From law enforcement officers to healthcare workers to retail employees, several people regularly find themselves in situations where they may need to de-escalate a potentially violent encounter. While no one wants to find themselves in such a situation, knowing how to de-escalate can help prevent violence from occurring in the first place. Controlled F.O.R.C.E. offers effective de-escalation training using human control holds.
What is De-Escalation
De-escalation is the process of reducing the intensity of a conflict or confrontation. In other words, it’s about diffusing a potentially dangerous situation before it has a chance to escalate into violence. Violent situations can range from potential shootings or domestic abuse to road rage and fights. There are many different strategies that can be used for de-escalation, but some effective tactics include situational readiness, active listening, and MACH 5.0 techniques.
Why De-Escalation Matters
De-escalation is essential because it can help prevent violence before an event occurs. When you’re able to diffuse tense situations, you make them less likely to escalate into something more dangerous. Not only does this keep you out of harm’s way, but it also keeps everyone involved safe. Additionally, if our communities can learn to de-escalate in response to potential conflicts, we can keep everyone in the community safer.
De-Escalation Tips & Tactics
Situational awareness is identifying, processing, and comprehending information about your surroundings and potential threats. It is a crucial component of self-defense, as it can help to de-escalate a violent situation before it escalates. There are three key elements to situational awareness: observing, orienting, and decision-making. To be aware of your surroundings, you must first observe the environment and identify potential threats. Once a threat has been identified, you must then orient yourself about the threat. Finally, decide how to de-escalate and respond to the threat it can become violent.
Active listening is a communication technique that encourages understanding and rapport between speaker and listener. It involves paying attention to verbal and nonverbal cues, paraphrasing, and reflecting on what has been said. This technique can be particularly effective in de-escalating a situation. When people feel heard and understood, they are more likely to calm down and be receptive to reason. Active listening also shows respect and empathy, which can help to diffuse tension and defuse anger. In a nutshell, active listening creates a safe space for communication, which is why it is such an effective tool for de-escalating violence.
Controlled F.O.R.C.E. MACH 5.0 De-Escalation Techniques
Controlled F.O.R.C.E. is the developer and sole source provider of the Mechanical Advantage Control Holds (MACH 5.0) system. The MACH 5.0 system is a series of five techniques that use positioning, movement, body momentum, and resistance to control a subject. Because the system emphasizes mechanical advantage over pressure points or pain compliance, the techniques work on any subject regardless of size, strength, skill, psychological state, level of intoxication, or chemical influence.
MACH 5.0 is now recognized as one of the country’s most sought-after training programs for military combative, law enforcement arrest, control tactics, and the development and integration of basic and advanced training doctrine. It won the 2022 IACTP award and is widely accepted by law enforcement agencies as a legally, medically, and technically acceptable technique.
Other de-escalation tips include:
- Remain calm, relaxed, and collected
- Avoid passing judgment
- Keep open body posture
- Avoid phrases like “never,” “always,” and “should”
- Avoid making sudden movements
- Try to see things from their perspective
Controlled F.O.R.C.E. De-Escalation Training
Our defensive tactics departmental instructor certification courses are held monthly throughout the year. Courses teach arrest control tactics, survival tactics, and de-escalation techniques using MACH 5.0 body positioning drills. View our training calendar to learn more: https://controlledforce.com/training-calendar/