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Old May 17, 2001, 11:59 PM   #1
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Join Date: May 17, 2001
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Earlier this month, I attended two classes (back to back) at the Sig Arms Academy in Epping, NH. I attended the Concealed Carry and Advanced Concealed Carry courses. In summary, the courses are worth every minute and dollar spent (invested is more like it). I'll break down the courses in some detail:

Concealed Carry Course.....This is a three day course designed to meet the basic CCW training requirements of most, if not all states. Don't be fooled by this! Things start out slow and seemingly elementary, but things get rolling along fairly quickly....The first day starts in the classroom with an overview of the course, introduction of the staff, and the facilities. There is additional instruction on types of concealment holsters and such. In the afternoon, the student gets on the range and starts with the basics of proper holstering, presentation (drawing from the holster), and grip of the weapon. Students are given excercises that teach proper trigger technique/gun stabilization. Ready Positions (used during confrontations) are discussed. There is also instruction on sight alignment and sight picture. To some, this might seem "mickey mouse," but there is a method at work here. If you think about what has been presented so far, the student has been taught how to "wear" the gun, how to draw (and re-holster) the gun, how to hold it once drawn, and how to aim and fire an accurate shot. The day ends with a couple of live fire excercises to teach accuracy and the daily de-brief in the classroom.

Day two starts in the classroom for a brief moment and then the rest of the day is spent on the range. The day is spent shooting various courses of fire covering: close proximity shooting; point and precision shooting; one hand (dominant) shooting; multiple target engagement; tactical movement while shooting. The day ends with daily pistol maintenance (cleaning) and the de-brief in the class room. You are tired at the end of day two!

Day three starts on the range with a quick review on those things discussed on day one and two. There was a quick "warm-up" live fire and then we got into the day's course of fire: non dominant hand shooting; extensive drawing and firing weapon "from concealment;" drawing and firing while seated (both dominant and non dominant hand); firing from seated to standing and then moving; utilization of cover; introduction to diminished light; various live fire static drills. The day ends with maintenance/equipment turn-in, a discussion of continued defensive development and training, and finally a graduation and course critique. Everyone attending was very enthusiastic about the experience and thoroughly enjoyed themselves!

The Advanced Concealed Carry Course is a two day course that picks up where the Concealed Carry Course left off.....
Day one (my fourth day at the academy) begins with a quick classroom session reviewing firearms safety and a program introduction. The rest of the day is spent on the range covering the following:

a review of basic shooting techniques (one and two handed);
speed shooting; reactive shooting; speed draws; movement; emergency reloads. We were then timed (using one of those IPSC/IDPA timers) on how fast we could draw from concealment, engage, and defeat (two rounds minimum) three diferent targets at three different distances. This was done with and without a reload. The times were recorded and the instructor said that by the next day, there would be significant improvement on the times by everyone. We then moved into the day's various lessons....There was instruction on tactical reloads (one hand only while using dominant or support hand); disadvantaged position shooting to include "groundfighting" techniques (various shooting positions while on the ground/ behind cover), prone and kneeling shooting positions. There was training on engaging moving opponents, both from a static position and while moving. As the norm, the day ended with a maintenenace session and a de-brief in the classroom.

Day two started on the range with some warm up drills on the metallic knock-down targets and a review of fundamental defensive pistol skills. We were then tested again on drawing, engaging, and defeating three targets. As promised, everyone's time improved tremendously!! We then got into dimished light in detail. We were taught the various flashlight techniques, we did live fire drills in the dark with flashlights only. The afternoon was spent in two parts:
"interactive scenarios" and live fire excercises in vehicles and dwellings. The interactive scenarios were live fire scenarios using "Simunitions FX" ammo loaded into specially modified Sig pistols. Simmunition ammo is loaded basically like regular ammo, but it has a sub-caliber bullet made of soft plastic containing soap. The guns fire like normal, but the bullet strike feels like a paint-ball hit (it stings like hell!!!). We put on special protective gear and went through some very interesting and educational scenarios. After that, the live fire excercises were done out-doors. We did some shooting while sitting inside a vehicle (we were drawing and shooting from the driver's side thru the passenger side window. It was an actual working vehicle, not a junker or a prop...we had to be careful!). The dwelling excercises consisted of room clearing in a "shoot house" with both good guys and bad guys inside. The day ended with maintenance/equipment turn in, a de-brief, an end of course critique, and graduation......

Again, all of us were unanimous in our enjoyment and praise of the course, our instructors, and the facility itself. The cost of the two courses is $1090 -->$595+$495 (discounts available to members of various firearms organizations...see their web site), but when you factor in the fact that all ammo is included, the actual bang-for-the-buck
is significant. Another thing to not forget is that you are being taught by Bank Miller (28 years with the DEA....who is gonna know more about carrying concealed than a narcotics agent?) and George Harris (a lifetime of pistol shooting/training experience). These two have tons of on the street and professional pistol shooting experience. I highly recommend these two courses to those who want to take their shooting and defensive mind-set to the next level......
eLmEr_FuDd is offline  
Old May 18, 2001, 12:03 PM   #2
4V50 Gary
Join Date: November 2, 1998
Location: Colorado
Posts: 19,338
George Harris & John Pederson

Both of these SigArms Academy instructors are excellant. George can probably teach a monkey to shoot and John's knowledge and experience is fairly extensively.
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Old May 20, 2001, 05:11 PM   #3
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Join Date: March 28, 2000
Posts: 4,055
I only attended the Concealed Carry Course, didn't have time for the Advanced course. Definitely worth the time and money. I've been to LFI, S&W Academy, and SigArms Academy. I recommend LFI for LFI-1. After that, go to SigArms Academy. Rumor has it that S&W Academy is basically kaput, as all but one instructor were just laid off.

I concur with Gary's opinion about George and John: excellent instructors.

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