How Much Training is Enough?

How Much Training is Enough?

This is a discussion on How Much Training is Enough? within the Defensive Carry & Tactical Training forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; I have been thinking long and hard about this topic. When I teach my armed guard classes I assume that most of them will not ...

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Thread: How Much Training is Enough?

  1. #1
    Senior Member Array Matthew Temkin's Avatar
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    How Much Training is Enough?

    I have been thinking long and hard about this topic.
    When I teach my armed guard classes I assume that most of them will not seek out additional training so I try to give them as much as I can withing 20 hours or so.
    Someone recently sent me this PM and I think that his ideas cover a lot of common ground.
    So..here it is...

    Matt...Of course, safety, i.e. safe gun handling is the top priority. Which guns are best for their defense needs. I suspect you and I will not agree on this, but I'm simply not a revolver fan as a defensive weapon. They need to understand the operation of various types of guns including DA/SA revolvers, DAO revolvers, DA/SA semis, DAO, and SA semis. They need to know the proper use of safeties and the different types. Hopefully this will help them identify a suitable gun for them.

    Holsters - if they are going to carry, they need to know the wide range of holsters and carry methods.

    They should learn how to determine if a gun is loaded or not, how to store a gun both short term and long term, how to properly and safely clean a gun, how to properly lube the gun, of course defensive shooting, I think as much of that as can be accomadated should be.

    They should learn how to load and unload their gun, but I would set speed reloading at a very low level. I just don't believe they'll be reloading in a gunfight. That's why I don't favor revolvers, they just don't hold enough ammo.

    They need to know the difference in defensive ammo and range ammo.

    They need know proper shooting stance and grip.

    I think they need to learn basic tactics, esp. using concealment and cover and how important it is to stay there and not let the BG lure them out into the open.

    They should get some experience shooting around cover/concealment and should at least see a demo about penetration and why first hand why inside residential walls are not cover.

    They should be able to identify trouble spots in their homes, places they can't see and places that would provide cover like book cases filled with books and file cabinets filled with paper with emphasis on they have to have the books and paper to stop a bullet.

    It might be a good idea to ask them to bring a sketch of their home floor plan so you could go over specific features of their homes.

    A light. It's probably not important to have some kind of tactical light. I think sometimes average, non-gun people are a little intimidated and baffled by all the high speed low drag terminology and gear. They just need to think about how they would manage a gun and light if they had to and proper uses of the light. The most important thing to me, is to have a light and know someway to use it with their gun without producing a UD.

    For outside the home, how to identify and avoid a threat or threat area, how to respond to strangers that approach them and especially that one may try to get their attention while another tries to come up from a blind side.

    Of course emphasis on E&E - evade and escape - only fight if they have to.

    Mathew, I don't think you'll have much success with moving while shooting. It's just too much at this level. I'd suggest move and shoot instead.

    Emphasize the fallacy of shooting it out with a BG in close quarters. Emphasize how many shots it may take to neutralize the threat and of course where shots need to go.

    I think esp. important is to help them understand BGs do not think like GGs. You have to make them realize the nature of the threat.


  2. #2
    Senior Member Array SilenceDoGood's Avatar
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    I think you should emphasize(sp?) that your training is the tip of the ice berg, and should be viewed as the minimum passing grade, except that failure doesn't result in a repeat or an average of the two grades, failure results in major bodily harm (if lucky) or death. Encourage them to train more, and as often as possible.
    "A government is like fire, a handy servant, but a dangerous master." -- George Washington

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    Member Array dang.45's Avatar
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    Are you talking about how much training is enough for an armed-guard class, or more generally?
    "It is only as retaliation that force may be used and only against the man who starts its use. No, I do not share his evil or sink to his concept of morality: I merely grant him his choice, destruction, the only destruction he had a right to choose: his own." - John Galt, from Atlas Shrugged

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    VIP Member Array Supertac45's Avatar
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    20 hours of training for an armed guard in my book sure wouldn't get the individual hired by anyone that I know. That's basic firearm info. I see a lot of armored cars loading or unloading money; and, it's not hard to understand how so many dirt bags rob them, shoot them, and get away with it. In my book, they have no clue as to what is going on. If you don't believe it, watch the next time you see one in action. It's sad.
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  5. #5
    VIP Member Array Redneck Repairs's Avatar
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    IMHO you should train under others untill you no longer learn anything , and then of course you are way too jaded to train others .
    Make sure you get full value out of today , Do something worthwhile, because what you do today will cost you one day off the rest of your life .
    We only begin to understand folks after we stop and think .

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  6. #6
    Senior Member Array Matthew Temkin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dang.45 View Post
    Are you talking about how much training is enough for an armed-guard class, or more generally?
    More generally.
    I see the armed guard class as a base that would help any gun owner.
    In my class we cover the history of firearms from flintlocks to semi automatics, safety, care and cleaning, basic marksmanship, point shooting, use of cover, low light tactics, ammunition, use of O.C. spray, weapon retention, basic unarmed combat techniques, how to safely "take" a suspect at gunpoint, how to interact with responding police officers as well as the legal aspects of self defense.
    As someone who has trained quite a few armored car crews let me state that I strongly disagree with the opinions of Supertac 45
    They do, however, get a lot more training directly from the company on tactics specific to their job.

  7. #7
    Senior Member Array Matthew Temkin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Redneck Repairs View Post
    IMHO you should train under others untill you no longer learn anything , and then of course you are way too jaded to train others .
    Is there anyone who can state that they have nothing else to learn?
    Highly doubtful.
    Does that mean that we will never be able to defend ourselves?

  8. #8
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    Actually training never stops since there is not one single solution for a problem or one school with all the solutions that you can use. And the somebody comes with something a new technique that works and you want to learn it.
    Also, you don't assimilate all you can in class and you may want to take it again if nothing just to refresh it.
    You have to make the shot when fire is smoking, people are screaming, dogs are barking, kids are crying and sirens are coming.
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  9. #9
    Member Array RochPersDef's Avatar
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    Matt, I run into that a lot in my classes as well. I try to emphasize the thought that any class you are taking, be it a Basic entry level class or a higher end tactics or advanced shooting class is just the beginning. You never stop training. Heck, I am always on the lookout for something to advance my skills all the time.

  10. #10
    Senior Member Array Matthew Temkin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SilenceDoGood View Post
    I think you should emphasize(sp?) that your training is the tip of the ice berg, and should be viewed as the minimum passing grade, except that failure doesn't result in a repeat or an average of the two grades, failure results in major bodily harm (if lucky) or death. Encourage them to train more, and as often as possible.
    I do.
    I also give a recommended book/DVD list.
    But reality states that few will follow your sound advice.

  11. #11
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    It was Evan Marshall that said, "I've been training for 30 years, I just hope it'll be enough if I need it."

    A multi-millionaire was once asked how much was enough, he replied, "The next million." Of course that's a perpetual effort. I think we can get caught up in training like that - how much is enough, one more class than I've had. At least that seems to be true for me. I'm already thinking about what my next course should be. But then, I love it. But I see it like Evan Marshall said it.
    I'm too young to be this old!
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  12. #12
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    I doubt ''enough'' can ever be, enough!

    I regard training as a steepening exponential curve rising to infinity - in other words no one will ever reach the top

    They probably will tho over time capitalize on early learning and probably be able to increase the learning rate relative to time - a building process many stories high - with perhaps tho no way to achieve the top and get the roof on!
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    is like owning a piano and assuming that you are a musician!."


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    Senior Moderator
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    To contiune my previous post (not in response to your post P95, I agree with it 100%) but, as far as the typical gun owner is concerned, I don't think speed reload, tactical light, immediate response drill training will be worthwhile, in fact it may be determental, simply because the typical gunowner is not gonna need to reload in a gunfight, nor would he be able to. He's most likely gonna have some light, coming from somewhere to shoot by and if not, he's not gonna be able to manipulate a light and gun anyway; and if his gun malfunctions, his best option by far is to run, and not try to remember how get his gun going in the middle of a gunfight.
    I'm too young to be this old!
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  14. #14
    VIP Member Array Redneck Repairs's Avatar
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    Matthew Temkin
    Is there anyone who can state that they have nothing else to learn?
    Highly doubtful.
    Does that mean that we will never be able to defend ourselves?
    No Matt It simply means that imho we are never perfectly prepared to defend ourselves under any much less all circumstances . The day we feel we are we should walk off from all others who wish to learn since the " wisdom " we may then impart frankly is not worth learning . Its a general observation on some trainers , and in no way is pointed at you personally . I personally have known folks who have had 40+ years of firearms training , and some others who have had 1 year 40+ times . We all fall in there somewhere lol .
    Make sure you get full value out of today , Do something worthwhile, because what you do today will cost you one day off the rest of your life .
    We only begin to understand folks after we stop and think .

    Criminals are looking for victims, not opponents.

  15. #15
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    I've been in this business my entire adult life, and I never stop learning or think I have become a master of pistol craft. There is always somebody better out there. (and there are a lot of somebodys!)
    Everytime I think I've reached a certain level, I get smacked down a notch or two... its just the nature of the beast and thats why it has kept me interested so long. Every class I attend, I learn something new even if it is a entry level type class. I learn even more when I'm the teacher. Different people always bring something new to the plate, and the smart ones pay attention to everybody, not just the guys flapping their gums.

    The armed guard class people need to have it pounded into their heads that this class really means nothing more that a state (or whom ever) requirement. It is the basics of how not to get killed... its up to them to become truly skilled. I do the same in my CCW classes.
    "Just blame Sixto"

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