Wednesday, March 11, 2015

My Wish List - Body Armor

Have you heard about this?

Learn more here.
This is a new intelligent body armor that calculates the damage a body would take when struck with a weapon. 

If you're like me, when you first read about this, you were like this:

 MMmmmm.... Arrrrrmmmoorrrrr....
It's a really cool innovation, and I hope it becomes something regular joes like me can play with some day.

But really, I'm not so sure I need that smart armor as much as I need a different kind of smart armor.  That armor is awesome, but honestly, it is going to boil down to measuring blunt force,  I can't imagine it will do well with the subtlety of an edged weapon - after all, we're not chopping wood, people - and there are so many things we do that aren't just blunt force.

We need a smart armor that is going to dissipate enough force to not hurt me, but to measure that I would have been hurt for things like locks, or a subtle edge of a blade against a critical spot.

I was thinking about this over the weekend as we were training in locks with the stick, My partner was wrapping the stick around my hand or wrist (sometimes the one, sometimes the other) and then getting me trapped into a lock.

This is the result of that training:

I bruise easy, but I promise you, friends, that HURT.  A lot.  And it hurt for several days afterwards, too.  Not just the bruising - getting locked past the initial point of it being put into to place over and over takes its toll.

So what I really need is a lightweight armor that provides just a hair of protection (not too much that I can't feel what's going on at all, like the armor above).  This armor would dissipate some of the force across the armor and measures the force being applied.  It would also signal when the point where a lock is set but before the point where it gets really painful or causes some damage.

This should be a full-body armor, so it should also signal, with throws and takedowns, the point where you can stop because your partner has passed the point of no return.  This would be great in cases where you are training with no mats - hey, I'm old, I can't take repeated takedowns on concrete or tile or unpadded carpet.

I'd also like the armor to measure when you hit nerve points on the body.  Theoretically, you could have your armor with those points marked for practice, maybe...?

I don't want something that's so bulky and strong that I can't feel anything through it - that's the big down side of that smart armor above. Think of it like a slightly padded second skin.

I'm sure one of you out there reading this is way, way smarter than me, and can figure out how to make this happen.