Folder into the Fight- pressure test your skills

Folder into the Fight- pressure test your skills

This is a discussion on Folder into the Fight- pressure test your skills within the Defensive Carry & Tactical Training forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; We have been using the Folder into the Fight Drill to pressure test defensive knife skills now for about four years. In that time, we ...

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Thread: Folder into the Fight- pressure test your skills

  1. #1
    Senior Member Array mercop's Avatar
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    Folder into the Fight- pressure test your skills

    We have been using the Folder into the Fight Drill to pressure test defensive knife skills now for about four years. In that time, we have had hundreds of people go through the drills several times each. Participants have come in all shapes, sizes, age, training level, fitness level, and background. What we have found to be the short comings led to the creation of Inverted Edge Tactics. First, I will explain the drill. Good guy and bad guy both wear headgear, eye protection, and a mouth piece. The bad guy wears 14 OZ boxing gloves and the good guy is armed with a Spyderco Endura training knife. It is the students choice where he carries and how he deploys the folder, and what grip he uses. The good guy tells the bad guy how intense he wants the drill on a scale of 1-10. The rest of the class gathers around to create a circle, that accomplishes two things. It creates a small realistic area to fight in, and they try to keep the people in the circle from smashing to the ground.

    Station I- Panic Pushing another student at combat speed to simulate a preemptive strike in a defensive situation.

    Station II- The good guy grabs a hold of the end of two sticks being held by another student. For 45 seconds they go back and forth with the sticks to increase their heart rate. At 35 seconds, the bad guy steps in and begins to attack the good guy. At the end of the 45 seconds, “fight” is called. The good guy must defend himself and gain distance in an attempt to access, deploy, and use the folder. Once they get some cuts in, the knife is dropped, or a stalemate ensues, the drill is stopped. The drill takes around one minute, but much is learned.

    Lessons learned

    * When they grab the sticks, people have a tendency to circle to their reaction side. This often results in them crossing their feet and falling.
    * When the bad guy begins to strike them, people often respond by dropping the sticks and turning their back on the guy with the two sticks.
    * Even very light shots to the side of the head can cause massive central nervous disruption and in some cases render the person unable to continue.
    * Once they drop the sticks, people often turn their back to the bad guy because of fixating on accessing the knife.
    * Many knives are dropped during access.
    * Many deployments fail.
    * Many students attempt a cut only to realize their knife is not fully open resulting in crushed fingers and more dropped knives.
    * About 95% of the cuts to the bad guy are across the top of the legs, belly, outside of arms, and the back during clinches, or when they end up on the ground.

    The last time we did this drill was at the Southwest Alabama Police Academy. 21 officers did the drill twice. The first time was before being trained in IET. The results of the first go around-

    * Several officers turned their back to the bad guy.
    * Approximately 7 dropped knives.
    * Approximately 5 more were used to attempt a cut without being fully opened.
    * A poll of everyone in the room reported that one stab was observed and it was to the back during a clinch.
    * The rest of the cuts were to the top of the legs, outer arms, across the back during the clinch, and on the ground.

    The class was then trained in IET and the drill was conducted again with the following results-

    * Students as a rule have the bad guy increase the intensity.
    * The majority of officers used a Panic Push of some sort to gain distance.
    * One knife was dropped.
    * One failure to open.
    * The majority of first cuts were to the femoral artery area of the crotch, and the second cuts were usually to the brachial artery inside the upper arm.
    * The cut to the groin is often accompanied by a look of “Oh my God” on the face of the attacker.

    Be warned that even though this drill only takes about a minute to complete, but the combination of cardio, disorientation from the spinning, and head shots can take it’s toll even on those in reasonable shape.

    Everyone in the room has to act as a safety and along with the participants can call a stop to the drill at anytime for any reason. The most common is headgear knocked off.

    Without having a trainer for the knife you carry and pressure testing your reaction under stress with a drill like this, you will never be able to have any confidence in your training.


  2. #2
    VIP Member Array Blackeagle's Avatar
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    Every folder comes out of the pocket broken, and you need to fix it before it's useful in a fight. Going through some training similar to what you describe above has me strongly considering carrying a fixed blade instead of (or in addition to) a folder.

  3. #3
    Senior Member Array psychophipps's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Blackeagle View Post
    Every folder comes out of the pocket broken, and you need to fix it before it's useful in a fight. Going through some training similar to what you describe above has me strongly considering carrying a fixed blade instead of (or in addition to) a folder.
    Hear! Hear! I've been a proponent of the "Grip it and rip it!" simplicity of a fixed blade for a while on boards like this. Folders are certainly an option, especially if they're your only legal option for a defensive blade in your jurisdiction, but they are definitely a second best option as a defensive blade. I carry a fixed blade primary and a back-up folder because people don't flip out as bad when I use my folder for knife chores and it saves the edge on my realio-dealio knife.

    Great way to describe a folder, btw. I would modify it to say, "Every folder comes out of the pocket broken, and you need to fix it before it can be fully utilized in a fight." I will steal this and use it often when discussing defensive knife use. Thank you, sir!
    Last edited by psychophipps; February 18th, 2010 at 07:37 PM. Reason: corrected

  4. #4
    VIP Member Array Blackeagle's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by psychophipps View Post
    Great way to describe a folder, btw.
    I should emphasize that I can't claim credit for originating the description. I heard it from someone (though I can't remember who at this point).
    Last edited by Blackeagle; February 18th, 2010 at 04:34 PM.

  5. #5
    Member Array NC Buckeye's Avatar
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    I carry my folder weak side since my strong arm is likely involved and I would carry a ka-bar if they were legal in NC. I can carry a gun but not a fixed blade, how dumb is that.

  6. #6
    VIP Member Array Blackeagle's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by NC Buckeye View Post
    I carry my folder weak side since my strong arm is likely involved and I would carry a ka-bar if they were legal in NC. I can carry a gun but not a fixed blade, how dumb is that.
    One thing I've heard of people in states that bar fixed blades doing is to have a kydex sheath made for your folder and carry it locked in the open position. Technically, it's not a fixed blade, but on a practical basis it has almost all the advantages of one.

  7. #7
    Distinguished Member Array C9H13NO3's Avatar
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    Were they using regular enduras or the wave? Just curiosity.

    Big point on crossing the legs up there. Never cross your feet in a fight. Much to easy to be knocked over or unbalanced. Footwork ftw.
    -Ryan

    All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing.

  8. #8
    Senior Member Array mercop's Avatar
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    They were using regular Enduras. Waved knives opening towards the rear do even worse since when using them you start with a "pinch" grip and have to somehow establish a regular grip before cutting. This results in more dropped knives. Whenever you try to deploy the knife from the pocket and the blade from the knife at the same time you end up not doing either very well.

    About the fixed blades..don't be so sure. The longer a fixed blade is the harder it takes to deploy. Add a concealment garment to that and it is even harder. At least the folder is typically below garment level.

    If for some reason you draw is fouled with a folder you can still hammer fist with it. With the fixed blade...not so much.

    Tell me where and how you carry your knife and I will tell you the advantages and disadvantages that I see in it. Just like with the folder, unless you have a drone of your fixed blade with the exact carry option you will never know if it will work when you need it. - George

  9. #9
    Distinguished Member Array C9H13NO3's Avatar
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    I usually carry a wave endura in my right pocket oriented so the wave opens it. I also carry a TDI on my left hip with a pistol type draw, so if my weapon is in my right hand, I can easily access it with my left. Would my Benchmade AFO switchblade be better in your opinion than a waved knife (assuming legal to carry)?
    -Ryan

    All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing.

  10. #10
    Senior Member Array mercop's Avatar
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    We do not advocate autos, or spring assisted knives. The first reason is that they usually do not have trainers so they cannot be pressure tested. The second reason is two fold, first during a combat stress situation the body experiences vasoconstriction which causes the blood to leave the limbs and pour into the thoracic cavity. Without blood filling the finger tips your tactile sensation greatly diminishes. If you cannot feel the button you cannot push it. Again since most autos do not have trainers it is hard to pressure test this. The second part is that whether you are using a button on the side or the flipper on top of the knife you are left with poor grip that must be juggled to establish a good grip. This increases the likelihood of a dropped knife. These things are so evident to me that I would not carry and auto for SD nor would I advocate anyone would. This is without getting into that if the blade is impedded during deployment you will have to manually open it anyway, thus why not just carry a regular folder.- George

  11. #11
    Member Array Cruel Hand Luke's Avatar
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    Small fixed blades (ie Clinch Pick, K-bar TDI LE, and Cold Steel Braveheart ) all work well when carried at 11 o'clock and oriented so they are slightly "tip up/handle down" so they are drawn downward from under your closed front garment (that means untucked shirt). This makes 'em less likely to get caught up in your garment.

    I'm NOT talking straight up and down. I'm talking about the handle being SLIGHTLY angled downward. The good thing about those knives I listed is that they are also offered in drone trainers too so you can work your accessing against real pressure.
    Randy Harris
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    TRAIN with me....http://www.suarezinternationalstore....px?find=harris

  12. #12
    Member Array Cruel Hand Luke's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Blackeagle View Post
    One thing I've heard of people in states that bar fixed blades doing is to have a kydex sheath made for your folder and carry it locked in the open position. Technically, it's not a fixed blade, but on a practical basis it has almost all the advantages of one.
    Yeah, I actually used to make a sheath that was designed to carry a spyderco delica opened. I'll show it to you when I see you in Tom Sotis's class next month.
    Randy Harris
    Suarez International Tier 1 Staff Instructor
    NRA Certified Instructor
    Master Class IDPA SSP

    TRAIN with me....http://www.suarezinternationalstore....px?find=harris

  13. #13
    Senior Member Array mercop's Avatar
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    At least in MD a folder carried in the locked position is considered a fixed blade and is illegal. I tested this on a gang banger who carried a cheap folding knife open in his hoodie and got a conviction.- George

  14. #14
    Member Array Cruel Hand Luke's Avatar
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    Fortunately we don't all live in Maryland.
    Randy Harris
    Suarez International Tier 1 Staff Instructor
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    TRAIN with me....http://www.suarezinternationalstore....px?find=harris

  15. #15
    Senior Member Array psychophipps's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cruel Hand Luke View Post
    Fortunately we don't all live in Maryland.
    Big +1 there. One nice thing about being on the left side of the map is that you cab dodge a lot of garbage like that.

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