TKD & Multiple Attackers (In reference to a quote by Exile)

Kacey

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I studied KKW TKD and part of the teachings included lessons on using our skills against multiple attackers. When I promoted to BB I had to spar against 2 attackers at once. It was my understanding that the KKW required facing multiple opponents for Dan promotions. Do they still require this? Do other styles of TKD have similar requirements?

Yes - starting at BB ranks for free sparring, and at red belt ranks for step sparring.
 

colinmatchett

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When I achieved 1st dan in 1989, our karate club 1st dan fight test was a 4 on 1, 8 minute fight full contact fight. To pass, you had to not get knocked out and "score" at least 15 solid (body shuddering) hits. We used foot pads, light gloves, and nothing else. However, for my black belt test I did wear a hockey helmet as we were allowed to punch to the head and I wanted to avoid a serious injury. Our club was focused solely on self defence and we regularly fought multiple opponents. I think even the test for blue belt was a 2 on 1 fight. It was great training, though it was very rough, even when I was 18 years old and full and pith and vinegar. I still cringe everytime I watch the old video of the black belt fight. (I am in the process of getting the VHS video put on DVD so maybe I can post it for you to watch at some point).

There were some very important lessons learned by fighting multiple, aggressive opponents. To avoid getting completely pummelled, distancing and movement came almost instintively over time. The other thing that was learned was blocking and countering while moving out of multiple lines of attack. Blocking against multiple attackers is extremely important because sometimes there is no place to go and the only way to avoid getting hit is to block or deflect.

I am currently studying WTF TKD and preparing for a 1st dan test in the spring. One of the fights I have to do is a two on one fight for, I believe 3 minutes, but I don't believe we will fight any more than two opponents until the higher dan levels. Also, there are no head punches allowed.(which at 36 years of age, I am really appreciating!)

I guess my point is the TKD or any martial art can be effective against multiple attackers but the only way to train this to fight multiple attackers on a regular basis. Of course, sparring in the dojang is not a true simulation of a street fight but I can't think of any better preparation than sparring multiple opponents. Start with 2, then 3, and even 4 opponents as you progress in your skills.

Colin
 

dancingalone

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What "style" of TKD do you practice? What Org. do you belong to? Dealing with multiple attackers was defiantly part of KKW TKD curriculum. It was a requisite for Dan promotions. I wouldn’t be surprised though, if schools that emphasize WTF style Olympic sparring abandon this. As they have with many of our style’s SD oriented aspects. I just wondered how other style and Organizations view this aspect of SD.


I came up through Jhoon Rhee's line in Texas. Blood and guts era work. Lots of sparring and heavy hitting. No org membership since we thought they were largely useless but that's been discussed in another thread.

Actually, this isn’t the case with my system, rather the opposite is true. Facing multiple attackers called for emphasizing the core of the system, putting greater impetus on our usual techniques and strategic principles. I describe before how I was taught to fight. The goal was to quickly incapacitate (knock unconscious) your adversary without taking damage. We attempted to accomplish this by combining very aggressive striking with movement, directing fast, powerful blows to vulnerable targets while relying on evasive footwork and angular positioning. When in a fight, I will always try to do as much damage as quickly as possible while seeking an advantageous position. This holds true when facing one or three adversaries, though be it much more of a necessity when there are multiple attackers. Coincidently, I was taught a similar approach when facing weapons, other than a few disarming techniques it was pretty much business as usual. If an attacker thrust a knife towards my belly I would side step, kick to the groin and follow up with a knock out blow to the head just as I would if it had been a punch to the gut. In this way my style kept things simple, an important factor for SD.


Sounds pretty similar to my TKD training... I assert that's actually just training to defeat a single opponent at a time despite the number you are facing and NOT true multiple combat training. Tellner's list is pretty solid in my opinion for listing the qualities of arts that really address fighting more than one attacker at once. What you describe doesn't really match that list at all.

 
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foot2face

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I think that you were very fortunate to wind up training in the dojang where you've studied, f2f.
I believe I was. My brother and I are very thankful for having the opportunity to train there.
If more of them were like that, I think people in the MA world would have a very different view of TKD. It sounds to me as if your school has a very different business model, as the bean counters would say, from the standard dojang, and I'm not talking about McDojangs exclusively. Even very good TKD schools typically have to compromise a good deal on their martial content if they want to keep their core clientele, especially insofar as kids are involved.
Coming from someone as passionate and dedicated to TKD as you are Exile, I take this as a huge compliment. Thank you.
Sounds to me as if it's a labor of love for some devoted real-combat enthusiast who's happy to give up big profits to teach an effective fighting system the way s/he thinks it ought to be done…
You couldn’t be more right. The school was always small and never had that many students. My master had to move locations several times due to issues with rent.
Dealing with the adrenal shock aspect is probably the thing that's most missing from ordinary 'self-defense' training in MAs... all the skills in the world aren't going to help you if you freeze solid.
I know it’s not your thing, but full-contact free sparring is useful for this. It helps one become accustom to having violence directed towards them. After a while being attacked and hit with random strikes just doesn’t faze you.
I came up through Jhoon Rhee's line in Texas.
Ah…GM Jhoon Rhee. My master held him in high regard.
Sounds pretty similar to my TKD training... I assert that's actually just training to defeat a single opponent at a time despite the number you are facing and NOT true multiple combat training.
What do you consider “true multiple combat training“…learning how to do jumping split kicks, knocking two guys out at once? This ismultiple combat training, as well as anti-weapons training and single attacker training. The objective of my system is tactical simplicity, instead of relying on different techniques and strategies for different situations we employed our cores skill set in a way that allowed it to be effective across a variety of situations. Facing someone with a weapon or multiple attackers didn’t change what I would normally do. It increased the intensity for sure, but I would rely on the same skills and tactics that I would if fighting a single attacker, just more so.
How long did you train in TKD? As others have mentioned, facing multiple adversaries is not trained till later on. Perhaps your school doesn’t address it until higher Dan ranks. TKD is often taught using the “onion method”. You learn something, seemingly in it’s entirety (getting the whole onion), but your initial understanding of it is superficial. It’s true meaning laying within. Your instructor will gradually peel off layer by layer, allowing you to gain a deeper understanding. It could be that your TKD training does account for multiple opponents, it just hasn’t been revealed to you yet. Or perhaps your school just doesn’t teach it, but many others do.
Tellner's list is pretty solid in my opinion for listing the qualities of arts that really address fighting more than one attacker at once. What you describe doesn't really match that list at all
Tellner’s list is very good but not the final word on how to fight more than one attacker at once. Others have found success relying on different methods. Besides, my training does incorporate a majority of the qualities he listed.
 

tellner

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Tellners list is very good but not the final word on how to fight more than one attacker at once. Others have found success relying on different methods. Besides, my training does incorporate a majority of the qualities he listed.
It certainly wasn't meant as the last word, just a list of common traits.

What do you think was redundant?
What was missing?
What are some of the other approaches?
 
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foot2face

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It certainly wasn't meant as the last word, just a list of common traits.
What do you think was redundant?What was missing?
What are some of the other approaches?

Like I said before your list is very good, there is nothing wrong with it, in fact most of the qualities you listed are intrinsic to my system. My comment was directed more towards Dancingalone’s injudicious dogmatic use of it for determining whether my methods, or any for that matter, are effective for dealing with multiple attackers. His determination that my methods don’t match what you listed was a bit hasty. I wanted to make the point that though your list is an excellent one, more can be added and that some call for tactics that diverge from the ones you listed. For example #10 “An ability to cause damage with every movement but less emphasis on the big fight-ending kill shot. “ I heard several experts assert that dealing with multiple attackers is not the time to be reserved. When facing a single adversary you may have the luxury of being cautious, a bit standoffish and selective with your shots, in order to mitigate any injury you might incur but when facing multiple attacker you are going to get hurt so you might as well swing for the fences and try to end the altercation as soon as possible. This is the best way to lesson your chance of injury, the longer the fight last the worst off you’ll be. Then there is #13 “Fighting six people at once rather than fighting one person six times”, while I’ve heard this before I’ve also heard people argue the opposite. They stress tactics that call for engaging your attackers one at a time. Tactics such as “run and hit” ( as oppose to hit and run), where you run back a bit to disperse their numbers, deal with the attacker who keeps up with you the most then repeat until safe. They also stress taking advantage of your environment, making use of narrow hallways or the space between two parked cars, this way only one attacker can reach you at a time.

Be Well -F2F
 

DArnold

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The question is always, are the SD techs specifically designed to enable you to face multiple attackers coming in at you, no-rules, and with the intent to leave you brain-dead, with every damaging attack the experienced street thug and bar brawler is going to use on you, and working in tandem, one to keep you busy, one to get round you from the back? Or are they specifically geared to a one-on-one street combat situation. And so far as the various testing protocols at the KKW are concerned, are you, in contrast, facing multiple opponents under sparring-type conventions, in effect working separately? It makes a big difference. I'm not saying that you cannot train the effective TMA techs against more than one attacker, but rather that the techs themselves, as evidenced in the forms, are devoted to self-defense methods against a single unconstrained attacker, where you are not having to deal with the possiblity of a tackle or choke hold from the rear while engaged at close quarters with an assailant in front of you. The techniques are geared, IOW, for one-on-one assault/defense situations. They can certainly be adapted, up to a pointbut three assailants? That's a major stretch, I think. Even with two, I'd be very hesitant to use some of the continuations that I'd certainly favor if only one were involved. With two guys working as a team, you can't afford to let one of them out of your field of vision even very briefly, or occupy yourself with one of the attackers to the degree that the tech sets of the karate-based MAs encourage you to do.

If you look at the original context of the discussion, the issue was whether there were particular MAs which involved specific multiple-opponent techniques as components of their technical repertoire and basic syllabus. That was where the issue came up, in particular in connection with The Master's post here. In particular:



I am unaware of any part of standard TKD (or other karate-based) curricula that incorporate the particular kinds of methods TM is referring to here. Hence my response...


If you look at techniques with the above linear view then your conclusion makes sense. However, thinking that a low block with the outer forearm is used against a front kick is similar, as the block is to defend an area, not just a specific technique.
 

tellner

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His determination that my methods dont match what you listed was a bit hasty.
Ah, all is clear now, thanks :)

I wanted to make the point that though your list is an excellent one, more can be added and that some call for tactics that diverge from the ones you listed.
Oh, of course. Those were just a few off the top of my head. Sometimes the words used are a little confusing. They're used in specific non-everyday ways. Maybe this will help clear up some of the confusion...

For example #10 An ability to cause damage with every movement but less emphasis on the big fight-ending kill shot. I heard several experts assert that dealing with multiple attackers is not the time to be reserved.
A multiple attacker situation is a deadly force situation by definition. You simply can't hold back. Four or five pretty wimpy guys can hold you down and kick you to death. And one of the scariest things I've heard of was of a man who had a dozen Schusshund-trained Chihuahuas that worked as a group. By the time you stomped two or three to death the rest would hamstring you and act like a school of piranhas.

What I meant is that with more than one you have a target-rich environment. There will always be some unpleasant way to reach out and touch them as opposed to a duel where the other guy's guard will be optimally set to stop your attacks. You have to keep hurting them, because they will certainly be hurting you. When an opportunity to cause some pain or minor damage presents itself - and it will - you need to be able to take advantage of it. It might be a stumble here, an elbow there, a peeled-back toenail in passing, or two opponents shoved into each other for just a moment with a thumb to the eye as you move on. It won't be the textbook-perfect setup you've practiced with your killer combo and finishing technique. That works better in the more constrained world of one-on-one encounters.


Then there is #13 Fighting six people at once rather than fighting one person six times, while Ive heard this before Ive also heard people argue the opposite. They stress tactics that call for engaging your attackers one at a time.
What I mean here is that fighting more than one person is different than fighting that many single duels. They are at least as fast and committed as you are, so every time you do something, so do they. That's one of the real weaknesses of most (not all) TMA in dealing with more than one attacker. They act as if you can just stand there like Bruce Lee in Return of the Dragon and fight one guy while the others stand around and watch. Then go to the next. Then the next. It just doesn't work that way. They will all be doing something while you're doing whatever you're doing.

Unless it's Cyrano on the Bridge fighting the hundred or you're in a narrow hallway there will be group dynamics to consider. Some of the most important tactics like finding holes in the group and moving through them, getting them in each others' way, lining them up so that only one or two can reach you at a time and so on simply do not exist in one-on-one encounters. They rely on the fact that there is more than one person and acknowledge the reality that you have to deal with them as a group.

There is also the psychology of the group to consider. If one starts to run the others will have a tendency to follow. If the leader falls down with a wet crunch or someone is lying there screaming in agony it can have change what the group is doing. And so on.

You don't want to stand there and try to block-and-hit with six guys all at once. That means you have to fight them as a group in ways that minimize their ability to do that. You can't treat it like a set of single encounters that will all happen neatly one after the other.
[/quote]
 

Last Fearner

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The Last Legionary

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Well, f2f, out of respect for you, and in accordance with the rules of Martial Talk, I won't derail the thread, even if moderators don't follow the rules. Here is my reply to properly inform, and respectfully enlighten those who are misled by comments made here by exile.

http://martialtalk.com/forum/showthread.php?p=926988#post926988
You sure seem to have a number of problems with moderators and moderation here. Could it be your deodorant rather than guarding your right took a left turn?
 

tellner

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LL, where does that quote of yours "All warfare is based on deception" come from? My Silat teacher just used it tonight.
 

The Last Legionary

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LL, where does that quote of yours "All warfare is based on deception" come from? My Silat teacher just used it tonight.
It's from SunTzu's "Art of War".
Section I - Laying Plans
18. All warfare is based on deception.
 
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foot2face

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Yes - starting at BB ranks for free sparring, and at red belt ranks for step sparring.
Kacey, can you please elaborate on how the Ch'ang H'on style trains for and deals with multiple attackers.
 

Kacey

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Kacey, can you please elaborate on how the Ch'ang H'on style trains for and deals with multiple attackers.

The same way we train for single attackers - using techniques from patterns for step sparring, pre-arranged sparring, semi-free sparring, and then free sparring. There are techniques that can be used for multiple attackers as low as yellow belt, although there are more as you progress through the ranks. Like other difficult techniques, training in this begins well below the level at which it is required - I usually introduce the concept formally to red belts, although 2 on 1 sparring isn't required for testing until II Dan.

Here's an example, I think, of what you're trying to find out: one of the gentlemen who tested last weekend for VI Dan based his specialty demonstration on one particular pattern, Ko-Dang. He started by performing the pattern alone; then he performed the pattern again with 4 attackers in a preset routine, modifying the techniques sufficiently to be effective for the angle of the attackers - we started with 1 in front, 1 behind, and 2 45 degrees off the front, although we moved around throughout the pattern, staying in the same general positions of front, back, and sides; then he performed the pattern again in a semi-free sparring format (you know who's attacking and when, but not with what) with three attackers. Finally, he demonstrated 6 on 1 free sparring, using only techniques from the pattern for defense and offense.
 

matt.m

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Wow, I do not understand all the intolerance etc. Look, TKD and Judo are arts 1st and sports second. Tae Kwon Do, as a traditional art is taught in the following aspect. "Every block is a breaking technique and every strike is a counter to aggression." GGM Lee H. Park taught that to GM Hildebrand. He taught the same to the hapkido class, so my father got a big dose of the same info.

Anyway, we do a lot of directional fighting drills where it is "Free fighting." against multiple attackers.

The point of poomsea is reps, reps and more reps. The point isn't that you use Tae Guek Il Jang or Yul-Gok, whatever to fight. The point of poomsea is the fact that you have a set of techniques at your disposal to protect yourself with. The more reps, the better you know the technique.

Look.......it is no different in Yudo or Hapkido. The more you do the better you can do. Tae Kwon Do, Yudo, Hapkido.........whether it be poomsea, throwing or wrist/clothes techniques of hapkido whatever have to be physically and mentally practiced until you can visualize and feel it in your mind.

Gee would you ask a distance runner to run sprints only? That would be ridiculous. The point is in tae kwon do you have to have the poomsea, one steps, three steps, breaking and sparring. If one piece is missing then the effectiveness is moot.

Sorry, I am really harded headed on the issue. I have seen "Old school" hard core training and well I just believe that it is all about reps, reps, reps. If you only spar and don't do poomsea you are missing out on knowledge you are not getting by doing them.

The way I have always been trained within Moo Sul Kwan is that reps, reps, reps 1st and foremost. Competition is just something you do to the best of your ability.

However, we are extremely self defense orientated over tournament orientated. So our reps that do tie on their belts and spar always do excetionally well.

Oh and just for grins, a week ago I was doing the isometic/power version of Do-San. The poomsea begins with a drop into front stance, mid block, reverse punch.

To get to the point I did a mid block through a 1 inch pine and reverse punched through 2 1 inch pine with no sweat. So gee, 1 inch pine is harder than a joint or forearm so to think that TKD is not applicable to multiple attackers is just down right perponderous.
 

SageGhost83

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Maybe I am just a little ignorant but, can't all techniques be modified by the individual to fit both one-on-one and multiple attacker scenarios provided that they are trained in that way? I mean, aren't there levels to technique applications like say, a block is a block on one level, a strike on another level, and a grappling technique on another level? Could they also have levels such as one-on-one on one level (trying say that three times fast), and multiple attackers on another level? Perhaps the forms were originally designed for one-on-one encounters so that the principles could be more clearly taught and passed down without all of the extra baggage, then one could add in training for multiple attacker scenarios as they saw fit? Or maybe Multiple attacker scenarios have more to do with *strategy* than *specific techniques*? I personally think that TKD was designed for one-on-one on the more basic levels, but there are things in there once you reach the more advanced levels that teach how to handle multiple attacker scenarios. Just my opinion, but I am certainly enjoying this discussion :bangahead:.
 

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