Posted On:7/16/2010 6:54am
Originally Posted by Alucard619
Picked up this book a few days ago. The full title is called "A Los Angeles Bouncer's Guide to Practical Fighting: Learn No-Nonsense Fighting Tactics from a Professional Bouncer"
Catchy right? Sounds like it is filled with all the deadly secrets of a real life Road House-esque "cooler" right? Well after reading it I find myself disappointed (and out of $14.94...) Nothing but worthless and shitty techniques. Basically just to review and critique:
The author is Noah Knapp. He states to have served as head of security and/or bouncer at a number of popular LA night clubs. Among them are The Playroom, A.D., The Gate, The Lounge and Balboa. He has over 24 years of martial arts exeprience holding a 3rd degree black sash in Northern Drunken Style Kung-Fu. He also has training (though doesn't specify the rank) in Kenpo, Karate, Aikido, Kali, Silat and Tai Chi. The book also states he is a 2nd generation instructor at his family's own kung fu studio as well as instructor of the STAR martial arts program. No website or contact information is listed so if you're curious it looks like Google is your best friend in finding out any more information. Now unto the book content.
The guy talks about his experience as a bouncer, tossing out unruly patrons, assisting other members of the security team, breaking up and escaping violent altercations etc. All fine. First thing that made me raise my eyebrow was his explanation behind what he calls the "ward off position". It is basically a fighting stance, though deviates from what many of us have been trained. Instead of placing the hands up, chin tucked in, elbows in tight, shoulders relaxed and turned slightly sideways. He states this is not only incorrect, but one of the most foolish things ever. Reason being? It leaves as he explains, the spine exposed. He instructs to place your hands forward (ward off), drop one foot slightly back giving a small bend in the knees, keep both shoulders forward and elbows bent then turn the toes inward to avoid a break from a kick. He states it to be "one of the most easily defensible positions ever conceived". Nothing too major, I found it a little eccentric but kept reading.
Next was talk about awareness and positioning when faced with a potential threat. Again nothing major just about being aware of all your surroundings. Now comes the hand and arm attacks. Before explaining each technique he talks about his first time as Head of Security for a club. On this night he was told by the manager to "send a message" in regards to security and amount of force used to cover a huge promotion coming in to celebrate. Simply put: Loud angry drunk ass people acting a damn fool. May sound pretty typical but he insists up to this point the club was relatively clean and had a good record.
Now for the actual techniques. First is "whole fist"; a standard punch. Details it normally, using not just your arms but hips as well to generate power. Next is "half fist"; Closing the hand as usual but utilizing a half twist and leaving the thumb pressed on the top of the hand. The next technique is back fist, against pretty standard. Next was something I have never heard of, "knuckle fist". Open a half fist, exposing the middle knuckles for an elongated attack. Knuckle fists are described as attacking the opponents chest. What comes next is the "Star Fist/Eagles Beak". At that point I stopped to see if I picked up a Street Fighter manual by mistake. This is basically same as knuckle fist with greater focus on the middle knuckle. Described as perfect for pressure points such as the sternum and temple.
Finger gauge comes next. Now, I'm not a bouncer and I don't know very much about bouncing but I am pretty sure you're not supposed to gouge out a customer's eyes. No matter how unruly. I could be wrong but to me that just sounded like some bullshit reality based defense program where the guy stresses "the real deadly". Noah at this point again referred to a previous incident where he used a finger gauge to subdue a very large, angry and aggressive man that had been swinging punches at security and several patrons. In his words, "My years of training had impressed me a vital piece of knowledge. You can't build muscle over your eyes"* Gee....I assumed that was just common sense. Never knew it took 20+ years to learn the eyes have no muscle built over them in layers. He describes this deadly technique in that the simplest poke will subdue the most powerful adversary. Right, moving on.
Next was thumb spike. Take your thumb, extend over the index finger keeping it tight and jam it underneath the ear lobe. Then palm strike, here I thought "Ok finally a technique that isn't bogus" Wrong. "This attack is perfect for heart strikes.".....what? Is this a book about open heart surgery? Does it talk about using a scalpel and slicing the heart open? Basically take your palm, extend the heel of it towards the chest and strike over the heart. Next was simply "claw." I actually laughed out loud when I read this. Same as palm strike but instead you swing in scratching at the face, stomach or back. A bouncer talking about clawing some drunken fool. Sweet. Next is whip hand attack. The whip hand is described as "Not only being the ultimate slap it has many times served as the ultimate intimidator." Again I may be wrong but pretty sure bouncers aren't supposed to bitch slap the patron that chugged a bottle of Jack Daniel's and pissed all over the stool. The whip hand attacks with the finger tips. Lastly was yup you guessed it.....CHOP OF DOOM!!!!! Same as knife hand it uses an arcing motion with the underside of the hand, right at the unlucky bastard's neck (his NECK damn it!!)
I could go on. The book moves on with arm attacks (wrist attacks, forearm, "acute and obtuse" elbows). Then some **** about upper body manipulations (which looked like trapping) then some poor kick techniques and how to escape grabs. Overall, I'm kind of curious on how tough being a bouncer is if you can just Star Fist some SOB.
I bounced for around 15 years in two cities.
When you are the small guy (the one whom relies on martial arts and not strength things do change but all bouncers who want to leave the job with no bad facial scars should mention the following:
1) there is no stance to take. what gets you pounded is never the guy in front of you talking to you. It is his friends. First rule is when speaking to a perp your back should be against a barrier so nobody can coldcock, barstool/bottle you to the head.
2) Second rule is that you are to a person's flank, their side, your eyes and head should be looking indirectly at the person.... because peripheral vision senses his movement better. You will see it quicker if you are not looking directly at him. When it does come, never act defensivelly. if a sudden movement occurs and he is angry, an attack is coming, yu keep to his side and grab, hit with an open hand and grab, or go fowards and steam roll him out the door, before any cntact with his friends,,,, done properly his friends will not even know what just happened and will find him outside (in one piece).
Bouncing is never about fighting. This guy is an example of the type you get who real bouncers do not want to work with... a young punk with something to prove. You do not hit people with a punch.. you might use atema waza that is more deceptive.
One thing about this book is true: There are a lot of clowns like this guy and real bouncers have to put up with them, i had too and they are a danger to everyone in the club, usually the owner's nephew who studies the arts and wants to show uncle what badass he is. When I worked thge door at the DNA lounge one of these types got a bottle over the head during Hip Hop nigh and that stoppe his bouncing career.
This thread never was a high quality conversation - My friend vern Gilbert on the William Acquier thread.
The fight in question having started over who owns which piece of rubble. Nicko1;2233174 On the Acquier Kim Fiasco slash thread.
Posted On:7/16/2010 7:18am
Style: Nothing - yet
Originally Posted by HereBeADragon
Guy sounds like out and out bullshit. The root of this kinda BS is the assumption that certain professions make you an expert at combat/martial arts/self-defense because it is presumed that people who have to deal with potentially violent people should know how to. Which is true BUT its only true for the sphere they worked in.
A bouncer knows how to deal with people in the context of bouncing. Not a mugging, a rape attempt or some other situation that does not involve removing a drunk from a bar.
Likewise a police officer would have a lot of experience with street violence but again they are limited to the experiences they dealt with and likewise they are limited to the confines of their profession. In which they are generally trained not to strike an assailant and if it comes to that level of conflict the rule generally is shoot or tazer not single combat.
Or for another profession that these con artists like to draw on there is always the former special forces story. Again this falls flat of being a good information source for self defense but is presumed as otherwise and so is exploited. Like the bouncer or the police officer special forces deal with hostile targets and situations but the context is vastly different than a home invasion, mugging or other self defense related situation.
All of these professions would add to someones experience and aid them in teaching others how to protect themselves but that doesn't make that profession a complete education on the subject in and of itself. Its like asking a surfer to teach a scuba diving class. They operate in the same environments but with vastly different situations and goals.
People like this author pray on such assumptions to sell their snake oil. Its dishonest, irresponsible and can lead people into actions that can get them sued, arrested or killed.
Also does anyone else find it hilarios that the only art he claims rank in is drunken kung fu? How fitting for a bouncer.
For years, the door security industry in the UK has been trying to get away from the image of bouncers/doormen as psychopathic shaven gorillas in suits who stand around looking for an excuse to kick someone's head in. Not to say that there aren't guys like this still around but one of my friends from the football (whom unfortunately I've lost touch with now) who had been a 'door supervisor' (his preferred title) for several years told me that guys like this rarely get licensed these days (as toughguys who like to beat people up tend to have substantial criminal records for one thing or another) and if they do, they don't generally last long on the job.
Anyhow, in every situation I've seen where some serious **** kicked off in a bar/club, the bouncers went in mob-handed and pinned the guy to the floor, sitting on him until he stopped kicking and wiggling with minimal punches and kicks being thrown, if any. I have never, ever seen a bouncer stand up and trade d3adly with a drunken punter.
Posted On:7/16/2010 10:26am
Style: In transition
I forgot to ask if the book includes any references to the film Roadhouse.
I bet it does.
When I Get Back
Posted On:7/16/2010 10:34am
Originally Posted by jnp
Wait, where's the part about Alucard619 kicking several guy's butts with his awesome martial skill? All his other threads are about him schooling three or four other guys with his deadly kicks.
He only knows the deadly while standing on line, not controlling those standing on said line
Posted On:7/16/2010 11:10am
Style: Kenkojuku Karate, Judo
Actually, he beat up 3 guys while waiting on line to pay at the bookstore, but such events have become so commonplace he doesn't bother to report them anymore.
P.S. Alucard, check out Geoff Thompson. Then you can develop the TKD version of "The Fence"!
P.P.S. Good review. Eventually we'll stop teasing you. Eventually. :p
Last edited by maofas; 7/16/2010 11:14am at .
Posted On:7/16/2010 11:25am
PDS Rifles Style: Univ. Florida Kickboxing
can we get link to said threads by 619? I take it that he is from san diego
Posted On:7/16/2010 3:43pm
Style: currently xingyi
the problem i have with any book written by a bouncer is that it needs to promote awareness and such over any real technique based experiences, they might offer some entertaining stories to read, but IMO as far as thier martial value goes, any experience of them kicking major ass by a bouncer, better be followed by the next few years spent doing time in a state prison.
bouncers have NO special legal right to put thier hands on anyone (self-defence and such excepted obviously), as any good bouncer will tell you its the show of force that is designed to prevent some clown from getting stupid as opposed to a bunch of huge guys beating the crap out of unruly drunks.
if a bouncer was simply telling his/her life experiences, then giving interesting insight in techniques and training methodologies in the styels they studied and why they studied those in connection witht thier desire for protection and preservation as a bouncer i can chill with that.
(i have no intention of bieng one- but a book like that that is honest and truthfull about the circumstances is better than some guy just hawking a book using "bouncer" on his resume like its some kind of magic button for techniques)
Posted On:7/16/2010 4:17pm
Originally Posted by dwkfym
can we get link to said threads by 619? I take it that he is from san diego
Well, YOU asked for it:
So I saw the Karate Kid - No BS MMA and Martial Arts
So one of the mothers got mad at me - No BS MMA and Martial Arts
Parents piss me off - No BS MMA and Martial Arts
So I had an interesting conversation - No BS MMA and Martial Arts
I miss the old days - No BS MMA and Martial Arts
and no, he's allegedly in New York
Posted On:7/16/2010 6:41pm
Style: The Way of Hand and Foot
No I didn't fight anyone standing on line at the book store. I elbowed this sucker in the throat at the VIDEO store. Why? He cut in line and knocked my copy of American Psycho down. :biggrin:
Seriously, I hadn't really intended for this to be viewed as a serious critique but glad some of you liked it.
Originally Posted by maofas
P.P.S. Good review. Eventually we'll stop teasing you. Eventually. :p
Been teased with much much worse. All good bro, it'd be kinda questionable on my part if some internet tough guys scared me away. :)
Posted On:7/16/2010 6:57pm
I'm not an internet tough-guy, asshole maybe, but not tough-guy! You don't see me posting stories about how many people I kick in the face waiting my turn at the ATM!
I was serious though about recommending Geoff Thompson though, and I notice others recommended him too.
Last edited by maofas; 7/16/2010 7:05pm at .
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