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Saturday, April 23, 2011

Making a comeback

For those who have read “Death of a beloved friend” take heed. Common sense is making a comeback. It is alive and thriving at the Keishoukan Dojo . We are privileged in being taught principles and common sense. I know, unusual theses days.

We had the proof of this at SOTA. SOTA, Special Operation Training Association, is basically a convention for the SWAT teams in the upper Midwest, a conglomeration of the best of the best. This happens once per year and offers classes to all operators. We were asked to teach a class at this year’s convention. Our great leader put together a formidable class: very professional, awesome information and great teaching methods. This was a tremendous need to be filled and he rose to the occasion. But then we never rise to our expectations, we always fall to the level of our training. This goes a long way to describe the incredible training he provides.

The class started with a bunch of big burly alpha males sitting cross armed in their chairs with a “go ahead impress me” attitude. Kasey did just that.

As a small grandma (and the only female there), I can’t say I quite fitted the profile of a SWAT instructor. And to add to the list of drawbacks, I am a civilian. Cops notoriously do not like civilians instructing them and for good reasons. Most civilians have no idea what cops, especially SWAT teams, really need to learn. Never judge a book by its cover. We got going, started teaching the basic motions and techniques. After putting a few big guys on their asses (that never gets old), applying a few cross face, amazingly they were all ears and willing to listen. Cops at this level are able to recognize common sense (they should anyway). And this was pure and simple common sense teachings. Things so simple that a person like me who has never served a warrant or even arrested someone can still easily apply, understand and teach. They became eager to learn and grateful for the instruction. All those guys worked hard and did a great job.

This goes to show how awesome our training is. To turn plain civilians into good operators with simple common sense techniques, how much better will actual operators that take this training be?

Instead of complicated techniques, having to remember too many steps, trying to decide on “he is attacking this way so I need to respond this way”, Kasey uses key principles that will work in any circumstance, aka… common sense.

I can’t explain how refreshing this is.

So Common Sense, my long lost friend, welcome back to the world. May you live long and prosper.

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