Should he really be training people?

This is a discussion on Should he really be training people? within the Defensive Carry & Tactical Training forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; The other day an individual was talking to me about a company he owns where he offers training to armed civilians and law enforcement. He ...

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  1. #1
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    Should he really be training people?

    The other day an individual was talking to me about a company he owns where he offers training to armed civilians and law enforcement. He started talking about the types of classes he teaches. "tactical Pistol", "Tactical Carbine", "Dynamic Entry" and a few other "cool" sounding classes. I asked him if he received his training in the military or as a LEO. his reply "Nope, I'm just and armed responsible citizen".

    So this guy, whose only experience has been exclusively in the range is qualified to teach these classes? I understand that he may indeed be highly trained by other schools in the country and he probably provides some beneficial information. But has he ever done operations outside of a training range? the answer for him, and a large number of civilian firearms instructors is no.

    to me this guy is basically "Tactical Enthusiast" meaning he's interested in the concept of tactical operations, he has probably done a great deal of research on the subject but the critical difference is that none of this information is from first hand experience. How does this qualify him to teach others?

    Even if that person is an expert shot, even a nationally recognized 3 gun competitor this still, in my mind, does not qualify him to teach the above mentioned classes.

    I'd like to clarify, I do think that responsible citizens teaching classes like this can offer some value, But ultimately most of these people are just regurgitating what they have been told/taught. Now, give me a person who has done real operations where someone might fire back, or even an armed civilian who has been in a defensive situation and I'd value that opinion/perspective a lot more.

    What are you thoughts? Am I being unreasonable?

    Thanks,
    Clay

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    VIP Member Array Eagleks's Avatar
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    I'm a bad one to comment on this...... in some classes I've had.... I've laughed a lot at some of the idiotic things some instructors say. It's obvious, they haven't been there nor done that, or they would know better than some of the things they say.

    I about had it out with one such instructor, who is an LEO , while in a gun shop...... who jerked a gun out of my hand (me not knowing him nor him me... I was just there picking it up) and began trying to "show me" all this and that about the gun.... he didn't work there. He scanned I don't know how many people, never cleared the gun, and on and on. Then he tells me how I ought to come to some of his classes that he has. It was definitely testing me, and then I could resist no longer.... and told him how all of what he had just done was some of the most ignorant things I'ld ever seen and he needed to take his over-blown ego and take it down a whole bunch of notches... and advised him to never reach for nor snap a gun out of my hands or he & I would have some really serious issues.
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    Caveat emptor.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Eagleks View Post
    I'm a bad one to comment on this...... in some classes I've had.... I've laughed a lot at some of the idiotic things some instructors say. It's obvious, they haven't been there nor done that, or they would know better than some of the things they say.

    I about had it out with one such instructor, who is an LEO , while in a gun shop...... who jerked a gun out of my hand (me not knowing him nor him me... I was just there picking it up) and began trying to "show me" all this and that about the gun.... he didn't work there. He scanned I don't know how many people, never cleared the gun, and on and on. Then he tells me how I ought to come to some of his classes that he has. It was definitely testing me, and then I could resist no longer.... and told him how all of what he had just done was some of the most ignorant things I'ld ever seen and he needed to take his over-blown ego and take it down a whole bunch of notches... and advised him to never reach for nor snap a gun out of my hands or he & I would have some really serious issues.
    I like that you mentioned ego, that seems to have a lot to do with it. I know one guy who is an instructor at one of the leading schools for defensive pistol in the us. He's bound and determined that if you don't carry an XD 45, you might as well have a stick. He has never fired a single shot in his life defensively. I just think its funny.

    I will say that just being in the military or an LEO doesn't automatically qualify someone, just as your experience shows.


    Thanks for your reply

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    I'm not trading money to spend time with an armchair warrior... I can do that for free with friends. Show me the documentable CV and certifications, please... then maybe I'll consider it.
    Smitty
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    I, for one, believe in training. It's NICE to have some experience as well, but a person who has trained their whole life for something may very well be more able to train others in that skill than someone who was simply forced to use the skill one time. Would you rather be trained by a master level black belt type martial artist - even if he'd never been in a "real" fight in his life, or someone completely untrained in any form of hand to hand combat who just happened to knock a guy out once in the one fight he'd ever been in? One has "experience" and the other doesn't, right? Another ferinstance - I'd rather learn physics from a master physicist than from a space shuttle pilot (generally speaking).

    I often think that we give TOO MUCH credit to "experience." Someone who has done something a few times, and done it WRONG, but gotten lucky, is a very, very dangerous instructor indeed. I have seen many times a bad decision luckily turn out well, this "validating" that bad decision. Sorry, it just doesn't work that way...

    The ideal, of course, is considerable real world experience using techniques that have served not only that one instructor, but a wide variety of end users well over a long period of time. I put very little faith in anecdotes, one-offs, and "well, I knocked out Mike Tyson, so I must be the best fighter ever. Well, yeah, he did slip and hit his head on the curb just as he was about to knock me into next week, but my one experience PROVES that my techniques are the best!" I'd rather have an instructor who may never have had to use his techniques, but whose STUDENTS perhaps have used them extensively and proven their value.

    Only my opinion, of course....
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    I think it could go either way.

    I've seen "highly qualified" Instructors that were hired simply because they had been there and done that and had both the scars and the pedigrees to prove it not be able to teach a simple concept.

    I've seen other Instructors that never fired a shot in anger do a wonderful job of teaching a concept, doing the hands on instruction on the range and they did an exellent job in all areas related.

    The key is finding an Instructor with a good balance of all things that isnt an egotistical maniac. Finding one is easier said than done.
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    Plenty of college professors teaching things that they never earned a living at.
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    After you have experiences training at different schools I have had good and bad experiences with LEO and Civilian instructors. One of the best instructors I ever taken a class from is a civilian and is an instructor at Magpul Dynamics. My very first class I ever took was from a retired SWAT officer. I didn't know it at the time, but looking back now after having different experiences he was a pretty bad instructor. On the flip side this year I took a class from another gentlemen who was a civilian and he was a downright terrible instructor (new school so I had nothing to reference and determine if it was worth my time and money). The last couple classes I took are from a current LE, former Army ranger, and SWAT team member and he is a very solid teacher.

    Over time I've developed my beliefs of how to determine if they are good instructors such as to the tell you this is "thee way" to do something or this is "a way"? Does what they are teaching me make sense and is simple for a everyday civilian as myself? What kind of training background do they have? Just because they are LEO or former military does not mean they understand and can teach what civilians need to know and! learn. Are the tactics, precedures, manipulations, etc street proven? And the list goes on.

    Either way, I always try to keep an open mind until my research on a school or individual is complete.
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    From about 1960 until 1994 almost ALL martial arts studios were filled with 'black belts' who had NO IDEA how to actually train someone to fight. There were a few that had 'badarses' as instructors - they were just mean, tough dudes who would have won fights if they taught ballet. So it's nothing new.

    Look for someone with a cohesive 'training method' which includes footwork, energy, timing and is unrehearsed and uses resisting opponents. It's not the instructor, it's their training method. People who do unrealistic 'drills' with no force-on-force, or who says don't go train with other people (exposing them as bad instructors, perhaps) then you should look elsewhere.

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    I simply laugh at those who have attending a few classes, maybe gone through a few training courses and/or have a limited military background then suddenly think they are qualified to teach. Not to mention they charge people for such "teaching". I agree with the above poster who said they are nothing more than gun (or self defense) enthusiasts.

    They are fools. Those who attend their courses/classes are being cheated and more than likely improperly trained.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Speculator View Post
    From about 1960 until 1994 almost ALL martial arts studios were filled with 'black belts' who had NO IDEA how to actually train someone to fight. There were a few that had 'badarses' as instructors - they were just mean, tough dudes who would have won fights if they taught ballet. So it's nothing new.

    Look for someone with a cohesive 'training method' which includes footwork, energy, timing and is unrehearsed and uses resisting opponents. It's not the instructor, it's their training method. People who do unrealistic 'drills' with no force-on-force, or who says don't go train with other people (exposing them as bad instructors, perhaps) then you should look elsewhere.
    I was in karate at one point, and had a 3rd degree black belt ask me, during an in-class demonstration to try my best to pin him to the floor. He reaffirmed 'my best.' Being fit and 70lbs heavier, it was no problem. I chalk it up to too many beers and arrogance when young for me, and not enough of either for him! :-)

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    New Member Array Jedburgh's Avatar
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    I would say that the original firearms enthusiast is qualified to train firearms safety, marksmanship, etc. Training tactics, entries or similar is probably a bit far. After ten years of combat, there are some highly qualified guys (and gals) that are also top-rate instructors. I wouldn't poo-poo combat experience unless the instructor is also an unsafe clown.

    A good instructor doesn't have to have "real world" experience, but if he doesn't, he should tread lightly teaching tactical skills...if only because there are good instructors who do have the experience.

    There are lots of knuckle-heads out there. Some of them don't teach firearms classes.

    Scott
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    VIP Member Array farronwolf's Avatar
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    I think you would need to look at the whole picture.

    Does he train organizations or departments that actually use what he teaches, or does he just train regular folks. If he is training departments and the departments that he trains have good track records and have good entry tactics with little or no injury or things going south really quick, then they guy might just be a good instructor.

    If the folks he trains have piss poor performance, well than I would go elsewhere.

    Look at the whole picture, then decide.
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    Quote Originally Posted by SHTFGearLLC View Post
    The other day an individual was talking to me about a company he owns where he offers training to armed civilians and law enforcement. He started talking about the types of classes he teaches. "tactical Pistol", "Tactical Carbine", "Dynamic Entry" and a few other "cool" sounding classes. I asked him if he received his training in the military or as a LEO. his reply "Nope, I'm just and armed responsible citizen".

    So this guy, whose only experience has been exclusively in the range is qualified to teach these classes? I understand that he may indeed be highly trained by other schools in the country and he probably provides some beneficial information. But has he ever done operations outside of a training range? the answer for him, and a large number of civilian firearms instructors is no.

    to me this guy is basically "Tactical Enthusiast" meaning he's interested in the concept of tactical operations, he has probably done a great deal of research on the subject but the critical difference is that none of this information is from first hand experience. How does this qualify him to teach others?

    Even if that person is an expert shot, even a nationally recognized 3 gun competitor this still, in my mind, does not qualify him to teach the above mentioned classes.

    I'd like to clarify, I do think that responsible citizens teaching classes like this can offer some value, But ultimately most of these people are just regurgitating what they have been told/taught. Now, give me a person who has done real operations where someone might fire back, or even an armed civilian who has been in a defensive situation and I'd value that opinion/perspective a lot more.

    What are you thoughts? Am I being unreasonable?

    Thanks,
    Clay
    There are many good instructors/educators who did not have a background in something and were able to train world champions.

    Look at Béla Károlyi I doubt he could even do a handstand on balance beam but he take 14-18 year old girls and make them do things with their bodies that lets them win Gold medals in the olympics. To my knowledge he was not a gymnast.

    Do your homework about the instructor see what others say about that particular instructor. I know this may not be the related to your question; however, I have a friend who took an advanced Concealed Carry course course from a enthusiast out of West Virginia, the guy was not military, and had no LEO background. My friend is a LT. Col in the Air Force has been to many shooting schools, been deployed to both iraq/afganistan, and is a shooting and training nut. He said the WV class was outstanding and he learned more than he thought he would. Just because you carried a carbine, and a pistol in a drop leg holster and kicked in doors may not bring a lot of background knowledge to a topic such as Concealed Carry.
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