Recently, I had to opportunity to meet Chad McBroom, founder and owner of Comprehensive Fighting Systems. Chad has been a practitioner of various disciplines of Martial Arts for over 30 years. In addition, Chad is an author, experienced Special Operations Response agent and Physical Techniques Instructor.
Chad founded Comprehensive Fighting Systems “for the purpose of promoting and teaching effective, comprehensive fighting methods.” Since that last sentence is about as descriptive as the ingredient list on 3am truck stop donuts, allow me to elaborate further. A quick peek into his instructor bio page reveals that Chad has studied more than 20 different forms of martial arts under several different teachers and has attained high ranking in several of these disciplines. From that life-long exposure, Chad strives to take what he considers are the best elements of each discipline and synthesize them into fighting form that is practical, deadly, and relevant to the student’s needs.
As with many martial arts instructors today, Chad acknowledges that combat has advanced since the days of flying monks dancing on tree-tops teaching “A thousand fists of fury.” For that very reason, Comprehensive Fighting Systems includes four subsystems that explore modern fighting. Chad teaches that a modern combat martial arts system should include studies of Hand Arts, Blade Arts, Stick Arts, and Gun Arts.
At the request of Will, aka Black Sheep Overlord he suggested that I audit a few of Chad’s classes and do a write up for Blacksheepwarrior.com. As I perused www.compfightsys.com, I noticed that Chad is the designer of both a custom combat knife and a polymer personal defense tool that vaguely resembles a karambit. Chad’s knife, the Dawson Knives Kalanu Fighter has just hit the market, and I hope to present a review soon (You can also read David Reeder’s article on recoil Web).
Also, since his polymer self defense tool known as The Raptor is currently available, he let me borrow one. Together with Chad, I am exploring the various self defense and pain compliance capabilities of this tool, and may also include that in a future review.
Comprehensive Fighting Systems Courses
So, I’ve never taken a martial arts class in my life. During a basic law enforcement academy, my class got a respectable dose what was then called “Intermediate Force and Arrest Techniques.” This included baton, spray, handcuffing, searching, etc. Even back then, it struck me as a bit odd that we didn’t focus more time on edged weapons defense, blocks, and basic grappling skills in case the fight started to go the wrong way.
But that’s it. No Karate at the YMCA, no boxing in college, nothing! So I was a bit nervous for my first night at what I internally began calling “knife-ninja-school-class.” There’s a famous episode of Seinfeld where Kramer starts taking Karate and since he is a novice is put in with the 8yr olds. Obviously being an adult he throws them around; that is until they all team up and jump him in a dark alley while the audience laughs. That was sort of what I pictured my experience was going to be like.
Fortunately it couldn’t have been further from the truth. Since it was a nice evening in Southern Arizona, Chad held the class in a public park on an empty basketball court. As students began showing up, Chad warmed the class up with a few basic movements where students practiced both strikes and counters. It was all very fluid, and resembled movements that I have seen Kali stick fighters perform. I however swung my aluminum-training knife like I had just finished creeping on a woman showering in a weird hotel that my mom owns…….
Chad then led the class through several movements that focus on using the knife as a close quarters defensive weapon when attacked with a knife. Several strikes were covered that made me remember my basic baton strikes used to disarm a noncompliant subject. As Chad taught different techniques he would pause to cover basic anatomy and physiology, emphasizing just how soft and squishy we all are underneath a T-shirt and a few ribs. He also took time to break down many of the movements discussing the fighting style that developed the movement, origin, and blade shape the particular culture used. His ability to do that while multi-tasking critiques of several students speaks both to Chad’s passion of the martial arts and his belief that Comprehensive Fighting Systems should truly be an amalgamation of what works.
It would be easy to close this review by simply saying, “Chad McBroom has a great company you should go. Now buy some swag from BSW, Overwatch Designs, and LEO Armory.” But the truth is, as a law enforcement officer, I had my eyes truly opened when I saw for the first time what a motivated offender with a knife and a little training could do to you. I have several friends who are corrections officers, and they have told me several gruesome stories of prison fights that involved rudimentary prison shanks. Those people get out, and they will likely offend again. When you come into contact with that person, they will immediately begin sizing you up. If they are armed with a knife, and know how to use it, it drastically tilts the odds in their favor.
Do yourself, your partner, and your family a favor. Find someone who teaches martial arts (hopefully someone with an edged weapons background) that comes recommended from a colleague. Check your ego, and challenge yourself to take a few of martial arts classes. It’s a cheap investment and a useful tool that will help you stay in that fight.
Another option would be to grab a hard copy or digital version of Chad’s new book. Buying from Amazon using the link below helps support this site.
Solving the Enigma: Insights Into Fighting Models
Stay tuned for a review of the knife that Chad designed, The Kalanu Fighter! I’ll post a review and an update on my training soon. Check out Comprehensive Fighting Systems: http://www.compfightsys.com On Facebook On Instagram