Avoidance, fight, avoidance

This is a discussion on Avoidance, fight, avoidance within the Carry & Defensive Scenarios forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; My first calendar year of teaching MCS is coming to a close. This year I would say we have trained approximately 100 students. Many of ...

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Thread: Avoidance, fight, avoidance

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    Senior Member Array mercop's Avatar
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    Avoidance, fight, avoidance

    My first calendar year of teaching MCS is coming to a close. This year I would say we have trained approximately 100 students. Many of them are repeat students. We have staged hundreds of force of force scenarios for open hand, impact weapon, edged weapons, and firearms. Many I came up with and many students came up with. Here some general observations as well as those specific to edged weapons-

    I would say that the "average" MCS student is 35-45 yrs old, most are usually dedicated knife or gun guys, seldom both, at least in the beginning. Because they are weapon dedicated they focus on the weapon before the situation and during initial contact.

    The progression we teach is- Awarness, Avoidance, and Agression. The first two work for two out of the three types of threats to your personal safety- Accidents (all types), Attacks (all types), Natural Disasters (all types). In the case of Attacks you can transition to Agression.

    The problem seems to be that if you feel that you are prepared for a particular type of threat then you may be less inclined to avoid it. Example- people who live in Florida and have supplies and plywood are less likley to evacuate even when others do. So if you carry a dedicated self-defense knife and have some training you may be less inclined to avoid situations that you would if you were not armed or trained. The longer you wait to avoid after becoming aware of a threat the less options you will have. This is what we see in classes, students are there for a knife or gun class and during FOF are easily drawn into a "fatal funnel" and as they do there world closes in behind them and they are unable to see the rest of the world. Once they put themselves in the situation they feel obligated to use their weapon.

    Here is the rub, the majority of carry/deployment options for guns and knives are primarily designed to be used under the best case circumstances where you are static and standing. When you do force on force you quicly realize how some of the following things play a huge role in the outcome of the altercation-

    Inside/outside
    Light level
    Footing (wet grass, gravel, and tile floors are not your friend)
    Balance (many students end up falling backwards because of crossing their feet)
    Clothing ( nothing like watching someone trying to deploy a folder from a sweatpants pocket)

    And the list goes on.

    The more I look at my lab rats AKA students:) the more I see the need of awareness and avoidence skills. The problem for many people is "aware of what". It is about perception, you need to know what subtle things to look for. Too many people concentrate on learning to look for the things that happen right before something bad happens, not the clues that lead up to it. By that time you are sucked in.

    Next is avoidence, you need to be willing to change your path in spite of tools, training, and confidence. The way we drive this through to students is by taking them through the same scenarios but making the responsible by another student playing their wife or child. That is the level of avoidence you need to use for yourself. When you alert to a specific threat and begin to avoid you consider your tools. You have to have tools that you can have in your hand while avoiding that will not unnessisarly alarm others. On the lowest level this is a pen or flashlight. For me the next level is the Gerber Artifact with Inverted Edge Tactics in mind. I don't want to "knife fight" , I want to use my pen, flashlight, or Artifact to inflict damage that allows me to escape and continue to avoid. If I cannot continue to avoid it may be time to upgrade to a purpose driven weapon like a gun or a knife if I have the room to do so. Don't get stuck on the aggression and "winning" the fight. When there is no other choice and avoidance has failed you overwhelming force of violence to move through your attack until you are safe.

    Beyond bridging tools like pens, flashlights, and the Artifact, decide what is most appropriate for you to carry and how to carry it. Then get some training. You will also have peace of mind knowing all the layers of your Personal Protection Plan that were breached prior to you having to use your Primary Deadly Force Option. This is a thinking game, not a hardware game.- George

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    Knives scare the crap out of me!

    Good points, which many of the so-called tough guys on this site should heed. The best hazardous encounter is the one that never happened. More awareness and avoidance is needed (Why would you need to use the ATM at 2:00 am?).
    Retired USAF E-8. Remember: You're being watched!
    Paranoia strikes deep, into your heart it will creep. It starts when you're always afraid... "For What It's Worth" Buffalo Springfield

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    Member Array HUSTLEnomics's Avatar
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    I think all of this is very helpful info to consider. Especially for some of us who are fairly new to the legal concealed carry world. I often see posts on here, where some people seem overly ready to be involved in a SD situation, etc. I know that is the last thing I am interested in. Mainly because of the headache of possibly going thru a time consuming, headache causing, anger inducing, frustrating series of battles with the judicial system & meetings with my employers.

    Learning to recognize danger signs & avoid them is a aspect of training I know I over-looked. I guess I thought I'd just use my common sense, but I may have underestimated the sense of over-confidence that can come with SD training to use a weapon. Thanks for this post bro.
    Don't Knock The HU$TLE! When all else fails, I have a HU$TLER's Ambition! When the economy goes to crap, I will maintain and u wont! The hunger I have to survive, and your inability to handle the struggles we have ahead is what seperates you & I!

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    Very well presented and accurate! The false sense of security that conceal-carry presents, is real. Even I feel it as I navigate in public and I know better. Someone has a signature quote that reads; “first rule of a gunfight is don’t be there”. This is always on my mind and I do not want to test my skills or lack of skills for the sake of being ‘the winner’.
    “Monsters are real and so are ghosts. They live inside of us, and sometimes they win.”
    ~ Stephen King

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    Senior Member Array mercop's Avatar
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    Glad you guys find the information useful. It seems people are to first to go from awareness to aggression and disregard avoidance. I cannot tell you how many times it came up with cases I was investigating why the "victim" did not leave or avoid the threat. These are same people who blame law enforcement for someone stealing their laptop from their vehicle when they leave it in the front seat.

    People, especially men become ego invested during a perceived wrong doing and subconsciously move towards the threat instead of away from it. - George

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    Great read. I work late nights in a rough part of town. I am constantly trying to figure out the way to get in and out the safest. I also work alone. Since I carry some tools at work, pepper spray, knife, flashlight, I have actually taken more steps to keep folks out of the warehouse than I did before. I have had several instances of folks walking into the warehouse and asking for money, etc. Prepared or not, avoidance is less paperwork.

    I guess the fine line between avoiding and acting is constantly fluid. Avoid too long and you react too late. React to soon and you can end up on the wrong end of the law. And then there is a limitless amount of possibilities between the two.

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    In the defensive class that my husband and I took the instructor said, "If I had it my way this class would be nothing more than two days of running away, but seeing as how that's not what you paid for we might as well throw some shooting in there. However, the principle stands. Your first responsibility, whether it's legal or not, is to get out of the situation, PERIOD, with or without a gun."

    I may be speaking only for myself but the more training I get the more humble I feel and the more committed I am to avoidance.

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    Yes to all the above and clapping hands as usual to Mercop.

    Great stuff.

    You don't live to my age without getting harmed or going to jail unless you take the "avoidance" part to heart.

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    Member Array Jim Macklin's Avatar
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    The 2 or 3 pounds of gun and ammo we carry is there to keep us reminded that it is a bad world sometimes and to always be alert.

    Knives scare me too. Get in a gun fight, and even if you're wounded you'll probably survive and heal. Get into a knife fight and you'll probably get cut.
    The bad part of that is the guy who attacked you will also get cut and both of you will become "blood brothers" and he/she is probably HepC or HIV Positive.

    Bullets are safer than knives and avoidance is best. But I'm old and "running" away may not be possible, I want to see trouble so I have time to not be there.
    The People Think the Constitution Protects Their Rights;
    Government See IT as an Obstacle to be Over-come.

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    Mercorp- your posts always get the gears moving in my head. Many thanks.

    Footing (wet grass, gravel, and tile floors are not your friend)
    Don't forget about ice. We certainly get our fair share out here. I witnessed an domestic violence assault last winter (called 911 from my vehicle, BG was arrested). The street had not been plowed and one could barely walk let alone run or fight.

    I bought myself some ice cleats the next day.

    It doesn't have to be this bad for you to slip and fall:
    YouTube - Portland drivers in the snow
    "a reminder that no law can replace personal responsibility" - Bill Clinton 2010.

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    Good post George. Happy Anniversary.
    Training means learning the rules. Experience means learning the exceptions.

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    Senior Member Array mercop's Avatar
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    Thanks guys, I really wish more gun guys would attend my edged weapons classes. It provides a whole new understanding of the reality or the threat. If you look good during training you are not being realistic.- George

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    Quote Originally Posted by Saber View Post
    Very well presented and accurate! The false sense of security that conceal-carry presents, is real. Even I feel it as I navigate in public and I know better. Someone has a signature quote that reads; “first rule of a gunfight is don’t be there”. This is always on my mind and I do not want to test my skills or lack of skills for the sake of being ‘the winner’.

    Makes perfect sense^^^^^^^^^
    But, In the back of your mind one must ultimately have a go-to-plan if you expect to have any degree of survival , SHOULD the time arise; ie; we all don't have eyes in the back of our heads 24/7, people jump out of bushes at 10:30 @ night when you're coming home etc,,,,,,,,

    Quote Originally Posted by mercop View Post
    Glad you guys find the information useful. It seems people are to first to go from awareness to aggression and disregard avoidance. I cannot tell you how many times it came up with cases I was investigating why the "victim" did not leave or avoid the threat. These are same people who blame law enforcement for someone stealing their laptop from their vehicle when they leave it in the front seat.

    People, especially men become ego invested during a perceived wrong doing and subconsciously move towards the threat instead of away from it. - George
    Instinct^^^^^^^^^^^Protect^^^^^^^^^^Family

    I'm not justifing it, I'm just saying, I think it's the
    "Man s gotta do what a man s gotta do thing JMHO

    THANKS FOR THE INFORMATION THOUGH;
    Good post!!!



    "After a shooting spree, they always want to take the guns away from the people who didn't do it."
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    Distinguished Member Array Spec's Avatar
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    good post...thanks
    NRA Certified Rifle/Pistol Instructor
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    Accuracy ALWAYS WINS! So carry what you can hit with.

    If you find yourself in a fair fight your tactics stink.

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