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Old February 10, 2014, 01:23 PM   #26
Angelo Demuerte
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Sul works for many situations. I have used it in real world application. I, however, tend to modify the position for retention purposes by moving the hand closest to the torso in front of the firearm.
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Old February 10, 2014, 01:50 PM   #27
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Without getting too far into it, Sul looks like you have the least grip on the weapon. The with the thumb up and the off hand under the slide, a firm bump to the shooting hand will rotate the gun in that hand. It does not seem like a ready position from that standpoint.

Does anyone teach semi-holstered as either a ready or safety position?
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Old February 10, 2014, 02:36 PM   #28
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Does anyone teach semi-holstered as either a ready or safety position?
What do you mean when you say "semi-holstered" as a ready position?
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Old February 10, 2014, 02:47 PM   #29
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Partially drawn. The pistol in full control of the shooting hand, but the muzzle contained by the holster. Faster than a full draw, but muzzle direction still under control of the holster. It puts two contact points on the gun but frees the off hand.

Obviously, this wouldn't work with certain holsters, but a duty holster or FBI style would work.
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Old February 10, 2014, 03:49 PM   #30
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Okay, I'm not able to give any sort of definitive answer for armed private citizens, as I'm mostly a LE firearms instructor and am oriented to working with cops. I've not heard of anyone teaching cops to perform "partial draws" as a "ready" technique.

Holstering & drawing are a couple of actions that can provide for some increased risk. Hesitating in the middle of either? Maybe not so good of an idea.

Why? Because we're handling the gun (it's not resting in the holster). We work to develop skills to allow us to maximize safety and proficiency in those high-risk actions.

Drawing ... You're grasping the weapon and preparing to not only safely clear the holster, but also any cover garments, while maintaining a proper grip and trigger discipline/safety, as well as locating/positioning your other hand to be clear of the muzzle as the weapon is presented (whether it's going to be used for support or some other, separate action) ... as well as making whatever body positioning or balance adjustments, or movement ... as may be necessary. Ever wonder why some folks are startled to find themselves fumbling their draw? Sometimes just canting the gun the wrong way, leaning off balance, or missing your "timing" during the release of a retention device and the lifting the gun, can really throw people off.

Holstering ... Not only does the muzzle have to be located for safe insertion (not sweeping the user, or anyone else), but depending on the holster it's possible for either a retention strap, clothing (edge of jacket, shirt or drawstring) or an index finger to become trapped against the holster mouth and funneled within the trigger guard.

If you haven't seen someone experience (or experienced for yourself) getting excited and SHOVING their weapon past the front of the holster while attempting to holster, missing the holster, extending their arm & weapon downward into the air ... or, shoving it HARD into a holster, trapping their finger against the edge of the holster, shoving their finger into the trigger guard and against the trigger ... or, catching some part of their clothing inside the holster as the gun is being holstered ... or just fumbling the attempt ... you haven't experienced that sort of interesting adrenalin dump.

So ... These drawing & holstering actions are often hard enough for many folks to properly, safely & smoothly perform them under even minimal range stress conditions (if you're on a range that allows it, or are attending a class).

Creating a situation where you're "interrupting" those (hopefully) practiced & ingrained movements, hesitating partway through either movement ... and probably while under real stress ... may create an unexpected opportunity for confusion & fumbling.

Ever hit the wrong pedal in your car, hitting the gas instead of the brakes, or the brakes instead of the gas (or, add a clutch and see some real foot action gymnastics stabbing for 1 or 2 of 3 different pedals), and that's involving actions you probably perform/practice everyday, for some years, each time you drive the car.

How about ever hesitating in applying one of them, stopping halfway and then continuing, and finding yourself doing the opposite of what you intended? You're deviating from your normal skills application, trying to over-ride those normal actions, and sometimes a moment's confusion may make you shove your foot DOWN instead of LIFTING it (or vice versa). Hand & finger confusion, even without any jerks or "yips", can be a very unwelcome thing when we're handling guns.

Introducing an extra "step" may add to some confusion in an already unexpected, uncertain, stressful and rapidly evolving situation. That's the time when you want to keep things simple, and be able to rely on well-practiced physical movements, performed smoothly without having to stop and consciously think through each and every step of the movement. It can be even harder when your attention is distracted by a realistically perceived threat.

Also, hesitating in the drawstroke will probably require you to "re-engage" and "perform" the draw a second time, and it's not going to feel like what you normally do (when performing a complete drawstroke with the fully-holstered weapon). It might just put you behind the curve needed for the situation, too.

Now, most cops have policies, procedures and general orders regarding the drawing and presentation of their weapons in public (whether on or off-duty). I can think of some agencies that require a special report if their cops so much as grasp the butt of their holstered weapons during a public contact.

Private citizens? Well, some careful attention to your jurisdiction's use-of-force, displaying & brandishing laws might be prudent.

There's always the possibility of a chance for there to be some witness you didn't see, and we live in an age where camera phones are EVERYWHERE (except perhaps when we need them to be there, of course ).

Just some thoughts. I apologize for the wordiness. I've just not heard someone ask about a "semi-holstered/ready" position.
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Old February 10, 2014, 04:04 PM   #31
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I wasn't really thinking of a hesitated draw as much as using the open top of the holster as a spot to put the muzzle. The gun is in full control of the hand - the holster just serves as an index and secondary means of controlling the movement of the handgun.

Since holstering/reholstering is a trained movement, the idea is to use that muscle memory as the basis for the position rather than teach a new and unnatural position, like Sul.
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Old February 10, 2014, 04:26 PM   #32
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I wasn't really thinking of a hesitated draw as much as using the open top of the holster as a spot to put the muzzle. The gun is in full control of the hand - the holster just serves as an index and secondary means of controlling the movement of the handgun.

Since holstering/reholstering is a trained movement, the idea is to use that muscle memory as the basis for the position rather than teach a new and unnatural position, like Sul.
Why draw if you're not going to present it?

Why not holster it if you're looking for a "safe" position to "index" it if you're not ready to present it?

You're creating a new "position" and set of circumstances in which you're handling the weapon. Is it necessary?

FWIW, I don't have any perceived or actual need for SUL, either.
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Old February 10, 2014, 04:51 PM   #33
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RX-79G
...Does anyone teach semi-holstered as either a ready or safety position?
Not in my experience -- including 300+ hours of handgun training.

I can't imagine what worthwhile purpose it might serve. Among other things, assuming a suitable type holster is being used, have the gun in your hand and partially in the holster really offers no meaningful advantage over having the gun holstered with your hand on the gun in a full firing grip ready to draw.

And with the gun holstered with your hand on the gun in a full firing grip ready to draw, if you need to quickly use that hand for something else you can just remove it from the gun with the gun then remaining securely seated in the holster.
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Old February 10, 2014, 06:12 PM   #34
Angelo Demuerte
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Drawing a pistol only halfway out of a holster telegraphs what your next plan of action is most likely going to be and can leave you at a disadvantage. While your hand is still on the pistol and close to your body, the pistol is not yet clear of the holster. If you are in close quarters and the threat is able to close the distance quickly, physical contact may begin before your pistol is clear of the holster.

Drawing a pistol only halfway out of a holster also interrupts the draw, and can increase the chance of a snag during the completion of the draw. A smooth draw is executed in one motion from the holster.
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Old February 10, 2014, 06:23 PM   #35
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Keep in mind that my question was because of the bizarre Sul position.

It doesn't sound like anyone likes or uses Sul, so my question is academic.

Last edited by Tom Servo; February 10, 2014 at 08:42 PM. Reason: Removed mild vulgarity
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Old February 10, 2014, 06:50 PM   #36
Angelo Demuerte
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Like I said, sul is useful, and I have used modified sul in real world application.

Last edited by Tom Servo; February 10, 2014 at 08:43 PM. Reason: Removed mild vulgarity
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Old February 10, 2014, 06:53 PM   #37
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Quote:
I was thinking it was a way to accomplish the same thing without pointing a gun at your nuts and sacrificing your grip on it.
SUL does neither of those things, if you do it properly.

Quote:
It doesn't sound like anyone likes or uses Sul, so my question is academic.
I find I use it, or a variation of it, more than anything else.
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Old February 10, 2014, 07:34 PM   #38
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as with anything you have to consider the percentage of practicalness vs the percentage of kabooki dance.
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Old February 10, 2014, 08:10 PM   #39
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As i posted on another thread. The ability to flow between different readies as the situation demands is the mark of a professional

Walking up to a car on a traffic stop, stacking on a door with a team, 2 man entry and clears OR the CCW holder that gets frightened at an ATM, or the unexpected knock on the frontdoor at night. Examples go on...

Different readies each and every one. The person that has trained enough can comfortably transition their hangun thru any/all of the readies as needed

Bottom line.... No friendlies get covered EVER!!!!! and any potential badguy that does get covered, has that happen intentionally
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Old February 10, 2014, 08:37 PM   #40
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RX-79G
...It doesn't sound like anyone likes or uses Sul, so my question is academic.
I like SUL and use it for appropriate applications.

I don't like your "partial draw" idea and wouldn't consider using it. I can think of no purpose for which it would be well suited.
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Last edited by Frank Ettin; February 11, 2014 at 01:49 AM. Reason: correct typo
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Old February 11, 2014, 02:03 AM   #41
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I never gave it much thought, but I would fall under the Compressed ready position. From this position I can get my gun on target quicker than the others.
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Old February 11, 2014, 04:22 AM   #42
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RX-79G
bizarre Sul position
Anyone who thinks the Sul position is bizarre or unnatural obviously hasn't practiced with it using the proper technique. I've used Sul since 1998 when I learned it from a Marine buddy. It's an extremely natural technique once you learn that all you're doing is rotating your support hand up close to your chest; your support hand is flat against your body yet it's still in a position to immediately grasp the gun in a two-handed grip.

I like the Sul position because it safely brings the gun very close to your body for good retention, yet it's a very natural hold that allows you to bring the gun into action very quickly.
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Old February 11, 2014, 08:28 AM   #43
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Quote:
I like the Sul position because it safely brings the gun very close to your body for good retention, yet it's a very natural hold that allows you to bring the gun into action very quickly.
When tested against all the other positions, SUL is the slowest.

I also think if it was truly "natural" someone would have been using it before 1997.

http://www.lawofficer.com/article/training/ready-or-not

Quote:
Spaulding’s Position vs. Speed Test
Position Time (3 shots) Avg.
Guard / Low Ready .61 .57 .52 .57
Chest Ready .66 .66 .63 .65
Compressed Low Ready .65 .59 .61 .62
High Ready .64 .62 .61 .62
Sul .88 .84 .82 .85
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Old February 11, 2014, 08:51 AM   #44
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Snyper
When tested against all the other positions, SUL is the slowest.
Good catch, Snyper. I went to the link and had never seen that article. It seems that Sul is slower than other ready positions, by some 0.22 of a second. However, the author makes a good point in the concluding paragraph.
Quote:
Considering that a blink of an eye is measured at approximately .32 seconds, the difference between these positions is minimal. However, there’s no way to know what will be “too slow” in a fight.
I don't consider Sul a ready position. Never have. It's just another tool in the bag to help me get through the day. I don't think I'd use it in competition, but in the real world it works fine.
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Old February 11, 2014, 09:26 AM   #45
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Wow! Lots of dug in toe nails against change around here. Good thing no one brought up the thumbs forward grip!

Quote:
I also think if it was truly "natural" someone would have been using it before 1997.
That can be said for most of the other wizz bang stuff thats now, or ever was, once all the rage, dont you think? You can also follow that thought back to the caveman for anything if you think about it.

Just out of curiosity, for those who dont use/approve of the SUL position, when the need arises, how do you move safely (and discretely) amongst people, or in tight spaces, and without telegraphing your gun, but having it instantly ready?

Can you move 360*, without, or I should say, with a greatly reduced chance of sweeping someone?


I look at SUL as the "base" that all others either start from, and/or eventually return to. As PawPaw said, it is just another tool in the bag, but for those of us who find it very versatile, it tends to be the main tool, that can easily and quickly turn into any of the others as needed, yet offers more than they do in the end.
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Old February 11, 2014, 09:49 AM   #46
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Snyper
When tested against all the other positions, SUL is the slowest.
OF COURSE it's slower, it's not a true ready position. I think you're completely missing the point here; the Sul position allows you to carry the firearm in a safe manner that allows for maximum retention, while still being very quick to bring into action if needed. But the Sul position is not designed to replace those other ready positions, it's simply another tool to use.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Snyper
I also think if it was truly "natural" someone would have been using it before 1997.
That's kind of a ridiculous statement. I find the thumbs-forward grip very natural ever since I learned it and started practicing it. That doesn't mean it's so natural that I should have invented it on my own.
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Old February 11, 2014, 11:49 AM   #47
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Two points I would like to make:

1) As a non-leo, purely civilian, CCW-er, I am unlikely to ever have to move among a tight crowd of people with a drawn pistol. A police officer is much more likely to need that skill than me.

Nonetheless, I have practiced the SUL position a few times, and it seems natural to me, and I could immediately see the utility of the position. I admit it seemed odd at first, but I walked around my house, around corners and into tight spaces, and after a short time the SUL position seemed as natural as low-ready, but tighter and more compact. I notice the muzzle covered a spot between my feet, about a foot in front of me, which is about ideal.

I also noticed an easy transition from on-target to SUL back to on-target. To those who feel it is odd or unnatural, I would advise that they try it a few times.

2) Regarding the idea that if SUL was such a great idea, why was it not invented prior to 1997: Well, let me tell you a short story on the history of swimming. Humans have been swimming since the age of stone tools, probably before that. The fastest most efficient swimming stroke is what today we call freestyle, or the "front crawl"... This stroke was unknown in Europe, Asia, or Africa until the 1800s. The Native Americans of North and South America invented the front crawl technique, and it was introduced to Europe in an 1844 swimming competition. All the societies of Asia, Europe, and Africa, both primitive and advanced, over the course of 5000+ years, failed to discover the best method for swimming. To me this seems utterly astounding.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_of_swimming

The point is that good ideas are often obvious after the fact, but can remain undiscovered for very long periods of time.
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Old February 11, 2014, 12:06 PM   #48
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Regarding the idea that if SUL was such a great idea, why was it not invented prior to 1997
Just a reminder that Sul was developed in response to a particular problem: How to have 4,5 or more men in tactical gear, with drawn weapons stand in a small space one behind the other without the weapons pointing at the next fellas back. This was in response to men shooting each other in just such situations.

So it was not developed until the maturity of the SWAT team and modern entry tactics. A problem of the last 20-25 or so years.

Variations of it have been used before by individuals in close spaces of course. But Sul arose as a team tactic and not an individual one and is different from a close weapon retention hold.

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Old February 11, 2014, 12:43 PM   #49
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1) As a non-leo, purely civilian, CCW-er, I am unlikely to ever have to move among a tight crowd of people with a drawn pistol. A police officer is much more likely to need that skill than me.
I would assume just the opposite. Most times, by the time the LE get there, all the action is over. It's the civilian in the movie theater, church, shopping mall, etc. that may need to move among a crowd with a drawn gun.
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Old February 11, 2014, 01:28 PM   #50
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brian Pfleuger
Quote:
1) As a non-leo, purely civilian, CCW-er, I am unlikely to ever have to move among a tight crowd of people with a drawn pistol. A police officer is much more likely to need that skill than me.
I would assume just the opposite. Most times, by the time the LE get there, all the action is over. It's the civilian in the movie theater, church, shopping mall, etc. that may need to move among a crowd with a drawn gun.
Good point, Peet!
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