Monday, April 16, 2012

How, What, Why

The VPPG Sunday went well and, as always, got me thinking. I'd hoped to have some time to sit and write and hammer stuff out, but life got busy and didn't cooperate. Today is just as busy (deadlines coming up) so this won't have the depth. Consider it a spring board to more of the gamut.

E's question at the VPPG was the perpetual one: how do we teach this. This, in this context is something that most of our group understands but it's hard to put into words. The emotional context of an assault. Howe to break the freeze and how to be efficient and how to adapt and, in essence, how to win when a bigger, stronger, experienced opponent got the first move at the time and place of his choice.

On paper that's not going to happen. It looks like an insurmountable problem. But every one of the core members of the group has done it, most of us multiple times. It's not a physical skill. Which doesn't mean that there is something wrong with physical skills or that you don't need physical skills. It's just that... not all the survivors are what you would call physically gifted. For some of us, our first ugly encounter was long before we had any formal training. This whatever this is that allowed us to survive wasn't a physical skill. How do you train it?

That's not quite the right question, it turns out. We've been hitting a wall maybe because we've been focusing on how to teach. The first step has to be defining what you are teaching. What comes before how.

The brainstorm on "What" was short. That was what I really wanted to sit down later and hammer on before life got in the way. My notes concentrate on 'seeing the real problem' and 'reframing.' There's more, though, and it could be a long list. But once that list is made, then 'How' will become much, much easier.

Then IV trumped the What. Because we also need the why. And the why drives the what and the why is different for every student. How many students really need what we do? Would it have a negative impact on the rest of their lives? That's a valid concern. We're all emotionally (mostly) healthy with good relationships and stuff. But that's certainly not true for all survivors.

And each student needs a different thing. I preach on adaptability, maybe because of near-ctastrophic failures from blindly following protocols. E focuses on a small set of highly drilled skills. Each student has a different victim profile, which drives what they need.

Why the student is there drives what they need to know. What they need to know drives how things must be taught. And some of the things on that list will require a little extra work to figure out how to teach.
BTW, either I'm losing it or I'm out of touch.
Force Decisions came out a couple of days ago and I didn't even know. Mac has a copy already. I don't.
The video for Facing Violence has a clip on Youtube and is shipping. No idea.
Now Toby posts on FB that I have an article posted at YMAA.

Glad people are telling me when my stuff comes out.


Steve Perry said...

"Glad people are telling me when my stuff comes out."

Welcome to the biz. THe writer is usually the last to know ...

Rich said...

If not all of the survivors are physically gifted, do they have something in common in an aspect of their personality that you can identify? Assertiveness, optimism, emotional intelligence, that kind of thing?

What if the thing you're talking about isn't a generalizable, teachable set of choices, but a result of the way that people with particular personality features experience the stress of assault?

Charles James said...

I remember studying "book collecting" and found it very interesting the book publishers seldom send the author a copy and when it is requested it is seldom the first printing. Curious .....

SM said...

What is the intended audience of "Force Decisions": Americans? Anglos? Westerners? Anyone who lives in a country where police are usually well trained and mostly have to justify their use of force? The Amazon blurb is quite brief.

Randy said...

It's amazingly complex and defies any simple approach, but a basic model might look like this:

a) Violent contexts & scenarios, b) individual attributes and c) skill qualities can all be evaluated for their cognitive, affective, motor and physiological components (CAMP). The content and combinations of CAMP will differ for contexts & scenarios, for each skill that might be used in a scenario, and for the individual who may face a given scenario. They will change in relation to changes in other CAMP components.

Transferability of training is going to be highest when CAMP components for all three areas line up, and training has provided high quality simulations (accurate cues/actions) of a potential scenario and context. The same model applied to 5 different individuals quickly produces a complex, individualized guide for skill training, situational training, and attribute conditioning (strength/bioenergetic systems, etc.), specific to any of the three domains or relative between them.

nry said...

Can we get this in the UK without paying silly shipping costs from the US?

Anonymous said...

Well, isn't it complicated? Experience is a good teacher even if only to look back and say, geesh. I shoulda seen that coming? So some things you can't teach. But the preparations as Randy points out the teaching individual and so there you are.

Josh K. said...

To E's question flipped a bit.

What qualities do you promote in a student so they can learn?

This takes the focus of the material and puts it on the student.

You(Rory) already do this, to a point, when you say, I prefer/like to deal with people that are thinking clearly. A quality you find apealing in a student, I bet.

Now onto the; oh, you probable already thought considerd this, feeling, and the who am I to to even have an opinion on this.

Josh K. said...

But, being a good student learner what have to do with survival if anything.

Josh K. said...

corection "... what does that have..."