Weapons Of The Body5

a. Arms. The hands, forearms, and elbows are the individual weapons of the arm.

(1) Hands. There are several areas of the hands that can be utilized as weapons.

(a) Fist. The fist can be used as a weapon directed at soft tissue areas such as the throat. This will minimize the risk of injury to the fist. The striking surfaces of the fist are the first two knuckles of the hand or the meaty portion of the hand below the little finger.

(b) Edge of Hands. The edge of the hand (knife edge) can be used as a weapon. Similar to the fist, all strikes should be directed toward soft tissue areas.

(c) Palm. The heel of the palm, because of its padding, can be used for striking, parrying, and blocking.

(d) Fingers. The fingers can be used for gouging, ripping, and tearing soft tissue (e.g., eyes, throat, and groin).

(2) Forearm. The forearm can be used as a defensive tool to deflect or block attacks. The forearm can also be used as a striking weapon to damage or break joints and limbs. Strikes with the forearm do not pose as high a risk of self injury as do strikes with the fist and fingers.

(3) Elbow. The elbow can be used as a striking weapon. Because of the short distance needed to generate power, the elbow is an excellent weapon for striking in the grappling range of close combat.

b. Legs. The legs are more powerful than the other weapons of the body and are less prone to injury when striking. The feet are protected by boots and are the preferred choice for striking.

(1) Foot. The ball of the foot, the instep, and the toe can be used to kick an opponent. The toe is only recommended for striking when wearing boots. The cutting edge of the heel and the heel can be used to stomp on an opponent.

(2) Knee. Like the elbow, the knee is an excellent weapon in the grappling range of close combat. Knee strikes are most effective while fighting close to your opponent where kicks are impractical. The groin area is an ideal target for the knee strike against and opponent standing upright. The knee strike can be a devastating secondary attack to the face following an initial attack that causes the opponent to bend at the waist.

3. TARGET AREAS OF THE BODY (5 MIN)

During close combat, the parts of the opponent's body that are readily accessible will vary with each situation and throughout a confrontation. The goal is to attack those areas that are readily accessible. These areas are divided into five major groups: head, neck, torso, groin, and extremities.

a. Head. The vulnerable regions of the head are the eyes, temple, nose, ears, and jaw. Massive damage to the skull can kill an opponent.

(1) Eyes. The eyes are excellent targets because they are soft tissue not protected by bone or muscle. Any attack to this region may cause the opponent to protect the area with his hands. Secondary attacks to other target areas can then be successfully executed while the opponent's hands are occupied.

(2) Temple. The temple is one of the most fragile areas of the skull. Powerful strikes to the temple can cause permanent damage and death.

(3) Nose. The nose is very sensitive and easily broken. An attack to this area can cause involuntary watering and closing of the eyes, rendering the opponent vulnerable to secondary attacks. Unless the strikes to the nose are powerfully delivered, attacks to the nose may not distract the opponent because, through training, individuals can become accustomed to the effects of attacks to the nose.

(4) Ears. Attacks to the ear may cause the eardrum to rupture, but as with the nose region, this may not stop or even distract the opponent unless the strikes are delivered powerfully.

(5) Jaw. The jaw region, when struck forcefully, can cause unconsciousness. Strikes to the jaw can cause painful injuries to teeth and surrounding tissues (e.g., lips, tongue), but the risk of self injury is great unless the strikes are delivered with a hard object such as a helmet, rifle butt, or heel of the boot.

(1) Front of Neck. The front of the neck or throat area is a soft tissue area that is not covered by natural protection. Damage to this region can cause the trachea to swell and close the airway, which can lead to death.

(2) Back of Neck. The back of the neck or cervical region contains the spinal cord, the nervous system link to the brain. The weight of the head and the lack of large muscle mass in the neck area combine to allow damage to the spinal column when the head is twisted violently. Attacks to this region can readily cause pain and immobilization of the opponent.

(1) Clavicle. The clavicle or collar bone can be easily fractured, causing immobilization of the opponent's arm.

(2) Solar Plexus. Attacks to the solar plexus or center of the chest can immobilize the opponent by knocking the breath out of him.

(3) Ribs. Damage to the ribs can cause immobilization of the opponent and may cause internal trauma.

(4) Kidneys. Powerful attacks to the kidneys can cause immobilization, permanent damage, and death.

d. Groin. The groin area is another major soft tissue area not covered by natural protection. Any damage to this area can cause the individual to involuntarily provide protection to the injured area, usually with the hands or legs. The scrotum is the main target since even a near miss will cause severe pain, contraction of the lower abdominal muscles, deterioration of the opponent's stance, and possible internal trauma.

e. Extremities. Rarely will an attack to the opponent's extremities (arms and legs) cause death, but they are important target areas in close combat. Damage to a joint can cause immobilization of the opponent.

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