Training for personal protection, are YOU doing it right?
Volumes have been written about training in one form or another. Whether it is sport specific training, training to become a better musician, chess champion, or some other area in which an increase in performance is desired, the path to success is the establishment of a training regiment and one's ability to set realistic, well-defined, and attainable goals. Many people have the desire to become better at their craft, but unfortunately, they lack the "know how" to get to the level they want. Remember this, How you train is much more important that what you train. With that in mind, I want to discuss a few tips for success with you in regard to developing a training regiment that will help you succeed in reaching the goals that you have set for your specific self-defense needs.
The first thing that you should keep in mind when establishing a training regiment is to KEEP IT SIMPLE. Ever heard of the KISS principle? Kiss stands for Keep It Super Simple. One of the biggest problems that people face when starting a training regiment is overcomplicating things and becoming distracted with gear and gadgets that don't really matter. In order to prevent things from getting out of hand, you should focus on the BIG PICTURE. I admit, it can be difficult to not go for the latest and greatest gear that looks super cool and that the "best shooters" use. But if your goal is to become a better shooter for real-world self-defense, then you should focus on skills and gear that are applicable and appropriate to that type of shooting. You would not want to go out and spend $2000 on a "race gun" (what that high speed competitive shooter at your gun range uses at matches), when you could spend $1000 on a used Glock 17, 1000 rounds of ammunition to practice with, and some quality instruction from a reputable instructor.
Another useful tip for setting successful goals is keeping a training journal. I have been an instructor in one form or another for over 16 years. From my experience the best practitioners at their craft ALWAYS have a training journal. The training journal is the place to write down the well-defined realistic goals that you have set. It is also the place to write down where you are CURRENTLY in your training. Specifically, you should write down where you are currently and where you want to be. Speaking of that, have you done an assessment to know where you truly are? If not, you should have a professional instructor help you determine that or at the least video tape yourself shooting and review the footage to determine where you need work. I am a strong believer in weakness biased training. Weakness biased training means that you focus on the areas that you need improvement the most instead of those areas where you are good. Write down your weaknesses in your training journal. Plan AHEAD of time to work on those weaknesses at the range or via dry fire training and don't forget to log EVERY training session that you do so that you can see the progress that you are making.
The takeaway from this newsletter should be to: keep things simple and not to become distracted by all the "high speed low drag" guns and gear that you see and to keep a training journal that you use every time you train. These two tips alone will help set you on a path to success. In the next newsletter we will continue to discuss some other principle's used to make a solid training regiment, so stay tuned.
Close Quarter Combat Recommended Training: Aids, Techniques, Exercises and Drills
Nobody can argue that shooting is a visually dependent activity. If you want to be able to shoot better then you need to be able to see better. Specifically, you need to be able to focus better and faster. Not many people that I shoot with take time to warm up their eyes before they shoot let alone do eye "exercises." But if you want to be a better shooter I would strongly recommend adding a few exercises to your shooting regiment. They only take a few minutes and they pay off tremendously! Try this before your next dry fire practice or shooting session. First, do eye circles. Go slow. Go to the left as far around as you can go. Three to the left, then three to the right. Once you have done eye circles, do near/far switches. Take your handgun, a pen, or even the tip of your index finger and extend it straight out in front of you while you get into your shooting position/stance. Switch focus from your handgun, pen, or finger to a target at a distance. Change focus ten (10) to fifteen (15) times. For added difficulty pic two (2) targets to your left and right. Now switch between them. The order should be target, front sight, target, front sight (if you are using the front sight of your gun). Training your eyes to focus quickly helps you to pick up your front sight more easily and that should not need an explanation as to why it will help your shooting.
Pulling the trigger is only one of hundreds of things to work on during training. In fact, you can (and should) use dry training to improve your shooting. Understanding this, you’ll quickly see the benefits of adding a blue gun to your toolbox. They function in high security holsters for safe draw stroke training and gun retention drills, plus the rails will accept mounted accessories.
I have several of Ring’s pistols, plus a carbine that I use for everything from practicing barricades and transitioning to and from hand-to-hand fighting. Once you start using one you’ll find you can get a lot more training done in a shorter amount of time, plus you don’t need to keep them locked up from the kids!
Well gang, I hope that you have enjoyed this edition of the Close Quarter Combat Newsletter. Look for this newsletter periodically. I told you all before that I would not bombard you with useless information but only that information that I believe could truly help you out. If there is something that you would like to see in an upcoming newsletter shoot me an email and I will try to make it happen. Thanks again and God Bless!