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Old November 16, 2010, 09:07 AM   #1
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Center Axis Relock Gunfighting Class, Doug Dean Columbus, Ohio Review

This past weekend, I took a IPD Course. The course focus is Center Axis Relock(CAR) for pistols. It was held on Saturday and Sunday and taught by Doug Dean of Belay USA. The class was held in Columbus, Ohio.
To describe the course in one word, Outstanding.

Not being a man of few words, I will go further. : First about me. I am a 48 year old father of six. I did not serve in the military and am not a law enforcement officer. I started shooting when I was 6 or 7. I have owned and shot handguns for over 25 years. I consider myself very competent with all my firearms. I own two handguns, a Taurus PT809 and PT709. I own handguns for two reasons. First, they are fun. Second, they are a tool for protection. I have a CCW and carry nearly all of the time.

Doug Dean is a CAR trainer. He was trained by Paul Castle, the developer of the CAR system. He has also practiced and taught martial arts for over 30 years. He teaches firearms at a local college for police and private security personnel. In addition, he works in the personal protection field.

I was extremely fortunate to be the only student. 3 other students cancelled. Most instructors would have cancelled the class, but Doug is an honorable man that put commitment ahead of profit.

The first day was classroom teaching. After attesting not to be a criminal, Doug reviewed the use of force laws. We discussed situational awareness. The course then focused on the CAR system. Doug talked about the development and advantages of the system. We worked on the four positions, high, combat high, extended and apogee. We work on drawing. We worked on weapon retention. We work on mag changes, tactical, combat and administrative. We worked on transitioning between hands and using the system in a vehicle.

The second day started with more mag changes, stoppage and malfunction drills. Then we moved to some basic combatives. Since most altercations happen within 5 feet, this is a critical skill to have. Then we went to the range. I went through 650 rounds in an afternoon. We shot from each position. We shot moving. We shot moving while transitioning between hands. We shot at multiple targets. Doug would call out a target and I had to move to it and shoot and resume scanning. We shot behind barricades. Shot hostage takers. We shot from bad breath distance out to 50 feet. Of course mag changes were required. Most of the work was done up close, because that is where the typical encounter will happen.

About the CAR system, I read about it on the Internet about a year ago. It made sense and seemed pretty simple. I watch the few brief videos I found online. I tried it at the range and it worked pretty well. I took the online course in the Spring. The class was very helpful because there are important little nuances that require the help of a trained eye and instructor.

I would consider myself a beginner/intermediate CAR shooter. With practice I will get faster and smoother. That being said, even with my limited skills, the system is fast and combat accurate. The system reduces the recoil to nil. It was amazing how fast I went through a 17 round mag, with all of the shots on target. Forty foot shots moving resulted in consistent CM hits. No problem taking out a hostage taker with a head shot from 25 feet with the hostage covering half the bad guys head. The stance is dynamic and very stable. The bladed stance also gives the bad guy less of a target and protects your vital organs. It also is ideal for striking with your reaction hand, drawing with your weapon hand and creating distance. Movement in any direction is easy. Gun retention is optimal.

The system makes sense and it works. It will be the only way I shoot in the future.

To close, the class achieved the two objectives of pistol ownership. First, it was a blast. Second, it improved my self defense skills tremendously. I highly recommend the class.

Last edited by skifast; November 16, 2010 at 03:10 PM.
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