Marine Corps Martial Arts Tan Belt - Fundamentals

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Marine Corps Martial Arts Tan Belt - Fundamentals

This section focuses on tan belt techniques used by the Marine Corps martial arts program. This page looks at targets of the body, etc. Information from Public Domain Document, MCRP 3-02B, Marine Corps Martial Arts Program (MCMAP).

For more Marine Corps techniques, please visit the main Marine Corps Martial Arts Program section.

Section I

Fundamentals of the Marine Corps Martial Arts Program

The MCMAP trains Marines how to execute unarmed and armed techniques, in close proximity to another individual, across a spectrum of violence within a continuum of force. Unarmed techniques include hand-to-hand combat and defense against handheld weapons. Armed techniques include techniques applied with table of organization weapons, edged weapons or weapons of opportunity.

Ranges of Close Combat Engagements

There are three ranges in which close combat engagements can take place: long-range, midrange, and close range. In any engagement, these ranges can rapidly transition from one to another and then back again until the aggressor is defeated or the situation is handled. At long range, the distance between combatants allows engagement with a rifle and bayonet or weapons of opportunity. At midrange, the distance between combatants is such that they can engage each other with knives, punches, or kicks. At close range, the distance between combatants is such that they can grab a hold of each other and may involve elbow and knee strikes and grappling.

Target Areas of the Body

During close combat engagements, the parts of the aggressor’s body that are readily accessible will vary with each situation and throughout the confrontation. The goal is to attack the areas that are readily accessible. These target areas are the head, neck, torso, groin and extremities. See figure 2-1.


The vulnerable regions of the head are the eyes,temple, nose, ears, and jaw. Massive damage to the skull can kill an aggressor.


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  1. Information from Public Domain Document, MCRP 3-02B, Marine Corps Martial Arts Program (MCMAP),, Added - 02/18/15

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