putting ourselves in situations where trouble could develop. If trouble does start to brew leave the area immediately, save your pride for another day (read: be the mature person). Only fight if you have to, when you can definitely say that you feared for your life. If you have to fight end the fight before it even starts using speed and absolute violence of action, no hesitation. Finally remember: no rules.
This post is for informational purposes only, to get the wheels spinning inside your head. Understand there could be a time when you are not armed or find yourself in a bad situation. If that is the case hopefully some of these tips will help you avoid the emergency room. As always anything you do as a result of your own decision making process is totally your responsibility. I don’t claim to be an expert hand to hand combat, nor do I know how to roundhouse kick people to the face. If you are a level 65 black belt and can flying arm bar people with your brain, this article is probably not for you. Everyone else, take my advice with a grain of salt.