10 September 2012

Realistic training,- taking the force out of force on force training

When discussing why they don't seek more training, most people will reply either time or money, sometimes both.  The truth is that realistic training is inexpensive, if not cheap.  The first thing you have to figure out is what you are training for.

If you want to attend a 2, 3, or even 5 day pistol course at one of the big names, then yes, even without the cost of travel and lodging, you will be spending lots of money.  But as I have discussed before, it is my belief that once you are safe and proficient with your pistol,  you need to move on to the realities of using it during a violent confrontation.  The truth of the matter is that you cannot attain that training with live fire.  You need force on force training.

Those that have never trained force on force may have this picture in their head of exactly what force on force means.  Often they conjure up images of students in Redman or Simmunition suits, shooting Simmuniton guns at each other.  This is usually part of a bigger, formal group.  I define force on force training as training against the actions of another live person, where in their actions result in you being forced to make split second decisions.  The goal when possible is to not let them "force" your decisions, but rather through trial and error, under controlled stressful situations, allow you to constantly be aware of all your options, not just force.

One of my favorite scenarios is to identify a door as a "convenience store."  When the student, armed with an airsoft, walks out, they encounter two bad guys attempting to break into their vehicle.  When he calls to them, they just stand up and verbally engage them, making sure not to walk towards the student with no visible weapons.  The first time around, most people draw their pistol into a two handed grip and move towards their attacker.  Because one is on each side of the truck, this will eventually put them between the  bad guys as they get sucked away from cover.  In the heat of the moment, few people decide to walk back into the store and call 911.  This is in spite of the fact that they are provided with a non working cell phone as a prop.  The other thing I notice time and time again is that people over 30 or so habitually fail to press 'send" after dialing 911.  The reason being is that for the majority of their life they were using real phones and not cell phones, and default to that under stress.

The scenario above requires only four people; one good guy, two bad guys, and a safety.  You can make it even more intense by having a female or kid play the significant other or child of the good guy to add as a distraction.

The three most misunderstood things in force on force training is the use of time, space, and movement.  Both on the part of the good guy or the bad guy.  Situational awareness  leads to effective use of these things, and 9 times out of 10 will allow you to not even have to draw your pistol.  This reality is not comprehended on the live range.

Before any force on force, contact or non, ensure that the training area is easily identified, free of any live weapons, and that people know what "stop"means.

In future posts, I will discuss more DIY Force on Force training.

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