Hand-to-Hand Combat and the Use of Combatives Skills: An Analysis of United States Army Post Combat Surveys from 2004-2008
Final rept. 1 Jan 2013-10 Nov 2014
MILITARY ACADEMY WEST POINT NY CENTER FOR ENHANCED PERFORMANCE
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Despite technological advances, hand-to-hand combat remains a persistent aspect of the contemporary operating environment Wojadkowski, 2007. To develop a more detailed understanding on the use of hand-to-hand combat, the researcher analyzed 30 Post-Combat Surveys administered to US Army Soldiers from 2004 to 2008 after their return from deployments to Iraq and Afghanistan. 216 out of 1,226 Soldiers 19.0 reported using hand-to-hand combat skills in at least one encounter. The Soldiers descriptions indicated that hand-to-hand combat occurred in a variety of tactical situations and that the most common skills employed were grappling techniques 72.6, followed by the use of weapons e.g., rifle butt strikes 21.9 with striking as the least reported skill i.e., punching and kicking 5.5. These results further reinforce that hand-to-hand combat remains a relevant demand and the US Army should continue such training with an emphasis on grappling skills practiced across a variety of performance settings.
- Military Operations, Strategy and Tactics