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Old October 21, 2014, 03:13 PM   #1
ezmiraldo
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How do you guys practice "tactics"?

Marksmanship practice is relatively straightforward and simple. But, how about tactics? How to practice reacting to the actions of an armed adversary, while constrained by geography/layout of one's environment? Anyone can share some ideas that work?

I've just finished reading Suarez's "The Tactical Advantage" and am in the process of re-thinking my training. Let me know what you folks think, especially if you have some tactics training/expertise.
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Old October 21, 2014, 04:59 PM   #2
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I practice a lot of different techniques, and weapons, but with a pistol I practice multiple targets at different distances. I will usually get set, and turn my back to my setup and my old lady will mark the targets variously by "priority". She'll also move them to different locations/distances. When we're ready I'll turn and she'll hit the timer and see what I can do. I usually try to mix in bowling pins as well so I have to take some more challenging shots.

I didn't read that anywhere I just made it up. .. It has so far improved my shooting more than anything besides slowly practicing the fundamentals with a .22. Hope it helps. .. I hope you get some good answers from others.
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Old October 21, 2014, 05:24 PM   #3
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FOF with airsoft is one way that works well. Just don't play a "game" but be serious about it.

I shoot as many "night" matches as I possibly can.

I train with LEOs as a volunteer "bad guy" in a variety of conditions.

I asked a friend, who was a DOC officer if I could interview inmates who had been convicted in shootings. They had to agree, but I learned quite a bit about what tactics may work, and some which probably would not, from talking to these guys. I asked them what they saw, what they were trying to do, etc. when they were shooting. The information about "why" they decided to shoot was also interesting.

Last, Play acting: This is an excerpt from the text I wrote and used for many years...
Scenarios and Situations. Yes, even without a FATS, this can be done. The author’s wife likes to give, and go to, murder mystery parties. Why not a Scenario party? Okay, don’t freak out! Remember, NO guns, we’ll use just an index finger and “air guitar” it. Have four of your shooting buddies draw up 4 scenarios. Then when they come over to watch the game, do one each commercial break. Rotate through as play actors, CCW holders, and moderators. Read your scenario and set-up the situation, and then let them act it out. Set some basic ground rules for the play actors and CCW holder and try it out. Verbal commands are necessary, as is feedback. This is to be taken seriously. If someone is goofing off, just quit and don’t invite them to participate next time. You can use cover, movement, element of surprise, etc. as great training aids. Do not berate each other, try to improve each other.
One thing I have learned, there are very few "textbook" lethal force encounters. Planning and practicing reactions and methods is certainly important.
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Old October 21, 2014, 06:14 PM   #4
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What kind of situations and tactics are you asking about?
There's lots of different kinds, from home and family defense to battle field.
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Old October 22, 2014, 09:34 AM   #5
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One of the simplest things to do (and forgive me if it is too simple, but a surprising number of people don't do it), is to think through situations at places you commonly go. Your home, your office, your favorite restaurant, your church, all have a finite number of entrances. What are your opportunities for cover, concealment, and field of fire at those locations?
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Old October 22, 2014, 11:10 AM   #6
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Shoot IDPA.

Yes, I know - "...it's just a game," so shoot through a few matches using your every day carry equipment. For my last two matches, instead of using the XDm, I used a Kahr -which run out of rounds quicker, has a shorter sight radius, smaller grip, etc. Additional challenge was provided by trying to dig magazines out of pants pocket instead of mag carrier.
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Old October 22, 2014, 11:32 AM   #7
ezmiraldo
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Thanks, fellas! I'm talking primarily about home defense and self defense outside of home.

I think IDPA (and other competitions) help run one's gear under stress (which is extremely useful); but, I don't know how much they benefit tactics? Am I wrong?
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Old October 22, 2014, 11:51 AM   #8
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There are plenty of skills that you cannot practice at regular range. These include:

- Rapid fire: The key is recoil control and learning what I call the "reset position". This basically means being able to bring the gun back on target quickly and almost exactly to the point of aim after the gun recoils. Most ranges will allow double taps if you demonstrate some level of proficiency, but rapid fire is usually not allowed unless on a private range.

- Drawing and firing: If you can't get your gun out quickly and on target quickly, it is practically useless. The good thing is that you can practice drawing with an empty gun at home or practice drawing a good air soft replica.

- Engaging multiple targets: While the chances of having to engage multiple targets is low, the ability to get on target quickly and accurately is a highly valuable skill.

- Shooting while moving: Hitting a moving target is a lot harder than hitting a stationary target. Be the moving target! Hitting a target while moving is also a lot harder, especially if your target is moving as well.

- Force on force: Hitting a target accurately is hard enough without someone shooting back at you. The extra sense of urgency of getting lead on target while being shot at will create an adrenaline dump that will most likely greatly affect your accuracy. You have to shoot while on the move, fire at moving targets, and look for cover/concealment.

As for training:

Air Soft: Great for force on force simulations (especially if you get a quality replica of your actual carry gun). This is great for shooting while on the move and while moving. Also great for drawing and firing to practice draw speed and accuracy. Air Soft can be used for point shooting and rapid sight acquisition practice (go from low ready to on target as quickly as possible). Air Soft can even be used for marksmanship if you have a decent quality gun.

IPSC/PPC: Few things beat live fire and actual trigger time with actual recoil. IPSC is too "gamey" in my opinion, but the skills will carry over to real life. It is far better to use "regular" guns rather than tricked out competition pistols since it is best to use what you carry.
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Old October 22, 2014, 12:37 PM   #9
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I get ansty at our outdoor range, when I see a shooter do a "safe & hang" {AR-15 with a single point sling, that has the muzzle pointed down at the concrete firing pad and his feet. I wouldn't feel so ansty if the shooter performed the method while on grass while or at a sanctioned event at our range --- but our range rule {AGC at Marriottsville} states that the muzzle of the firearm should be pointed downrange or vertical.

Now...I don't care whether the muzzle is pointed just ahead of the front edge of the concrete firing line/pad --- but too see these knuckleheads perform this technique on our concrete firing pad, begs the opportunity for novice shooters to copy the "safe an hang" technique --- and have the possibility of a negligent discharge onto the concrete firing pad or worse.

I'm having trouble with the SRSO's and higher management to have this "safe an hang" technique stopped at our range during a non-sanctioned event, and our other rule states that the muzzle of the firearm should be over the firing line while in the act of shooting and not behind any other shooter. So IMHO...the muzzle should not be pointed down at the concrete firing pad while even getting to raise the rifle or pistol in the act of shooting; prior to touching off a round.
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Old October 22, 2014, 01:04 PM   #10
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I don't practise, I do shoot IPSC maybe that's practise.
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Old October 22, 2014, 01:16 PM   #11
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I over scenarios I my head a lot.
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Old October 22, 2014, 02:28 PM   #12
MarkCO
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Quote:
I think IDPA (and other competitions) help run one's gear under stress (which is extremely useful); but, I don't know how much they benefit tactics? Am I wrong?
Mostly correct. When your weapon handling and safety protocols are part of your make-up, natural, that element of stress is removed in a lethal force encounter which frees up what little you have left to actually observe, ID and react in accordance with good tactics. If "Competition" is all you do, then you might be showing clear to the bad guy. I am of the camp who actually believes the freestyle nature of USPSA is preferable to the prescriptive (and often tactically ignorant) rules of IDPA for most people.

Conflict avoidance and using your brain will always be the better tactic than a shootout of any flavor.
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Old October 22, 2014, 02:35 PM   #13
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Quote:
Few things beat live fire and actual trigger time with actual recoil. IPSC is too "gamey" in my opinion, but the skills will carry over to real life. It is far better to use "regular" guns rather than tricked out competition pistols since it is best to use what you carry.
There are a LOT of people who shoot USPSA (IPSC is the International and only shot at a few majors in the US) using standard carry guns. Single-Stack, Limited 10 and Production are very easy to shoot with actual carry guns. When I shoot the night matches, I shoot my ACTUAL HD AR-15 and my ACTUAL HD M&P in those matches (in Open nonetheless) because I feel that the live fire dynamic shooting with them is more important that 15 slots higher up. In 3Gun and USPSA I shoot a very close to stock M&PPro that is only accessorized by having a better barrel and a few trigger tweaks. The manual of arms is the same across the game and defense platforms I choose.

And yes, my BB guns and Airsofts are the same as well.
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Old October 24, 2014, 06:20 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ezmiraldo
I think IDPA (and other competitions) help run one's gear under stress (which is extremely useful); but, I don't know how much they benefit tactics? Am I wrong?
Isnt shooting under stress what its all about? There's no other safe way to simulate shooting against an adversary. Whatever or however you train you must build your unconscious competence operating the firearm under stress as second nature. Reference infographic.


Quote:
Originally Posted by ezmiraldo
But, how about tactics? How to practice reacting to the actions of an armed adversary, while constrained by geography/layout of one's environment? Anyone can share some ideas that work?
Check out this video: http://www.personaldefensenetwork.co...andards-drill/


I started training with a close friend of mine this year we warm up with a dot torture drill then spend half our time practicing IDPA scenarios then half our own imagination based scenarios. There isn't one scenario that covers it all, we set up multiple targets at various distances and one or more empty target stands simulating cover. One of my favorites is with my back turned my friend rearranges the targets only one marked as the bad guy, from there we can mix it up where we can only shoot from cover first or as we can only shoot as were moving to cover. Also, the general rule is were not allowed to double check our round count, this guarantees random slide lock events... or, I have my friend load my first mag for me!
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Old October 25, 2014, 07:08 AM   #15
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As far as combat handgun I set up sategte at different angels and distances then ingauge them to see how fast I can aquire a site picture and sometimes practice double taps . I have thought about a shoot "house" made by 4 corner post and black plastic with a door to set up room clearing exercise . My absolute favorite practice I use the standard torso target B-27 printed on natural color papper and set them up in a wooded area at diferent distance some partialy hid with some cover . Then back to the FFP (final firing posistion ) and find them with my sniper rifle and pick them off . Its not easy even if you know about where they are , Then go back to check hits and cover them with brown masking tape they statr to take a camo patern this is good tactical practice .
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Old October 25, 2014, 01:37 PM   #16
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Do you have the money & time available to find and attend some sort of defensive pistol training class, one (or more) taught by a reputable company & instructor?

In order to practice "tactics", you first have to learn about "tactics", meaning not only what they are, but some appropriate situational context for their successful application.

Kind of like trying to teach yourself martial arts from a book or DVD. Not the most practical or effective way for a beginner to "develop" skills (although those learning aids can be of value to more experienced students as they acquire an increasingly better skillset foundation).

Kind of hard to know what you don't know, and then to know what you may think you're doing right, but aren't doing right ... or may or may not be doing for the appropriate circumstances.

You might have a good instructor who works (if only occasionally) at a local range, and might be able to help you on your way.
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