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Old October 19, 2010, 01:07 PM   #1
Dave Williams
Join Date: January 2, 1999
Location: Euclid,OH,USA
Posts: 79
AAR - Larry Mudgett Intermediate Defensive Handgun

AAR - Larry Mudgett Intermediate Defensive Handgun

I had the good fortune to attend another class with Larry Mudgett this past weekend. For those of you who are interested, I wrote an AAR of the first class I did with Larry in 2008 on another board. That AAR has some info on Larry's background:

Needless to say, few instructors have Larry's credentials and teaching ability.

Larry has started a training company:

And a blog:

On to the AAR.

Day 1 - We met up as a class on Friday night for four hours of lecture. Larry "owns" this material, so the lecture is actually over before you know it. He did a quick review of the material in the basic class, including the best safety and combat mindset lectures I've heard, then launched into what he considers intermediate material, including: close contact shooting, shooting on the move, stepping off the line of attack, multiple target engagements, shooting under and from cars, long distance shooting, among other topics. Larry will give real world examples(Larry had access to records of/reviewed thousands of shootings in his career) of these types of issues that really serves to drive the point home.

Larry had a cadre of assistant Instructors helping him out, a mix of private Citizen, Federal LE, Local LE, and Nuclear Security and "Doc Gunn", who specializes in wound treatment classes and I've trained with before. Great guys, THANKS for your efforts.

Day 2 - We met on the range, and the first order of business was an accuracy evaluation to make sure everyone was accurate enough. After all, if you can't hit, why move on to the Fast Action Guy stuff? We shot groups at 15yds. I was using this class to help break in my new service pistol, America's Police Pistol, the Glock 22, in a new Gen4 flavor. Incidentally, Larry feels that the Glock 22 fulfills his Mentor, Jeff Cooper's basic requirements for a service pistol, a relatively light consistent trigger pull(5.5 pounds) and a caliber that starts with a 4. This gratifies me, as I'm required to carry it.

From here we moved into pivots, left, right and to the rear. Some of the students habits drew comments from Larry. He understood the students had been to a wide variety of instructors and had many different "tools in the toolbox", but he just wanted us to know his thoughts. He likes the traditional Guard(aka Low Ready) of the Modern Technique vs SUL. I think part of the problem is that people do not use SUL as the originators intended, they use it as a general ready position. He is not a fan of the fashionable look over each shoulder to the rear after a string of fire, saying if he has his gun out, he is going to be looking where the gun is pointed, Eyes Muzzle Target.

We had used paper plates up till now as targets. From here on out we switched to a B-27 target. B-27s are somewhat out of vogue as targets, every instructor has his own take on this subject, but they worked great for us.

From here we moved into close contact shooting. Larry teaches to have the gun hand tight into the rib cage, with the wrist touching the outside of the pectoral. Tilt the gun slightly out to avoid clothing cause a malfunction. Weak hand in a blocking position well out of the way of any gunfire, ready to strike, block, push, etc. Great drills. Needless to say there were a lot of close contact shootings on LAPD over the years, and this type of training is critical. The last year that LAPD issued revolvers, for instance, there were 4 muzzle contact shootings. Also, though we were close to the targets, Larry insisted on good trigger presses, good shot placement, and tight groups. He checks the target of every student after every string of fire in the class.

Next up was a drill designed to help teach the compressed surprise break. First the students would hold the gun, and Larry would press off the shots against a timer. Then, the students would press off the shots against the timer. Students were able to go slack out, wait for the beep, and press off very accurate shots in as low as .18 seconds, maybe lower. This drill really got everyone dialed in as far as accuracy goes. It was the turning point of the class, everyone improved accuracy wise after this. We did it freestyle, but I'd also like to do it stonghand and weakhand only.

Winding down the day was a shooting on the move block, which I did great on due to the accuracy work earlier on(I'm happy because I SUCK at shooting on the move), and an interesting drill where we thumbed rounds into our locked back guns from our mags, hit the slide release, and fired, repeat, repeat. This was to simulate having shot to slide lock, getting a magazine from someone else's gun in the same caliber, and using it to stay in the fight. Pretty rare scenario, but Larry has a saying, "Some things aren't hard to do unless the first time you are trying to figure it out is when someone is trying to kill you." I think I read about a drill like this in an article by Bart Skelton, but I'm not sure.

Day 3 - We met on the range and discussed an interesting method of shooting a threat to the rear that was utilized in a shooting by a US Marshal. Some of us elected to try the method out. Needless to say, Larry is very safe on the range, saying the 4 Universal Safety Rules ALWAYS APPLY, but I won't discuss this method, as it needs to be done under the watchful eye of an experienced instructor.

Next was more close contact shooting, then more shooting on the move and incorporating that with close contact shooting and failure to stop drills. Larry calls two shots to the body, if the head is there shoot it the "failure to stop drill". There is no assessment like in a classic Mozambique drill. If the head is there is the only assessment. This was a great block of instruction. I should mention that Combat Mindset is stressed and present in all of these drills. In fact, the weekend was really a 3-day Combat Mindset Seminar.

We got into a discussion of the various types of kneeling positions and the advantages and disadvantages of same. Then we moved into a block on Rollover Prone, and we did a bunch of that, rapidly assuming the Rollover Prone position. I haven't had formal instruction on Rollover Prone with a handgun, and found that it really helped me shoot a good group at 20yds.

Next up was shooting the LAPD Combat Course, a PPC type course. I managed a 292/300. It is as follows:
Stage 1 - 7yd line, 12rds in 25 seconds - 2 targets - 2xbody right, 2xbody left, left head, right head, speed load, repeat. From the holster.
Stage 2 - 10yd line, 2rds in 2 seconds - 2 targets - 2xbody right, 2xbody left, 2xbody right. From the Guard.
Stage 3 - 12yd line, 6rds in 8 seconds - 2 targets - 2xbody right, 2xbody left, 2xbody right. From the Guard.
Stage 4 - 15yd line, 1rd in 3 seconds - 2 targets - 3 rds left hand barricade on left target, 3rds right hand barricade on right target. Pointed in on target, finger on trigger.

Larry has cleaned this course using a single action revolver It was originally designed for the days of revolvers and spill/dump pouches, which is why the time limit on stage 1 is so long. I felt the old heart beat pick up a bit during this competition, reaffirming my belief that competition shooting is good training because it puts you under stress, and makes you perform under stress. By the way, this competition was won by a 59yr old Patrolman from a local dept who consistently shot tiny groups the whole class. Also, he had a great positive mental attitude, a real pleasure to train with.

Next up was the Dozier Drill. Larry runs it like Jeff Cooper. First shooter facing 5 targets. This represents Gen Dozier. Second shooter facing one target, gun in a zipped bag, condition 3. This represents a terrorist facing Gen Dozier, with a condition 3 Uzi in a zipped bag. On the beep, first shooter draws and fires 5rds at the 5 targets, have to be in the 9 ring of the B27 to count, after all, only hits count, and you can't miss fast enough to win. Also on the beep, second shooter unzips the bag, draws the gun, racks the slide and shoots the 1 target which represents Gen Dozier. I managed to shoot all my targets before my terrorist opponent shot his 1 target, but one of my hits was an 8 ring hit, so I lost. Only hits count! Great drill.

Lastly we did vehicle ambush block, with some great vehicle combat lecture, and live fire involving 3 targets outside the driver side of your vehicle, a "threat!" command, unbelting, drawing, and putting two shots in each target. I had downloaded my mags for these drills, so I had forced slide lock reloads inside the car. Never done it before, great training. While the shooter was up, one on one on the range, the rest of the class was off doing malfunction clearances, speed, and tactical reloads dry with A-Zooms.

America's Police Pistol ran great, with a TLR-1 clamped down on the dustcover. I used a 6365 Safariland duty holster and an open top Bianchi Accumold mag pouch.

All in all, a great class, great weekend. Oh yeah, tuition was $250.

It was a great group of guys in the class, mostly cops, great exchange of information. It's one of the reasons I like going to firearms training classes, if anyone reading this is hesitant to try a firearms training class, don't be, they are a blast. Private citizens are welcome at these classes hosted by the Pittsburgh US Marshals Office.

Larry wants to do an Urban Rifle class in Pittsburgh next year, he started/wrote the rifle program at LAPD. If anyone is interested contact Larry at the links I provided above. Larry also teaches a unique class at Gunsite, The Defensive Single Action Revolver. Very neat.

Larry is a great instructor with impeccable credentials, and his classes are very reasonably priced. He stresses the basics and will make you a better shooter and warrior. I highly recommend his classes.

"Seize the opportunity to train with people like this!"

Dave Williams

Last edited by Dave Williams; October 20, 2010 at 01:18 AM.
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