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Old December 3, 2007, 01:51 AM   #1
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Training tips from real-life encounters

I have been carrying and training for 6 months (since my 21st b-day) and one of my greatest concerns is whether I would be able to act under pressure and defeat a violent adversary, or if all this training would fly out the window as soon as I looked down a BG's muzzle. I have read up on the body's stress response and the mind reverting to training under pressure, so I'm not interested in that kind of information. What I would really like to hear is if anybody has had a real encounter with a criminal, whether you drew/fired or not, and what you would suggest might be helpful from a training perspective. I've always been calm under pressure, but this still weighs on my mind...
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Old December 3, 2007, 08:44 AM   #2
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I've been in the martial arts for over 25 years and what I've learned is this: You don't just workout you study. That means letting your mind control your body and throught thousands of hours of drilling you commit that movement to memory. Combat shooting is a martial art and the same principles still apply. I tell younger belts this.
1.Form: Work on your form and if your form is correct you will have power.
2.Repitition:Speed is a product of repitition. Don't worry about it just worry about your dynamics and speed will come in time. As it does in shooting. Now to your question: I have worked as a bouncer in biker bars,sports bars and lot's of other tuff places and have been in more confrontations than I can count. "Not Bragging" it's just the way it is. I have found my skill has been their when I needed it. I've done armed security work in nice areas like fedaral housing projects in South L.A. which will test most peoples ability to cope with stress and have had the misfortune of being in a couple of shooting. In regard to your training in combat shooting it's important to work on three aspects: Firearm handleing skills,marksmenship and tactics. You also need to work on your "Mindset" Mindset,training and then equipment. Of the three the least important is the equipment. Hope this helps. Be safe.
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Old December 3, 2007, 08:57 AM   #3
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If you can find a range or training center that has a "F.A.T.S." or some other type of simulator, that may benefit you.

Personally, I think that working on your "situational awareness" skills is probably the best. Wherever you go, you can make assessments in your mind, such as "Is it safer to park here, or in that lot across the street?", "Are those people harmless or do they present a problem to me?", etc. The more you exercise your #1 "weapon" (your brain), the better off you will be.

Also, if you're currently in college, there's a battery of tests that you can take that will give you a comparison evaluation of your "under stress"/"no stress" skills. I don't recall the name of that test, but someone may be able to find it for you. It's fairly accurate, but only if you answer the questions honestly.
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Old December 3, 2007, 09:08 AM   #4
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If (God forbid) you find yourself in a situation, ALWAYS assume that there is more than one bad guy!

Angry is far better than scared...but it must be a controlled anger that you can use.
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Old December 3, 2007, 11:53 AM   #5
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Great tips guys, thanks a lot!
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Old December 4, 2007, 01:19 PM   #6
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The closest thing I have to share with you is a discussion with a coworker yesterday. He says while hog hunting he shot one which fell over after being hit. He walks up to it - all the while the hog seems cold still. Just as soon as he touched it he says it "Came alive". He had a high capacity pistol that he drew and unloaded at the hog as quick as he could. All missed.... and probably from a pretty short distance (as far as he could jump/stumble back and draw, I'm sure).

I think it's all about being able to stay cool under pressure. Hitting your target takes a precise movement and cutting the time you have to be precise would exponentially compound the difficulty. It's like trying to open a lock while under water I suppose. It seems like the best you can do is practice drawing & shooting from the hip until you can do it in your sleep. Muscle memory plays a big role when the brain is short circuited.
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Old December 4, 2007, 01:58 PM   #7
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as soon as I looked down a BG's muzzle
When this happened to me, I dropped and rolled under a truck, got to other side got up saw guy fleeing dropped his empty weapon. Then I went and got some new underwear............. I doubt if Icould have drawn while dropping as the heros in movies depict. Try it sometime, it takes an awful lot of concentration and skill.

Try to stay out of situations like this, be aware. Stay out of known bad areas. Etc, just use plain old common sense and you will be OK.
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Old December 4, 2007, 05:05 PM   #8
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It seems that what I've learned from studying other cases, as well as the information that you guys have provided here (thanks) is that the most important thing is to be aware. If something catches you completely by surprise, it's likely you'll freeze and take a while to act. Whereas, if you see a threat coming, you can quickly go over what needs to be done in your head.
I know when I'm driving on ice and I slide, I react quickly to counteract the slide. But when I suddenly hit a patch of "black ice" out of nowhere, it takes me a second to realize what's going on. I think this is true in self defense as well. You have to be ready for whatever is coming if you're going to act quickly and effectively.
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Old December 4, 2007, 07:43 PM   #9
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As has been said before, the "awareness" factor is the most important factor of all. Obviously, if we could "see" a situation building, . . . we could either avoid it altogether, . . . or at least react quicker.

Avoidance, first: reaction, second. Reaction can never be allowed to get to a "I'll cross that bridge when it appears", . . . you must have already developed paths of action which will be deployed as the situation warrants.

Take for example: you see a guy across the street with an AK, . . . hood and black PJ's and he is laying down rounds like Santa handing out presents. If you stand there for 30 seconds debating in your mind your first reaction, . . . duh, . . . it may be to bleed out.

Your first action is the critical one movement that must be a schooled action, whether it is to get cover & concealment, . . . draw and fire, . . . say, "yes, sir, . . . no, sir, . . . 3 bags full, sir" or whatever. This only comes with proper instruction, . . . and unfortunately this forum is not any where near good enough to get you through it. Look into some professional schooling, instruction, classes.

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Old December 4, 2007, 10:02 PM   #10
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Everybody talks about practice in returning fire, evading situations, choosing locations and such. These are very important and must not be sloughed off.

However, the first thing I was taught when being trained to go into situations where there people wanting to shoot at you was to always be aware where the COVER is. I got whacked with a stick quite regularly if I responded to incoming fire with fire of my own.

Armed and Safe: Not just a theory

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Old December 5, 2007, 09:14 PM   #11
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i am by no means tough or a bad ass. i want to clarify this before telling my story. i studied judo for about 3 months. i was "around" a fight between two groups, one of which i was part of. shoulda not been there, but young and dumb and wanted to see a fight. someone yells my name i turn around and a fella is bullrushing me from about 5 yards. perfect hip toss on his ass without a thought. i really never even thought about doing it. that being said i do not have that same training with my ccw and feel akward acknowledging it...
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Old December 8, 2014, 10:53 AM   #12
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Like everything else practise makes perfect and it will also condition your mind to react without you even being conscious of the act.In combat I have seen soldiers patrolling through dense bush flushing an enemy and shooting him down with an FAL, which is a big heavy and long assault rifle even though he had his own AK47 to his shoulder ready to fire.
With a handgun you need to learn to shoot where you look without even referring to the sights if the range is under about 7 metres.At longer ranges you need to use the sights.
The words of Wyatt Earp come to mind;"In gunplay it has been my experience that the winner is more often than not, the one who takes his time".
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Old February 2, 2015, 04:48 PM   #13
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Please finish Wyatt Earps whole statement. The statement was something to the effect "In a gunfight take your time, in a hurry". Strike a balance between taking the time to get a proper hit(s). But don't take so long that the other fella has time to finish you. You have to find a balance of speed and precision. Imbalance in either will get you killed.
Placed in more modern terms. Only shoot as fast as you can make good hits. No faster, but sure as hell no slower! Nuff said.
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Old February 2, 2015, 05:12 PM   #14
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The OP has not posted for seven years.
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Old February 2, 2015, 05:37 PM   #15
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The OP has not posted for seven years.
Maybe he froze up and got himself shot?
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Old February 2, 2015, 06:20 PM   #16
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Let's call this one done.
"It is long been a principle of ours that one is no more armed because he has possession of a firearm than he is a musician because he owns a piano. There is no point in having a gun if you are not capable of using it skillfully." -- Jeff Cooper
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