Why I'm Here
I've read posts on this site in the past, and I've gotten a lot of laughs at some very absurd claims from self proclaimed "Masters" and some other things. The Head Master of my Hapkido school once said that literally anyone can proclaim themselves "Founder" of a new art, and proclaim themselves 10th degree Master.
More recently I've been on here researching Chris Pizzo. I have read a whole lot about him on here, and learned a ton. Most of the threads I read are quite old. I would like to share my recent experience with "Captain Chris". Please don't flame my post for covering anything that's already been discussed here. I looked at threads going back 6 years, and I'm not going to read every single one, although I spent a couple hours before joining. Try to keep an open mind as to what I want to say, and I'll share my experience.
First off, the primary style I've studied formally is Hapkido. I do not proclaim that it is the best style, but I've found it best for me. I am open minded, and have learned from other styles. I can kick pretty well, but most decent TKD guys can do better. I can punch, but a trained boxer can do better. I like joint manipulation and pressure points a lot, maybe because those are the things I am best at, and they come natural to me.
Before purchasing "Accelerated Battlefield Combatives" I never thought I was going to learn a system that would make me wish I never wasted time studying Hapkido. I thought his claims that using anything other than gross motor movements in a real situation won't work was complete bullshit. I know that is complete bullshit, because I've done it more than once and easily took control of the situation. But I stuck with simple techniques, the ones I've practiced a thousand times to the point of muscle memory.
I did think I might learn something I didn't know. I learned a little, but mostly it was useful stuff for my 8 year old son. I started teaching him to strike when he was 4. He can strike, block, do basic front snap and thrust kicks, side kicks, elbows and knees. He also knows how and where to hit, grab, gouge or last resort bite an adult who grabs him. I do not teach him joint locks yet.
I get visitation with my son every other weekend. I try to give him something to practice each visit. We went through Accelerated Combatives one weekend, and practiced the techniques some. Two weeks later he remembered 90% of it. Some of it is useful. One of the few things I think so called Captain Chris is truthful about is that it is simple to learn.
I will not by a long shot replace what I know with what Chris teaches, and neither will my 8 year old. It is not the best system in the world for anyone large or small, strong or weak, etc.. like he claims. But I will say it is better than nothing, which is what a lot of people have. Most of the techniques, OK all but maybe one, I would do something else, but it's better than freezing and doing nothing.
I have found from experience, that in most cases, an attacker is not trained at any martial art, and most of the time they look for someone weak, who will not fight back. Just fighting back at all is a start, and again, better than nothing. There are also people who train in a controlled environment, gain high belt levels, but when they get grabbed on the street or a bar, they freeze long enough to get taken out.
Now, on the other hand, I don't think Chris should be teaching anyone that if they learn this system, they are basically unbeatable. Their level of confidence should also be coupled with realism. Anyone with no idea of how to defend themselves, would gain something from practicing this system. I will assume that most of the martial artists on this site could kick the **** out of them. But I will also assume that most martial artists of any prowess are not thugs, thieves, rapists or child molesters.
Anyway, back to Captain Chris. In Accelerated Combatives, he teaches that only gross motor movements will work in a real situation. Included with the videos, was one called "Black Mask", an "Advanced Level" video. He (at least I think it's him) wears ski mask in the video. The techniques look a lot like Hapkido to me, or Aikido. A lot of fine motor movements. I thought those didn't work?
One technique, he says you almost never see and is rarely if ever used. In Aikido, it's called Kotegaeshi. In my Hapkido school we didn't call anything by the traditional names, but it's very common. It's a wrist lock, throw, pin. I'm sure many of you guys know it, and I'm sure it's used in many martial arts I've never trained in. I've never seen a thug use it, and I've never seen it in MMA. I think it is considered a small joint manipulation, and it's not allowed. It is a great one, and once you get good at it, it can be used against lots of different attacks, and is very powerful and effective. But it is no secret known to Captain Chris.
I have learned since that the system Chris teaches, was not something he found in the archives of WW2. I wondered at first hearing this, if it is so effective, why doesn't every branch of the military use it exclusively? They use only what works, and they do not care where it came from. Why would they not stick to the best system ever developed?
I did more and more research, and I came across a name, Carl Cestari. I found that one of Carl's students became a business partner of Captain Chris, who used to go by another name, and so did the company. I looked up Cestari. I've only seen a couple of videos so far, shorts on You Tube. The one's I've seen are EXACTLY what Chris teaches as his secret find, only a little more brutal. I'm not even close to done with my research.
I also found a lot of other things that conflict with Captain Chris's stories. My take so far? Captain Chris, is not now and never was a Captain of anything. Unless maybe he started a YWCA soccer team. He did not find any "Secrets" he did not steal from someone else. Cestari is dead, and cannot defend himself against Chis's marketing. Chris knows some stuff, but the source he got this from is fabricated bullshit. I also learned a little about "Lt. X." and all that bullshit.
I don't trust Captain Chris as far as I can throw him. And given what I've learned, that may be a lot further than I thought.
If anyone knows where I can get videos by Cestari himself, I would appreciate it. The vid I watched of him doing a chin jab, Chris's final finishing tech, I really liked. It looks like he's in an old gym, wearing sweats, sunglasses, (sunglasses in training, now that's some cool ****) and a NY accent, and teaching the tech better than Chris does, I liked the hell out of that! I want to see a lot more of that guy! I wish he was still alive.
Chris looks like a pretty fit High School wrestling coach. Carl looks like a hit man. I want to see more and learn more about Carl. I'll do plenty of research on my own, but pointers I would appreciate.
What is the nub of your post?
Welcome to Bullshido. The open-minded part is where you score points with me LOL.
Originally Posted by Devil
Welcome to Bullshido.
Have you looked at Modern Army Combatives?
TL;DR, try writing a book ******.
Dammit, am I the only one who was suckered into reading all of that? Anyways, sounds like what you're saying is that you've found yourself a video of someone teaching self-defence moves that he learned from someone else, rather than inventing all entirely new movements of his own. What an outrage, alert the press!
You want pointers? Here's one: learn martial arts from qualified instructors, not from video.
So, you aren't going to read every thread going back 6 years, but you write a post that looks like it would take 6 years to read?
I'm out, welcome to bullshido.
for info on Carl Cestari's materials, check out www.gutterfighting.org. Lots of good old resources there.
That's what I skimmed off the top. Welcome to Bullshido.
Originally Posted by jdogg33
Welcome to Bullshido Jdogg33. That was very long, consider paragraphs (Double tap enter, when you finish your 3rd or 4th sentence). Less is more, in that more people will read it all. The thread will develop quickly without bombardment.
I'd say consider some in person instruction from a live person. Video can't do the same, as they aren't there to correct you (and other reasons).
If you want to give your son something practical, I'd suggest a boxing or judo class. Both are inexpensive on the scale of things, and are highly applicable in the realm of keeping-one's-self-safe.
Enjoy your posthood on BS.
For other posters, I think the point was he'd like to find out more on Carl Cestari videos. You're welcome.