So you are there enjoying your well-deserved glass of beer (your fourth of the night), and the next thing you know is the world has become silent.
You are no longer standing up but looking up at the ceiling, the world seems distant, almost as if you are being swallowed up by the floor.
You can hear arguing, but the audio is toned down, a bit like being underwater.
You are there, but at the same time, you are not, yet you are frozen, your body unable to move, your brain unable to think, time has halted.
And then it goes dark.
You have been knocked out.
In this article, we address the subject of street knockouts and why they occur.
It Is The Punch You Don’t See Coming
The punch you don’t see coming is the one that gets you. That is what they say, and that is true.
I have seen hard boxers knocked out in the street by the guy stood next to them that they never knew was there.
But that is the reason people get knocked out; it is not because they weren’t a good fighter it is because someone decided to play by their rules and not yours.
In our world we play nice, we play fair, and it is one on one, that’s how two people sort their differences.
Now that is your worldview, but it is not shared by the guy that just knocked you out, his worldview is where anything goes, where hitting a guy when he least expected it IS FIGHTING.
Now, this is the major thing to take home, what you think is ‘fighting’ and what other people think are two different things.
When it comes to fighting, we have people who think it is ok to hit people with bottles, to glass them, hit people with baseball bats and kick a person in the head when they are down.
If you are reading this, I guess you are a normal decent human, great, so this is where you need to check your ego at the door.
90% of Martial Artists believe their ego when it comes to training. They never think that a third person will get the ‘drop’ on them and even if this idea has come into their head, they have an ‘it will never happen to me’ view.
Well, it can and does happen.
Enter shapeshifting, the solution for the street.
Defence Lab Is Built Around Reality
I have seen it time and time again. The second when a person who has never trained in Defence Lab comes in with an open mind and leaves with their jaws dropped.
Why, because they get to experience a tiny fraction of reality when they step in the middle of a multi-person attack scenario and realise that their A game is now a D minus.
The holes that this drill shows up can be a huge ego crush and guess what; some people don’t come back.
The effect this can have on ego is quite dramatic. Very often I have driven home from sessions with Andy Norman, and my head spins.
But how? After all, I am very experienced. The answer lies in the place that Andy Norman takes your mind.
That place is the street, the bar, the nightclub or wherever violence could enter your life. It is great saying ‘I would do xy and z’, but it is a whole different league trying to do that with two other people throwing bombs at you.
And there lies the ego buster, if your self-defence skills only work with the one attacker playing your game with your rules, then they don’t work.
Yes, you may only deal with one person, but that is not something you can control. You never know who is going to get involved and unless you train for this, your skills count for nothing.
One of the core issues in self-defence and Martial Arts is overthinking.
We over plan, over think, overestimate our own ability.
The simple question is this, ‘will this work against two people?’
It is amazing that people will train with weapons, learn high kicks, grapple and so many other techniques that are ineffective if you just add one more to the mix.
It is not to say those things should not be learned because they should but when things can be so easily undone just by adding one more attacker shouldn’t that question be answered at the beginning of your training?
And shouldn’t that question be answered in every lesson, with every technique?
If we can’t make a technique work when we just add another unskilled opponent into the mix what does that say about the technique being fit for purpose?
Now you can’t throw the baby out with the bathwater here. There is always a time and a place for one on one techniques, but we cannot ignore the fact that in many situations there is more than one attacker!
We started this article with a look at why people get knocked out in a street fight.
We answered that early on, people get knocked out by the punch they never see coming.
Armed with that knowledge what are you going to do?
You could carry on with your training and ignore this article.
Or you could start asking yourself when you are training ‘what if there was one other person attacking me?’
If you ask that question and keep asking every time you train, you will have an answer. It might not be the answer you want to hear.
If you keeping getting wrong answers, perhaps you need Defence Lab. Maybe training in the huge online University is for you.
Or possibly you want physical training, in which case the DL classes are your go-to source.
For those who are teaching others and want the answers fast so they can immediately add this to their training and teaching, being an instructor may be the route for you.
Either way don’t fall victim to the punch you never saw coming, train in a system that is already expecting that punch to be thrown.