Jeff Anderson

Urban Warfare: The Gun Is Loose…Now What?

Fighting in built-up areas, engaging in combat in urban surroundings, often forces you to fight with very little room to maneuver. Whether you’re on the battlefield, defending yourself in a home-invasion robbery, or facing a violent attacker in any other urban or suburban setting, space can be at a premium and you’re at greater risk.

It’s always important to note that when you’re fighting in built-up areas, one of the most important survival principles is to gain access to a weapon.  If you’re in the city, there should be plenty of improvised weapons around you (such as bricks, sticks, metal bars, etc.) and if you’re a soldier, you will most likely have your weapon with you when fighting.  In built up areas, however, it’s also very easy to lose your weapon due to the confined space you’re fighting in.

Built up areas often offer multiple environmental obstacles and it’s easy to trip, fall, bang into a wall or other obstacle.  If you have a weapon, you’re at a great risk of losing it and the same goes for your attacker if he’s armed.  At some point in a close-quarters struggle you or he might lose your weapon.  Your first impulse will be to try and recover it, or to fight for possession of it… and that can actually get you killed!  Here’s why…

You see, the one mistake almost every fighter makes when fighting in built-up areas, especially if he lacks training, is to focus on the weapon instead of the real threat.  The weapon, by itself, can’t hurt you.  It’s the man who can hurt you, and he’s the real enemy.  If it looks like it’s going to be a life-or-death struggle to gain access to a loose weapon, especially when you’re cramped for space follow these principles instead:

Fighting in Built Up Areas –
Weapon Retention Tip #1:

Stop worrying about the weapon and start worrying about the man.  As long as your force multiplier is on the ground or the floor, it can’t hurt you.

Fighting in Built Up Areas –
Weapon Retention Tip #2:

Use his own survival impulse against him.  He’ll go for the weapon instinctively.  While he’s focused on the bait, you can target him more effectively.

Fighting in Built Up Areas –
Weapon Retention Tip #3:

Use your combatives.  Football kick your enemy while he’s struggling to get that fallen weapon.  Rain hammerfist blows down on him.  Knee him.  Overwhelm him while he’s still thinking of that weapon he’s never going to reach.

Fighting in Built Up Areas –
Weapon Retention Tip #4:

Once your enemy is on the defensive, you can recover the weapon to finish him off or take it and escape.

When it comes to your self defense training, think outside the box and outside your traditional training environment and the hazards you may face such as those when fighting in built-up areas.

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