The Basic Drill

The Basic Drill

This is a discussion on The Basic Drill within the Defensive Carry & Tactical Training forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; I am an instructor by nature. I teach firearms, martial arts and just about everything else I learn from lock picking, interviews or whatever. I ...

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Thread: The Basic Drill

  1. #1
    Member Array JudoJake's Avatar
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    The Basic Drill

    I am an instructor by nature. I teach firearms, martial arts and just about everything else I learn from lock picking, interviews or whatever. I like to learn and I like to teach.

    Now with that said, a few people I know who carry concealed and are not in law enforcement have asked me to teach them how to shoot. So I started think, what gun handling skills are necessary for concealed carry? And when would I consider somebody to have the basic skills necessary to accomplish the mission/situation they might face while they are carrying?

    There is so much to learn out their, everything from support side malfunction drills, to low light building searches. A lot of these skills have taken me years to learn and master to some degree. Where do I start and stop with a new shooter, who has limited training time? What would I consider success?

    What I came up with is what I call the "basic drill". I call it the basic drill, because I consider it to be the minim gun handling skills that you will use in a situation where you use your firearms in a lethal force engagement.

    Basically the drill is to:

    1. draw your weapon, fire and hit the target.
    2. scan for other threats and(often over looked) locate cover.
    3. move to cover.
    4. reassess the threat and scan again.

    Again I am not saying that these skills are basic. What I am saying is that this is basically what you should be doing when you use lethal force. I know not in every situation, but almost all of them.

    Now that I have identified the basic drill, I know what to teach. Start with weapons safety, nomenclature and all of that, then move to draw and holster, then loading, marksmanship, shot placement, scanning, moving, use of cover. This is a basic outline, but you get the idea. The point is to identify the critical skills and be able to preform them.

    Once the student can preform the basic drill I always make them practice it, always, because I want to condition them to go through all of the steps automatically.

    The beautiful part about this is that even though the drill is basic, you can add an unlimited number of variables without changing the fundamental drill. For instance, mutable targets, induce malfunctions, reloads, verbal commands, low light, force on force, different types of cover, follow up shots, a phone call to the police on step four, or anything else you want. All of these things can be added over time, to keep the student or yourself interested, learning new things, but still developing good mussel memory on the basics.

    Dose anyone practice anything like this every time? Do you have any suggestions or thoughts?


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    VIP Member Array Kerbouchard's Avatar
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    Sounds like a pretty good start, although I don't believe most people on this forum would advocate clearing a building by themselves in low light circumstances.

    I would also break down step 1 a lot more, and concentrate on that.

    My Basic Drill would be:
    1. Be aware of possible threats.
    2. Realize when an actual threat exists.
    3. Assess the level of the threat and the appropriate action. (anything from walking across the street, to going into a store, to realizing that you will be forced to defend yourself)
    4. Realize the threat level requires drawing your weapon.
    5. As sight picture is being acquired, evaluate situation to see if lethal force is still necessary.
    6. Fire if needed.
    Repeat steps 5 and 6 as necessary.

    Your first step can never be draw and fire. The first step is to know what's going on around you. If you aren't walking around in condition white, you will probably know how many threats you face; as it probably played a large factor in deciding if lethal force was necessary in the first place.

    You should probably always know where available cover is, but either way, looking for it should not be the step after firing. I believe the step after firing(and sometimes before) is move. Always, move. Laterally, forward, diagonally, whatever...just move.

    As far as where you move, or where you move to cover, that will more than likely be decided by the BG's and whether your family is with you.

    As far as suggestions...spell check. I know it's nit picky, but when an 'instructor' spells muscle with 'mussel'(among others), it automatically decreases credibility. Whether that is fair, or not, I won't get into. But it is a natural tendency for a lot of people to discard ALL of the information if some of it has errors.
    There are two sides to every issue: one side is right and the other is wrong, but the middle is always evil.

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    VIP Member Array semperfi.45's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JudoJake View Post
    I am an instructor by nature. I teach firearms, martial arts and just about everything else I learn from lock picking, interviews or whatever. I like to learn and I like to teach.

    Basically the drill is to:

    1. draw your weapon, fire and hit the target.
    2. scan for other threats and(often over looked) locate cover.
    3. move to cover.
    4. reassess the threat and scan again.
    I prefer the basics of:

    1. Situational awareness, threat identity and course of action determined;
    2. draw your handgun while moving offfline;
    3. fire and hit threat while moving to cover;
    4. continue to engage threat until no longer deemed a threat; and,
    5. reassess, 360 scan and move again.
    Training means learning the rules. Experience means learning the exceptions.

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    Member Array JudoJake's Avatar
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    Keep in mind that this was a simplification of skills and not a full break down. Moving off line is the most common thing that people suggest.

    Also realize that I have limited these skills to actual weapon handling and not situation awareness. This is not because I don't think that situational awareness is not important. It is simply because I only have a limited amount of range time to spend and I wanted to focus on those skills. Usually I try and fill in the gabs by recommending books, or through conversations about those topics. The basic drill is only intended to get them up to speed on the gun handling skills. Thanks for the feed back.

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    VIP Member Array semperfi.45's Avatar
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    This is a good post. I see your point, but IMO there is nothing basic about carrying a handgun. I have gotten away from teaching the basics on a square range level and now only instruct those that have a more advanced skill set. I prefer to develop a shooter who has already risen to the next level and has a grasp on situational awareness, OODA, low-light tactics movement, etc. Although basics are always reinforced, we always improve upon them. Everyone does have to start somewhere and your basic drill is a perfect way.
    Training means learning the rules. Experience means learning the exceptions.

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    Senior Member Array PaulJ's Avatar
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    one issue I struggle with: Should I first draw and shoot, or first take cover? As part of my situational awareness, I always look for cover as well as for threats. If someone all for sudden draws on me, I don't think I would be able to draw before they fire the first shot, and jumping for cover would be in my opinion safer and better.

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    Distinguished Member Array sniper58's Avatar
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    I would add a very important step somewhere in your teachings. Teach your students how to carry - what to do and what not to do. We all see people (newly-licensed) repeatedly touching their outer garment to make sure the gun hasn't slipped. Some walk a little funny. I think blending in to the crowd is important and should be covered.
    Tim
    BE PREPARED - Noah didn't build the Ark when it was raining!
    Si vis pacem, para bellum
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    VIP Member Array semperfi.45's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sniper58 View Post
    Teach your students how to carry - what to do and what not to do.
    Great point, often overlooked.
    Training means learning the rules. Experience means learning the exceptions.

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    VIP Member Array edr9x23super's Avatar
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    If you are talking about basic shooting drills, I tend to apply the KISS rule here. For that, I look to the teachings of Jeff Cooper and others who have really exchanged pleasantries with lead; the simplest measure of overall handgun proficiency for me is still "El Presidente". Your back is to the targets, hands raised in surrender. At the signal you turn, draw and engage each of the three targets with two rounds each so you have movement, transitioning from target to target, then you reload and engage the three targets again with two rounds each. An IPSC or IDPA Master can do this today with a carry gun in under 5.5 seconds, including the reload with all their hits.

    So that is the drill I would use...Simple and effective to test:

    • Movement skills
    • Target engagement and transitioning
    • reloading skills under pressure
    "Guard with jealous attention the public liberty. Suspect everyone who approaches that jewel. Unfortunately, nothing will preserve it but downright force. Whenever you give up that force, you are inevitably ruined". - Patrick Henry

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