DEFENSIVE PISTOL SHOOTING AND TACTICS
Description: Defensive shooting is not bullseye shooting. If you find yourself in a street defense situation, there are probably three things that will be true: the attack will be sudden, it will be very up close and personal, and it will be violent. This is a live fire class that is long on reality and short on theory. It concentrates on encounters that are 21 feet and less, oftentimes much less. We will discuss how to avoid getting into the situation in the first place, then, what happens when you can't avoid the situation. Last, we will consider the legal implications of the use of deadly force in self defense. Class time is approximately eight hours. This class is not for new or totally novice shooters. (For those, please see the NRA Basic Pistol Course.) Participants will take a pre-shoot assessment of basic gun handling and safety skills. Contact me for further details and pricing.
- Avoiding Deadly Force Encounters
- Situational Awareness
- Combat Mindset
- Legal Considerations in Defensive Shooting
- Firearm, Ammunition and Holster Selection
- Stance, Grip and Trigger Control
- Drawing From Holster/Concealment
- Combat Accuracy
- Aimed Fire, Flash Sight, Point Shooting
- Clearing Malfunctions
- Moving Off the X
- One Hand Shooting
- Multiple Threats
Estimated round count: 300 rounds.
- Semi-Automatic Pistol
- 2 magazines minimum
- Belt mounted, dominant side concealment holster
- Concealment garment (recommended)
- Magazine Pouch(s) (recommended)
- Eye and ear protection
- Valid FOID card if an Illinois resident
INTRODUCTION TO GUNFIGHTING
So now you have your concealed carry license. Good for you. Now you are ready to defend yourself and your loved ones against attacks from any manner of miscreant. Or are you? Let’s look at some facts about handgun training.
The vast majority of basic handgun classes teach only two aspects of actually shooting the weapon: safety and marksmanship. Now don’t get me wrong. I’m all for the ability to safely and accurately shoot a handgun, or any other gun for that matter. The only problem is that probably is not enough to save your life if the situation really heads south. Let’s look at some numbers from a study put out by Beretta.
55% of all gunfights take place at a range of 0-5 feet.
20% of all gunfights take place at a range of 5-10 feet.
20% of all gunfights take place at a range of 10-21 feet.
75% of all gunfights take place at a range of 10 feet or less.
So where does that leave us? If you read my introductory page, you know that I am a fan of “reality based” training. From the numbers above, you can see that 95% of all shoots take place at a range of 7 yards or less, and usually a great deal less, 3 yards and under. As such, I don’t spend a lot of time on extremely remote hypothetical 100 yard “what if” situations. Rather, I spend my (your) time on the most probable scenarios you may actually confront, and how to not just survive them, but how to win. Safety is a given. No compromises there. As for marksmanship, the mission is to stop the threat. I am not looking for pretty, but rather for effective.
So what then is gunfighting? Gabe Suarez of Suarez International made the following comment:
“I want my people to understand that we are not talking about some clinical exercise but rather an ugly bloody fight to the finish where someone will likely die.”
Most basic handgun training is exactly what Gabe described: a clinical exercise. If you ever do have to defend yourself with a handgun, in all probability you will not be standing in some stall, taking careful aim at a stationary target 21 feet away, (much less the 45 to 75 feet that some instructors want you to practice at.) No, the chances are that your encounter will be very sudden, very violent, and extremely up close and personal. That is the situation that this course is designed to handle. It may not always be pretty, but it is effective.
This is very much NOT a course for novices. At the start of our range portion, you may be asked to demonstrate basic safe gun handling and marksmanship skills. IF YOU FAIL TO SATISFACTORILY DO SO, YOU WILL POLITELY BE ASKED TO SIT THIS OUT.
The law and the use of deadly force.
The ethics of using deadly force.
Choice of handgun and carry equipment.
The myth of ‘stopping power”.
On the Range
Review of basic skills
Drawing from concealment.
Loading and unloading techniques.
Point shooting, flash sight, and aimed fire techniques.
Two handed shooting, strong hand, support hand shooting.
Close retention shooting.
Multiple threat environments
Moving off the X.
Cover and concealment.
This is designed as a two day course. About 50% of our first day will be spent on part one, classroom topics. The remainder of our time will be on the range.
- A combat handgun. (I strongly recommend that you bring whatever gun you intend to use as your everyday carry gun.)
- At least 500 rounds of ammo.
- At least three magazines and a mag pouch. (Five mags are better.)
- Strongside belt holster. (No shoulder holsters or crossdraw rigs.)
- Eye and ear protection.
- Bug spray and rain gear depending on weather.
- Soft drinks, water etc.
- Valid FOID card if an Illinois resident or Illinois FCCL.
LAW AND THE USE OF DEADLY FORCE
When it comes to understanding the law governing the use of deadly force there is a massive amount of misinformation out there. Go to any of the popular defensive firearms forums and you will get all types of advice which usually begins with, "Well, I not a lawyer, but..." Well I am a lawyer. And, if you read my opening web page you know that I am also a firearms instructor. This course is designed to meet the needs of other instructors who may want to supplement their firearms courses with a lawyer's view of the law as well as for groups, clubs and ranges wanting to offer their members or customers a more in depth understanding of the law regarding the defensive use of firearms. Topics discussed include:
- How to avoid the legal problems to begin with.
- Understanding the double threat: criminal culpability and civil liability.
- When is the use of deadly force legally justified?
- The Castle Doctrine: Use of deadly force in the home.
- Post Shoot Action: Dealing with the police, witnesses and lawyers.
- Things to do, and things not to do, including ammo, equipment modifications, etc.
- Do not confuse law with ethics.
The length of the course is tailored to the needs of the client. For instructors and organizations wanting a concise overview of the topics for their students or members, I will work with you to provide whatever scope and depth of information you desire. For those wishing an in depth understanding of the topics, the full course runs approximately eight hours.
Private instruction is available. Equipment and time are determined by your specific needs. Contact me for further details and pricing.