By Roger Phillips, Owner of Fight Focused Concepts
Since 2001, there has been some very nice work done in the arena of the “reactive” gunfight. This had largely been a forgotten/missing piece of the puzzle. As we have worked on bringing this piece of the puzzle back to the forefront, many exciting, effective, and efficient methods have been discovered, or more aptly rediscovered. These less well know methods have caught many people’s attention and the study of the reactive gunfight has taken on a growth at an exponential rate. The excitement at this growth and the wealth of knowledge that has come out of it has led to some of the very best training courses that the private sector has ever offered. These courses have raised the reactive gun fighting skill sets to a status that will never allow for them to be forgotten again. With such great success and focus, the reactive gunfight skill sets have taken a very predominant role inside of the training industry. The amount of change that I have witnessed since 2001 is simply astounding.
As soon as we became comfortable with our new-found training philosophy, Murphy reared his ugly head. With the recent cases of mall shooting and church shooting, along with the threat to see even more of this type of attacks, it has become very clear that there needs to be a seamless integration between the proactive gunfight and the reactive gunfight. The focus can not just be on typical combat distance. They must include all distances, with priorities made to “the most likely.” Now, great strides are being made to seamlessly integrate the proactive gun fight with the reactive gun fight.
“Gun fighting is a thinking man’s game.” Responses to specific situations have to be firmly grounded in common sense and logic. This is what strategy, tactics, and mindset is all about.
As we look at the fight continuum, we need to understand that the “fight or flight” response is a continuum also. It is not “either/or,” it is about varying degrees of the combination of “fight or flight” to come up with the best solution to the problem. This is all about offense and defense and the varying degrees of the usage of offense and defense.
There is no doubt, that in the right place the old saying “the best defense is a good offense” is the very best solution for the problem. This is usually from an extreme dominant position or one where extreme domination of the action is the best solution, tactically and mindset wise, physically and psychologically.
The ultimate goal is to win. If winning is best achieved by taking the adversary out of the fight as quickly and ruthlessly as possible…..then just do it. This is where “The Balance” swings to the offensive minded “to hit” response as the priority response that will end the fight, with you as the victor.
There are also times where the offensive minded “to hit” takes on an equal importance to the defensive minded “to not be hit.” Once again, this is probably from a dominant position or one where dominating the action is the best solution tactically or mindset wise, physically or psychologically. The biggest difference comes down to the extent of initiative that the confrontation started out with and the distances involved. Since it is not an “extremely dominant” situation “to not be hit” has to enter into the equation.
Unfortunately, there are times where we must think defensive first. “Too not be hit” takes on the predominant role, due to the fact that you must survive the initial contact before you can even get into the fight. This is where all of the recent hard work has paid off. Without nailing down the reactive gunfight there simply could not be a seamless integration of the proactive – equal initiative – reactive continuum.
We now have everything in place. We just need to put it in its proper place. There is a definite balance between the “To hit and not be hit” concept that allows for us to have the very best solution to every situation possible.
The Fight Continuum: “The fight will be what the fight will be”
“Situations dictate strategy, strategies dictate tactics, and tactics dictate techniques.”
We must have the techniques down to cover all of the possibilities. These techniques become fluid concepts inside of the continuum’s. We must be able to access these fluid concepts, within the correct context of the fight, at the subconscious level. We must be able to apply the concepts, within the balance “to hit and to not be hit” to solve the problem by the most effective and efficient means as possible. From one inch to two hundred yards, from a dominant position, to being way behind in the reactionary curve, and everything in between. We must understand and train with visualization in “The Balance”.