Do NOT Punch In A Street Fight

Discussion in 'Self Defense' started by Kevin, Apr 5, 2012.

  1. Kevin

    Kevin Administrator Staff Member

    One of the most common injuries that boxers out in the street is a broken hand. I've read many books on self defence and they all stress that you fight how you train. For most martial artists, and I include boxers and Taekwondo practitioners in this, it is instinctive to throw a punch in a real life fight.

    It's no surprise that people do this. If you spar every week with gloves on at your club, then you will most likely fight in a similar fashion. Throwing a punch in a real fight can be counter productive. If you are close to a wall or pole (which is likely if a fight breaks out in a pub) then there's a serious chance of you breaking your hand against the wall. There's just as much chance of you breaking your hand on your opponents skull. The top of the head is very hard and would easily an attackers hand if they struck there.

    In the video below CloseQuartersCombat talk about how bad throwing a punch in a street fight can be. They give three better suggestions> palm strike, hammerfist and a chop. Those of you who have been doing Taekwondo for at least 6 months will have practiced the palm strike and chop in your patterns or during your class individually. The hammerfist is a common technique that is used in MMA when a fighter is top of their opponent - it's how a large number of fights are stopped.

    In a real life situation, things rarely go to plan, though it's worth drilling into your head than in a real life situation kicks, palm strikes, chops and perhaps a submission hold if you can get close enough, are much better than throwing a punch as the risk of breaking your hand is very high.

    Mel Ober likes this.
  2. Isabella

    Isabella New Member

    Those are a good suggestions!!!
    Im begginner in TKD and I would like to learn more about it.
  3. shivshan

    shivshan New Member

    Every beginner has to understand one thing clearly about the art of Self Defense. It’s not like any other sports or games where you have some set of rules and will have a referee who will judge and give you points. Self-defense doesn’t have any rules and there is no fair play in it. The art of Self Defense is one of the deadly serious things that everybody should be aware of. Everybody should be cautious enough when they involve in street fight, otherwise they will end up in injury and it will be a question of your survival.
  4. Zerodamage

    Zerodamage New Member

    While I agree with all of these points 100% completely, I have yet to encounter the mentioned problem in any of my street fights. I've always made sure to fully comprehend during the flight of my punch where it and HOW it will land, whether it's the face, neck, body, or even the skull. As long as your brain can fully brace the moment of impact and your knuckles and hand have been conditioned to a certain extent, serious damage can easily be avoided.

    Then again I've always tended to train bare knuckle since training from 8 years old anyway. While I don't deny that serious damage can still occur, it's all about what we're all comfortable with.
  5. Kevin

    Kevin Administrator Staff Member

    I don't think serious damage to your hands can be avoided easily. In fact, quite the opposite. In the ITF you need to break a brick by punching in order to pass your dan grades. I've seen lots of black belts with problems with their hands because of this.

    In a real fight there's a high risk of punching the head of an opponent. No amount of conditioning can stop that causing serious damage to your hands.
  6. Zerodamage

    Zerodamage New Member

    That's why I made sure to specify that it can't be fully avoided nor stopped completely. But it's a no wonder that I haven't broken my hands yet despite having so many altercations, many even against martial artists. But I've always said there's a difference between martial artists and fighters.

    It's not easy to avoid, but you don't do yourself any good relying on padding, handwraps and gloves 100% of the time you're training either. While it's good to practice safe training disciplines, it's also good to add some defensive conditioning to your body's ability to take damage. Proper diet is part of that.

    Besides, the bigger portion of avoiding damage is in the head. It's mostly about how well you can intellectually comprehend and mentally prepare the impact of your blow. If you put a blind fold on and punch a punching bag, you have a high chance of breaking your wrist.
  7. YourDarkestHour

    YourDarkestHour New Member

    Palm thrusting can easily be just as damaging to the victim as a fist, and can be controlled in a more versatile manner on top of that.
  8. Kevin

    Kevin Administrator Staff Member

    I'm a big fan of using palm strikes and chops to the throat in real life situations.
  9. Zerodamage

    Zerodamage New Member

    Palm strikes as well are a good alternative, so are the back of the wrist. I sometimes use the back of the wrist as a quick single-motion counter after parrying a straight. All of that is reflexive of course and can change depending on the chaotic variables that may cause changes in the fight scenario.
  10. Kevin

    Kevin Administrator Staff Member

    Back of the wrist?? Don't you mean back of the hand?
  11. dojo

    dojo Member

    That's a real problem. I know many martial artists who either spar only with the gloves on and hit the bag the same way. Take them off their gloved protection and they can really injure themselves. I personally like to spar with no gloves (helps me control my technique, since I don't want to maim my classmates and I always hit the bag with no gloves. not pleasant, but I can at least feel how a solid (even a little softer) feels like.
  12. Kevin

    Kevin Administrator Staff Member

    I still prefer to train with boxing gloves. MMA gloves are ok too if you want to incorporate some grappling/groundwork (though you need to watch for renegade fingers poking you in the eye!).

    I would recommend sparring with gloves on in most situations. It's useful slowing down the speed of sparring sessions to improve technique and avoid injury though in some occasions you want to get as close to a real fight as possible without hurting you or your training partner badly. You can't make an omelette without breaking some eggs. If a trainer wraps his students in cotton wool and doesn't allow them to spar properly, they are going to get a rude awakening when a real situation developers outside.
  13. ninjanurse

    ninjanurse New Member

    Palm strike is taught in our system as the first strike and we spend quite a bit of time working on "payload delivery". next comes elbows and knees.
  14. Ryan Thompson

    Ryan Thompson New Member

    my TKD instructor say never be the aggressor because you will get into a lot of trouble with the police it is better to be passive because if you attacker whether it be he/she they get to close you can hit them but let them throw the first punch because then you you will not get into trouble for it because you will have the right to defend your self.

    keep your hands open to make look like you do not want to fight but if your attacker comes to close then you will be able to hit back.
  15. GizmoDuck1833

    GizmoDuck1833 New Member

    Palm strikes as well are a good alternative, so are the back of the wrist. I sometimes use the back of the wrist as a quick single-motion counter after parrying a straight. All of that is reflexive of course and can change depending on the chaotic variables that may cause changes in the fight scenario.​
    Back of the wrist?? Don't you mean back of the hand?

    In Shotokan there is a series of movements that use the inside and back of the wrist with the hand bent away from the attacker as striking surfaces, i train with it as a one-handed one step with my opposing hand in my belt behind my back to simulate an injured or grabbed arm
  16. Joe

    Joe Member

    I believe that you need to mix it up with/without gloves, I find that even training once a week without gloves on the bag is very helpful in conditioning them. With another person I always spar with gloves, if we are allowed to punch.

    In the street I personally counter, wait for an opening and go for a takedown. Then I get myself out of the situation, tackle them to the ground and disappear, I don't like fighting outside of the ring. When I find myself in the situation like that I try to block and counter, using the self defense moves I learnt while helping write the new grading syllabus. I found them very effective and easy enough to pull off. The biggest thing I found was that now, everyone expects a strike, hardly anyone expects to be taken down or put into a lock. With even less people being able to counter it
  17. Jon Sloan

    Jon Sloan Member

    I would much rather try to get the opponent to commit, then trap their hand/arm and get them into a lock or pain compliance. I agree with using the open-handed strikes, and there is always the issue of using your techniques judiciously so as to not get nailed for excessive force.
  18. Tony Falconer

    Tony Falconer New Member

    In a real street attack, there is no time to think of what technique to throw. You will revert back to what is natural and what you practice. By practice I mean pressure testing techniques with someone who wont hold back or dance around you. Street attacks/fights are manic 10 second events. going to the floor should not be done by choice but may happen due to slipping or just being bundled over. It is esential you know how to fight on the floor, Judo/wrestling training would be enough. Chops and open strikes are excellent pre-emptive tools but do not work so well mid fight.
  19. Matt Parker

    Matt Parker New Member

    Some school are strictly tournament oriented, this may cause some issues, since you might never commit to whatever technique you use.....if you have any thoughts about using what you know for self defense, I tell people to remove the hand protection, and instep guards and try doing a 3 min round on a heavy bag...if you have what our school calls "white belt hands and feet, you may want to do some conditioning. As for techniques for the street, elbows are a favorite if you get in close as well, learn some clinching and make use of your knees....any good instrctor won't fault you for cross training and Thai boxing is a good supplement. If you have the mind to engage on the street you really need to remember that there is no referee to pull some gorilla off you if it gets really need to finish effectively and QUICKLY. I know first hand that TKD does work in the street but keep the flashy stuff for tournaments. Be decisive, commit 100% and be brutal. BJJ, judo and MMA wrestling all make excellent cross training choices for self defense. Just remember that opponents frown on being suplexed at most Olympic style TKD events...LOL
  20. lorraine

    lorraine Member

    I've said this on another thread so forgive me for repeating myself, i'll be brief.I would never punch in a street confrontation as its so easy to break little bones in your hand .I would palm strike , back fist , knife hand chop,ridge hand or even slap instead of punch.Elbow strikes are also extremely effective.

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