Training Reports

After Action Report - Handgun Fundamentals

Coaching New Shooters on Handgun FundamentalsOn October 24, 2015 we held another Level 1: Handgun Fundamentals course at South River Gun Club in Covington, Georgia. We had four students for this course, comprised of two married couples. There was a couple in their early 30's and another couple that was middle-aged, and both came with a positive attitude and an open mind. There were many questions, discussions, laughs, talks, and fortunately- many more hits than misses. The weather was perfect and our gear cooperated with us as much as we could possibly hope for.

During this course, it was refreshing to have people that would openly share their "pre-conceived notions" as to what they already knew in various topics so that we could clarify any questions that might have and correct any errors they might have in their understanding of the fundamentals of shooting. 

As with most of our Level 1 courses we covered in detailed the 4 Rules of Firearm Safety. After we had a solid understanding of each rule, we spent a great deal of time really elaborating on the proper grip of a semi-automatic handgun and the implications that it can have on your performance. Our usual topics were covered in detail and we spent a good bit of time honing our skills on the range in the live fire exercise. All in all, we had a fantastic day and I look forward to the opportunity to share some range time with everyone in the near future.

See some pictures and video clips from the course below:

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Home Defense and Weapons Manipulation - 10/24/15

Tactical Rifle Training

In the afternoon of October 24, 2015- we completed a course that had a specialized syllabus specific to the requests of those involved. Specifically, the course was a hybrid of the content within the Handgun Manipulation course, Tactical Rifle, and the Home Defense course.

During this course we began with a basic breakdown of the human anatomy, and specifically the ways that we can cause the human body to fail due to a traumatic wound. We identify our "two most efficient ways to shut down the human machine." Those two ways are to disrupt either the body's electrical system (central nervous system) or the hydraulic system (combination of respiratory and circulatory systems). After a discussion of the ways that bullet wounds can cause the human body to fail, we move on to the manipulations covered in our Level 2 Handgun courses. We worked on reloading both from slide lock as well as from a chambered reload. We worked on identifying and clearing all four types of common handgun malfunctions.

AR-15 Low KneelingAs we moved into the Tactical Rifle content, we worked on the fundamentals that would be the equivalent to our Level 1 Handgun content. Topics included:

  • Zeroing the Optic
  • Understanding "hold over"
  • Grip/Stance
  • Shooting from Standing and Kneeling
  • Loading/Unloading the Rifle
  • Reloading from slide lock

As with our Level 2 Handgun courses, we did a lot of live fire exercises throughout the course of the day. We work on a skill and then exercise it enough to thoroughly understand the concept and then move on to the next skill. We intentionally prepare the skill sets so that each skill will build on the proficiency of the previous skills. Per the request of the students involved in the course, the round count was slightly higher than usual to accommodate a slightly smaller group and a more aggressive learning pace.

The last topic that we included in this course was basic cornering/clearing for home defense. We worked on basic "slicing the pie" techniques from both the left and right side using both handguns and rifles. This portion included discussions of utilizing distance, changing levels, and using a solid shooting base for the rfile. Sometimes it can be possible to utilize the bed or similar furniture to provide that shooting base.

The feedback from the course was very positive, and I look forward to having some additional training time with everyone who participated.

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M&S Shooting Solutions

I have shot with Mark and Suzanne of M&S Shooting Solutions for a number of years in the training and competition circuits. Suzanne is usually helping with the match scoring during competitions, so she is generally not assigned to a squad as she helps the matches run smoothly. Therefore, she normally will join us on a stage just to shoot it quickly and then she's back at it, assisting the other match volunteers. She is proficient, fun, and can shoot the heck out of a handgun.

I have spent more time with Mark, as he is generally a Safety Officer and I have squadded up with him on numerous occasions. He ensures a safe experience during the competitions and makes sure that his squads are run efficiently and fairly.

I have also spent a significant amount of time with Mark in training outside of competition. Mark is a fantastic contributor to a training group that we both participate in, and he provides excellent feedback and instruction to the other shooters. This group consists of mostly higher level shooters who are experienced competitors and/or carry a firearm for a living. In short- the level of proficiency is fairly high during these training sessions. Even so- Mark is able to help elevate the level of performance for those around him as he can identify weaknesses and provide valuable insight as to how you can correct your issues.

I highly recommend training with Mark and Suzanne at M&S Shooting Solutions during any chance you get. If you are a new shooter, you will certainly benefit from their patient and personable approach. If you are a more experienced shooter, you will enjoy their ability to creatively push you outside of your current skill level and help you reach your goals.

Highly recommend this group for shooters in the central Georgia area!

Basic Intro to Handguns - Sept 26th 2015

Individual InstructionOn September 26th, 2015- we held a Level 1: Basic Introduction to Handguns for a great group of students. Though we had to endure quite a bit of rain, we were fortunate enough to be able cover most of the lecture portion of the class under shelter during the worst of the down-pours. All of the students kept a positive attitude and were able to learn basic firearm safety and basic handgun skills. The students shot both revolvers and semi-automatic handguns.

As we always do, we began with classroom style discussion to dispel any myths that the students may have previously been exposed to. We moved into being able to identify and understand all of the major components of both semi-automatic handguns as well as revolvers. After demonstrating their understanding of the components, we moved on to an explanation of ammunition and it's four major parts: brass, powder, primer, and projectile. Armed with a working knowledge of the way that the firearm and ammunition both work together, it was time to move on to how the shooter can control the firearm effectively and efficiently. 

We began by understanding one of the most vital fundamentals of shooting: the proper grip. While this is one of the most important fundamentals of shooting, it is also one of the least understood. Even with shooters that have years of experience, it is not uncommon for us to see many mistakes in the way that they grip their firearm. I place a lot of emphasis on this fundamental because it directly impacts the consistency in results, the ability to control and manage recoil, and the ability to perform weapons manipulations in the future as we begin to acquire those skills.

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