SEAL or Gurkha vs normal people

Inspired by the other threa of a SEAL against a Gurhka. I have read that numbers are a huge advantage in an unarmed fight. I can’t remember where, but I recall reading somewhere that 4 or 5 average, untrained, but physically fit people would be able to beat 1 highly trained fighter like a SEAL or even a top martial artist in unarmed combat. How true is this? Let’s say it’s like the mma octagon and you have 1 highly trained and in top physical shape SEAL against 5 ordinary guys who are untrained and in fair but not exceptional physical condition. Who would win?

I’d say the SEAL. His training probably includes techniques for fighting more than one person at a time. And he only has to hit each guy once.

I would guess if the 5 guys get lucky they could win by managing to get hold of the trained guy or hit him in the back of the head or take a knee out but I’ll say the traiined guy gets more than a 50% chance and that raises signifigantly if the 5 untrained guys hold back and don’t try to mob the trained fighter.

Are they in a hall way, does the guy have a hammer :wink: <---- violence in the clip. It a link to a epic one on many fight from a movie called Oldboy

As a black belt myself, but not a SEAL, I’d say it gets exponentially harder to defend yourself against more people. Unless 4 people are attacking you one-at-a-time kung fu-movie style (which is possible if the 4 people don’t really want to be in the fight, if they’re scared, or drunk), I think it would be exceptionally difficult for anyone to fight off 4 or more dedicated, aggressive attackers.

One key is mobility, and not getting in the middle of several people where you cannot attack whomever is in front of you and defend against whomever is behind you. When you start talking about more than three people, if one attacker grabs your arm or leg and holds on for dear life for more than a couple seconds, it’s a huge window of vulnerability for the others to exploit. So long as the four or five people are actually being aggressive and taking the fight to the one, I would bet that the mob would win consistently.

If the five “normals” are hesitant, to the point of watching one of their number enage the SEAL and get clobbered before moving in, I’d give it to the SEAL. If they swarm, the SEAL has no chance.

Now, how many angry five-year-olds can a SEAL handle?

I would be somewhat leery of even saying a SEAL would defginitely be all that good in hand-to-hand. I 'm sure they’re competent. But solduiers, even really dedicated ones, generally practice techniques that involve lethal weapons, like guns or (at worst) knives. Not hand-to-hand. I’ve no doubt that some of the MMA champions would crush a SEAL, unless that SEAl is extremely proficient as a personal matter.

I’d say the SEAL loses. In hand to hand ? Definitely. Consider the real life events portrayed in Black Hawk Down: at one point, a pair of Deltas opt to go down on the ground and defend one helicopter crash site against the mob for as long as possible. In real life, the two of them managed to kill around 25 militias with their automatic weapons - then one of them caught a random bullet in the dome, and that was that. The other was overrun, then killed.

If you make the scenario pure hand-to-hand, where technology and professionalism matters much less than sheer physics, then it becomes even more lopsided. The seal might immobilize or even incapacitate one, two of his aggressors. The mob will do him in, training or no training.

Didn’t one Ghurka recently take on 40 bandits?

I used to train with a couple of SEALS who joined one of my old martial arts (BJJ) schools. They were very fit, but no better at fighting than any other very fit person. As a matter of fact I was joking with one of them about it once and he said something like “we only train to shoot people.” So I wouldn’t expect too much more out of a SEAL than out of any other person, unless guns were involved.

One at a time, in very tight quarters (on a train), against untrained and unmotivated attackers. Which gave him a great advantage, and one big handicap: he only had to deal with one attacker at a time, but the narrow aisle meant he kept getting his big brass Gurkha balls stuck. :smiley:

And he was armed with a kukri, which is basically a machete, while his opponents were armed with fake guns (really!). And he was only facing 40 of them in the retelling. This is in no way intended to disparage the man, who did a seriously brave thing, but this probably isn’t a good indicator of how an unarmed fight against a Gurkha would go.

What if I rephrase the OP to include not professional soldiers, but professional fighters like Randy Couture or Georges St. Pierre? The reason I ask is this makes me wonder about the utility of martial arts training if being a highly trained fighter will not really give someone enough of an advantage to take on more than two or three opponents at once. Specifically I’m thinking about the scene from the original Karate Kid where Mr. Miyagi wipes the floor with all the kids that are beating up Daniel. How unrealistic is that scene?

i will say that no MMA technique in regular use/practice is good for fighting multiple opponents.

You mean like the punchingtechniques in MMA? They won’t work against a crowd?

MMA fighters would do much better against a crowd (in an unarmed fight) than anyone else on the planet.

Boxerbeating two opponents in a street fight. My personal opinion is that judo throws would be very effective, but haven’t found any videos yet. And don’t forget, the odds are against the single guy, no matter what he studies.

Personal anecdotal data suggest that judo throws, while pretty damn efficient against one guy, absolutely suck when you’re against two or more.

I can break your ribs if we fall together the right way. I can put us in a position where I can easily dislocate your shoulder, or break your arm, or even convincingly threaten to snap your neck.
But by that time we’re on the ground and your buddy can kick me in the head to his heart’s content.

I suppose you could just use regular throws that put the opponent on his back (IPPON !), but that doesn’t accomplish much without following through on the ground - he’ll just be back on his feet 5 seconds later. Especially considering sport throws are designed to let Uke (or was it Tori ? I always get those two mixed up) fall “right”, in a manner that doesn’t hurt, and it’s pretty tough to do away with that conditioning entirely.

I’d say the best fighters are those crazy motherfuckers who fight with their elbows, knees and teeth, and just - don’t - stop. Since most dojos don’t let you really practice eye-gouging and groin-twisting, the most effective training is given on the streets and in prison yards.

So what you are saying is dirty Dan Dority has the edge over both Mr. SEAL and Mr. Gurkha :p?

In 1966 a Special Forces instructor taught me hand to hand combat. (Just to be up front about it, I sucked at it.) We had specific lessons for one opponant, two opponants, and more than two opponants. After the last one, he said, ok, now forget all that crap. Just shoot the sunsabitches, and if you can’t shoot 'em, you should have been running from the start.


what you mean is a trained puncher will likely hit at least one face in several. that’s the problem. the next two or three guys aren’t going to play dumb and beaten. several oriental techniques, whether hard or soft, have multiple opponent drills (both kata and semi-kumite.) i had to spar with 5 guys (including the instructor) during one intermediate promotion in karate. but i would sooner challenge 5 guys to basketball than a fist fight.

but your claim that MMA punchers are in the best position is neither relevant nor (i think) correct.