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Old September 15, 2007, 10:32 AM   #1
Chuck Dye
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Mark Twain and Jeffery Kooistra: Drills aren't supposed to be fun, just effective.

Jeffery D. Kooistra, a regular commentator in Analog magazine, offers his thoughts, backed by Twain and Life on the Mississippi, on the value of drill to learn important skills. Made me go back to my presentation-from-concealment drills. (How do you argue with Mark Twain?)

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Old September 15, 2007, 01:56 PM   #2
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I have often pondered this. While I understand the importance of drill for military and LE personnel I have sometimes wondered at the wisdom of drilling for the average person.

I did some research back in the eighties on various issues of product liability and manufacturing policy(they make you do stupid stuff like that to get an MBA). Anyway one of the things I studied was the effectiveness of fire drills.

Anyone who reads my posts knows I use the term journeyman hubris from time to time. I use that term to describe the attitude of people who have some training, as in they are no longer an apprentice, but have little experience, ie they are not yet masters. In my experience, and research, the apprentice is safer than the journeyman, but not as safe as the master.

For military and LE types they must go through this journeyman phase to reach the master phase, it is a part of their career path and is their job. For the rest of us, it may be better to remain in effect an apprentice.

Fire drills demonstrat this and actually gave me the idea in the first place. A factory or school should do a very small number of fire drills, otherwise people don't take the alarms seriously. But you have to do a few just so people know what to do, in essence you have to train people up to the level of an apprentice, but must avoid going any further.

Back in my twenties, as I mentioned on another thread, I nearly crushed a guys windpipe in an NCO club altercation because of my instincts. At that point in my life I would say I was a journeyman at Tae Kwon do. I like to think I have since moved beyond that level and have more control.

It's a tricky business. To be truely proficient at self defense, whether by hand or with a weapon, is to drill until you do things by instinct. But sometimes your instincts will be wrong, what happens then?
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