Combat Focus Training

This is a discussion on Combat Focus Training within the Defensive Carry & Tactical Training forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; Ill just say that were i to take a course on point shooting by whatever name Brownie , Matt , and Sweatin would be the ...

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  1. #16
    VIP Member Array Redneck Repairs's Avatar
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    Ill just say that were i to take a course on point shooting by whatever name Brownie , Matt , and Sweatin would be the top three i would look to . Tho i am a strong aimed fire proponent under about all conditions I strongly feel that they are the best out there for instruction on point shooting . Ethical gentlemen each who are well versed on the subject.
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  3. #17
    Member Array Troy Price's Avatar
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    Having trained with Rob, and considering him one of my friends, I understand the context in which Rob teaches. Did Rob take some elements of Point Shooting and incorperate them into CFS? Good question.

    Let me tell you what I know: Rob taught himself to shoot. From an early age he had access to guns and ammo and lots of space to shoot. With no one to teach him, he taught himself in a way that was natural. Is it point shooting? Some would consider it that. Do I? Having never been to a point shooting class I can't make that distinction.

    After years of formal training Rob went back and reevaluated what he had learned from formal training and what he had taught himself. After reevaluating all of that Rob wanted to share. That is where Combat Focus Shooting came from.

    In all of my discussions with Rob I don't think he ever tried to align CFS with any methodology. I know he makes a difference between shooters that use their sights 100% of the time (mechanical shooters) and what he teaches in CFS.

    I have read some of the texts folks reference for point shooting and I will say this; the one theing Rob teaches in CFS is to get the gun in the sight line every time. Some of the things I've read about point shooting don't say to do this. Some differ greatly.

    One of the foundations that Rob teaches in CFS is to use common points of reference such as the "high compressed ready" and getting the gun in the sightline everytime so you can transition to your sights when you need them. CFS is more than just " extend-touch-press" (oh, how I hate that phrase).

    If I had to categorize CFS I would classify it as using the axiom of "Speed vs. Accuracy Trade-off" as the foundation and adding on some other building blocks.

    Is it point shooting? Ask Rob.

    I have taken a CFS course with Rob. I believe there are some very valid techniques in CFS. I also know that there are some techniques that I do not agree with, and don't include in my training regimen. I have trained with a lot of other training organizations, I have never agreed with everyone 100% of the time but I always learned something. Rob Pincus and his instructors have also trained with LMS Defnese. To their credit they set they're techniques aside and did it "our way" for a few days.

    Rob and his instructors are not so closed minded as to think they are perfect. They sit down and discuss every one of their techniques and measure them against their own experiences and the experiences of others. Some of those boys have had some interesting experiences to include bad guys with an AK at ten feet.

    Personally I train with others to find those little nuggets of gold that I can incorporate into my own training regimen. I search for techniques that work for me. I encourage my students to do the same. Take what someone teaches, evaluate it for yourself, keep what is good and discard what is bad. I encourage everyone to train with whomever they can and wherever they can afford. When you find something good discuss it with your training partners and evaluate it for yourselves.

    No single methodology works 100% of the time; train hard, train often.
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  4. #18
    Sponsor Array DCJS Instructor's Avatar
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    If I may add my $0.02. (Thatís probably all it's worth)

    I have been a FULL TIME Firearms Instructor for over 10 years.

    I have trained with Rob (and some guy named Richard who said he worked at Front Sight before working at Valhalla)

    I have had some good training conversations with Matt and Brownie.

    Here are my thoughts: students can go anywhere to learn how to shoot. But they come to me because they like the way I deliver the training. However please note that the recipe for my training is not secret here it is:

    My Dad+ NRA+L.E.+Bruce Winsentsene+Todd Jarrette+Brad Naylor+Dave Sevigny+James Yeager+Frank Borelli+U.S. Dept of State+Blackwater+Rob Pincus+Richard Sherer+Jim Cirillo, etc,etc=Tom Perroni

    Who cares what I call it....I have taken the best things from each Instructor and made it my own.

    I had an FTO once tell me don't sweat the small stuff.

    Let's just make sure that we understand than as Instructors we have an obligation to our students to teach the most Recent, Relevant and Realistic training.

    I respect both Rob and Matt and think they both have a wealth of knowledge to offer anyone who attends a class they are teaching.

    I don't think we have any bashing going on...In fact you are seeing a very passionate instructor who only wants the best for his students.

    Matt I wish we had more Instructors like you out in the field!

    Tom Perroni

  5. #19
    Senior Member Array Matthew Temkin's Avatar
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    Thanks for the kind words, Tom, and I feel much the same to you and quite a few other dedicated instructors.
    (Ditto to Redneck Repairs as well)
    In the end it really is about giving our students a fighting chance of reaching retirement.
    Actually I like Rob and I like his system as a good, basic starting point.
    I have also offered him some free range time on his next visit to NYC so as to compare notes.
    But the fact he is pretty much self taught--at least as far as threat focused techniques are concerned--means that he was forced to re inventing the wheel.
    His basic stance, for example, is illustrated in Applegate's Kill or Get Killed (page 145 of the 1976 edition) and in Bill Jordan's No Second Place Winner ( page 95 of the 1965 edition)
    Both books talk about the need to blend point and aimed fire, depending upon time, distance and lighting conditions.
    If Rob wants to claim that his system is unique--and it may well be--then we are free to post evidence to the contrary.

  6. #20
    Member Array Blackhawk6's Avatar
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    I do not know Rob Pincus. I have nothing against the man. I do not own any of his books or videos. My passing familiarity with the man is through a few of his magazine articles which I never found to be particularly insightful and, in one case, I found to be dead wrong.

    Were I inclined to advocate his system of shooting, I think my time would be better spent discussing the merits of the system and how it differs from what is currently available rather than attempting to tell people what they will or won't be able to do.

    Quote Originally Posted by HadjiKlr74 View Post
    To quote from Rob's Book: (pg. 12-14)

    "Basically for several years, I tried to rationalize FRONT SIGHT SHOOTING AND INTUITIVE SHOOTING, with little satisfaction. I came to the conclusion that 2 hits in 1 second that are 6 inches apart on target are infinitely better than two hits in 3 seconds that are in the same hole. Stopping the threat in one third the time makes you SAFE FASTER THAN PERFECT SHOTS. UNDERSTAND WE ARE NOT TALKING TARGET SHOOTING, BUT COMBAT EFFECTIVE SHOOTING."
    I agree with the notion that in general, good hits now are better than perfect hits later. Of course, there are circumstances that require perfect, or near-perfect hits.

    Given that I routinely achieve the "2 hits in 1 second that are 6 inches apart" standard while using my sights it would seem that sighted-fire is combat effective shooting. At least according to Mr. Pincus' definition...

    Quote Originally Posted by HadjiKlr74 View Post
    After 2 tours in Iraq & being in Combat for the better part of 8 years and working in Private Security for 4 years, I can tell you from experience, the Modern Technique is flawed and not realistic in many aspects.
    I am assuming that when the reference is made to "the Modern Technique" we are talking about sighted fire. FWIW, the sighted fire I practice differs greatly from LTC Cooper's Modern Technique.

    After tours in Iraq, Afghanistan and elsewhere and having had the opportunity to serve a few high-risk warrants here in the U.S., I can tell you from experience that when I used my sights I got hits, when I did not use my sights I missed. My friends/collegues, whose experiences are similar to mine, report similar results.

    A small sampling for sure, but an important one from my perspective.

    Quote Originally Posted by HadjiKlr74 View Post
    ...it is simply stated, working with what your body does naturally under stress, for those who have never been in Combat or in a Highly stressful incident, your primal instincts cannot be replaced with a pre-programmed system of 5 steps. That is Nonsense.
    Your assertion is nonsense. Do you swim? That would be a pre-programmed response that overcomes your primal instinct. (I would note that when a trained swimmer drowns, we do not consider the incident to be an indictment of the crawl stroke. Pity the shooting community can not adopt a similar attitude.)

    As it relates to shooting, numerous people have successfully trained themselves to use their sights and have done so successfully in combat. Unfortunately, there are also those who were unsuccessful.

    Quote Originally Posted by HadjiKlr74 View Post
    Come back to me after being on the business end of an AK at 10 yds and tell me what works--I guarantee you after you change your underwear and your gun is at slidelock, (because you thought you fired 3 rds and you really emptied your mag in 2 seconds) you will say that AK looked like a 105 howitzer and that is all you saw until it was over because primal instinct to survive over-rode your training to concentrate on the front sight.
    I have been on the business end of an AK at 10 yds (less actually). No change of underwear was required, my weapon never went to slidelock, the AK looked like an AK and I saw my sights.

    Care to tell me about that "primal instinct vs. training-thing" again?

  7. #21
    Senior Member Array Matthew Temkin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Blackhawk6 View Post
    I do not know Rob Pincus. I have nothing against the man. I do not own any of his books or videos. My passing familiarity with the man is through a few of his magazine articles which I never found to be particularly insightful and, in one case, I found to be dead wrong.

    Were I inclined to advocate his system of shooting, I think my time would be better spent discussing the merits of the system and how it differs from what is currently available rather than attempting to tell people what they will or won't be able to do.



    I agree with the notion that in general, good hits now are better than perfect hits later. Of course, there are circumstances that require perfect, or near-perfect hits.

    Given that I routinely achieve the "2 hits in 1 second that are 6 inches apart" standard while using my sights it would seem that sighted-fire is combat effective shooting. At least according to Mr. Pincus' definition...



    I am assuming that when the reference is made to "the Modern Technique" we are talking about sighted fire. FWIW, the sighted fire I practice differs greatly from LTC Cooper's Modern Technique.

    After tours in Iraq, Afghanistan and elsewhere and having had the opportunity to serve a few high-risk warrants here in the U.S., I can tell you from experience that when I used my sights I got hits, when I did not use my sights I missed. My friends/collegues, whose experiences are similar to mine, report similar results.

    A small sampling for sure, but an important one from my perspective.



    Your assertion is nonsense. Do you swim? That would be a pre-programmed response that overcomes your primal instinct. (I would note that when a trained swimmer drowns, we do not consider the incident to be an indictment of the crawl stroke. Pity the shooting community can not adopt a similar attitude.)

    As it relates to shooting, numerous people have successfully trained themselves to use their sights and have done so successfully in combat. Unfortunately, there are also those who were unsuccessful.



    I have been on the business end of an AK at 10 yds (less actually). No change of underwear was required, my weapon never went to slidelock, the AK looked like an AK and I saw my sights.

    Care to tell me about that "primal instinct vs. training-thing" again?
    Your points are well taken and your experience is excellent but--have you ever had any formal training in threat focused shooting?

  8. #22
    Member Array 7677's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by HadjiKlr74 View Post
    I am not trying to say "It is something New"--I am simply stating it is something that works. The marketing hype you mention is used by anyone trying to make a living in the training arena, all trainers do it--you cannot fault a man for doing that--he wants to eat too.

    I am sick of people arguing about sighted vs. unsighted and what is better, etc. Armchair warriors like to argue about such things. They can try to enamour people with their book knowledge, when the closest they came to combat was the airsoft match last week.

    Come back to me after being on the business end of an AK at 10 yds and tell me what works--I guarantee you after you change your underwear and your gun is at slidelock, (because you thought you fired 3 rds and you really emptied your mag in 2 seconds) you will say that AK looked like a 105 howitzer and that is all you saw until it was over because primal instinct to survive over-rode your training to concentrate on the front sight. True Story.

    Come on fellas--let's get real about training, otherwise we are ******* in the wind.
    I do not get the arguing myself because both are necessary components of combat shooting.

    As far as combat experience and AK-47s, the one I faced at that distance was dead before I got my sights to eye level.

    With that said, I agree with Matt and Brownie that there is nothing "new" in the combat focus training he offers. Then again according to Pincus there are 12864 just like me so what do I know?

  9. #23
    Member Array Blackhawk6's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Matthew Temkin View Post
    Your points are well taken and your experience is excellent but--have you ever had any formal training in threat focused shooting?
    Unfortunately, I have not. I would like to at some point, but it does not appear that my schedule will allow that to happen anytime in the immediate future.

  10. #24
    Senior Member Array Matthew Temkin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Blackhawk6 View Post
    Unfortunately, I have not. I would like to at some point, but it does not appear that my schedule will allow that to happen anytime in the immediate future.
    OK..and you would always be welcome in classes with myself and my partner in "crime" 7677.
    I must point out that if one has no training in point shooting and misses then that is not an indictment of point shooting.
    In other words, a "sights only" shooter who fails to use his sights and misses is NOT point shooting--he is just plain missing.
    There is no question that sighted fire works in combat.
    But there are times when point shooting has it's place--especially when up close and in dim light.
    It is IMHO--and a few others--that one should own both skills to be prepared for anything.

  11. #25
    Member Array Blackhawk6's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Matthew Temkin View Post
    OK..and you would always be welcome in classes with myself and my partner in "crime" 7677.
    Thank you.

    Quote Originally Posted by Matthew Temkin View Post
    I must point out that if one has no training in point shooting and misses then that is not an indictment of point shooting.
    In other words, a "sights only" shooter who fails to use his sights and misses is NOT point shooting--he is just plain missing.
    I agree. However, if one must be trained to point-shoot in order to be effective, that would bring us back to HadjiKlr74's assertion that one can not be trained to overcome primal instincts. After all a "sights only" shooter who fails to use his sights is relying on his primal instincts to orient his weapon, no?

    Quote Originally Posted by Matthew Temkin View Post
    There is no question that sighted fire works in combat.
    Which was my only point. There were assertions made that directly contradicted my personal experience and that of several close friends.

    Quote Originally Posted by Matthew Temkin View Post
    But there are times when point shooting has it's place--especially when up close and in dim light.
    I do not disagree. In fact, I do not use my sights at contact distance.

    Quote Originally Posted by Matthew Temkin View Post
    It is IMHO--and a few others--that one should own both skills to be prepared for anything.
    Having debated this topic more than once I now view it in the same light as a "Which is better, Karate or Jujitsu?" debate. Undoubtedly, both approaches can be effective, but ultimately the effectiveness is going to be dictated to a much larger degree by the individual using the system rather than the system itself. A system that blends the two may be even more effective. But, again, ultimately the individual applying the system is going to influence the outcome to a much larger degree than the system itself.

  12. #26
    Senior Member Array Matthew Temkin's Avatar
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    I can't disagree with any of your points.
    I will say that once you have some training in threat focused shooting you may be amazed at how much pinpoint accuracy can be obtained with blinding speed.
    And the time required to learn this is minimal--anywhere from a few minutes a to a few hours.

  13. #27
    Member Array Rob Pincus's Avatar
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    Hey guys...

    Sorry, I've been out of the US for the last 4 weeks and internet time has been low.... I apologize for the delay, but I'm glad to see the this thread didn't turn completely into a cheerleading or badmouthing session.

    I appreciate the continued professionalism of most of the posters....


    The concern about whether or not CFS "re-invents" anything always seems completely beside the point to me. One of the marks of a good instructor is finding ways to articulate concepts that help his students learn. It seems that those who would say CFS is nothing new should then celebrate when someone who had been perceived as opposing its ideas are convinced by the new explanation!
    Of course, at end of the day, it is not about what I say or someone else says, it is about what the students can do with the information. It is certainly not about my personality of personal experience, but the quality of the information and the training methodology that should be considered when someone looks at CFS.
    As 7677 continues to bemoan, there are thousands of people who can claim LE, combat, security and other types of experience.... it doesn't make someone special. There is value in concepts that help people become safer. We should all stop worrying so much about the source.

    Staring at an AK47 makes someone no more or less capable of articulating defensive concepts. Those of us with LE & investigative experience know that first hand testimony is one of the weakest and least accurate forms of evidence.
    I am in favor or examining objective evidence, including the observations of others (many of the gurus of practical defensive shooting training are referenced, acknowledged and/or quoted in my book, for example.), but more importantly focusing on the wealth of information available from sources such as dash-cam videos and observation of students & other shooters under stress. It seems to me that when this path is taken, people looking at the same data (average people, average critical incidents, etc) and trying to solve the same problem will come to very similar conclusions.... only a very insecure person would feel the need to deny or criticize that reality.


    When people are on that path in an objective way, I strongly suggest taking their training (as I suggested on another forum in regard to training with Matt & 7677 as being a good idea....). It is when people are teaching skills in isolation (ie- how to be the best shooter on a square range) that I start to question the value for people with limited time & budget (ie- everyone) looking for efficient defensive handgunning techniques.

    CFS seeks simply to help people become more efficient shooters under critical incident stress. It is not simply sighted or unsighted shooting and wish we as a community could get beyond that antiquated and sophomoric argument. Take a listen to the podcast I posted months ago about the "Balance of Speed & Precision" concept (itunes or Switchpod) to understand the CFS position on the topic. Through realistic training a student should be able to start to understand under what circumstances they will need their sights or not and be able to shoot as efficiently as possible.


    What I do think is "new" in CFS is the articulation of concepts, outlines of training methodologies and overall perspective emphasizing efficiency as opposed to only effectiveness. At least, those who have taken the courses overwhelmingly identify these as the most important "new" things...
    For the deepest level of exposure to these concepts, consider attending the CFS Instructor Development Course.

    Thanks again for the discussion!

    -RJP

    PS- Matt, I'm setting the dates for my time in NYC within the next week. I hope to see you in April.

  14. #28
    Senior Member Array Matthew Temkin's Avatar
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    Rob--Yes..let's do April.
    I have a semi private range where we can use both Airsoft and live fire.
    As well working on some H2H skills and how they blend with the shooting portion.
    My amusement is not with you (we see eye to eye on many issues) but with the anti point shooters who still bash the old methods while embracing Combat Focus.
    A prime example of this is Kevin Davis of the Akron, Ohio PD.
    It is IMHO that they have been looking for a way to change their position and now have a face saving way to do so.
    In any case I am delighted that others can now adopt point/target/combat/threat focused shooting and help bring it into the mainstream.
    Where we will have to agree to disagree is importance of combat experience, since I believe that such experience is vital when evaluating what works and what does not.
    Trying to do this on the square range, competition venue or even with FOF is asking for trouble.
    While personal combat experience is not required to be a good instructor (for example I am a much better teacher than my dad, who was a WW2 Ranger for 2 years) I feel it is mandatory to teach either from one's own experience or from that of others.

  15. #29
    Member Array Rob Pincus's Avatar
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    Matt,

    In that case we don't disagree at all then in terms of instructor validity. Whether one is a court security guy in NYC, a rural cop from Nebraska or a Ranger at the the wrong place - wrong time with "combat experience" doesn't matter... it is the evaluation of the actual experiences that matters. I happen to stand pretty firm on the fact that "it happened to me" stories (or their retarded cousin "it happened to my friend/uncle/this guy on the internet") aren't nearly as insightful as actually watching a video of a real incident or reactions under high-level simulation.

    One of the problems that the "it happened to me" crowd must face is that plenty of things "work" that we would not want to train, nor would anyone advocate them as the best solution. Just because someone once "survived" by swinging a gun wildly in the general direction of the bad guy while pulling the trigger doesn't mean we'd want to suddenly adopt the "eyes closed trigger yank" technique.... of course, people have survived using it, so simply worshipping at the alter of Elephant See'ers isn't enough for me......
    Teaching from one's own experience when it is clouded by fear, tachy-psychia, ego, patriotism, administrative oversight and civil court can also be a recipe for trouble.


    See you in April, most likely around the 21st....

    -RJP

  16. #30
    Senior Member Array Matthew Temkin's Avatar
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    April 21 is good, but it will have to be in the early evening or so.
    It so happens that I have to requal that day in Long Island.
    If you could make it a few days earlier I'll have a guest over from London who is on an armed SWAT team with London Metro.
    I am a firm believer in watching camcorder videos of actual combat.
    Actually it amazes me as to just how right so many of the old school instructors had it way back when.

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