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Citizen Police Academy: week 8

highscore, originally uploaded by baboon™.

For our defensive tactics class, we met at the old station in downtown St. Paul. The session was held in a dilapidated exercise room, with piles of old fitness equipment pushed into a corner. The windows were tarped over. When we began for the night, we gathered on a flotilla of wrestling mats that covered half the floor, and picked up punching bags.

Kick! Punch! I had flashbacks to my lessons in Tae Kwon Do. We paired up with a sparring partner and practiced the basic moves for unarmed close-quarters combat. After that, we got to swing around some padded Asp batons (for maximum force, you strike with the tip). One of our classmates wanted to tussle with the instructor, but his dream of sparring with a cop was denied.

Lastly, we discussed cuffing techniques and practiced with both chain and hinge-style handcuffs. (Officers might choose one or the other based on personal preference and the circumstances of the individual who needs to be restrained.) The training officer told us that some people can slip their cuffs from back to front. I took that as a personal challenge, and I learned a valuable lesson: with no shoes on, I can indeed step out of cuffs, but I can't do a whole lot afterwards.

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