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Web Blast Extra: Mixed Martical Arts & Cops

Rolling Around One The Ground

Jason E. Phillips

Editor’s Note:

Jason points out MMA lends itself to use in police work, but only after careful consideration of its limitations. Neither standard defensive tactics methods nor MMA are the answer when having to go hands-on with suspects; and all new-fangled techniques have had their drawbacks over the years.

It seemed every other time I went to Advanced Officer Training (AOT) there’d be a four-hour block on D-Tac. In four hours we were going to be shown the latest wonder-moves known to the martial arts world and “practice” the new moves maybe a couple of times at half-speed or slower. Then everybody thought we’d magically draw upon our new skills over one year later when we finally managed to get in a fight. The instructors are all rabid martial arts fans and practice a lot — most cops aren’t and don’t.

Any new techniques, be it ground fighting, MMA or a Vulcan mind-meld, practice is key. And let’s face it, cops with more than a couple years under their belts will not have an open mind to something new, especially if it’s going to require lots of practice.

Perhaps a solution to this dilemma is agencies adopt a two-tier D-Tac force continuum. Start teaching the new techniques (whatever they may be) along with the standard techniques to the new guys in the academy; leave the old guys alone with their repertoire of old standards. They’ll soon dinosaur their way out … just a thought.


In this second series of pictures, Jason and his father, Stanley, demonstrate how officers can quickly lose their advantage when attempting to use an arm bar on a suspect.


martial 1


Jason starts in the dominant or mounted position; Stanley is already starting to push Jason away


martial 2


Jason uses both of his arms on Stanley’s chest and begins to transition to the arm bar


martial 3


Jason then rotates to his left and secures Stanley’s right arm. Stanley seizes
on the opportunity and grabs Jason’s shirt with his right hand.


martial 4


When Jason tries to lean back and raise his hips to create tension on Stanley’s elbow,
Stanley starts to reach around Jason with his left hand.


martial 5


martial 6


Stanley grabs Jason’s shirt with his left hand and starts to pull himself up,
effectively reversing the dominant roll.


martial 7


Firmly taking dominance, Stanley moves to his knees, pinning Jason on the ground.


martial 8


Game, set and match — Stanley reminds Jason who’s boss in the family.


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