Defensive Shooting Fundamentals Workshop That I Attended
OK, first off a disclaimer: I don't work for Shoothouse USA nor do I receive any special dispensation for posting this. I'm just another guy like the rest of you who loves to shoot and enjoys a good gun related class.
Shoothouse USA in Conway, AR, boasts as part of their business model that they're a Reality Based Training business. They offer Arkansas Concealed Handgun Carry License Classes, as well as have started offering - as of last month, I believe - a series of training classes on Personal Protection.
Tom has further broken this down in to a series of workshops for those who don't have the cash - or the time - to do a full one-day class. He's broken this down to five workshops, each approximately 1 1/2 to 2 hours in length.
This last Tuesday evening I finally set aside both the cash and the time to attend his Defensive Shooting Fundamentals workshop. There was one other gentleman - who's name I shall not post - in attendance, so Tom had a small class to deal with. The other gentleman and I were both fairly seasoned shooters, but knew that there's always more to learn that you can't get from basic firearms training, or from watching TV or movies.
As with all classroom training involving firearms, we first covered basic firearms handling. No firearms - loaded or otherwise - are allowed in the classroom. Tom then went over the basic theory of what we were about to do, as well as covered what we could expect. Tom is one of 80 people in the world to have received the instructor training that he taught us the other night.
We next got our gear and proceeded to the range. He had set up two of the targets at the far end of the range. We had the entire place to ourselves so were allowed to relax our safety gear - safety glasses and hearing protection - during the portions of the session in which we weren't to be handling firearms. And, of course, prior to shooting the range was "made hot" and we put our safety gear back on.
I don't want to get too detailed as to what all Tom had us do, but it was a blast - no pun intended. We shot at a variety of targets after Tom covered some basic stances. He also covered a few possible scenarios we might find ourselves in during an everyday setting. Several of the scenarios had us shooting at more than one target at a time, as well as Tom calling out different commands regarding the targets, how to move during shooting at different targets and even blocking us from fully moving in that direction. And finally, he reminded us to cover the area after shooting - once we knew our immediate threat was neutralized, we look around to ensure no other threats exist.
One interesting tidbit that I will mention, tho, was what to do when you fire that last round and realize you have no more ammunition on you. The gist is to make it look as tho you have just loaded a fresh magazine, lock the slide forward and present yourself as a continuing potential threat to your target - which we're assuming is a Bad Guy in these situations. Or at least someone who's threatened you in some fashion or another to the point where fear for your safety and/or the safety of your family or others around you.
Overall, I got a LOT out of this class. I'm AD USAF and have received some fairly basic training, but never hands-on in my career. Certainly nothing while handling a hot weapon with live ammunition as we did here. We didn't draw from the holster, but presented our pistols from a ready stance - both hands on the weapon, holding it close to the chest, body squared off directly at a potential threat and ready to bring the weapon up and put it on-target in the space of a heartbeat.
And I want to make it perfectly clear that we were adhering to SAFETY at all times. At no point did I feel my safety was threatened by anything that Tom or the other gentleman did.
I highly recommend this class to anyone interested in how to properly defend yourself with a pistol. I got a lot out of it and while I pray to God that I never have to draw and fire at someone else if I can avoid it, I also want to be as ready as I possibly can to protect my family or myself should the occasion ever arise. You never know when you might be walking to your car at the local WallyWorld or getting up in the middle of the night hearing the sound of breaking glass inside your house and dogs barking. The class was a real eye-opener on a couple of levels, but overall was an enjoyable learning experience. And after the last week or two that I've had it was a nice, relaxing way to blow off some steam.
Please feel free to ask any questions. I'll be happy to answer so long as I don't feel it's giving away any sort of "secrets" of the class. I know that I didn't receive this training to train others, but would love to get others interested in this training, as well.