Old 01-22-2006, 10:59   #1
Kyobanim's Avatar
Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: Central Florida
Posts: 3,045
Army Combatives

For those interested, you can DL the Army Combatives Field Manual in pdf format HERE.

This is for reference only. Do not attempt the techniques in this manual unless under the guidance of a qualified instructor.

Very few people have ever been killed with the bayonet or saber, but the fear of having their guts explored with cold steel in the hands of battle-maddened men has won many a fight.


Here's a guide to stretching for those that are interested. Stretching

And a few words on stretching and it's importance:


RELAXATION - You must relax the muscles that you are stretching. You cannot stretch a tensed or contracted muscle; it must be relaxed. A good way to warm up the muscles with out too much physical exertion is to have a hot bath. This helps to relax the body and warm the muscles.

MYOPHASIC REFLEX- Muscles have sensors, which check, for changes in muscle length. For example, when you kick, the muscle changes length very rapidly. This activates the myophasic reflex which means that the muscle contracts hard. This myophasic reflex will prevent you from stretching successfully. Stretching and bouncing will cause the myophasic reflex to be activated. (This is called the ballistic stretch). To avoid activating the myophasic reflex, stretching must be done slowly. The myophasic reflex helps to prevent injury and gives you an indication of when stop. No pain, No Gain? When it comes to stretching pain is your brain telling you its time to stop. So do not over stretch.

SAFETY- Stretching exercises must be done under careful control, You must not overload the muscles being stretched. In other words, the position you are in while stretching must be safe, with no chance of slipping or falling, or else you can unconsciously tense or tear the muscle.

Finally, remember that kicking correctly is the ultimate stretch. Nothing will stretch your body as completely as a kick. The leverage, force, and relaxation inherent in kicking exercises will increase your flexibility dynamically. Also, a kick is extremely specific in the muscle groups and fibres, which it stretches. So after you have warm up do your hand and leg techniques slowly at various heights and with no tension or force. After you have done 20 to 30 increase the speed and power of the technique. This will help increase dynamic flexibilty but too truly increase mobility, dynamic and static movements must be done.
Remember the 48-72 hour rule- Don’t` kick hard one day and stretch hard the very next day. Stretch and kick the same day; or, kick on day one, rest on day two, stretch on day three. Good luck, be careful, and much success.

A. Advantages of stretching:
Increased range of motion (kick higher, kick faster)
Increased heart rate at a gradual pace. (if doing dynamic flexibility)
Less chance of leg injury (a stretched muscle is less likely to strain)
Increased muscle capability (as an athlete's flexibility increases, so does his muscles ability to perform work)

B. How to begin your stretching routine:
If you wish to increase your heart rate before you stretch, choose an activity that will not cause your heart rate to increase too quickly. Start off slowly and gradually increase the intensity for less chance of injury. You can use your stretching routine to increase your heart rate or warm up. Working with the same premise as mentioned in #1 above. Start slowly and gradually increase the intensity. Stretching is an exercise, and if done correctly, it will develop muscle strength.

C. Stretching should follow four basic rules:
DO NOT use a ballistic type of stretch, using a bouncing type of motion to stretch the muscle. The jerking motion will increase the chance of muscle strain and will not develop good muscle control. Use a static type of stretch: stretching slowly with a constant pull. Hold for 30 seconds to 1 minute, relaxing the muscle while in this position.

Stretch muscles in proper order, head to toe or vice versa. When trying to stretch a specific muscle, it is important to realize which muscles are inter-related. Forward for a hamstring stretch involves not only the hamstring, but also the back, neck, buttocks and calves, so to get the maximum stretch in certain areas, it may be necessary to stretch an inter- related muscle first.

Once you establish a certain sequence (order in which you do your stretches), it is best to stay with that sequence, especially for the beginning student. Your body becomes adjusted to your warm up procedures, which in turn, means less chance of injury.

An important part of stretching is muscle control, the ability to relax one muscle for stretch, and tighten another for strength. Example: Contract hip-flexors and quadriceps muscles while relaxing the hamstring. To front kick high, you must let the hamstring relax to stretch high, but the hip- flexors contract, lift the leg and the quadriceps contract to cause leg extension .If you tighten the hamstring at this point, your kick will be low, or you might strain your hamstring. This can be developed during stretching.

D. Stretching routine example:
• Jog on the spot or skip for 3 to 10 mins
• Rotate the neck, left to right going shoulder to shoulder.
• Shoulder shrugs, rotating backwards 20 -40 times and then repeat forwards
• Stretch the chest by crossing arms across chest and then extending the arms fully at chest level.
• Rotate hips, left and then right.
• Legs apart at shoulder width extend left arm to knee and repeat action on the right side.
• Legs slightly bent touch toes ( when you increase your flexibility straighten )
• Sit down extend left leg and tuck in right leg, bring you chest down to the knee kicking the back straight. Repeat exercise on the other side.
• Lie down face down arch the back slowly counter stretch with a cat stretch (brings buttocks back to heals)

E. Making your own stretches.
There are too many different stretches available to explain all of them. Most of all stretches can be done with a partner, on a stretching bar, standing, sitting, walking or squatting. Do not stretch hard every day, alternate between one light day and one hard day.
When selecting which stretches from the many available, remember the four basic rules listed above.

NOTE: The most important thing about stretching - stretch through range of motion. If you become limber, but do not have strength to lift your leg high or kick at this height, you will not have got the full benefit from your stretching.
"Are you listening or just waiting to talk?"

Light travels faster than sound. This is why some people appear bright until you hear them speak.

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Last edited by Kyobanim; 01-22-2006 at 11:21.
Kyobanim is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-01-2007, 16:37   #2
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Afghanistan
Posts: 39

I noticed the link to FM 3-25.150 is down. Just for reference, here is a link to the current TSP's, Risk Management Worksheets,etc.


The new FM should be available sometime soon. It has gone far past the due date for the update because of many changes to the MOI's, TSP's, and training, as some changes are made from feedback from OIE/OEF. The program continues to evolve, but the training methods stay the same.

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Old 04-01-2009, 19:38   #3
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: JBB
Posts: 6
I think the best thing about the Combatives website is the video.


Some of the Risk assessments and packets don't get updated as soon as the changes are implemented at Benning. That's been a problem in the certification classes here.

The theory is that Level 1 techniques will be common-task for all soldiers sometime before I retire. I don't really know if it will happen as the requirement for NG deployments is a 4 hour block of instruction. The non certified people in my unit retained approximately nothing from that. Those of us that were already M.A.C. Instructors simply had to sit back and ask why Level 1 instructors were responsible for teaching brigade and battalion sized units techniques they barely understood.

Probably the most interesting things with the program are in TRADOC, most people going through basic and AIT these days are fighting either every other day or once per week. We had Company and brigade wide tournaments when I was an IET soldier.

Anyway, the video is a nice refresher for all the common-task level technique; it's the same video you can buy for 40$ in the PX.
"When the law is against you, argue the facts. When the facts are against you, argue the law. When both are against you, JHP."
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