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Effective knee kick from the ground against a standing suspect

A Tactical Tip For Combatting a Standing Suspect When You Are On The Ground

by Chuck Remsberg & Ron Borsch

If you’re on the ground and your adversary is still standing, one of the fastest ways to buy yourself precious seconds and potentially disable him is with a powerful and effective knee kick. A suspect’s knee will generally be a closer target for your foot than his groin, just as when standing his solar plexus will usually be closer than his upper body, face or groin for your fist to deliver power punches.

Ron Borsch, manager and trainer at the SEALE Regional Training Academy in Bedford, OH, describes what he considers the most damaging knee strike:

Facing the offender on your side, feet towards your adversary and using your hands to propel yourself toward him, hook the crook of your lower foot behind one of his legs at about ankle level. Tug that foot toward you as you cock your upper leg and then blast a kick to his knee with explosive power.

Before kicking try to bring your knee as close to your chest as possible to increase velocity. Try to strike with the horizontal edge of your foot rather than the ball to lower the risk of deflecting or missing.

The impact, pain and potential dysfunction will likely drive him backward off-balance and possibly bring him to the ground. You may be able to gain a bit of time and distance to get up or draw a weapon.

Note: Hooking his leg is critical in order to anchor it so the resulting pressure/counter-pressure when you kick can do its devastating work, Borsch explains. Otherwise your kicking blow will likely land too wimpily to be destructive. (Likewise, when standing, first hooking your off-hand behind a suspect’s neck can intensify the power of defensive punches or elbow strikes to his head.)

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About the author

Charles Remsberg co-founded the original Street Survival Seminar and the Street Survival Newsline, authored three of the best-selling law enforcement training textbooks, and helped produce numerous award-winning training videos. His nearly three decades of work earned him the prestigious O.W. Wilson Award for outstanding contributions to law enforcement and the American Police Hall of Fame Honor Award for distinguished achievement in public service.

Buy Charles Remsberg's latest book, Blood Lessons, which takes you inside more than 20 unforgettable confrontations where officers' lives are on the line.
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