Sometimes I think about the future of this pursuit, and what the multidisciplinary practitioner will look like in 10-20 years. I’m predicting the future of this art will be filled with verbally agile, mentally, and physically indomitable, highly adaptable trainees.

We’ve been about as broad as we’ve needed to be for a very long time on the physical side of the house. We knew in the 90’s that Boxing, Wrestling, and Brazilian JiuJitsu would cover every base in the unarmed game. We knew we didn’t need to add anything except maybe some dirt if we’re dealing with a criminal attacker. Just put time in on the mat or in the ring, and develop a high degree of proficiency.

We also knew what works with edged, impact, and improvised weapons as wells as how to defend against those weapons. When it comes to firearms we’re good to go there as well whether we’re working with a pistol, revolver, shotgun, carbine or rifle from extremely close quarters work out to the effective range of the weapon.

We’ve taken the physical side of the house to a fairly high level. Where we were out of balance, and lacking was in the areas of verbal agility, and understanding the criminal mind. Fortunately for us Craig Douglas of Shivworks has spent the last fifteen years refining and codifying the verbal aspects of this endeavor. Craig has essentially done with the verbal game what we’ve done with the physical game, boiled it down to the fundamentals, and perfected the delivery of this material to such a degree that most folks can understand, and begin to apply the material within a few hours. The same thing can be said for William Aprill of Aprill Risk Consulting regarding the understanding of the criminal mind, and how criminal attacks occur. William’s work gives us an understanding, and knowledge gained from interviewing and working with violent criminal offenders for decades that we never had before. Our understanding of the concepts and principles of verbal, and non-verbal cues, the motivations of violent criminal offenders, takes our pre-assault game to a more sophisticated place then previously known or practiced. This closes the loop of soft and hard skills effectively checking all the boxes.

For these reasons I think we will see the next generation of multi-disciplinary practitioners performing in all areas at a level previously unseen simply because their starting point is so much higher than the trainees that came before. It’s an exciting time to be involved in this meritocracy that is the home of the multidisciplinary practitioner. This thought inspires me to work harder to stay on top of my game, while seeking to improve weak areas, and continue my search for the next thing because despite my supreme confidence that we have solved the puzzle there is still that little voice inside that says; what if I missed something?