If you haven’t heard of Paul Sharp yet, you’re missing out. I have first heard of him via his Multidisciplinary Optimization Course, or MDOC. “Multidisciplinary” means that he isn’t simply able to shoot you, he can also punch you, stab you, throw you to the ground and then choke you there. If there’s something to learn in the world of self-defence, we can probably learn it from Paul Sharp.
bringaknife: Who are you? What do you do for a living, and what do you do for fun?
Paul Sharp: I’m Paul Sharp, I’m a police officer and trainer. For fun I’m down for anything that involves cars, heavy metal, fight sports, and pretty much anything that makes me feel that rush.
BAK: Could you give us a rundown of a typical day of yours? What are you doing right now/before answering these questions/after answering them?
PS: I start my day with some form of rehab/prehab work. Usually foam rolling and voodoo band flossing, so some ab/core work and shadow boxing while waiting for my coffee to brew. I get as much reading done as I can then start working on whatever project I have going, answering emails and returning phone calls. I will usually hit the gym to lift weights for an hour each day. I usually dry fire after strength training and then do some more solo drills for Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. At that point it’s usually time for me to go to the gym where I teach MMA and Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. After the gym I run home, shower and run back out the door to get to work where I work 8 hours as a police officer. Right now I’m waiting for my coffee to finish brewing and after this I will spend some time drilling a new arm drag to ankle pick combo I’ve been seeing in my head but am unable to execute yet. I will get it though, it’s just a matter of putting the time in training it.
BAK: Most people know you because of your MDOC-program, could you describe what you teach in the courses?
PS: I teach a systematic approach to weapons access, dealing with multiple opponents, sucker punch drills, weapons retention as well as disarms.
BAK: A lot of people love training “tactically” and as “street” as possible, yet you are developing close to the sports of BJJ and MMA, that might seem a little counter-intuitive to some. Why aren’t you doing some esoteric, deadly Martial Art?
PS: Slamming someone into the ground with as much speed and power as possible is far more damaging and dangerous to my opponent’s health then any esoteric eye jabbing type thing. Beyond that, with the fight sports I am able to work against a resisting opponent on a daily basis. I learn how to manage and control my opponents bad intentions. Adding a little dirt to the mix is fairly simple. When it comes to this debate and the rules that some like to point to as protecting me from real damage, they fail to realize is that the same rules that protect me also protect them. Remove those rules and I’m a different animal. Now I can do whatever I want and there is no one there to tell me not to?? It’s on.
BAK: What is your advice to somebody that has good training-options for Boxing, BJJ, Wrestling and/or MMA, but doesn’t get to include weapons or realistic scenarios much? How much time should we spend on our skillset compared to applying it?
PS: Form a training group of like minded folks and work on your weapon access, retention and disarms. I like an 80/20 split. So spend 80% of your training time on developing your skills and then 20% in scenarios applying this skill
BAK: You’re not only good at choking and shooting people, you’re also pretty good at lifting heavy things I’ve heard. Would you call physical training an integral part of good training? How much of our energy should we spend in the gym lifting or doing roadwork?
PS: I think strength training is a key component. An hour a day is sufficient. Run one day, lift the next. Alternate this so you lift every other day and you’ll be fine.
BAK: How would you go about including family in a robust system of security and defense? How much do you think can we include our spouse or children in our training and “tactical lifestyle” without becoming controlling or putting a burden on them?
PS: You have to have a conversation with them where you bring them in as allies. You can’t be the expert, present it as a problem solving type of exercise. Start with medical emergencies; what do we do if mom burns her hand really bad or dad falls off a ladder. Simple things like that and build from there to what if someone kicks our door in and tries to do harm to us.
BAK: What’s the one tool you’d like everybody to carry on a daily basis? How would you try to have your loved ones carry it?
PS: A medical kit. Especially now with the ankle rigs, there is no excuse for not having medical gear on your person. I would use the same strategy of partnership. You’re not trying to boss them around or anything like that, you’re a student as well. You need them to help you achieve the goal of having this lifesaving gear available for your family should the need arise.
BAK: I’m usually pretty fond of your musical tastes, what’d be your theme song if you decided to make a movie about yourself?
PS: Highway to Hell – AC/DC