Once a predatory assault has started and our Survival Attitude strategies are in effect (Staying Conscious, Breathing, and as Vertical and Bipedal as possible) we must turn the tide. In the Functional Edge System we achieve this by shifting to the Reversal Attitude. It is important to understand that, because of the dynamics and chaos of a credible predatory ambush, we may be in the Survival Attitude anywhere from just a micro second to several seconds before we can move to Reversal Attitude. The totality of circumstances, environment, and the explosiveness and ferocity of the attack will influence the time it takes for the shift in Attitude.
Put it in Reverse
To reverse means to change to the contrary. To understand the Reversal Attitude and our strategies during the same, we must understand what the attacker has done so far. The bad guy at this point is using the element of surprise and forward physical, emotional and psychological momentum in order to keep us off-balance, continue to control our movement or to apply more blunt trauma.
When entering the Reversal Attitude we must go beyond embracing our instinctive protective movements, we must build and improve upon them. Because range is compressed very quickly during the attack, one of the imperatives is to create room in which to operate effectively. In the Functional Edge System we have a body of drills that help us turn the two main instinctive protective behaviors (Compressed and Extended) into levers to create space and begin to move the attacker backwards and/or into solid frames that allow us to keep the territory we just earned.
The next step in the Reversal Attitude is to get our Weapon Systems and Structure in the best alignment possible while keeping the attacker off balance with his structure off line. We accomplish this by using our frames and levers, along with our propulsion (legs) to drive forward with enough force to cause dis-alignment of the attacker’s skeleton.
When the bad guy’s body/mind system is more concerned about maintaining or regaining balance and re-aligning its structure it will be less capable at hurting us.
As with all the Attitudes the Reversal will be fueled by emotion. Indignation is anger aroused by something unjust or mean. If you are a normal, law abiding citizen and someone trying to prove his status picks a fight with you, or a predator attacks you as a resource or for the process, you can and should feel indignant.
The relationship between fear and anger is very interesting, at a visceral level, the hormones coursing through our bodies are nearly identical and our “gut” feels the same. The biggest difference is in how the two emotions express themselves in movement.
Fear will normally cause a backwards movement or a freezing. Anger will propel us forward. It’s that simple, we move away from the places, people, and things which we fear and we go after the ones that anger us. The specialized type of anger invoked by indignation is ideal fuel to drive forward and put our attacker on his heels.
Our attacker has seen us as prey and we must now physically, psychologically and emotionally show him he is dealing with a fellow predator.
We have mentioned before that in the Functional Edge System, all of the Engagement Attitudes are closely inter-related. It very possible that with sufficient training in Mental Modeling, Attack Recognition and Habituation and possible mistakes from the bad guy; our Survival Action may also achieve our Reversal within one move
If the attacker makes a lot of mistakes, the environment and circumstances favor us, and our training supports us, we may even achieve our Survival, Reversal, and Engagement within that one move also, but too many factors have to align in our favor for it to be a frequent and reliable result. The dynamics of the real fight may demand otherwise.
There and Back Again
Finally we must remember that the explosiveness and ferocity of the attacker will have an impact on which attitude we are able to use. The dynamics of the fight may have us reversing the bad guy when suddenly through misfortune or deed we may get sent back to a Survival State from which we need to Reverse again.
It is this wavelike effect of Survive-Reverse- Survive-Reverse that we should prepare for. When the attacker’s intensity is very high, we must expect chaos. This chaos is similar to swimming in the ocean with heavy currents and strong, massive waves. It is through exposure and training that we learn to ride the violence and ferocity and then turn the tide against our enemy
Copyright Tony Torres 2011