Human perception is a fascinating topic, and certainly one that you could spend the time it takes to earn a Doctorate’s Degree or more studying. When it comes to self-defense and related disciplines, it is important to factor it in to your training as well as your pre-gaming of what to do “in case something happens.”
The current trend amongst many shooters is to try to perform all tasks as rapidly as possible. Some of this trend is admirable and useful, some of it is possibly unproductive, and potentially harmful for real world encounters.
Most criminal acts do not start with a buzzer or the turn of a target. In reviewing numerous accounts from victims and law enforcement officials, as well as hours of video, it is apparent that many conflicts have warning cues, or pre-fight indicators. Upon the recognition of those indicators, individuals must successfully position themselves and use verbal interaction to clarify the nature of the conflict. This positioning and interaction with their assailant takes time, space, and mental processing power to achieve.
In order to solve the other problems, a self-defense practitioner should have a solid command of the fundamentals of combat marksmanship. That means things like the draw, aiming, and trigger control should be accomplished subconsciously. The more mental processing an individual must commit to the fundamentals of marksmanship, the less mental processing power one has available for things like problem solving and movement to cover and communication, all these tasks are critical in terms of survivability in a real fight.
Once that expertise is achieved, the practice of movement, communication, and problem solving is required. Real fights often require you to think as well as react. A true fight is often a split attention situation, especially as it initially unfolds. An unknown contact may be somebody out shopping, a panhandler, or a violent criminal, and work is required on your part to figure out exactly what you are dealing with.
Successful criminals often play on the average human’s ability to only focus on one thing at a time. A standard ruse to get close to a victim often involves things like asking for the time, directions, or a cigarette. Once a victim’s attention is drawn to whatever the criminal asked for, the criminal’s true intent manifests. This is often revealed through movement that establishes positional dominance, and often backed up with the introduction of a weapon. This violence of action and surprise allows the criminal to demand what it is that they want, be it money, cell phone, or the victim’s person, possibly all the above.
Justified Defensive Concepts recognizes the need to be technically proficient, and we’ll train you to do that in our classes. Once we’ve achieved the first goal, we’ll introduce you to performing technically while dealing with other tasks, be it communicating, moving, or problem solving, or all three. It is our opinion that as a well-rounded defensive practitioner, you need to be able to do more than react to the sound of a beep. You need to be carefully prepared for the threat’s reality.