Weapons may be vital for a soldier overseas, but as one MMA fighter shows soldiers on Fort Hood, quick movements during hand-to-hand combat may be the difference between life and death.
MMA fighter Josh Koscheck, founder and CEO of Check Defense, is finding a way to give back by teaching mixed martial arts to soldiers around the country. He was on Fort Hood Tuesday morning working with the 3rd Armored Brigade Combat Team, or Greywolf soldiers.
"I'm gonna jack it up, pull this one, step right on his foot," Koscheck said, demonstrating a move to take down an opponent to the floor.
It was back in 2006 and 2007 during multiple visits to Walter Reed Medical Center when he got inspired to work with soldiers.
"They wanted to get back into the fight and I could relate to that, hey I'm down, I lost the fight inside the cage, is a lot different than losing a body part," Koscheck said.
It was the fighter's tenth time on Fort Hood, teaching soldiers how to get out of specific holds both standing up and lying down.
1st Lieutenant Tyler Brady said combatives help build warrior spirit and competition among a unit.
"Today we learned a new choke where you manipulated it with your thumb and pulled it underneath to choke them," Brady said.
Koscheck said it's a good workout plus an outlet beyond the bar.
"Jiu-jitsu, mixed martial arts can be a way out, a way of getting your mind off of the hustle and bustle every day of the military," he said.
Sergeant Kalinda Ortiz knows something about mixed martial arts. She's a blue belt in Jiu-Jitsu--the sport is part of her routine almost every day.
"The modern Army sees you as equals, so you might as well be on the front lines as the males," she said.
Koscheck said an hour of training with him will not teach the soldiers everything they need to know, suggesting consistent practice is the way to go.
"As I was explaining to these soldiers, I'd rather have the toolkit with me to potentially be able to have that option to get me out of a bad situation if needed be," Koscheck said.
The MMA fighter said Army posts like Fort Hood need to get more combatives gyms to get the soldiers ready.