View Full Version : USMC combatives

01-31-03, 03:00 AM
I've been posting links for there is too much to cut and paste, but I think that the information is important enough to make others aware of...IMO anyway. LOL.






02-08-03, 11:59 PM
Marine Corps Martial Arts
The Fight Behind Semper Fi
by Loren Franck and Jim Lacy

They're the few, the proud, the United States Marine Corps. They're the green machine with semper fi, which to Marines means "always faithful." And they're among the most dreaded fighters in the world, with a combat history second to none.
Known for their staunch discipline and reverence for tradition, the Marine Corps is an elite fighting force. Its mission? To preserve peace. "No one likes to fight, but someone's got to know how," says a former Marine Corps recruiting slogan.
And with an undefeated war record for more than 200 years, the land, sea and air fighters must be doing something right. Do Marines have better weapons than the other U.S. armed forces? Not really. The basic weapon of a U.S. Marine isn't a fancy rocket la uncher or computer-operated missile. Rather, it's a lightweight M-16 A2 rifle.
Are Marine recruits substantially different than those found in the Navy, Air Force and Army? Hardly. The difference is training. Some military authorities say Marine Corps training is the best, most comprehensive combat preparation in the world - even fo r raw recruits who spend just over two months in "boot camp."
When Firearms Fail

Although a Marine's basic weapon is an M-16, there may be times in battle when his rifle won't fire or won't be available. At other times, the Marine's rifle may function properly and be within reach, but the enemy is too close to be fired upon.
Yet with the Marine Corps, this situation is well in hand. The solution? Hand-to-hand and close combat. Both exclusively rely on proven-effective martial arts principles and techniques.
Don't be surprised. The Marine Corps and the martial arts make a perfect team. For centuries, both institutions have devoted themselves to undefeated fighting. As a whole, the martial arts possess tremendous fighting principles, and the Marine Corps needs them. And it's this need that makes both the Corps and the martial arts more successful.
After recruits at the Marine Corps Recruit Depot in San Diego, California, leam hand-to. hand and close combat techniques, they tackle the assault course. Here, recnuRs "double time" and use all the fighting skills they've learned.

Hand-to-Hand Combat

Hand-to-hand combat instruction for Marine recruits isn't intended to transform them into veteran martial artists. In fact, at the 482-acre Marine Corps Recruit Depot (MCRD) in San Diego, California, recruits only receive three hours of actual hand-to-han d combat training. "This might not seem like very much," says Sergeant Al Lozano, an MCRD instructor in hand-to-hand and close combat, "but it introduces recruits to the basic techniques and principles." If necessary, some Marines receive further hand-to- hand training after graduating from boot camp.

Underlying concepts
While in boot camp, a Marine recruit learns several time-tested hand-to-hand fighting concepts. The first is discipline. Only rivaled by the most strict martial arts academies, the discipline shown during hand-to-hand combat training is awe-inspiring. Rec ruits pay total attention to instructors and execute every move with the finest precision. Well, at least they try. If recruits fail, a combat or drill instructor quickly sets them straight.
Second, recruits learn respect for their instructors. In traditional karate, tae kwon do and kung fu schools, the instructor's word is unquestioned and is followed immediately. This is also the case with Marine recruits during handto-hand combat training. On the training field, when instructors show recruits how to improve their technique, recruits follow these suggestions without hesitation.
Repetition is a third underlying concept in hand-to-hand combat training. Each technique is correctly repeated on both sides of the body in a systematic, progressive way. This, of course, resembles the training in the world's best martial arts schools. "I n time, fighting moves witi become automatic," explains Sergeant Kimbly Giles, one of MCRD's most trusted hand-to-hand and close combat instructors. "Naturally, this takes repeated practice, and we don't expect recruits to make all the techniques they lea rn second nature while they're at MCRD."

Fighting principles
Marine Corps hand-to-hand combat principles are the same used in the most martial arts systems. For instance, recruits are first taught balance. When a fighter is off balance, he can be taken to the ground quite easily, which spells disaster in combat. An d one of the best ways recruits learn better balance is by losing it several times during hand-to-hand combat training. Interestingly enough, aikido, judo, jujitsu and other grappling arts teach balance and breakfalls at the very beginning of training.
Marine Corps martial arts are extremely effective. Recnuits learn how to apply lethal chokeholds, such as the one second kill.


02-09-03, 12:01 AM
Karate, tae kwon do and other hardstyle martial arts heavily rely upon the hip thrust - the third principle taught - which adds power to throws, punches and kicks. Much of the power generated by the hips comes from the oblique muscles located at the lowe r sides of the waist. Furthermore, to help recruits fight with full power, they're taught principles of breath control that are similar to those used in the karate kiai (yell). Oftentimes, this takes the form of a growl, which Giles describes as the Corps ' battle cry. Much more than a trademark, it maximizes the adrenaline needed for full-power fighting.
A fourth principle of hand-to-hand combat is to strike your opponent's weakest targets. Recruits are taught to focus on specific weak body areas. Of course, this is identical to martial arts training, where your body's power is also focused on weak target s. Here, perhaps more than in any other way, Marine Corps martial arts are identical to traditional martial arts.
The fifth hand-to-hand combat principle deals with knowledge of major and minor operations. Though it sounds like military jargon, it's really quite simple. A major operation in terms of hand-to-hand combat means getting out of danger or getting the essen tial part of a hold. On the other hand, when a recruit applies pressure on a hold, he is carrying out a minor operation. Both operations are necessary if recruits want to make the most of their fighting ability. It's much like a karate fighter who selects his technique and target, then gets into the right position to deliver the blow (major operation). When he lets loose with full power and focus (the minor operation), his technique is most effective.

Recruits learn six basic fighting techniques during their three hours of actual hand-to-hand combat training. Interestingly enough, most of the moves come from judo or jujitsu. Hard-style karate techniques are learned after recruit training if necessary.
The first hand-to-hand combat technique recruits learn is the side fall, which puts the principle of balance to work. Winning fighters, whether they're U.S. Marines or civilian kung fu enthusiasts, must know how to fall correctly to their left and right. It prevents injuries and helps maintain momentum when confronting the enemy. Each recruit experiences how to protect his head, hips and elbows while falling at the hands of an opponent.
The M-16 A2, a Marine's basic weapon, can be used like a staff when fighting the enemy. Here, recruits practice diagonal slashes. Though outdoor classes like this are large, they're extremely well organized and resemble large martial arts training camps.

Second, recruits learn a judo side throw over their rear leg. The recruit places his right foot near his opponent's right foot, then grabs his opponent's right elbow with his left hand, his left shoulder with his right hand, and pulls his opponent over.
The hip throw is the third hand-to-hand combat technique recruits learn. The recruit grabs his opponent's right elbow with his left hand, places his right hand under his opponent's right armpit, steps in and hip throws him to the ground. Shorter recruits have an advantage with this throw because their center of gravity is low.
Fourth is the rear throw, which is mainly used to defend against a choke from the rear. The recruit grabs his attacker's right shoulder with his right hand and clutches his right elbow with his left hand. Then, the recruit quickly steps to his left, posit ions his right leg to his own right side, and throws his opponent over it.
One of the most combat-effective hand-to-hand combat moves is the trachea choke/knee drop. The fifth technique learned, the recruit approaches the enemy from behind and places his right thumb knuckle (ridgehand) into the soft spot of his opponent's throat . The recruit's left hand clasps his right hand, while his head and one shoulder put pressure on the enemy's head. At the same time, the recruit drops down to his right knee and drives his left knee into his opponent's spine.
Finally, there's the most combat-effective hand-to-hand combat technique of all. The Marine Corps calls it the one second kill. Similar to the previous technique, the recruit performs the trachea choke, but instead of doing a knee drop, he falls on the en emy's neck while doing the choke. This crushes the enemy's trachea and neck vertebrae.
Close Combat

As is hand-to-hand combat training, close-combat training with the M-16 A2 rifle and M-17 bayonet is taught during recruit training's three phases. When wielding his rifle, a Marine uses the same underlying concepts and fighting principles as he does in h and-to-hand combat. However, his close-combat techniques differ from his hand-to-hand tactics.
While undergoing close combat training, recruits get the opportunity to apply what they leam to human - shaped dummies. Here, a typical recruit practices his horizontal butt stroke.


02-09-03, 12:03 AM
Rifle and bayonet forms
The first segment of close-combat training resembles weapons forms classes commonly taught in martial arts schools. When recruits train with M-16 rifles and fixed bayonets, their parry and attack moves closely resemble those performed with a staff. Rifle and bayonet forms are learned in one day and techniques are divided offensively and defensively.
Before offensive and defensive techniques are taught, however, recruits learn basic stances and footwork. For instance, they're instructed in the ready position (fighting stance), with weight distribution about even and their rifle held fairly vertical, b ut slightly tilted toward the side of their leading leg.
Next recruits learn seven basic shuffles, which allow them to position themselves at virtually any angle necessary to attack and defend. Footwork also helps recruits close the gap between themselves and their opponents. The seven footwork moves are: 1) sh uffle forward, 2) shuffle left, 3) shuffle right, 4) world left (a 90-degree turn), 5) world right, 6) world about left (a 180-degree turn) and 7) world about right. After recruits practice these simple pivots, they're taught basic offensive and defensive moves.
Parry left is the first defensive tactic learned. It's much like a traditional staff or empty-handed parry familiar to many martial artists, and the same principles of angling and body movement are involved in the Marine Corps and martial arts version.
Second is the parry right, the counterpart of parry left. When the recruit parries right, he has no need to change hand position, but simply parries across his body to the right.
Third is the high block. Here, the M-16 is used to stop a downward strike. The center of the weapon blocks the blow.
And fourth, recruits learn the low block, an effective move that stops low upward attacks. Hand and rifle position for the low and high blocks is the same at the ready position. However, during each block, the rifle is held horizontally and is thrust in o pposite directions.
Strength and agility are crucial to any martial artist's training - Including a Marlne's. To dewlop these and other attributes, recruits climb a six - foot - hbh log wall as part of the

Offensive moves are simple and straightforward. Recruits are taught three fixed-bayonet techniques: 1) the diagonal slash, 2) the horizontal slash, and 3) the jab. Three butt strokes are also introduced in Marine Corps close-combat training: 1) the vertic al butt stroke, where the weapon's rear end moves straight up and down; 2) the horizontal butt stroke, which travels from side to side; and 3) the smash, where the flat end of the rifle's butt is used to strike.
Throughout the training, recruits are repeatedly reminded to use the fighting principles they have learned, such as balance, hip thrust and use of proper target so their offensive strikes will be as effective as possible.
This Marine Corps emblem at MCRD San Dlego abuliles the Corps' unsurpassed fbUt. Ing ability on land, sea or In the air. An organl. zatlon with a proud history, the Marlne Corps claims an undefeated war record.

Pugil stick training
This is the first real full-contact close-combat training recruits receive. In circular outdoor fighting rings about 50 feet in diameter, two recruits square off at a time. Each is well protected with a helmet, neck roll, mouthpiece and groin protector. Each recruit wields a ten-pound pugil stick, which is padded at both ends and represents an M-16 with attached bayonet. In fact, one end of the pugil stick is red, representing the bayonet, while the opposite end is white, symbolizing the rifle's butt.
This segment allows recruits to practice all they've learned in close-combat training so far. The activity is extremely competitive between the two combatants and between their respective platoons. Consequently, recruits shout encouragement to each other and drill instructors prod their budding Marines onto victory.
Pugil stick training not only helps recruits experience rifle and bayonet full-contact fighting, it also develops an aggressive fighting attitude, which is a must for combat. And because of the competition and thrill of fighting pugil stick training provi des, it's one of the most popular activities among recruits.
Assault Course

The final part of recruits' closecombat training is the assault course. It allows them to face a comprehensive fighting situation much like they would encounter during battle. With 11 stations, recruits accomplish a specific mission at each one.

Rope bridge - The recruit balances himself 30 feet above a large pit. Rope handrails help recruits maintain their footing while they traverse the pit.

Bayonet makiwara - With a fixed bayonet, the recruit delivers a butt stroke, slash and smash to a rubber makiwara (striking post), which is rectangular and is the size of a human upper body.

Fighting hole (foxhole) - Recruits jump into a fighting hole, then jab and smash an enemy dummy.

Tire course - This develops coordination. The course moves resemble martial artists' leg work and foot work maneuvers.

Barbed wire fence - Recruits enter the enemy's area by crawling forward on their backs under barbed wire.

Tunnels - To develop greater mobility, recruits crawl through corrugated metal tunnels which are large at one end and small at the other.

Enemy dummy - A jab and slash are delivered to a second enemy dummy in another fighting hole.

Bayonet makiwara - On another rectangular makIwara, a slash, horizontal butt stroke and jab are delivered.

Human dummy - This is the first station where recruits execute blade and butt movements on a human-shaped enemy dummy.

Barrier - Recruits then climb a sixfoot-high wall, jump into an enemy fighting hole to deliver a horizontal butt stroke, and slash a rubber humanshaped kneeling dummy.

Capture the general - At this final station, the recruit kills the enemy general's private guard, kills the general, then escapes.
Recruits execute the required techniques and run from station to station as quickly as possible. Such speed and intensity reflect all of the hand-to-hand and close-combat training recruits receive. It's quick, intense and comprehensive. Incredibly, the 20 total hours of self-defense training recruits receive provide one of the most effective combat and martial arts courses available.
Time and Change

Like traditional martial arts, Marine Corps martial arts have changed little over the years. When you have a system that works - no matter what you're dealing with - it makes little sense to change it.
One of the three offensiw riflerbayonet techniques recruits ream, the horkontal slash Is per fommed by moving the fixed bayonet across the body. The move must be quick, sharp and nnwort'.l In h. attertiu.

Explains MCRD community relations chief Bonita Little: "The Marine Corps is different than other branches of the American military. When we find a way that works for us, we stick with it, even if we've done it that same way for many years. That's one reas on why we have the outstanding hand-to-hand and close-combat training we do."
Accordingly, you can be the U.S. Marine Corps and the martial arts will have a strong relationship for decades to come. Without question, the martial arts principles and techniques taught to Marine recruits, and those used in advanced training, have made the Corps stronger and more effective.
Don't tell the enemy, though. He has enough problems.

Techniques Page

02-09-03, 12:10 AM
The Knife Fighting Tactics of the US Marine Corps: Grips, Stances and Targets
by Robert Safreed

It's midnight in the jungle, and a United States Marine Corps infantryman crouches in the grass. His M16 assault rifle, emptied of bullets, lies somewhere in the thick underbrush, near the bodies of the soldier's slain enemies. He is alone, and he is far from home, behind enemy lines. Yet he is unafraid. He still has his knife, and in close combat, that is all he needs.

According to Jim Advincula, a longtime U.S. Marine Corps knife and close - combat instructor, basic knife-fighting techniques are far more effective in close-combat situations than fancy or advanced techniques. For the average grunt, simple is deadly.
Advincula's Oceanside, California martial arts school is located near a military base, and the isshin-ryu karate and escrima instructor is frequently called upon to teach UPS. servicemen the finer points (excuse the pun) of knife fighting. Following are some of the major principles Advincula covers with his trainees.
The first thing Advincula shows his knife-fighting students is how to grip the weapon. The terrain and environment are rarely ideal for close combat. Rain, mud or snow will make the handle of a knife slippery and difficult to manage, and wearing gloves only makes it more difficult to wield the weapon efficiently.

Technique #1

Therefore, it is necessary to select a simple, strong grip which can be used in any situation. Close-combat instructors generally teach four methods of grip- ping a knife:
Reverse grip. Some instructors advocate the use of the "reverse" grip, with the knife held along the wrist. However, Advincula claims this method limits your techniques and only allows for slashing maneuvers, which are usually ineffective in a close-combat situation because the blade doesn't penetrate the target or generate much power.
Fencer's grip. Most instructors teach the “fencer's” grip, in which the knife handle is gripped firmly between the thumb and forefinger, with the other fingers wrapped loosely around the handle. While this grip may be suitable for small knives like a stiletto, it isn't suitable for blades with large grips. If your hand is hit during combat while employing the fencer's grip, you can lose your grasp on the weapon.
Ice-pick grip. The "ice-pick" grip enables deep penetration against soft body armor, heavy clothing, or other protective outfits.. To achieve this grip, simply hold the knife handle in a fist, with the blade pointing down. There are drawbacks to this grip, however. When raising the knife for a downward strike, you not only telegraph your intentions and expose your chest area, but you also make it easy for your opponent to see the weapon. Moreover, the ice-pick grip does not provide parrying or thrusting capability, and it is easier for the opponent to block a knife strike delivered in this manner.
Hammer grip. The hammer grip is preferred over all others. A knife held in this fashion is less likely to be knocked from your grasp, and can also be used in conjunction with a punch or to deliver butt-end knife strikes. A hammer grip is achieved by grasping the knife at the handle and forming a tight fist. Keep the wrist flexible, as if using a hammer or hatchet. This enables you to lock the wrist tightly when needed.
The hammer grip provides great penetration and power, allowing the blade to easily cut through heavy clothing. There is also less likelihood of injury to the user's thumb, unlike with the fencer's grip. The hammer grip can be used for chopping, slashing, and especially thrusting techniques.

Jim Advincula (left) demonstrates the "triangle" stance, with his knife to the front and shield hand covering his chest. This is the preferred knife-fighting stance. Standing with the free hand forward (center) rather than the knife hand, or using a reverse grip (right) is not recommended.
After achieving an effective grip, the knife fighter must assume an appropriate combat stance. Advincula teaches Marines to fight from a basic "triangle" stance. Also known as the "fencer's" stance, the triangle posture allows the knife fighter to move in any direction at a moment's notice. This stance also allows the practitioner maximum reach because his knife is held in the hand nearest to the enemy.

Advincula teaches students to "hide" behind their knife; in other words, keep the weapon between them and the opponent. By keeping the knife pointed toward the enemy, you can attack and/or block or parry any thrusts by the opponent. You can also pull the weapon close to your body, leaving your free hand to protect against an opponent's grabbing technique.

Shield Hand
The knife fighter's free hand should be held close to the heart or solar plexus to protect vital areas such as the heart and throat. Should the enemy's blade get through your defenses, your free hand will hopefully absorb the blade ra- ther than one of your vital organs. This technique is taken from Filipino escrima, in which the hand is used as a shield and is sacrificed, if necessary. According to Advincula, the escrimador's credo is: "You can cut my hand, but I will take your life!"
The knife fighter's "shield hand" can also be used to parry, punch, fake a blow, throw objects, distract the opponent, or assist balance in rough terrain. Marines are even taught to grab the opponent's blade, if necessary. It should be noted that your hand can't be cut unless the enemy is able to draw his blade. By grabbing and attacking the opponent, you can prevent him from drawing the weapon and cutting your hand.

Attacking the right targets is a key to effective knife fighting. The objective is to neutralize the enemy as quickly as possible, but this does not mean always attempting to strike vital points. Since the enemy will generally be defending his vital points, you should seek the most available target, be it the solar plexus, back, neck, stomach, etc. Drawing first blood is a tremendous psychological advantage. The more you strike your opponent- regardless of where you hit him- the more he will bleed and weaken.

Technique #2

Advincula also teaches students to aim for the opponent's weapon-wielding hand. By disabling the hand that holds his weapon, you neutralize the threat to your safety and gain the advantage. If the enemy has two weapons- say a pistol in one hand and a knife in the other- zero in on the one that presents the most immediate danger to your well-being.
The official motto of the U.S. Marine Corps is semper fidelis, a Latin phrase meaning "always faithful." By practicing the basic principles of close-combat knife fighting—proper grip, balanced stance, accessible targets—you too can be assured that your knife will always be "faithful," be it in the jungle, or on the streets.

Caption p.59 bottom There are four basic methods of gripping a knife: the reverse grip (1), the fencer's grip (2), the ice pick grip (3) and the hammer grip (4). The hammer grip is the preferred method because you are less likely to lose your grasp of the weapon and you can use the knife in combination with a punch. Caption p59top Caption p.60 In the "shield hand" technique, the knife fighter places (1) his free hand close to his heart or solar plexus to protect vital areas from his opponent's Knife strikes. Or, he can use the free hand to parry (2) an opponent's strike, and then counterattack.

02-09-03, 12:12 AM
The Marine Corps has separate doctrine, and for public discussions of its various programs, none of which have proven entirely satisfactory, see Marine Corps Gazette. Recommended readings include Capt. Charles M. Dunne, "Elimination of Combat Hitting Skills from Recruit Training: Cutting Our Nose Off to Spite Our Face" (December 1998) and Capt. Clinton J. Chlebowski, "Grappling with Close Combat" (October 1999). To order copies, send US $2.50 per article requested to the Editor, Marine Corps Gazette, Box 1775, Quantico, VA 22134. If foreign, remember to add another dollar to cover international postage.

02-09-03, 12:14 AM
Journal of Non-lethal Combatives, Jan 2002

Marines, Army Lead in Close-Quarters Combat Training

Staff Sgt. Dema Lege (left) and Maj. Kelly Heatherman practice unarmed strikes at Marine Corps Base Quantico, Va. The exercise was Feb. 6, 2001. Photo courtesy U.S. Marine Corps.
By Gerry J. Gilmore
American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON, May 16, 2001 -- The Marine Corps and the Army - America's land combat forces -- are the leaders among the services in teaching troops hand-to-hand combat and martial arts skills.

Marine Corps Commandant Gen. James Jones last year set a goal that all Marines would receive training in entry-level martial arts skills and be given the opportunity to achieve higher levels of expertise. On March 20, Jones presented tan belts to the first officer basic school graduates to complete initial martial arts training at Marine Corps Base Quantico, Va.

Eventually, "all Marines, regardless of age, sex, rank or job will do this training," said Lt. Col. George H. Bristol, director of the Marines' martial arts program at the Combat Development Center at Quantico. The program, evolved from a May 2000 test study, "is designed to further develop the complete warrior that has always been the United States Marine Corps," he said.

Marines' martial arts training features "a blend of proven disciplines including judo, karate and jujitsu, and bayonet and knife-fighting techniques," said 1st Lt. Jesse L. Sjoberg, Bristol's deputy.

Sgt. Byron Bell (left) and Sgt. Kevin Murphy tangle with their wooden rifles during bayonet training.
Marine Corps Base Quantico, Va. The exercise was Feb. 6, 2001. Photo courtesy U.S. Marine Corps.

Bristol, who has 35 years of martial arts experience, said the training is necessary because of changing world events.

"Right now, the world environment is more uncertain than it has ever been," he said. "Within a few days, a situation can escalate from humanitarian missions to full-scale combat." Bristol said the martial arts program integrates three warrior disciplines:

Mental discipline: The development of the combat mindset and the study of the art of war.
Character discipline: The firm integration of ethics, values, integrity and leadership.
Physical discipline, comprised of fighting techniques with rifle and bayonet, bladed weapons, weapons of opportunity (stick, club, gun), and unarmed combat; combative conditioning -- the ability to fight while fatigued in a combat environment; and combat sports -- boxing, wrestling, and wooden trainer bayonet fighting.
The Marines' martial arts training is composed of striking, grappling and weapons fighting skills, Bristol said. All Marines are required to earn a tan belt, representing entry-level training, he said. Subsequent higher awards of gray, green, brown and six degrees of black belts can also be earned.

Capt. Sekou Karega closes in with a wooden rifle during bayonet training.
Marine Corps Base Quantico, Va. The exercise was Feb. 6, 2001. Photo courtesy U.S. Marine Corps.

The program develops confidence not only in individual Marine combat skills, Bristol said, "but also in the skills of your fellow Marines," because battlefield combat requires teamwork. Marines who learn lethal combat skills are expected -- and required -- to use them responsibly, he said.

"The program teaches the ability to kill, but it is also tightly balanced with ethics," Bristol said, as part of the Corps' definition of a warrior.

"A Marine (is) highly skilled in lethal technique who can function appropriately in any environment. That includes the battlefield to his or her place as a citizen in society," he said.

Army recruits en route to become infantrymen at Fort Benning, Ga., get 15 hours of hand-to-hand combat instruction over 14 weeks as part of the infantry's One Station Unit Training program, said installation spokesperson Elsie Jackson. Troops attending the post's elite Ranger School receive an additional 18 hours of hand-to-hand combative training, including boxing, she added.

Army Special Forces students at Fort Bragg, N.C., receive extensive hand-to-hand combat training, said Carol P. Darby, spokesperson for U.S. Army Special Operations Command at Fort Bragg.

"Over a period of about one year, students in the Special Forces qualification course receive about 30 to 40 hours of combative training," Darby said. This training, she added, begins with basic hand-to-hand moves and advances as students progress through the qualification course.

U.S. Army military police at Fort Benning, Ga., practice hand-to-hand combat techniques.
Photo courtesy U.S. Army.

After troops graduate from initial Special Forces training and are assigned to their operational groups, they undergo more specialized hand-to-hand combative training, tailored to the mission needs of each unit, said Maj. Jonathan B. Withington, spokesman for U.S. Army Special Forces Command at Fort Bragg.

The Navy and Air Force also provide hand-to-hand and martial arts training, but normally only for members of special operations and law enforcement units. Air Force and Navy recruits don't receive bayonet or hand-to-hand combat training, according to service officials.


Readers should also see JNonLethal's September 2001 "Announcements"
Nicewarner, Christian L. "The Marine Martial Arts Program and the Training of One Rifle Company," Marine Corps Gazette, 85:12 (Dec. 2001), 14-17.

Also see: http://www.govexec.com/dailyfed/0102/010402nj2.htm

JNC Jan 2002

02-09-03, 12:17 AM




02-09-03, 12:39 AM
Get Tough FEATURE Sep01 <br />
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John Kary’s 6 Principles for Survival <br />
The six main principles of American Combatives, according to John Kary, are: <br />
Develop an offensive mind-set. To...

02-09-03, 12:42 AM
Day One
Upon my arrival, I was greeted by Kary’s wife, Margie, and she drove me to the site where the training would take place. John Kary introduced himself, then assigned me to a group and put all 50 of us to work.

The first session involved single technique drills on foam shields, Spar Pro mannequins and partners. The techniques Kary taught included the chin jab, face smash, whipping face smash, long ax hand, short ax hand, cupped hand strike, double cupped hand strike, shovel strike, clothesline strike, upward knee smash and low scooping kick. We performed each one innumerable times as Kary reminded us to use body rotation for maximum power generation.

Between rounds, Kary declared that his system is totally offensive in nature and contains no defensive maneuvers whatsoever. Every action is an attack—hence the American Combatives maxim, “Always attack the attacker.” Kary then commanded us to perform the aforementioned techniques John Kary’s system teaches students to use a strike to redirect the attacker’s weapon and inflict pain at the same time.

To demonstrate the American Combatives knee smash, John Kary pulls the opponent’s head downward to meet his rising knee. in pre-arranged combinations. His combinations are based on flow and body response, he said. Thus, the sequence of moves is not to be taken as gospel. The purpose of set combinations is to ingrain a continuous-attacking reflex and mentality in the student, he added.

“Whatever works for you, works for you,” he said. “I’m just giving you the tools. The way you use these tools is up to you. You have no way of knowing what exactly is going to occur with your strike.” Another point Kary frequently emphasized is to never look at your opponent during the execution of a technique.

“Do not target your strikes at all,” he said. “Through body positioning and peripheral vision, they will go where they are supposed to go.” When asked why he advocates that, Kary responded: “You should always be ready and looking for other opponents. Always think in terms of multiple assailants, always assume that an assailant has a weapon and always get the first two strikes in real quick.”

Next, Kary discussed what are commonly called self-defense techniques. “In my mind, there is no such thing as ‘self-defense,’ ” Kary said. “There is only ‘self-offense.’ If you wait, it’s too late.” He then had us practice pre-set responses to grabs, chokes, bear hugs, head locks and tackles. The main concept he stressed was that before you counter your assailant’s attack, you must stabilize your position.

Once you have done that, he said, “Keep striking nonstop and keep moving in one direction—toward the attacker. If you miss a strike, don’t stop. Keep striking!” You must continue attacking until your assailant is no longer able to harm you, Kary said. He punctuated that edict by explaining that everyone has his own boundaries with respect to the degree of physical damage he is willing to inflict on another person.

When faced with a life-or-death situation, Kary said, he will continue to attack until his attacker is not moving at all. The reason is simple: In far too many instances, assailants who were momentarily incapacitated managed to recover and attack their victims again before help arrived.

Kary revealed numerous concepts and beliefs during conversations with camp participants. For example, he scoffed at the notion that effectiveness in combat can be gained through infrequent training. “You must practice thousands of times to make any movement instinctive,” he said. “If you think you know something, you don’t.”

Day Two
The second day of the camp started One of the mainstays of American Combatives is the chin jab, the effect of which is amplified by holding the attacker’s arm to prevent him from moving backward when the blow is delivered. No-nonsense techniques make up the American Combatives system. One of them, the shovel strike to the groin, is demonstrated here by John Kary (left).

One of the quickest ways to dispatch an enemy is to use the American Combatives face-smash-with-groin-pick technique. Not only does it target two vulnerable parts of the body, but it also knocks him down and may even slam his head into the ground. with a review of the previously learned material. We drilled again on combination striking sequences using equipment and live partners. Then Kary continued with self-defense sequences against various unarmed attacks before transitioning into unarmed defenses against guns and knives.

First up was empty hand vs. the blade. No matter which attack methodology is used, Kary said, you should redirect the weapon away from you by striking the hand that holds it. You should then follow up with an immediate counterattack composed of the most savage techniques you can muster.

That philosophy was derived from Kary’s extensive conversations with Applegate. “The closer you are to the weapon, the less likely your attacker is to use it against you,” Kary said. “Once you clear the weapon, strike, strike, strike!” When the subject of disarming an armed attacker was brought up, Kary dismissed it outright. “There is no such thing as a disarm,” he said. “Just get past the weapon and attack.”

“You should always be ready and looking for other opponents. Always think in terms of multiple assailants, always assume that an assailant has a weapon and always get the first two strikes in real quick.” Kary then began his discourse on gun defense. It revolved around the same principle as American Combatives knife defense: redirect and attack, attack, attack until your adversary is destroyed. “Rather than trying to get into a struggle over a weapon with someone stronger than you, attack the attacker,” he said. “If you hit him in the throat with an ax hand, the last thing on his mind is going to be using his weapon.”

Because of the nature of American Combatives and the targets at which its techniques are aimed, Kary’s system does not lend itself to sparring. So after a brief session of bayonet training, he introduced us to the pugil stick. Pugil sticks are rifle-length padded staffs used by the Marines to instill fighting spirit. Kary and his assistants explained the rules and put on a short demonstration, then paired us off for full-contact matches.

Day two ended with more combination striking sequences, the bread and butter of American Combatives.

Day Three
On the final day of the camp, Kary gave us a choice: a session of carjacking and kidnapping defense, or a course in point shooting with the handgun. Because I was already wellversed in the use of firearms, I opted to join the unarmed-defense group.

Kary opened with a brief lecture on the concepts and principles he espouses.

Once again, it boiled down to always attacking the attacker. However, he added, when a vehicle is involved, sometimes you must bide your time and wait for the right opportunity. He then launched into a discussion of the various carjacking scenarios and instruction in the corresponding defenses.

Since some people had to leave earlier than others, Kary bypassed lunch so he could squeeze in a couple extra hours of training. No one complained as he delved into defenses against multiple opponents. He advised us to remember American Combatives’ four precepts for a mass attack:

• Pre-emptively attack the leader or the assailant closest to you.
• Immediately attack the next closest one.
• Keep attacking until you can escape.
• Employ single shots to vital areas, and don’t spend too much time on any one opponent.

After we completed the training on multiple-attacker defenses, Kary concluded the camp with his mainstay: combination striking sequences. He drilled us incessantly in numerous combinations until we were drenched in sweat. In closing, he reminded us that self-defense is about survival, not sport. “You must destroy the attacker as quickly and decisively as possible to ensure the safety of yourself and your loved ones,” he said.

Homeward Bound
On the way back to California, I reflected on my experiences and conversations with Kary. He had mentioned that his blindness has scared off many potential students over the years. But what I discovered was to the contrary: His “disability” actually boosts his ability as a teacher. I was constantly amazed at how he could detect mistakes students made from the way a strike sounded when it hit a piece of equipment or from the vibrations he felt when he stood nearby.

I also reflected on how meticulous an instructor Kary is. He always provided detailed instructions on the concepts and body mechanics associated with whatever technique he was teaching. When he demonstrated a move on an assistant or mannequin, his form, accuracy and power were astonishing. I recommend training with John Kary to anyone interested in reality fighting. You won’t be disappointed by his combat system or the way he teaches it.

Lito Angeles Lito Angeles is a free-lance writer and law-enforcement officer based in Southern California.

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02-13-03, 02:30 AM
LISTEN UP! What you learn in the Marine Corps concerning fighting skills should NEVER be used as a way of being the baddest Mother Focker around! Period. You will be men. You will be women. You will be members of MY by God Marine Corps. You will not bully people or allow anyone else to do so in MY by God Marine Corps. You WILL find other ways to screw up! Learn everything you can, cross train, Do what you're told, the way you're told, then go and learn more from those who would teach you. Cross train, Tai Kwon Do, Kung Fu, Akido, Ju Jit Tsu, and anything else you can think of or find. Run, lift weights, play basketball, ride bicycles, roller blade, climb cliffs, swim, dive, anything and everything. Cross train. You will become a weapon, one of the worst nightmares on earth to those who oppose you in your search for the right to excercise your Patriotism and to give others the right to be free! This is your ultimate commision. Do it and do it well. Concerning other things. Marines work. They work damned hard. The stories you hear of drunken revelry ARE NOT THE NORM! DID YOU HEAR ME? They are not the norm. You work hard, and party seldom, but when you do, you will party hard. You WILL sacrifice. Your time, your career, your families, your lives and the lives of others in order to accomplish the mission. The mission is your goal. What is your mission? To give others the right to be free, and to earn it for yourselves. You will be the best. You will learn things that you never ever thought of. You will come to value your brother and sister Marines, for they have sacrficed as you will. They will never let you down, and if they do, try to help them get back up. You are brothers in my by God Marines. You will conduct yourselves as such. DISMISSED and get outta my sight, til ya think it over. Ya got any questions ask. Someone around here will have the answer.

I posted this several months ago on another forum here after a bunch POOL-ees and wannabes were talkin' tough. Thought it fit better here.

06-12-03, 11:05 PM

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USMC Core Value Program - Punches
Suicide Awareness and Prevention - Falls
Leadership Fundamentals – Bayonet
Self-Discipline – Pugil Sticks
Warrior Study – Lower Body Strikes, Pugil Sticks, Counter to Rear Choke, Counter to Holds, Armed Manipulations, Employ Weapons of Opportunity
Sexual Harassment – Upper Body Strikes
Substance Abuse Prevention - Chokes
Equal Opportunity – Leg Sweep
Personal Readiness – Counters to Strikes
Fraternization – Unarmed Manipulations
Sexual Responsibility – Knife Techniques
Additional Classes: Mental & Character Disciplines of MCMAP, Responsible Use of Force, History and Structure of MCMAP
19 Total for Tan Belt


USMC Warrior Ethos – Bayonet Technique
Leadership Traits – Upper Body Strikes
Leadership Principles – Lower Body Strikes
Hazing – Front Choke
Value of Commitment – Hip Throw
Code of Conduct – Counters to Strikes
6 Troop Leading Steps – Counter to Front Choke, Counter to Holds
Honor – Execute Unarmed Manipulations
Courage – Armed Manipulations
Customs, Courtesies, Traditions – Knife Techniques
Oath of Office – Non-Lethal Baton Techniques
USMC History – Weapons of Opportunity
Warrior Study: Ground Fighting, Free Sparring
Martial Culture Study
Additional Classes: Components of Wellness, Force Continuum, Combat Conditioning
19 Total for Gray Belt


Combat Leadership and the Stresses of Combat – Bayonet Techniques
Character – Muscular Gouging
Right vs. Wrong – Side Choke
Who is a Combat Leader – Shoulder Throw
Force Protection – Counters to Strikes
Informal Resolution System – Unarmed Manipulations
Fear – Knife Techniques
Profession of Arms – Non-Lethal Baton Techniques
Fatigue – Employ Weapons of Opportunity
Professionalism and Ethics – Ground Fighting
Setting the Example – Free Sparring
Martial Culture Study
Additional Classes: Combat Fitness, Combat Conditioning, Basic Elements of Anatomy & Physiology
14 Total for Green Belt


Combat Readiness – Bayonet Techniques
Citizenship – Ground Fighting
Communications and Counseling – Ground Chokes
Cohesion – Major Outside Reap Throw
Law of War – Unarmed vs. Handheld
Band of Brothers – Firearm Retention
Leadership Roles – Firearm Disarmament
Counseling Techniques – Knife Techniques
Rules of Engagement – Non-Lethal Baton Techniques
Safety on and off Duty – Weapons of Opportunity
Discipline, Morale, and Esprit de Corps – Free Sparring
Martial Culture Study
Additional Classes: Human Dimensions of Combat, Warrior as a Gentlemen, Combat Conditioning
15 Total for Brown Belt


Eternal Student – Bayonet Techniques
Leader and the Follower – Sweeping Hip Throw
Expeditionary Maneuver Warfare – Execute Ground Fighting
Leadership Styles – Neck Crank Takedown
Sustaining and Transformation – Triangle Choke
Mentoring – Rolling Knee Bar
Tactical Decision Making – Counter Pistol to the Head
Instilling and Developing Values – Upper Body Strikes
Operational Risk Management – Knife Techniques
Ethical Leadership – Improvised Weapons
Developing Subordinate Leaders – Free Sparring
Martial Culture Study
Additional Classes: Advanced Elements of Anatomy & Physiology, Combat Mindset, Discussion Leading Techniques, Master at Arms, Combat Conditioning
17 Total for Black Belt
84 Total for Tan ~ Black

MAI Course

Preparing for Instruction
Delivering Instruction
Administer Belt Test
Maintain MCMAP Records
Supervise Free Sparring
Employ ORM
Employ the Continuum of Force
Elements of Anatomy & Physiology
Structure of MCMAP (mental, character, physical)
Components of Wellness
Functional Components of MCMAP Instructional Methodology
Combat Conditioning

MAIT Course

Instruct Belt Levels
Combative Sports Program
Instructor Trainer Skills
Administer MAIT Level Tests
Maintain MCMAP Records
Supervise Free Sparring
Prepare an Instructor to Supervise & Referee Free Sparring and Ground Fighting
Complete ORMs
Prepare an Instructor to Review a completed ORM
Prepare an Instructor to Employ the Continuum of Force
Instruct Anatomy & Physiology
Instruct the Structure of MCMAP
Construct Warrior Study, Martial Culture Study
Train the Trainer > Human Dimensions, Combat Mindset, Warrior as a Gentlemen, Master at Arms
Develop/Supervise/Manage a Local Combat Conditioning Program, How to Conduct Drills and Training
Develop a Sustainment/Integration Program

06-12-03, 11:10 PM


“The creed ‘every Marine a rifleman’ became reality on the battlefields of France during World War I, in the Pacific during World War II, and in the wars in Korea, Vietnam, and the Persian Gulf…”

from PAST IS PROLOGUE, USMC Concepts and Issues 2000

1. Introduction. From the beginning of civilization the warrior has exemplified and espoused the higher ideals of the combative arts. His strength of character and mental discipline rivaled his strength of arms. Never the mercenary or bully, instead he was the defender of others. At the moment of our nation’s birth a new warrior emerged to inherit this ancient lineage, the United States Marine. For 225 years Marines have remained true to the warrior principles, defending the tenets of freedom and the citizens of our great nation. Today as we move into the Twenty-First Century, we as Marines need to continue to hone our warrior skills. Drawing upon our rich legacy of leadership, and heritage of innovation we have developed the Marine Corps Martial Arts Program. A martial art whose roots reach back from the boarding parties of the Continental Marines through the Raiders of World War II up to and including the complexities of the three block war. While borrowing specific techniques from various established martial arts, our program has many techniques that are unique. It is a weapon’s based system rooted in our credo that every Marine is a rifleman and that we will engage the enemy from 500 meters to 500 millimeters. In addition to the physical disciplines associated with other martial arts, our program places an equal emphasis on training in the mental and character disciplines. The Marine Corps Martial Arts Program fuses together the physical disciplines of combat with the leadership and core values training that are the hallmark of our Corps. This synergy of training will create a warrior who will embody all that is best in our Country and Corps, a United States Marine.

“The battle was not won by simply ordering:‘hold at all costs.’ It was won months and years beforeon the drill fields of Parris Island and San Diego where the steel that went into these warriors was rough cast,and it was won when their units added the final polishand temper necessary to convert basic Marines into an integrated fighting machine….”

-- Major General Oscar F. Peatross, USMC

2. Structure. The Marine Corps Martial Arts Program consists of three components; character discipline, mental discipline, physical discipline. Figure 1-1 shows this synergy of disciplines. Each discipline is broken down into sections/blocks presented systematically to Marines at each belt level. Those taught at a lower belt level are then reviewed and reinforced during follow-on training and at the next belt level. In addition to the cumulative effect of these three disciplines many of their specific components overlap several of the disciplines. As an example the martial culture studies enhance the mental discipline through the historical study of war while they also enhance our understanding of the importance of character to a warrior and a martial society.

3. Implementation. Implementation of many of the components of the mental and physical disciplines will be done in a phased approach. During the initial implementation phase of the Martial Arts Program academic and unit instructors will continue to teach the majority of the classes and guided discussions associated with the mental and character disciplines. However, as this program matures the black belts and Instructor Trainers will begin to take on a greater role in teaching these disciplines. Eventually, this should lead to a situation in three to four years where the majority of mental and character discipline classes are taught by officers, staff noncommissioned officers and noncommissioned officers who are also black belts and/or Martial Arts Instructors and Instructor Trainers.

“The Marines have solved the jungle warfare problem byteaching each man to think, act, and fight as an individual as well as a member of a team…”

Lt Colonel Samuel B. Griffith, on discussing the battle of Bairoko, New Georgia Island

4. Training Requirements. All of the training components of the Marine Corps Martial Arts Program are already a part of Marine Corps training. The physical discipline will include armed and unarmed techniques that will blend as part of physical fitness to create combat fitness in every Marine. The mental and character disciplines are components of Marine Corps leadership, core values and troop information programs. All of the disciplines are covered by specific Marine Corps Orders, Marine Corps Doctrinal Publications (MCDP), Marine Corps Warfighting Publications (MCWP), and Marine Corps Reference Publications (MCRP). Like the physical disciplines, many of the mental and character disciplines have there own individual training standards (ITS). What makes the Marine Corps Martial Arts Program unique is the understanding and mastery of the mental and character disciplines will be required as a prerequisite for advancement to each belt level on an equal footing as the physical discipline.

5. Summary. The Marine Corps Martial Arts program is an evolutionary program building upon our rich traditions and proven ethos. It takes the best of our past with the innovation of the future and blends them into a seamless training system. With the successful implementation of this program we will enhance the personal development of each Marine in a team framework. Designed to enhance unit cohesion, esprit de corps, and combat effectiveness, it will help mitigate the human dimension and environmental factors of combat. Further it will be a program that will excite young Marines while increasing readiness and instilling a warrior ethos. Marine Corps Martial Arts training produces a successful and ethical Marine warrior. A Marine who has developed “integrity” of self and who is the successful synergy between body, mind and spirit (character).

06-13-03, 02:15 AM
MCMAP incorporates changes to develop warrior mindset
Sgt. C.A. Eriksen

CAMP COURTNEY (Nov 15, 2002) -- "One mind, any weapon" is the motto of the Marine Corps Martial Arts Program. This ethos is being developed into the mindset of every Marine who participates in MCMAP for the building of future leaders.

To accomplish that goal, MCMAP has undergone some changes to its training philosophy and how it will effect future promotions.

"It is all about leadership," said Lt. Col. Kevin Nally, director, MCMAP. "It's not just about the belt, it's about what is inside."

MCMAP's training philosophy incorporates leadership and core values, enhancing professional military education "tie-ins" with the physical training aspects. Now Marines must not only pass the physical tests, but also must pass the PME that is associated with each skill set they learn, according to Nally.

"The belts are tied to the PME," Nally said. "It's not just about passing the physical test. Marines must also have the mental mindset and discipline as well."

PME used to qualify for required annual training can help Marines be competitive for promotion.

"PME comes from the BST/EST requirements as well as other areas such as equal opportunity, and drug and alcohol abuse awareness training," Nally said. "This will help prepare Marines for promotions."

Starting in October 2003, MCMAP will be added into the promotion process, according to Nally. Each grade will be required to hold an appropriate level belt that will be needed for promotion to the next grade.

"Lance corporals and corporals will soon receive 20 points toward promotion for having rank appropriate belt certification," Nally said.

For sergeants and above there will be a mandatory comment in Section I on the Performance Evaluation System. The comment will read either "earned belt in grade," "earning belt" or if the Marine already has the appropriate belt "participating in regular training."

"These changes are being effected to help build and maintain the leadership principles and characteristics that MCMAP instills in Marines," Nally said.

Commanding officers will certify that their Marines have met the requirements for the belt being awarded. Once a Marine attains a belt, he is expected to maintain the mental and physical discipline he learned.

"Even if a Marine passes all the requirements for a belt, he still must demonstrate that he has the right mindset to be awarded the belt," Nally said.

Marines can be stripped of their belt certification as part of their punishment for NJP, according to Nally. Additionally, commanding officers can strip instructors of their belt certification if they show irresponsibility while conducting training.

"Commanding officers can pull the belts based upon a Marine's lack of moral courage," Nally said. "Unsafe or mentally unfit instructors can lose their certification and belt. Training Marines right is what MCMAP is all about."

Building a warrior mindset with high leadership principles and discipline is the goal of MCMAP, according to Nally. MCMAP's biggest challenge now is to get the senior leadership more involved with the training.

"Leadership is the key to success," Nally said. "It takes leaders to make leaders."

Updates to MCMAP can be found at the MCMAP Martial Arts Center for Excellence Web site www.tbs.usmc.mil/Pages/Martial_Arts/Default.htm.takes leaders to make leaders."

Updates to MCMAP can be found at the MCMAP Martial Arts Center for Excellence Web site www.tbs.usmc.mil/Pages/Martial_Arts/Default.htm.