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5 Essential Military Techniques For Close Quarters Combat

Close quarters combat is essential to survival on the streets, whether you’re a combat vet, law enforcement agent, or a civilian. Adapting these military techniques will enhance your knowledge on CQC and turn you into a fully efficient and capable living weapon.



Close quarters combat is defined as a series or combination of fighting techniques, styles, and systems that make use of both unarmed and armed combat for enemy engagement. I can basically define it as a system that allows you to fight with efficiency. Whether you’re a combat vet or a civilian, knowing about these military techniques can mean the difference between life and death.

5 Essential Military Techniques For Close Quarters Combat

When you’re fighting for survival or for your life, it doesn’t matter if you’re a combat veteran or not. The self-defense system or martial arts that you’ve studied for months or years have real life applications, but only if you think outside the mindset of a civilian. A banker who knows Krav Maga, an Israeli self-defense system, can be deadly as long as he or she applies the following military techniques for maximizing close quarter combat efficiency.

1 – Strike Through It

1 - Strike Through It | 5 Essential Military Techniques For Close Quarters Combat

Image via Return of Kings

Any form of strike can be deadly and effective as long as you strike through it. When you punch or hit, you don’t think about not hurting the assailant. You think about incapacitating him while protecting yourself. Offense is the best defense in the streets. When you “strike through it”, you deliver an assault that can end the fight in one hit. If you punch, aim to break his nose or jaw. Do you want to kick? Be sure to kick him down to the ground.

2 – Think About Survival

2 - Think About Survival | 5 Essential Military Techniques For Close Quarters Combat

Image via Tactical-Life

A survival mindset is essential to maximizing close quarters combat. When you think about survival, it allows you to calm your thoughts and keeps you focused all throughout the ordeal. Fear and panic will only make things worse, and will force individuals do something drastic. A wolf, when backed into a corner, will focus on its energy and strength to get out of the situation. A person who has the same mentality as a cornered wolf is deadlier than the enemy he or she is facing.

3 – Use Weapons

3 - Use Weapons | 5 Essential Military Techniques For Close Quarters Combat

Image via Detroit CQC

The streets opens up opportunities to use weapons as extensions of your fists. Weapons are used to create and maintain distance between the assailant. A simple umbrella can mean the difference between an assailant’s punch reaching your face and being able to keep them at bay. A knife, despite its size, can create a protective arc or circle when swung. This makes it effective in creating distance.

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4 – Use The Ground

4 - Use The Ground | 5 Essential Military Techniques For Close Quarters Combat

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Fights end up on the ground way more than one might think. Combative grappling allows you to maintain your composure even when you’re lying flat on the ground. Brazilian Jiu Jitsu and Krav Maga are known for their ground-to-ground techniques and both are useful in regaining control of the fight and keeping you alive at the same time. By using your body as leverage, you can keep your opponents incapacitated. By using your body as a weapon, you can break off an arm or a leg.

5 – Be Efficient

Reckless swinging and kicking will not do you any good. In Krav Maga, efficiency is the key to maximizing close quarter combat techniques. Efficiency also means knowing where and how to strike. A solid strike to the nose can leave your opponent writhing in pain than three punches to the body. A 100lb. woman delivering a good kick to the groin can disable a man completely. It doesn’t matter if he’s as big as Arnold Schwarzenegger or Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson.

Check out this CQC demonstration video from Eskrimamate:

Close quarters combat goes way beyond what we see in the movies or television. CQC excuses itself from fancy moves and acrobatics. It’s all about delivering punches and kicks the right way. It’s all about knowing how and when to strike. When these military techniques are applied to your CQC foundation, your mind becomes effective in identifying threats and knowing how to reduce them. Your body becomes the extension of your mind to carry out the measures to reduce the threat by means of delivering non-lethal blows.

Click here for CQC-related articles

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