the fighting skills of the average man

These arent “fighting skills”, they are “survival skills”. Fighting skills are the tactics and strategies one employs once the fight has started.

Fah! If running away is a fighting skill, then talking down from a fight is a fighting skill.

Obv I’m defining it overbroadly, on purpose: point is, fighting skills are a lot less necessary than they used to be for pretty much everybody, and they’ve been replaced by the development of this other set of skills.

The average guy has a 50/50 chance of coming out on top against another average guy …

Most guys slightly below average and above know how to avoid circumstances that would result in a need for a physical fight.

My last physical fight was in college (glad I escaped alive) and over the past 35 to 40 years I’ve had one time that it came close with me having to stand in front of someone much larger than me and make it clear that they were welcome to throw a punch at me but that if they did 1) they might be surprised at what happened and 2) witnesses present, identity known, they would end up in jail if they seriously injured me. They backed down … calling me nuts as they did … but backed away.

Compared to my Dad’s generation? My Dad was frickin’ boxer in his youth and when he started to make money as a salesman his mother assumed he must be beating people up for the mob. He got kicked out of an officer training program for special ops in WW2 because he slugged a commanding officer. I may be a more fit 55 year old than he was - by then he was an obese diabetic who had already had his first heart attack - but his generation knew how to fight. Manhood means different things now and I take on many roles that he would not have identified as the masculine things to do. And hand to hand physical conflict is not part of being a man much now, Fight Club aside. (And we don’t talk about that.)

Active Seals are going to be in excellent shape but there seems to be this comic book notion that they are some kind of personal hand to hand combat supermen. Seals train for lots of stuff, but rolling abound on the floor bar fighting is not high on the list. In the real world a lot of big, strong, in shape guys get their asses handed to them by experienced dirty fighting opponents who know what they are doing.

Where do you get this from? SEALs are trained in hand to hand combat and armed combat, they are in excellent physical conditions. Idiots who fight in bars do not have those skills or that conditioning. SEALs have undergone intensive survival training, even at a disadvantage in a fight they will hold out until their opponent tires out and then finish them off. As far as dirty fighting is concerned if such starts they are going to grab anything they can use as a weapon and the moron who started the fight will be lucky to come out alive. SEALs are trained professional fighters, drunken brawlers aren’t even amateurs, they are just nitwits.

So what, you, like drink a lot or something?

The idea that some of our national military’s elite, most highly-trained warriors are nothing more than glorified fitness models is fucking retarded. Being in excellent shape is a byproduct of being a Seal, not an end goal. It’s the dumb fucks in the bars who get juiced up on steroids with no real medical clue as to what they’re doing, all for the end goal of looking good and getting laid more often. I think you have your analysis exactly backwards.

Well of course they are excellent warriors. Warriors with guns; sure they train a bit for hand to hand take downs but so do cops. And sure they learn some more lethal stuff but is any of it really more complicated than “stick your knife in them”?. I’d sooner back a front row forward (the 'ardest in a footy team) in a brawl than I would most any man from the army.

So Navy Seals are just like police. Police with a tad more training thrown in. But nothing compared to big, bad football players in a fight. This is silly. You win. Whatever.

You might take a Navy Seal in a fair fight, but a Navy Seal would never give you one. A fair fight is what occurs after a breakdown in mission planning.

Simple factual answer - yes.

Supermen? No. Trained to the degree that it would not get to a point of rolling around on the floor? Uh yeah. They are trained to end it and end it fast, not for “take downs” unless you have very specific meaning to that word, one in which the person does not ever get back up.

I have a very close friend who was a navy seal. About 10 years out of the seals his drunkl brother in law kicked his ass. The ex seal was at that time a police officer and stayed in excellent shape and regularly practiced hand to hand combat tecniques. ( not the same as full blown fighting).

I’m not really sure what the focus on “modern” men is.

The prototypical, average man throughout recorded history is a poor farmer somewhere. The worst physical fight they might have reasonably had was against a family member while growing up.

Yes, there were some vicious armies and such, but those guys also received training, and didn’t represent the majority of a population. Also, many of them were often no better than fodder in wartime.

While many, if not most, of them may well have been in better physical shape than a modern man, I wouldn’t lay good money on their hand to hand combat skills unless they had military training.

And yes, there will have been some tough brawlers among them. There always are. Actually, I think Abraham Lincoln was known to be a pretty rough guy in a fight. But note that reputation itself is notable. It’s not a common thing. There’s some selection bias going on. We hear about the rough and tumble guys because they aren’t common (and hence notable) rather than because that was the average situation. “Nothing of note happened today” makes for boring news, so nobody reports that.

Training time is limited, even for SEALs, as there are only so many hours in a day. Yes, they have some hand-to-hand training. No, it isn’t the focus of what they do. The same is true of any of the elite military groups. They spend their time drilling mission-critical skills and running simulated missions. Some of them may have a personal interest in hand-to-hand martial arts and devote personal time to that. They are motivated people who went through a lot to become members of those units, but they aren’t comic book heroes.

The average guy does not go into ‘kill quick’ mode at the start of an average guy fight. There is usually some form of thinking about fair or what they are capable of. They have already lost.

If you want to handicap the SEAL the same, then anything can happen but usually you can’t get them into that kind of fight.

My Dad taught us that if it was not worth killing someone for, it was not worth a physical fight.

Firstest with the mostest wins.

The only way to fight is to kill as quick as you can by any means you can.

A ‘fair’ fight or fighting without death being on the table is totally stupid. ( Sports not included. )

Most efficient fight I ever had that did not involve guns or knives & was in a bar. I was the biggest guy in there.

When the bad ass littlest guy in there walked up and said, “I’m going to kick your ass.” I was just standing at the bar."

I was not going to fight him & told him so and he started the name calling, the pushing and slapping my chest.

Did not work.

Started with the usual insults and then about my Mother and on & on.

Got all they way to calling me a coward, etc.

Still no fight.

So he did as expected & turned away and started bragging.

I then tried to kill him with one blow. All I did was make him ambulance ready. If he had been able to get up, either the now broken & empty beer bottle or my boots were going to be applied to his head.

Now I have a CCW and I plan & practice winning every fight that might happen.

None will be fair and all will be to the death.

To date, all people have seen their future when they try to get in my face, but man, woman, child, all will lose.

I will never again have to go instantly without fanfare to eye removal or genital removal because I do not go unarmed. I have never fought ‘fair’ since I was about 14 playing with my little brother with boxing gloves on.

A SEAL could take me easy if I did not know he was going to try to kill me.

If I figure it out and he is far enough away that he can get to me before I can get to my weapon, he will ‘win.’

I don’t do bars, 23+ years sober, so how would I get into a hand to hand fight?

Saw a MMA or MME or what ever fighter break his own leg real bad in the first seconds of his attack. Had it been a for real fight, he would have died in the next seconds.

IMO, the average guy is not ready to kill so he goes into any fight with an deadly handicap.

Not being always and instantly ready to kill and to try your damnedest to do it to the other as quick as you can with no hesitation in the first second, not pre-game silliness, is the down fall of all average guys in hand to hand fighting if they are so stupid as to get into one.

I don’t get into them on my own accord, you have to bring it hard. And you better.


I’m curious if this is true. My understanding is that for most of history, adolescent boys and young men have been expected to get in brawls with one another, and taht such an experience was the norm rather than the exception. Are there stats on the subject?

I strongly expect the “norms” here are what most dopers experienced in their modern families extrapolated back to ancient times. My brother and I got into several serious tussles but I’m sure there were ancient families and cultures where this was not the case just as in modern families. I would also imagine wealthier upper caste ancient families saw less inter-family brawling than lower caste poorer families, just like today.

Been into the rum cake, have we?

You win the internets… for today.

Why on earth would you think that an “experienced bar fighter in decent shape” would have a “decent chance” of beating up someone who has completed arguably the most difficult combat training program in the world?

I’m guessing this is some kind of satire, or you’re intoxicated.
And what kind of bars are these exactly where fights between random strangers are routine? I mean man I’ve seen some DIVE bars, bars where bartenders ignore smoking bans, bars where the bartender doesn’t only not care about open drug dealing/hooking but is either taking a cut or dealing themselves. And fights happen of course but random strangers fighting on the regular?!