The below video shows a man attempting to rob a convenience store clerk at gunpoint.  As seen, the clerk calmly bends over and retrieves his own firearm which he points directly at the assailant.

The two men are now trapped in a stand-off, with either men willing to pull the trigger.  As I have discussed before, presenting a firearm may add fuel to the fire during a confrontation, and knowing how to properly handle a firearm during an altercation is an essential set of skills.

As you can see, the clerk is being quite casual with how he is wielding his firearm, and on two occasions the assailant attempts to swat the clerk’s pistol away.  In Canada, we do not have any laws that allow us to carry concealed or open, but in my mind, once you draw a firearm and point it at a living being, you better be prepared to pull the trigger.  Luckily in this instance both parties survived, and the clerk was able to go home safely.  It was later determined that the firearm possessed by the robber was in fact a BB Gun, but whether the clerk knew this in the instant is unknown.

The first thing that I pull from the video is the way in which the clerk handles his firearm.  He has the gun far away from his body, with only one hand on his weapon, and he does not seem to be completely in control.  He is utilizing a ridiculous “gangster-style” grip with the gun canted and his elbow high, guaranteeing poor control over the firearm, and almost no ability to aim.  Learning how to use your body language, voice, and firearm techniques in sync is a necessary skill set I believe which will aid in enabling you to survive a violent altercation.

I firmly believe that most CCW holders do not possess a desire to hurt or kill anyone, but if you pull out a firearm in response to being presented with the business end of someone else’s, I think it is time to act, and not negotiate.  I do not condone violence as a first response, but had the robber been properly armed, or more intent with his actions the clerk may not have fared so well.

This also highlights the need for proper unarmed training, or learning how to properly control an aggressor.  To play the ‘armchair operator’ had I been in the same situation, you would see a radically different attitude in my body language, and I would have been demanding compliance.  Had these commands not been followed, I highly doubt I would have stood there arguing and and allowing myself to get into a shoving match.  Since this is completely theoretical, take from it what you will, just know that the violence of action has saved many people from becoming victims.

How would you have handled this situation?  What training do you participate in that would have allowed you to fare better than the clerk?

Train well, train often!


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Everyone loves to rob hotels it seems, but this particular individual just happens to have chosen one which is temporarily home to two professional fighters.  Let’s have the “is MMA street effective” discussion.

There has always existed a feud between traditional or combat martial arts and those that are labelled as Sport, or Competitive, or that are organized in a manner in which combatants can safely challenge each other.

The combat martial artists like to look at the Sport Fighting techniques as watered-down, and confined and marginalized to the ‘ring’ and its refs and rules.  They like to argue that ‘real’ combat and aggression is dirty, and raw, and the training involved in preparing for a competitive fight does not prepare you for the brutality and viscousness of a real violent confrontation.  Nor does it allow all of the nasty little techniques that they relish like small joint manipulation, ripping and tearing etc.

The Sport Fighters counter when they compare their sparring, and the levels of force they are able to use safely on training partners and not risk serious injury with the sometimes limited sparring of  self-defense or military style systems.  For example, on the mat, you can go 60-80% of full power on your training partner if that excludes techniques like eye-gouging, strikes to the throat, eyes, back of head, or techniques not designed to quickly and severely incapacitate opponents.  It is easy to evoke that fight-or-flight response, and have combatants respond under pressure, whereas when you practice a technique which delivers the point of an elbow to the centre of an opponent’s throat, how forceful can you go, and how much resistance can your training partner provide.

Surviving a violent confrontation depends on numerous variables, and perhaps most importantly, fitness level / ability, an mindset may be the most critical.  A willingness to respond with possibly preemptive violence, or the comfort of delivering your fist to another person’s body with some gusto are also variables that need to be considered.

If we were to take ‘Billy’ and ‘Bobby’, twins who decided to each participate in a combat system, one sport, the other traditional, and set them upon each other, what would decide the conclusion?

In the below video, and to voice a personal opinion, you can notice the assailant is pinned utilizing a technique that leaves the good samaritan exposed to further threat.  Especially so if he did not have the aid of his friend.

Where do you view the divide?

Train well, train often


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It may be a cliche but frequently “A Good Guy with a gun stops a Bad Guy with a gun”, and this video provides quite a good breakdown of the situation to serve the example.

A customer at a grocery store is present while an armed robbery is occurring.  The customer reacts and draws a concealed firearm which he discharges wounding the suspect and ending the altercation.  The narrator does a reasonably good job evaluating the situation, though one thing I did notice was the customer at 1:25 present his pistol, which the suspect does not see I think because of his hood, then go back to a low ready, only to re-engage and discharge multiple shots. A variable may be off-camera, but to me it looked like the armed customer had a clearer line of fire, and earlier opportunity to engage the threat.  Did the customer hesitate or did he have reason to hold steady?

What did you pull from the video?

Train well, train consistently



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Rener Gracie discusses firearm retention during an attack and demonstrates the ability to cover your slide while firing, thus protecting it from being stripped away from you.

This technique will cause your firearm to jam after each shot, forcing you to rack the slide to chamber another round.


Does the benefit of added control over your weapon compensate for the limited firing capability?

It is a very interesting concept, and may be applicable in close-contact fighting.  Does anyone have any experience in such situations? How do you feel covering your weapon and utilizing your elbow strikes compares to having your support hand free to push your attacker back?


– Adam

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