Air Force

April 17, 2014

Grappling, pummeling, trapping: 162nd Airmen learn to ‘close with the enemy’

Tags:
Staff Sgt. Erich B. Smith
162nd Wing Public Affairs
(U.S. Air Force Photo by Airman 1st Class Chris Drzazgowski)
It’s just business….nothing personal. Airman 1st Class Anna Solis applies a free-style stranglehold on Senior Airman Jessica Switzer on March 21 at the Western Army National Guard Aviation Training Site gym in Marana, Ariz. The two security forces specialists were part of an intense 5-day, Army National Guard-instructed training event titled Basic Combative Course.

MARANA, Ariz. — The words on the gym wall summed it up best for 13 security forces specialists who trained at the Western Army National Guard Aviation Training Site here March 17-21.

“The defining characteristic of a warrior is the willingness to close with the enemy.”

Through the Basic Combative Course taught by Arizona’s Citizen-Soldiers, the men and women who protect the 162nd Wing’s jets, facilities, equipment and its greatest asset – the Airman – learned the essentials of unarmed combat: close the distance, gain the dominant position and finish the fight.

“Our security forces are well-trained in combat arms, but to see them operate in full-contact, close-quarter scenarios, only makes them more mission capable,” said 162nd  Wing Vice Commander Lt. Col. Kenneth Rosson, who was able to witness the training, describing it as “a great example of the joint-service mentality we have here in Arizona.”

In what an outside observer could mistake for a Ultimate Fighting Championship or Mixed Martial Arts event, the intense period of instruction covered submission holds, rear naked and cross collar choke holds, escape methods, front and rear mount positions – any kind of technique that neutralizes a threat without weaponry.

For Airman 1st Class Jordan Apalategui, successfully negotiating the course was an exercise in stamina of the body and mind.

“It was brutal, getting owned in wrestling and getting punched – it took its toll,” said Apalategui. “It was mentally and physically draining.”

With M-4 Carbine Rifles, M-9 Berretas, pepper sprays and soon-to-be Taser Guns at their disposal, security forces personnel are well-armed to meet any kind of immediate danger with defensive actions.

But according to Chief Master Sgt. Mark Milbourn, security forces manager, the training was useful in the event a security forces specialist does not have the luxury of a “reactionary gap,” a term used to describe the time it takes to asses a situation and subsequently use a weapon.

“If we don’t have that separation of contact, this training gives Airmen the confidence that if they go hand-to-hand with somebody, they can put them into some kind of submission to where that person is going to give up very quickly,” Milbourn said.

With an extensive background in Taekwondo, Army Sgt. Maj. Mark Ruffe, an operations sergeant major at the Arizona National Guard Joint-Forces Headquarters in Phoenix, served as one of the instructors.

“They (security forces) were impressive – every one of them, and they showed a lot of heart,” he said.

Ruffe added that 162nd Wing Security Forces personnel have joined the likes of Navy SEAL[s], Drug Enforcement Administration agents and personal bodyguards of government officials in receiving this type of unarmed, combat instruction.

“I took away from this training a new sense of confidence, skills and knowledge about myself and how much I can actually take and push myself to survive any type of hostile situation,” said Senior Airman Jessica Switzer, security forces specialist. “I love my firearms, but hand-to-hand combat is always going to be a vital role in defending myself.”




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 
(U.S. Air Force photo by Airmen 1st Class Cheyenne Morigeau)

Davis-Monthan Airman helps Tucsonan

One weather forecaster’s self-aid buddy care training quickly resurfaced when she witnessed a car accident outside the gates of Davis-Monthan. Senior Airman Amanda Boone, 355th Operations Support Squadron weather forecaster, ...
 
 

U.S. Air Force to kick off COOL program

MAXWELL AIR FORCE BASE, Ala. (AFNS) — The Community College of the Air Force officially launched the Air Force Credentialing Opportunities On-Line program March 16. Air Force COOL is a pathway for enlisted Airmen to earn industry recognized professional certifications and licenses to enhance their active-duty work and to prepare them as they transition to...
 
 

Military leads the way in equal opportunity

VANCE AIR FORCE BASE, Okla. — What does it take to change a nation? What force has the power to move millions of people in their fundamental views of the world? For Christopher Daniels, a U.S. Air Force colonel, that answer is simple: leadership. In his words, “The true agent of change is true leadership.”...
 

 

Doolittle Tokyo Raiders to receive Congressional Gold Medal

(U.S. Air Force photo) On April 18, 1942, Airmen of the U.S. Army Air Forces, led by Lt. Col. James H. “Jimmy” Doolittle, carried the Battle of the Pacific to the heart of the Japanese empire with a surprising and daring raid on military targets at Tokyo, Yokohama, Yokosuka, Nagoya, and Kobe. This heroic attack...
 
 

AFAF gives all Airmen a chance to pay it forward

NELLIS AIR FORCE BASE, Nev. — It’s Sept. 12, 2005. Senior Airman Dennis Hutchison is recovering from a hard day’s work on the flightline of Robbins Air Force Base, Georgia, when he receives a call that tragedy had struck. “I got a notification from my family that my father had passed away,” Hutchison said. “I immediately contacted...
 
 

Rocketry Club ready to take flight this weekend

TUCSON, Arizona – On March 28 and 29, hundreds of rockets will soar into the Tucson sky at Desert Heat 2015. Rocket enthusiasts from around the Southwest will gather for this annual two-day rocketry event, where there’s no cost to watch, and kids always fly free. The rockets that will be launched vary in size...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>


Directory powered by Business Directory Plugin