OODA Loop Drill...

Jared Traveler

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I'm working on changing the way I teach certain concepts, and trying to be capable of moving away from power point completely. Developing every aspect of the curriculum I teach into simpler "hip pocket" classes that are easier for everyone to understand.

Basically I want to be able to teach this stuff not only in a classroom, but also in a parking lot, or in a jungle village, with or without power, and make it fun. Also something people can easily duplicate, and pick up on quickly.

Okay..... The topic at hand teaching the OODA loop by having students do a few drills or games. Here is what I'm thinking right now:

Drill #1:
All students stand up, and when they preceive a threat, take one or two steps to safety (the door) .
-I have a bag or box at the front of the class 儭 inside are things like a cellphone, sunglasses, a training gun and knife ∴
-I keep reaching in the bag and pulling things out one at a time. Get their observation and orientation going. Eventually pulling out a weapon in an aggressive manner. Hopefully they will move at that point, Decide and Act. See something-Do something

Drill#2:
Same as above, but this time while I am at the front digging in the bag, an instructor in the back racks the slide on a weapon and yells "don't move!"
-Now they have to process the observation phase being audible not visual, and decide between moving vs complying

Drill#3:
Now I explain that when they see a threat, this time I want them to move not just one or two steps, but rather get completely out of the building. Move that far to safety once they see a threat.
-Now I produce a weapon 返 from the bag, they all exit the classroom.
-But run into a second armed(another instructor) threat at some point blocking their exit
-This forces them to not just OODA, but to do it as a loop. Because the Observation phase starts over, as they have a new problem and have to find another way out

Thoughts? Ideas for improvement?
 

wab25

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Basically I want to be able to teach this stuff not only in a classroom, but also in a parking lot, or in a jungle village, with or without power, and make it fun. Also something people can easily duplicate, and pick up on quickly.
This set of drills does not fit your requirements....

First you need at least one other instructor to work with you, probably would would best with at least 2 other instructors, so this requires set up time.

Second, you need a classroom to start in. If try this in a parking lot or jungle village, the students would "exit" in all directions, your surprise attacker would at best get 1 or 2.

Third, you would need to make everyone in the building and around the building aware of what is going on. If someone sees people trying to run out of a building, and some guy with a gun preventing them... it might be you and your instructors going through an OODA loop, only it will be the local SWAT team playing the other side... with real bullets.
 
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Jared Traveler

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This set of drills does not fit your requirements....

First you need at least one other instructor to work with you, probably would would best with at least 2 other instructors, so this requires set up time.

Second, you need a classroom to start in. If try this in a parking lot or jungle village, the students would "exit" in all directions, your surprise attacker would at best get 1 or 2.

Third, you would need to make everyone in the building and around the building aware of what is going on. If someone sees people trying to run out of a building, and some guy with a gun preventing them... it might be you and your instructors going through an OODA loop, only it will be the local SWAT team playing the other side... with real bullets.
Thanks for the feed back! I typically have one or two extras to help, or I can use other students as a last resort. But yes, I'm accounting for having one or two instructors.

I can do this in a parking lot, I would just need to find a corner of a building and inform them to move around the corner to safety. Then have the second instructor waiting behind the corner.

Regarding activation of a SWAT Team, great point. The reality is though that I do much more overt and drastic drills. So I choose my training sights carefully for some privacy. And let everyone in the immediate area aware of what is happening. Although this drill could be extremely low key.

I appreciate you taking the time to think through some things, everything you mentioned is important considerations.
 

JowGaWolf

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Not sure if this will help but I've done outside drills before. That sound similar to what you are doing. Below is where I used to teach Kung Fu. Students parked in the back of the school, where the yellow dot is. There have been some changes to the school (there's more paved area) in the rear parking lot. Before there were bushes close to where the yellow dot is. But I'll explain it as if I were going to do the same drill today.

Scenario: Students are leaving the building at the end of class. For safety, the doors are always locked so if you walk out of the building then you are locked out.

Training Awareness: The first training is to be aware of where you are along with the risks.
1. back parking lot away from public's view
2. Door locks behind you when exiting the building
3. The "Exit" in this case is to get to an area where you are in public view. Security Camera view cannot be relied on to escape the danger. It will only record the attack or your death.
4. Woods on the other side.

Cars would be in the back parking lot because it's at the end of the class. At minimum there would be a student car and a teacher car.

I would have one student wait inside while the attackers take position for an ambush. In this training I only cared about awareness and creating distance between the victim and the attacker. We may not all have the speed to get away but many of use have enough speed to create and maintain distance. Students would walk out of the building and learn how to walk past objects in a way that would allow them to see someone behind it and give them enough time to create distance.

The only real "Never do" action in this scenario is put yourself in a corner. If you can't run fast enough to escape then create distance by putting something in between you and the attacker. This may be a car, a bush, a tree, a utility box. This forces student to take inventory of the environment. If access to this building isn't limited then the back parking space would be a "no go zone" fewer cars, far from cars passing by, wooded areas etc make it a high risk area.

The front area could be used to run the same drill that we ran in the back of the school. Things like backing into a parking space can affect how much area you are aware of. Is it more beneficial to have your back to the parking lot or to the building? Questions like this help people become more aware about how they navigate their environment. It doesn't require any PowerPoints, minimum explanation is needed. It's actually better to allow students to make mistakes because we remember from mistakes that we make. It also gives them to opportunity to rethink their actions and come up with better actions.

I had one student who kept running to the corner where there was no escape. I asked her why did she run back to the door when she knew she could not get back into the building? She said she ran into the corner so that no one could attack her from behind. She not only did this once but 3 times. Even though this was a drill her fear kept putting her in the corner. After that I showed her the difference between what she's doing and creating distance.

1675778225843.png


I went through the same scenario and was able to spot my attacker because I approached objects that people can hide behind at an angle this increases the distance and allows me to see around an object before I actually pass it.

Had the attacker at our school waited by her car, this scenario would have eventually played out. If this was a scenario, and for us it is, I would tell students that she would created distance by walking on the driver's side of the red car (which seems to be hers) If the dark car was hers she should have should have walked in such way that allows her to keep an eye on the person. If the person attack drop your stuff if necessary and move to the other side of the car and try to keep the car between her and her attacker. In that scenario you don't need to be fast or have good endurance. You just need to be quick enough for a short distance to get to the other side of the car.

I like the parking lot scenarios because I know that not everyone can run fast enough to escape. The lady does her best to create distance. Her swinging her fist caused the attacker to hesitate long enough to create distance. Sometimes that's all you need. Better skills with staying on her feet may have gotten her to the door. When I teach kung fu, train kung fu, or teach self defense. I make footwork training a priority because falling down makes escaping more difficult if not impossible.
 

jmf552

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I'm a former Navy tactical aviator and while the OODA concept is interesting, I would not try to stretch it as many have to cover street self defense. Remember it was developed by a fighter pilot who never saw combat and only meant it for air-to-air combat. It's been endorsed by people like Grossman, who writes about killing in wartime, but never saw combat. If you brought up something like OODA in any preflight brief I ever participated in, you would have gotten laughed out of the ready room.

Varg Freeborn has been in over a hundred real-world street and prison fights. His book "Beyond OODA" goes into greater detail about the limitations of the concept. Better models are found in Gavin de Becker's "The Gift of Fear", Rory Miller's "Facing Violence", Tim Larkin's "When Violence is the Answer" and Freeborn's "Violence of Mind."

IMHO, people who throw the OODA term around, including shooting and SD instructors, are guilty of trying to be "tacticool."
 

JowGaWolf

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I'm a former Navy tactical aviator and while the OODA concept is interesting, I would not try to stretch it as many have to cover street self defense. Remember it was developed by a fighter pilot who never saw combat and only meant it for air-to-air combat. It's been endorsed by people like Grossman, who writes about killing in wartime, but never saw combat. If you brought up something like OODA in any preflight brief I ever participated in, you would have gotten laughed out of the ready room.

Varg Freeborn has been in over a hundred real-world street and prison fights. His book "Beyond OODA" goes into greater detail about the limitations of the concept. Better models are found in Gavin de Becker's "The Gift of Fear", Rory Miller's "Facing Violence", Tim Larkin's "When Violence is the Answer" and Freeborn's "Violence of Mind."

IMHO, people who throw the OODA term around, including shooting and SD instructors, are guilty of trying to be "tacticool."
Thanks for that additional info
 

drop bear

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I'm a former Navy tactical aviator and while the OODA concept is interesting, I would not try to stretch it as many have to cover street self defense. Remember it was developed by a fighter pilot who never saw combat and only meant it for air-to-air combat. It's been endorsed by people like Grossman, who writes about killing in wartime, but never saw combat. If you brought up something like OODA in any preflight brief I ever participated in, you would have gotten laughed out of the ready room.

Varg Freeborn has been in over a hundred real-world street and prison fights. His book "Beyond OODA" goes into greater detail about the limitations of the concept. Better models are found in Gavin de Becker's "The Gift of Fear", Rory Miller's "Facing Violence", Tim Larkin's "When Violence is the Answer" and Freeborn's "Violence of Mind."

IMHO, people who throw the OODA term around, including shooting and SD instructors, are guilty of trying to be "tacticool."

I am with you on this. I think the terminology is cringe. I think colour codes are cringe as well.

They do a simplified version for teens I like called stop, think, act.


(Actually they probably have exercises. I might have a look)
 

wab25

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I saw one drill being done at a seminar that I attended, which seemed pretty good and may give you a lot of what you are looking for.... with the added benefit of it being relatively simple to do... maybe even could fit in your hip pocket.

What you need is a blindfold. (they were using a dark bag to put over the head.) What would be nice would be to have training weapons... (they were using airsoft, as well as training knives and other training weapons... everyone needed glasses.... hence the bag)

You take the person that will do the drill, they stand in the middle of the room blind folded and with an airsoft gun in concealed carry. (you could use any training weapon or none at all.... but the guys running this were law enforcement, so the guy doing the drill had a gun....) Now, you quietly set up different scenarios, using the other people in the class. When ready, the guy takes the blind fold off and immediately has to figure out what is going on and respond appropriately.... before he or the another good guy gets "killed."

Scenarios:
simple:
1. Guy with a weapon is close up, in front ready to attack the student.
2. Guy far away in front, with weapon ready to attack.
3. Guy with weapon behind, ready to attack
4. Multiple attackers ready to attack

advanced:
1. bunch of people all around, one has a weapon concealed. Guy with the weapon tries to pull weapon and attack the one being drilled with as much advantage as he can get.
2. same as above, but multiple bad guys with weapons, mixed in with good guys
3. obvious hostage, bad guy has hostage with weapon to the head of the hostage
4. lots of good guys, bad guy has one hostage with weapon threat not obvious.... (guy has knife in arm that is around girl, directing her to walk out with him...)

really want to mess with someone:
1. No bad guys, just a bunch of good guys.... does an innocent get shot because he is looking too hard?
2. hostage situation, but after the bad guy gets shot, the hostage pulls out weapon and shoots the good guy.... (this one is tough, because you just identified who was the bad guy, who was the good guy and did the right thing... now the hostage becomes the bad guy....)

What really makes this work, is you mix up the scenarios, so the person being drilled never knows what his situation is until the blind fold comes off. You can keep rotating through the students, mixing it up each time. Nice parts are that you really don't need much, you can create your own situations and you don't need buildings, parking lots or anything besides your usual training area.
 
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Jared Traveler

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I'm a former Navy tactical aviator and while the OODA concept is interesting, I would not try to stretch it as many have to cover street self defense. Remember it was developed by a fighter pilot who never saw combat and only meant it for air-to-air combat. It's been endorsed by people like Grossman, who writes about killing in wartime, but never saw combat. If you brought up something like OODA in any preflight brief I ever participated in, you would have gotten laughed out of the ready room.

Varg Freeborn has been in over a hundred real-world street and prison fights. His book "Beyond OODA" goes into greater detail about the limitations of the concept. Better models are found in Gavin de Becker's "The Gift of Fear", Rory Miller's "Facing Violence", Tim Larkin's "When Violence is the Answer" and Freeborn's "Violence of Mind."

IMHO, people who throw the OODA term around, including shooting and SD instructors, are guilty of trying to be "tacticool."
I have read a few of those books, not all of them though. Thanks for the recommendations!

Context always matters. I'm not training elite pilots, I'm not even training advanced, or beginner tactical guys anymore. Just normal people who are unarmed and traveling to dangerous areas. To be successful teaching in that context, the trick is, not to try to fit in with advanced "tactical guys", rather to de-cop and de-mil.

The simple goal with this drill is to take a first step at getting people to not freeze up, to continue to think and solve problems, with an ever increasing amount of stress. This being their first low dose of problem solving an acute sudden low stress event. And perhaps more importantly using OODA as a debriefing tool to help them remember and unpack what just happened after the fact.
 
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Jared Traveler

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I saw one drill being done at a seminar that I attended, which seemed pretty good and may give you a lot of what you are looking for.... with the added benefit of it being relatively simple to do... maybe even could fit in your hip pocket.

What you need is a blindfold. (they were using a dark bag to put over the head.) What would be nice would be to have training weapons... (they were using airsoft, as well as training knives and other training weapons... everyone needed glasses.... hence the bag)

You take the person that will do the drill, they stand in the middle of the room blind folded and with an airsoft gun in concealed carry. (you could use any training weapon or none at all.... but the guys running this were law enforcement, so the guy doing the drill had a gun....) Now, you quietly set up different scenarios, using the other people in the class. When ready, the guy takes the blind fold off and immediately has to figure out what is going on and respond appropriately.... before he or the another good guy gets "killed."

Scenarios:
simple:
1. Guy with a weapon is close up, in front ready to attack the student.
2. Guy far away in front, with weapon ready to attack.
3. Guy with weapon behind, ready to attack
4. Multiple attackers ready to attack

advanced:
1. bunch of people all around, one has a weapon concealed. Guy with the weapon tries to pull weapon and attack the one being drilled with as much advantage as he can get.
2. same as above, but multiple bad guys with weapons, mixed in with good guys
3. obvious hostage, bad guy has hostage with weapon to the head of the hostage
4. lots of good guys, bad guy has one hostage with weapon threat not obvious.... (guy has knife in arm that is around girl, directing her to walk out with him...)

really want to mess with someone:
1. No bad guys, just a bunch of good guys.... does an innocent get shot because he is looking too hard?
2. hostage situation, but after the bad guy gets shot, the hostage pulls out weapon and shoots the good guy.... (this one is tough, because you just identified who was the bad guy, who was the good guy and did the right thing... now the hostage becomes the bad guy....)

What really makes this work, is you mix up the scenarios, so the person being drilled never knows what his situation is until the blind fold comes off. You can keep rotating through the students, mixing it up each time. Nice parts are that you really don't need much, you can create your own situations and you don't need buildings, parking lots or anything besides your usual training area.
These are great ideas! I use to do similar drills when I was teaching firearms skills, and martial arts skills. Even using a good at times.

When I was teaching CQB to police Cadets I would simply set up scenarios inside a room, and at that phase of their training all of the scenarios were designed to be solved without entering the room. The scenario started when they opened the door. Shoot vs no shoot, calling people out to cuff them in the hallway, ordering them down into a felony handcuffing position, and many other things.

However, this OODA drill is intended to be a giant step down from that level of stress. Just a way to introduce a concept.
 
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Jared Traveler

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Not sure if this will help but I've done outside drills before. That sound similar to what you are doing. Below is where I used to teach Kung Fu. Students parked in the back of the school, where the yellow dot is. There have been some changes to the school (there's more paved area) in the rear parking lot. Before there were bushes close to where the yellow dot is. But I'll explain it as if I were going to do the same drill today.

Scenario: Students are leaving the building at the end of class. For safety, the doors are always locked so if you walk out of the building then you are locked out.

Training Awareness: The first training is to be aware of where you are along with the risks.
1. back parking lot away from public's view
2. Door locks behind you when exiting the building
3. The "Exit" in this case is to get to an area where you are in public view. Security Camera view cannot be relied on to escape the danger. It will only record the attack or your death.
4. Woods on the other side.

Cars would be in the back parking lot because it's at the end of the class. At minimum there would be a student car and a teacher car.

I would have one student wait inside while the attackers take position for an ambush. In this training I only cared about awareness and creating distance between the victim and the attacker. We may not all have the speed to get away but many of use have enough speed to create and maintain distance. Students would walk out of the building and learn how to walk past objects in a way that would allow them to see someone behind it and give them enough time to create distance.

The only real "Never do" action in this scenario is put yourself in a corner. If you can't run fast enough to escape then create distance by putting something in between you and the attacker. This may be a car, a bush, a tree, a utility box. This forces student to take inventory of the environment. If access to this building isn't limited then the back parking space would be a "no go zone" fewer cars, far from cars passing by, wooded areas etc make it a high risk area.

The front area could be used to run the same drill that we ran in the back of the school. Things like backing into a parking space can affect how much area you are aware of. Is it more beneficial to have your back to the parking lot or to the building? Questions like this help people become more aware about how they navigate their environment. It doesn't require any PowerPoints, minimum explanation is needed. It's actually better to allow students to make mistakes because we remember from mistakes that we make. It also gives them to opportunity to rethink their actions and come up with better actions.

I had one student who kept running to the corner where there was no escape. I asked her why did she run back to the door when she knew she could not get back into the building? She said she ran into the corner so that no one could attack her from behind. She not only did this once but 3 times. Even though this was a drill her fear kept putting her in the corner. After that I showed her the difference between what she's doing and creating distance.

View attachment 29562

I went through the same scenario and was able to spot my attacker because I approached objects that people can hide behind at an angle this increases the distance and allows me to see around an object before I actually pass it.

Had the attacker at our school waited by her car, this scenario would have eventually played out. If this was a scenario, and for us it is, I would tell students that she would created distance by walking on the driver's side of the red car (which seems to be hers) If the dark car was hers she should have should have walked in such way that allows her to keep an eye on the person. If the person attack drop your stuff if necessary and move to the other side of the car and try to keep the car between her and her attacker. In that scenario you don't need to be fast or have good endurance. You just need to be quick enough for a short distance to get to the other side of the car.

I like the parking lot scenarios because I know that not everyone can run fast enough to escape. The lady does her best to create distance. Her swinging her fist caused the attacker to hesitate long enough to create distance. Sometimes that's all you need. Better skills with staying on her feet may have gotten her to the door. When I teach kung fu, train kung fu, or teach self defense. I make footwork training a priority because falling down makes escaping more difficult if not impossible.
I love that you are doing these kind of drills. I run a specific drill for responding to active shooter type events. This OODA drill is designed to be a step down in problem solving and intensity than the one you are describing.

I'm going to look over your drill more closely when I have time though, to see if there is anything I might use in other drills.
 

jayoliver00

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I'm working on changing the way I teach certain concepts, and trying to be capable of moving away from power point completely. Developing every aspect of the curriculum I teach into simpler "hip pocket" classes that are easier for everyone to understand.

Basically I want to be able to teach this stuff not only in a classroom, but also in a parking lot, or in a jungle village, with or without power, and make it fun. Also something people can easily duplicate, and pick up on quickly.

Okay..... The topic at hand teaching the OODA loop by having students do a few drills or games. Here is what I'm thinking right now:

Drill #1:
All students stand up, and when they preceive a threat, take one or two steps to safety (the door) .
-I have a bag or box at the front of the class 儭 inside are things like a cellphone, sunglasses, a training gun and knife ∴
-I keep reaching in the bag and pulling things out one at a time. Get their observation and orientation going. Eventually pulling out a weapon in an aggressive manner. Hopefully they will move at that point, Decide and Act. See something-Do something

Drill#2:
Same as above, but this time while I am at the front digging in the bag, an instructor in the back racks the slide on a weapon and yells "don't move!"
-Now they have to process the observation phase being audible not visual, and decide between moving vs complying

Drill#3:
Now I explain that when they see a threat, this time I want them to move not just one or two steps, but rather get completely out of the building. Move that far to safety once they see a threat.
-Now I produce a weapon 返 from the bag, they all exit the classroom.
-But run into a second armed(another instructor) threat at some point blocking their exit
-This forces them to not just OODA, but to do it as a loop. Because the Observation phase starts over, as they have a new problem and have to find another way out

Thoughts? Ideas for improvement?

These are very good ideas. Basically roleplaying/Larping; it works.
 

JowGaWolf

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These are very good ideas. Basically roleplaying/Larping; it works.
ha ha ha.. larping? I hope not,

I had a student that took kung fu and did larping too. It was the strangest thing for me to see.
 

jayoliver00

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ha ha ha.. larping? I hope not,

I had a student that took kung fu and did larping too. It was the strangest thing for me to see.

Haha, no man it's really, really fun. It just depends on the type/org of Larping. Mine is Dagorhir and it's not easy. There are lots of legit weapons techniques, battlefield tactics, etc. I am probably more athletic than 95% of them (of the 5%, there are legit MA'ist, MMA fighters, etc.), but when swinging a sword vs. the average nerds, I lose around 50%. Among their top 30%, I'd lose 70-90%. Vs. 1 of the top 5%, he's beaten me about 99% of the time of at least 100 exchanges over the years. I mean, in a fist fight, I'd knock them all out but if these were real weapons, I'd be dead easy.
 

JowGaWolf

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Haha, no man it's really, really fun. It just depends on the type/org of Larping. Mine is Dagorhir and it's not easy. There are lots of legit weapons techniques, battlefield tactics, etc. I am probably more athletic than 95% of them (of the 5%, there are legit MA'ist, MMA fighters, etc.), but when swinging a sword vs. the average nerds, I lose around 50%. Among their top 30%, I'd lose 70-90%. Vs. 1 of the top 5%, he's beaten me about 99% of the time of at least 100 exchanges over the years. I mean, in a fist fight, I'd knock them all out but if these were real weapons, I'd be dead easy.
If you train weapons in a martial arts schools. AKA spar with weapons then you should be able to a higher success rate. But very few martial arts schools actually spar with weapons. If the weapons aren't heavy as actual weapons then that would have an affect two. Some weapon swing techniques are dictated because of the weight of the weapon. Lighter weapons you can swing any way you wish. This is not the same for heavy or long weapons.

But it all goes back to sparring. People who train kung fu but don't spar using kung fu. Will not be able to be the guy on the street who spars with his brother and friends. You have to do it in order to be good at it. It could also be that the person that's beating you has had some formal training in martial arts? It could mean that you just suck at it, but I didn't want to start off by saying that lol.

A lot of what you see here are things done due to the weight of the weapon.

Dog Brothers weapon fighting doesn't look like larping fighting.

But with that said. If this is what I have to go against, then I'm confident that basic staff swings from a martial arts school with no sparring is more than enough lol.
 

jayoliver00

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If you train weapons in a martial arts schools. AKA spar with weapons then you should be able to a higher success rate. But very few martial arts schools actually spar with weapons. If the weapons aren't heavy as actual weapons then that would have an affect two. Some weapon swing techniques are dictated because of the weight of the weapon. Lighter weapons you can swing any way you wish. This is not the same for heavy or long weapons.

But it all goes back to sparring. People who train kung fu but don't spar using kung fu. Will not be able to be the guy on the street who spars with his brother and friends. You have to do it in order to be good at it. It could also be that the person that's beating you has had some formal training in martial arts? It could mean that you just suck at it, but I didn't want to start off by saying that lol.

A lot of what you see here are things done due to the weight of the weapon.

Dog Brothers weapon fighting doesn't look like larping fighting.

But with that said. If this is what I have to go against, then I'm confident that basic staff swings from a martial arts school with no sparring is more than enough lol.


I knew you were going to talk about the weight of the weapons.

Many are a little lighter than actual swords, etc. but some are heavier; ie. the spears (or maybe the same weight). I'm pretty sure that my 6ft glaive is near the weight of a real one.

My org. used to have rules on minimum weight and such but now we don't, so there's a new influx of ultra light, carbon fiber weapons. Like my 8ft spear out of a bandshop pole is $100; the carbon fiber version is $300, and makes a ton of difference.

But we do have Martial Artists with weapons experience that Larp, and they lose just the same; but they catch up & improve much faster. There is a high level TMA guy who has a Kendo/Judo gym I think; but he's also a long time Larper....hardly loses, but is also 6'4" with a ton of cheat weapons like these $300 carbon fiber joints.

I have no doubt that you can wreck them with your skills using a staff. But if we're talking about a glaive, then the Larper really doesn't have to slash you that hard to maim or kill you in real life...although no doubt you'd have excellent defense against it w/your staff (or maybe not). Try it out first and see.
 
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Jared Traveler

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These are very good ideas. Basically roleplaying/Larping; it works.
What I described in the drill above lasts a minute, maybe. But I do stress inoculation training with students, placing them in scenarios that last for up to eight hours. Typically with maybe 15 staff/actors involved.
 

JowGaWolf

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Holy crap. They should just train martial arts and play D&D. Leave off the play acting.
that's what I asked the student who did Larping. He trained real staff techniques. But he never gave me answer. It just confused me as to why he would know the real thing and then go and to pretend staff fighting. I will say that his wasn't this bad, but for me, the larping stuff is too much like when I was a kid playing "Batman and robber" to do it now just gives me a big disconnect with my reality perspective.
 

Tony Dismukes

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Holy crap. They should just train martial arts and play D&D. Leave off the play acting.
I've played a little with LARPing. Would probably still be doing it if I hadn't discovered my HEMA group. My observations:

It's a lot of fun.

It can end up being a really good cardio workout.

There is some overlap between the skills and attributes it develops and those required for actual weapon fighting. Also some significant differences, of course. But then any weapon based combat sport is going to have those disconnects. I wouldn't rate it as one of the most efficient ways to develop functional skills in melee weapon fighting, but I would probably put it even with or ahead of most "real" martial arts which include weapons training but have no sparring component for that weapons training.

Which reminds me, the last time this discussion came up I promised a post comparing the relative pros and cons of various weapon-based martial arts and combat sports (LARPing, SCA, HEMA, Olympic fencing, Kali, Kendo, etc) as I saw them, but I never got around to it. I'll see if I can get that written up and posted this week.
 
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