Passive Tactical Stance – Body Language and Distance

The Tactical Stance is used as a safe position to talk your way out of fight. Two key points to an effective Tactical Stance is body language and distance. This video demonstrates and explains important details for both points.


“Hi, this is Randall with KravMagaTraining.com. In this video I’m going to explain what the passive tactical stance is and some key details to it.

First of all, this is what the tactical stance is. It’s basically just your fighting stance but more relaxed. It’s a position that you use to talk your way out of a fight. Yes, Krav Maga is an effective self-defense system but ideally we don’t want to get into a fight just because we know how to fight. Ideally, we want to try to talk our way out of every situation that we possibly can. And this is the position that you’re going to do this from. All right. Now the reason why we use this stance is because you’re in a position to talk your way out of the fight but you don’t look aggressive. I’m like ‘Hey, man. I don’t got any problems. You know. I’m sorry. Just leave me alone. I don’t want to get in a fight.’ However, if the shit hits the fan, notice I can very quickly transition to my fighting stance so I’m in a position to protect myself.

Now I’m going to explain two major key points to an effective tactical stance. Number one is body language and number two is distance. First, let’s cover body language.

A good tactical stance is supposed to portray the body language of confidence and assertiveness. Not aggressiveness or, even worse, being so passive and looking like a victim. This is what I mean. When I’m in my tactical stance I want to be like this. I’m not like this. ‘Come on mother fucker. You want some of this.’ That’s aggressive. You’re going to start a fight doing that shit. But at the same time I don’t want to look meek like this. ‘Please don’t hurt me.’ All right. And look like a, quite frankly, you look like a bitch. It looks like, I look like someone who’s been a victim, whose going to be messed with. I want to find that halfway balance between the two. I want to look confident. I want to look assertive. So find a balance between the two. And here’s a few things that you can do with your body language to portray that.

Number one is when you’re in your tactical stance, instead of a fighting stance where your chain is down. I don’t like chin down. That looks passive and meek. ‘Oh, please don’t hurt me!’ I want my chin up. Chin up is a sign of confidence. Second I want my eyes to make eye contact with that person. I do want to be like, looking away like this. If you can make eye contact with someone you look like a confident person. The next thing is I want my back straight. I want to be tall. Yeah, I know in our fighting stance we’re supposed to be rounded so we can protect ourselves. Make ourselves a smaller target. But if you look like this, once again, you look like a victim. You look like someone who’s going to get messed with. Instead, back straight. Look assertive. Look like you’re aware of what’s going on around you. You look like you know what you’re doing. All right. And the third thing is your hands. Definitely not fists. That’s aggressive. All right, I like them open. So in Krav Maga, in our fighting stance, it’s more of your hands are more in a relaxed position. I like them open like this because this is the body language sign of stop. Back up. Leave me alone. At the same time it’s not aggressive. This just says ‘Hey, man. Back up. Leave me alone. I don’t got any problems.’ This is like a stop sign basically. But once again these hands are, very quickly, you’re in a position to protect yourself. So those are a few things that I like to portray with my body language when I’m in my tactical stance. Chin up. Good eye contact. Straight, erect, good posture. Hands open in that kind of stop sign position.

Now the other second part of what’s really important to a tactical stance is make sure that you have sufficient distance or space between you and your attacker. So this BOB bag is going to replicate my attacker. The ideal distance that I want to be is at, the very least, one arm’s length away, or even better, if he was to extend his arm out and we were to touch hands, two arm lengths away. The reason why this is the ideal distance is because if he, all of a sudden, tries to do a surprise attack and get aggressive with me, he’s going to have to step in and commit to that attack. Which means I have sufficient time to recognize what he’s trying to do, and are more likely to successfully defend myself and address whatever that potential attack might be. Whether it’s a punch, a kick, or whatever. But sometimes due to confined space you might not have that much space so, at the very least, be one arm’s length away. So from here I’m trying to talk my way out of it. Shit happens. Once again, I can protect myself. But whatever you do, don’t let them just get up in your face like this. ‘What’s up mother fucker? You want some of this?’ No, no, no. This is where shit happens. They might be talking some crap, ‘boom!’, and all of a sudden you get jacked! You don’t want this. So if this person, let’s pretend now that BOB is the attacker, he gets up in my face, you have two choices. The first choice, which is what I usually like to do initially, is I’ll just back up. ‘Hey, now. Come on. Back up. Don’t get in my face. I don’t have any problems. I don’t want to fight.’ I’ll just back up. However, if the guy doesn’t get that hint, and he gets up in my face again, the second time, or maybe because I’m backed up to a wall there’s no place for me to back up, the second thing I’m going to do to create space is push him back and get some space. I do this for two reasons. One is, like I said before, maybe my backs to the wall and I have no choice but to push him away to create that space. But the other reason why I like the push is I like to use it as my backup plan. Plan number two. Yeah, at first I’ll just backup. ‘Hey man, I don’t got any problems. You know, leave me alone. I apologize for whatever I did.’ But after I apologize and try to be nice and they still gets in my face, then it means they are not getting the hint and I need to be a little bit more aggressive myself and I push them to back off, basically implying ‘I’m not your punk. You can’t mess with me. You might be picking a fight with the wrong guy.’ So I’ll push them away to let the message know ‘Hey, maybe you’re messing with the wrong guy.’ And if they get in my face one more time, to me that’s like ‘three strikes and you’re out’. There’s a good chance that the fight’s going to be on and I’m going to be thoroughly prepared to protect myself. So remember. Appropriate distance between the two of you. Usually just backup. If you can’t get that space then you push them away to create that space.

So remember these key points to a good tactical stance. Good body language. Sufficient distance. And make sure you use them while you’re trying to talk your way out of the fight. Trust me, try to talk your way out of every fight. It’s just not worth it. Because, whether you win or lose, something bad is going to happen. If you lose, obviously that’s no good. You’re going to get beat up, or even worse, possibly permanently injured or killed. But even if you do win a fight you have the legality issues of that. You might end up having to go to court. You might end up going to jail. You have to explain yourself for your actions. So either way bad shit happens. Ideally, try to avoid a fight and how you do that is by talking your way out of it using a good tactical stance. So that’s what the tactical stance is for.”

“The supreme art of war is to subdue the enemy without fighting.” – Sun Tzu