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    Soldier never gives up the thrill of combatives

    Soldier never gives up the thrill of combatives

    Photo By Sgt. Woodlyne Escarne | Staff Sgt. Cody Thompson, a combatives instructor assigned to 1st Battalion, 12th...... read more read more



    Story by Sgt. Woodlyne Escarne 

    14th Public Affairs Detachment

    FORT CARSON, Colo. – Soldiers are experts in their field of work, weapons systems, and physical fitness. Combatives allow Soldiers to be effective warriors without a weapon. Army Combatives has been used in war throughout history. When it comes to the United States Army, combatives were taught during World War II and have evolved to what it is today.

    From one combatives instructor martial arts has been a part of this Soldier’s life for as long as he could remember. Staff Sgt. Cody Thompson, a combatives instructor assigned to 1st Battalion, 12th Infantry Regiment, 2nd Stryker Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division teaches combative courses at the Headquarters and Headquarters Battalion’s Company Operational Facility.

    At the young age of five, Thompson was introduced to karate, but he quickly switched to wrestling. He learned wrestling for only two and a half years during his childhood, he expressed how he wished he continued with wrestling.

    Thompson joined the Army in 2014 as an infantryman in the Florida National Guard, but switched to active duty four years later as a motor transport operator. While stationed at Fort Stewart, Georgia, He went on a rotational-based deployment in Eastern Europe (Poland/Romania) for nine months back in 2019.

    “When we were in Poland, they had a tent with mats set up and there was a noncommissioned officer who offered to do some combatives level one training,” said Thompson. “She had a blue belt in jiu-jitsu, so she was introducing us to the fundamentals of jiu-jitsu and that's when I became more interested in it. As soon as I came home from deployment, I signed up for a local jiu-jitsu academy.”
    Eventually, Thompson came to Fort Carson and this is where he saw the opportunity to become a combatives instructor as borrowed military manpower at Headquarters Headquarters Battalion, 4th Inf. Div.

    “An instructor is something I wanted to do for the last four years of my career by that point,” said Thompson.

    He started teaching the Combatives Program in January of 2022 and will be an instructor in the program for about a year.
    “It’s important to distinguish that combatives is not a martial arts dojo because it wouldn’t be what the Army is representing,” said Thompson. “Soldiers are learning how to be lethal when faced with the enemy at a close distance.”

    Soldiers at war will be wearing helmets, body armor, and weapons systems when they come into close contact with the enemy, Thompson expressed. Combatives was built for Soldiers to prepare to fight hand-to-hand with the enemy despite all of this.

    “Thompson is an outstanding guy and he’s very knowledgeable with the techniques that he teaches,” said Sgt. Aaron Jordan, a combatives instructor assigned to Headquarters and Support Company, Headquarters and Headquarters Battalion, 4th Inf. Div. “Also, he’s a blue belt in jiu-jitsu and he does a lot of volunteer work outside of work when it comes to the sport.”

    Unfortunately, Thompson tore both Anterior Cruciate Ligaments (ACL) on two separate occasions. When he went on a run with his unit, he stepped in a deep pothole which caused him to tear his left ACL. Meanwhile, he tore his right ACL by falling down the icy stairs this year in January. All this caused him to undergo a bilateral ACL reconstruction Surgery sometime in June.

    “To recover is a 6-12 month rehab, however, by two weeks and a half I was walking without the assistance of braces or crutches,” said Thompson. “I kept turning heads and eyes at physical therapy and they couldn’t believe the amazing progress I’ve accomplished through recovery.”

    Despite the rate at which Thompson was recovering, another issue arose.
    “I noticed swelling around my right knee so I went to get it checked out and it turned out that I contracted a Staph infection,” said Thompson. “I found myself in the operating room about 45 minutes later, but thankfully it was a successful surgery and I was walking fine a couple of days later.”

    Thompson expressed how diligently he’s been keeping up with his physical therapy and will continue to teach combatives levels one and two until he’s released from his duty.

    “Thompson knows how to stay composed and humble despite all that he’s gone through,” said Jordan. “Now he’s doing his best which is probably why he’s recovering fast.”
    Combatives provide Soldiers with the necessary skill set needed to defeat the enemy during a physical human interaction in warfare, stated Thompson.

    Combatives level one and level two classes recently started up again at Fort Carson after being shut down for over two years due to COVID-19. For Soldiers interested in attending the combatives course, reach out to your schools operations representative.



    Date Taken: 08.04.2022
    Date Posted: 08.05.2022 18:14
    Story ID: 426680
    Location: FORT CARSON, CO, US 

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