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The Military Leader Podcast

Dave Grossman - Killing, PTSD, and the Physiological Effects of Combat


Retired Army Lieutenant Colonel and renown author Dave Grossman essentially created the field of killology. His books On Killing and On Combat have made an entire generation of military, law enforcement, and first responders more ready for the stressful, sometimes violent situations they face. Long after his active duty career, Dave has continued to teach the stress-response techniques outlined in his books, traveling to hundreds of bases, posts, and precincts over the years.

In this episode, you discover what happens in the body during combat. Visual distortion, auditory exclusion, memory distortion, vasoconstriction, and loss of bladder control are all physiological effects that Soldiers and law enforcement personnel experience in extreme stress but rarely prepare for. Dave Grossman's books and instruction prepare combatants and protectors for the challenge of face-to-face violent stress and infuse confidence in those who have never experienced it before.

If you have a team who might face violent stress one day, they need to hear this conversation.

Personally, I can tell you that reading On Killing and On Combat made me more prepared for my own combat experience. I invite you to do the same.

Read more about Dave Grossman's work at Killology Research Group and check out his books On Killing: The Psychological Cost of Learning to Kill in War and Society and On Combat, The Psychology and Physiology of Deadly Conflict in War and in Peace.

Remember, the view expressed here do not represent the Department of Defense or the US Government in any way.

Thanks for listening and lead well.