Wednesday, January 4, 2017

Gun disarming tips

If you've read my blog post on "self defense against a gunman" ( then you have a basic understanding on how to disarm a gunman. In this post, i will give you several tips that will greatly enhance your skills in gun disarming along with some helpful videos. They are as follows:

* Strike first - As long as a gunman hasn't shot you dead upon the 1st encounter, you have the opportunity to act. As soon as you see someone threatening your life as he/she reaches to grab something from his/her pockets, move in and strike first. It could be anything - a knife, a gun, or another weapon you are unaware of. By taking the initiative, you eliminate the threat before it even begins. Don't wait until the gun is drawn for you to act.

* Practice realistic gun disarm training - The problem with many gun disarms is they rely on a compliant partner using a rubber gun with no trigger to fire fake bullets. Why is this ineffective training? Because there's no way for you to test whether or not your disarming techniques work in a situation where the gunman is noncompliant. In a real gun situation, the gun can go off at any given moment. You'll want to determine if the bullets go past you or in you. When your training in gun disarms, you must train with a gun that can shoot bullets in order to mimic a real gunman scenario. That being said, get a practice gun that can shoot fake bullets. It could be an airsoft gun or any other tool as long as it mimics a real gun. By simulating a real gun as much as possible, you learn how to improve timing and judgement. Be sure to also allow your partner to freely resist a disarm and the option to pull the trigger at any moment. Recreate different types of scenarios such as robberies, active shooters, kidnappers, hostage situations, etc.  

* Know your enemy - Assess the type of gunman your dealing with. Are you dealing with a murderer? An armed robber? A kidnapper? Active shooter? If it's an assassin,he/she will likely aim from a distance before firing. If it's an armed robber, he/she will approach you making demands. According to police reports, armed robbers rarely plan their moves out well so they most likely had no prior firearms training (1). If it's a kidnapper, he/she will try to subdue you into a vehicle for ransom or other crimes. By determining the kind of gunman you are dealing with, you can decide what the appropriate response will be.

* Communicate verbally and nonverbally - Verbal and non-verbal communication is so important in self defense against guns. When staring down the barrel of a gun, your body language will affect how well you can disarm a gunman. When someone comes up to you at close range making demands, put your hands up like your surrendering. Start talking to your attacker to find out more about him/her by asking "what do you want? Money? My wallet? I don't want trouble.." Communicate non-verbally and verbally that you are not a threat. Why? Because if the gunman sees you are unusually calm despite having a gun pointed at you, he/she may keep at a distance and tread cautiously. Get the gunman to lower his guard before you attempt a disarm. If the gunman is behind you, slowly move to a position where your facing a gunman at close range. If you are pinned to a wall, distract the gunman with your speech as you move away from it. Raise your hands at the gun's level and act like your surrendering so you can quickly redirect the gun away from you. This is all important because your body position will help you perform a successful gun disarm. Most likely, your attacker will not even notice your setting up for a disarm and thus will not take precautions to ensure his or her safety.

* Use distractions - By distracting the gunman, you are taking the focus away from the gun and towards what your saying or doing thus slowing down the gunman's reaction time. It's not a good idea to attempt a disarm right away because you don't know how the gunman will react and how fast. The gun will most likely go off and you may get shot. It's best to distract with gunman with words and actions. If you got money, throw it in front of your attacker as a distraction then disarm at lightning speed. Beg for mercy. Use something to divert the gunman's attention away from the gun before you go in for a gun disarm. It could be words, objects, or attacks.

* Target the gunman's vision, balance, and structure - Gunmen must have proper vision, balance, and structure in order to land accurate shots. Focus on obstructing their vision and disrupting their balance. You could trip him/her over or throw a shirt in the gunman's face before you disarm.

* Practice effective gun disarming techniques - I've seen many ineffective gun disarming techniques and few effective disarming techniques. Ineffective gun disarming techniques don't address redirecting the line of fire, evasion, speed, and firm control over the attacker's weapon arm. Instead you might see instructors teach you to grab the barrel of the gun as you slap the wrist or break the grip through pain compliance without moving out of the gun's line of fire. Realistically, you won't be able to grab the gun from gunman as he/she can simply move back and redirect the gun towards you or just shoot you all together. If the techniques you are learning aren't addressing all of these fundamentals then you ought to learn those that do. The best gun disarm techniques i've learned are simply a two handed grip on the wrist so the gunman can't easily redirect the gun as i move out of the line of the fire. If the gunman moves back, i follow. From there, i can either control the elbow then go into an armbreak from an outside position or quickly grab the gun with one hand then turn it inwards to break the grip. Once the grip is broken and possibly his/her finger, i quickly move back as i make my escape pointing the gun at my attacker. I would not advise moving closer to the attacker's free hand or you'll likely get hit. Ideally, you'll want to move to his/her outside where you'll have better control. You could strike and compromise your attacker's balance.  

* Have a back up plan - Sometimes, you won't be able to successfully disarm a gunman and if you do then you'll have to address possible resistance. If you disarm a gunman, are you prepared to shoot? If not then you are better off using the gun as a melee weapon as you engage in hand-to-hand combat. Plus the gunman may have a back up weapon such as a knife. It may go from an attempted disarm to an all out fight for the weapon. Don't get so focused on the gun that you forget about the attacker's body. Focus on addressing both the weapon and the body via. immobilization but always have a back up plan in case your primary one fails.

* Adapt to the distance - If your in close range with no obstacles providing cover or concealment between you and the gunman, go for a disarm. If your far away and find cover/concealment, make a run for it. If your somewhere in between then you must decide how to close the distance. Why would you go for a disarm at close range instead of running from a gunman? Because as soon as you turn your back and run, you would've already been shot than if you rushed in to attack with a chance of surviving. The distance between you and the gunman will tell you how to respond. Practice good judgement and choose your moves wisely.

* Use cover and concealment - In some cases, you don't have to fully engage a gunman when cover and concealment is available. As soon as you see someone pull out a gun from a distance and there's cover or concealment, rush behind it then escape. Cover and concealment provide you with many options (surprise attacks, evasion, protection, etc.)

When under fire, run in an unpredictable pattern - If you have to close the distance between you and a gunman or evade the gun entirely, run in an unpredictable pattern. Don't run in a straight line because that's a predictable moving pattern. Don't run in a zig-zag motion either because that's also a predictable moving pattern. Use a combination of straight lines, zig zags, head and body evasion, rolls to cover or concealment,etc. at unpredictable patterns. Change the speed of your movements. Slow down before you explosively move out of the line of fire and rush in or out. This makes you a much harder target to hit even for a trained gunman. Timing is very critical so you can only stay moving in one position for about a second or two before the gunman fires an accurate shot. Sometimes moving in a straight line as you run as fast as possible to an escape route or behind cover and concealment is ideal in some situations. This video demonstrates running in a straight line vs. running in a zig zag pattern.

* Know the different lines of fire and how to respond to each one - A gunman will point his/her gun high (at head level), to the middle (around your upper back area, neck, or sides), or low (in your lower back). If the gun is pointed at head level, you evade with head movements and turn to strike as you disarm. If the gun is pointed at your upper back area, sides, neck, or lower back then you would use your shoulders and arms to attack while you control the weapon arm.  

* Learn how to deal with a gun to the back - If a gunman puts a gun to your back, you'll want to feel the gun so you can perform the same principles in gun disarming. If you don't feel the gun against your back then you'll have to either back up or at the very least look over your shoulder slightly to see where the gun is if possible. Once you know where the gun is, you apply the same principles you would when the gun is pointed in front of you.

* Learn how to deal with a gun from the ground - If the gunman asks you to get on the ground, you put your hands up but keep his balance in mind. If you turn around with your hands up, strike at the back of the knee with your legs as you control the arm with the gun using your other hand then compromise his/her balance and disarm.

* Learn how to deal with a leveraging hand - Sometimes a gunman will use a free hand to control you by grabbing your shirt with the other hand pointing the gun at you. Your first priority should be the free hand instead of the gun because it's the closest target to you. As soon as you see the gunman try to grab you with the free hand, move out of the line of fire as you grab the leveraging hand then throw your attacker to the ground or use it to slam him/her against a wall. From there, you have excellent control over the gun.

* Use gunman's pressure against him/her - Depending on how much pressure the gunman is exerting, you will want to go with the flow of energy. If the gunman is pushing forwards, move forwards and move out of the line of fire.

* Don't telegraph your moves - If you make it obvious that you are planning a disarm when the gun is jammed into you, the gunman will shoot. Don't give away your intentions such as making eye contact with the gunman. Your pupils can give away your intentions (2). Don't rotate your body when the gun is pushed against you as the gunmen will feel your movements. Make your movements look as natural as possible while appearing submissive. Everything must be done swiftly and without warning.

* Know when to strike and when not to - If you want to perform a successful gun disarm, you must know when to strike and when not to. Don't just assume the role of the victim because there's a gun involved. Are there multiple gunmen? Is the gunman's gun drawn? Is it lowered? Is he/she distracted? Is the safety on? Did the gun jam? Are you in the proper distance and position to disarm the gun? If the gunman gives you a command that compromises your ability to disarm the gun successfully, that's a critical time to strike because you may not get another chance. There are many different variables you must taken into account. If the risks are too great, comply but be patient and optimistic. You have no idea what a gunman or gunmen will do to you once you are no longer useful. As soon as the opportunity presents itself such as the gunman's focus is lost or the gun jams, do not hesitate for a split second. Strike at full force and disarm if possible.  

* Use noncomplementary behavior - A woman and her family when confronted with an armed robber, disarmed him by offering a glass of wine. Why does this work? People follow behavioral scripts based on expected outcomes. Criminals (robbers, murderers, etc.) expect you to do two things - comply or fight back. When you do something out of the ordinary expectations, what's the result? Confusion ultimately leading to diffusion. Even if the effects are temporary, noncomplementary behavior gives you a split second to launch an attack of your own.

Gun disarms against long guns:

* Control the gun and use it as leverage to disarm - Long guns such as shotguns are easier to disarm than handguns because they provide great leverage. By repositioning the gun with one hand on the barrel and the other on a handle near the trigger, you make the gunman's grip weaker due to the pressure and can force it out easier. Regardless of the position you are in, you apply almost the same principles as you would a handgun.

Gun disarms against executioners with guns:

* Make requests - People may think that once under an executioner armed with a gun, it's all over but this is far from the truth. From a psychological level, people are more likely to comply to bigger requests if you begin by making smaller ones. This is also known as the Ben Franklin effect (3). Make a small last dying request. Say something like "I'd like a last meal before i die." If your back is turned against your executioner, say something like "..please face me when your killing me..." If your executioner complies, that's when you strike. You can use an eating utensil or broken glass then start stabbing or striking away or rush in on the executioner. As long as you can make seemingly harmless demands, you still have some mental control over your enemy.

* Learn how to deal with the execution style position - If your in the execution style position then it's a sign your probably about to die. You will need to act quickly. From this position, it's better to trap the gun arm and disarm from the ground as you'll be in a better position to control your attacker as you create distance to shoot. If the gunman is behind you, know where the gun is located and move back into your attacker as you trap the gun arm then disarm.

* Use psychology - Not all executioners are necessarily heartless. Some feel guilt over their line of work. Some are forced into it. Interview your executioner. Figure out what kind of person he/she is by asking questions such as "how many times have you done this? Are you getting paid to kill? What do you hope to achieve? Does your family know you do this?" Use guilt trips, reverse psychology, empathy, demand eye contact - get inside your attacker's head. If you can somehow pry into his/her conscience and emotions, you can be a huge influence in whether or not the trigger is pulled. Maybe your executioner will hesitate or even let you go. If you can influence your executioner for a split second, that may give you an opportunity to attack.

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