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Two Rangers Praticing in SOCP

'Special Operations Combatives Program' (SOCP) is the hand-to-hand techniques and training of the US Army's special forces. It was the Hand-to-Hand Combat of the US Army Rangers.


SOCP is a realism based, task-specific system designed to build upon the Modern Army Combatives Program (MACP) training, with techniques geared to the needs of a Special Forces soldier. It incorpates a number of different techniques, including strikes, ground fighting, personnel control, restraint escape, and weapons application in close quarters combat.


SOCP was developed by Greg Thompson following the War on Terror. As operators returned from the field, they would discuss with Thompson the tactical problems they encountered, that over time tended to show a predictable pattern: a surprise attack on an operator by an individual which takes place in the residence of a high value target (HVT). These characteristics, as they were identified, were combined to form the SOCP Core Concepts:

  • Fighting in kit with weaponry
  • Weapon transition and retention, standing or on the ground
  • 360 ambush attacks into and over objects
  • Fighting multiple assailants solo or as a team
  • Compliant and non-complaint cuffing and vehicle extraction
  • Force continuum (Lethal/less-than-lethal options)
  • Technique "linkage"


This fighting technique combination was compared to the NKSOF's Hapkido-Taekwondo Hybrid. The combination of hapkido and taekwondo relies on using the attacker's energy against him and attacking his pressure points as well as using circular motions and quick strikes followed by a lethal finishing blow while SOCP relies on simple, quick blunt force to do damage and make space. Both styles of fighting were deemed to be equally effective but were factored into the simulation as X-factors, not weapons.