I was working the the Department of Homeland Security – Investigations unit, truly an honor.  The host and I were engaged in a conversation concerning transitions.  Normally when people hear the word transition in the armed professional arena, they are normally talking about transitioning from their primary weapon system to a secondary weapon system.  Although, this is not the only time where transitions are necessary.

Transitions happen on every level of a violent confrontation… You must transition from one stage of the fight to the other, from hand to hand combat to a defensive technology, from defensive to offensive, etc.  It is important for combative instructor to look at their training and identify the transitions, then develop drills or allot time to dial-in the transitions.  I was listening to a podcast with Master Lloyd Irvin (Lloyd Irvin MMA Academy), he talked about how his athletes were able to win matches with virtually the same submissions.  He trains his students to take advantage of the transitional period from one position to another.

Understand transitional periods in a fight can make you appear faster and more spontaneous, but you must develop the skill.  The situation, environment, and circumstances may be dynamic, but the human body can only move a certain way.  Here are a couple of things you can work on:

  • Study how attacks are initiated (wild punches, tackles, brandishing weapons) (ref. Personal Defense Readiness, BTS, Inc.)
  • Understand the limitations of the attack (if your opponent is grabbing you with both hands, they can't punch you)
  • Attack your opponents balance (it is hard to initiate an attack if you have no balance)

The aforementioned points have helped me get a better understanding of transitions and how they affect timing, balance, and coordination.


Dominate the Battlespace!



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