Monday, October 26, 2009

Suarez International Extreme Close Range Gunfighting

In early September I took an Extreme Close Range Gunfighting class taught by Randy Harris. This class followed right on the heels of the Snub Nose Seminar/Pistol Tune Up held on Friday.

I brought my usual Glock 21, carried in a Comp-Tac C-T.A.C. IWB holster at 3:30. For the airsoft portions of the class, I had a Glock 17 airsoft gun, which fits pretty well in the G21 holster. I also brought along my USP Compact airsoft as a loaner.

There were a total of seven people in the class, including me. Most of them were shooting Glocks, while two students carried SIGs (one of the SIG shooters also had a Makarov). An AIWB holster with a closed front concealment garment was the most common carry method. One fellow carried on a load bearing vest Saturday morning, but he switched over to a belt rig for the afternoon.

The class was held on the back 40 of a farm just outside Florala, Alabama. We used some large, cylindrical hay bales as a backstop and shot to the accompaniment of mooing cows and a braying donkey in the next field.

Saturday Morning
The sky was overcast again Saturday, and it sprinkled off an on throughout the day. Thankfully, it never really poured and we were able to keep shooting the entire day.

We started out with five rounds of slow fire to give Randy some idea of our marksmanship capabilities. Everyone in the class was able to produce a fairly tight group in these circumstances. Shooting the Glock, with a big sight radius and relatively light trigger was a positive luxury compared with all the snubby work we did on Friday.

After divesting ourselves of guns, knives, OC, impact weapons and other dangerous implements, we switched over to airsoft gear. First up was a regular feature of SI force-on-force classes: the suicide drill, also knows as the Matt Dillon drill. Pairs of students quick drew at seven yards and blazed away at each other with airsoft guns. Hits were generally almost simultaneous. At seven yards, there were some misses, but when we moved the distance in to five yards, the hit percentage rose by quite a bit.

Mutually Assured Destruction might work with nuclear weapons, but it isn't really effective on the streets. The solution is to move. To get off the X and not be there when the assailant's bullet comes calling. Randy had us try out getting off the X on our own a few times before introducing the Pekiti takeoff. The Pekiti takeoff was actually one of my motivations for taking this course. I took Close Range Gunfighting and Interactive Gunfighting from Gabe Suarez two years ago, just a month or so before he made the Pekiti takeoff a standard part of the curriculum. The descriptions of it online were enough to pique my interest, but not really enough to teach me the technique. It is definitely in the category of "easy to demonstrate but difficult to describe". The PTO really helps you accelerate off the X (even for a big guy like me), particularly when combined with a bit of a ducking motion in the direction of travel. We worked the Pekiti takeoff by itself for a while, then threw in the drawstroke, moving off the X and getting the gun on target as quickly as possible.

We swapped from airsoft back to live weapons and did a bit of retention shooting. Randy prefers shooing downward from close retention, towards the pelvis rather than horizontally into the chest. If you're shooting from retention, you're probably fending off the opponent with your support hand, and aiming downward makes it less likely that you'll put a bullet into it. After trying out the close retention stuff, we took a step back and shot some from the #3 (merge) position of the drawstroke. In this position, the gun is well below the line of sight, so it definitely still requires the use point shooting skills. However, with a bit of practice it's possible to direct the gun fairly well, at least at the kind of range where you'd be shooting from retention. In addition to drilling the close retention and partial extension positions, we shot a few drills that combined them, starting with a close retention shot, then stepping back to shoot at partial and full extension.

We move on to some GOTX work with live guns, practicing explosive movement to the 2 and 10, 3 and 9, and 5 and 7 o'clock directions. Using live guns you can't really go at full speed the way you can with airsoft, particularly when lined up with several other guys, but I think doing it live is pretty important for both acquiring confidence and learning how to manage recoil on the move.

Saturday Afternoon
After lunch we spent some time on the pacing drill, moving off the X to one side, then turning around and walking back the other way, passing the gun from one hand to the other. This provides some practice on shooting while moving, as well as transferring the gun from one hand to the other. One of the things that becomes evident in force on force drills is how often hands and arms get hit. Being able to transition to the other hand, and being able to shoot well with both hands, is an important skill.

Our last live fire drill of the day involved giving the target some dental work. With three rounds in the gun, you got off the X to the forward diagonals (2 and 10). When the gun ran dry, it became an an impact weapon (a straight punch with the muzzle into the target's mouth). This was our first significant introduction to one of the big themes for this class: using firearms, contact weapons (including the firearm as a contact weapon) and empty hand together in a fight.

With that, we put our guns, knives, etc. back on the table and switched back to airsoft. Randy gave a quick introduction to defending against knife attacks, focusing on low line stabs. A shot to the gut like this is is probably the most common sort of knife attack on the streets. The lesson was basically a one-hour introduction to Tom Sotis' class that Randy hosted last summer, using the alternate X to block and clear the attacker's knife. During the course of the lesson, he brought out a pretty impressive collection of small, fixed blade knives, with a blunt trainer for every one. I always carry a folder or two, but my experience in this class has impressed on me how difficult it would be to access them in the middle of a hand to hand fight. This has me thinking about getting a fixed blade for carry, particularly for circumstances where I can't carry a pistol.

After we were done playing with knives, we finished up the day with a quick demonstration of the Inquartana in the confined space between two cars. This is another technique that I'd heard about on WT, but hadn't really been able to grasp until I was able to see it and try it for myself. We only had a couple of chances each at this. As we were on the verge of loosing daylight, we wrapped things up for the evening.

In an effort to get the class done a little early today, we started at 8am instead of 9. We gained one student, who hadn't been able to make it to the first day, but lost another who's sunburn from Friday was beginning to blister. The weather was much sunnier today, and quite a bit hotter. I sucked down four bottles of gatorade and a couple of sodas and still probably wasn't drinking enough.

We started out with some retention work, basically what to do when an assailant manages to grab your gun. Randy demonstrated both stripping their hands of the gun using your elbow, and shaking them loose using a circular motion. I got some fairly good results using a technique I learned from Farnam, shoving the gun towards the assailant then jerking it back. This worked quite well, but it requires you to start out in something less than full extension (another good reason not to extend your gun out all the way).

During the disarm drills, one of the pairs of students ended up on the ground, so Randy segued into a ground fighting lesson. He had the same pair of students try to take each other down and the guy with the gun ended up on top, so we used that as our starting point. The disarming student started on his back with the armed student's gun arm tied up in his armpit. The first time I was the armed student, after trying to pry my arm loose I ended up just letting go of the gun and reached down and retrieved it with my left hand. Randy pointed out that, especially with my size advantage, a good choice might be to just get my legs underneath me and stand up, leaving the disarmer to try to support himself by hanging on to my gun arm, which worked pretty well. We moved on to accessing another weapon (a training knife in this case) and using that to cut your way to the gun. This seemed to work well with accessible fixed blades, but with a folder it would leave you trying to hold on to your gun one-handed for quite a while.

After we finished rolling around on the ground, we ran some 3 on 1 multiple assailant drills. Based on my experience in Gabe's force on force class, I knew 3 on 1 really sucked, at least if you were the 1, and these drills bore out that experience. Randy introduced the element of using one of the assailants as uncooperative cover. Getting to that point was difficult, but if the defender managed to pull it off, it made a really big difference. Turning a 3 on 1 fight with no cover into a 2 on 1 fight with cover turns a really bad situation into a much better one.

Around this time, Randy realized that when we got off into ground fighting, we hadn't covered the disarming part of the retention and disarming segment, so we doubled back and worked those. I've learned a couple different methods of disarming from different instructors and the ones Randy demonstrated where definitely on the simple and brutal end of the spectrum, rather than some of the elegant, but more complicated maneuvers. Wrist goes one way, gun goes the other, and suddenly it's yours. One thing that differed a bit from previous disarm lessons was the context. Most disarm instruction assumes that you're being held at gunpoint by a mugger or robber. Randy pointed out that the disarm is a natural follow-up after you fail at a retention problem. The first thing to do when you loose a gun to someone is to take it back. He also emphasized following up the disarm with some sort of continued fighting action, rather than just standing there with the gun, or handing it back to restart the drill. He underlined this point by telling the story of a LA cop who, upon successfully disarming a suspect, handed the thug his gun back! That was what he was used to doing after performing a disarm in training. He promptly disarmed the suspect again, so no harm, no foul in this case, but definitely not something I want to emulate.

Disarming flowed naturally into defending sul, which was our next lesson. I learned defending sul from Gabe in CRG two years ago, but Randy introduced some new elements to it. One is the "Dracula Sul" position, which has to be the best name ever for a gunfighting technique. This is basically a one handed sul, with the support hand in a horizontal blocking position to keep an assailant off your gun (for the name, think Bella Lugosi holding a long black cape across his face). We practiced defending sul from assaults from both sides and the rear. Randy also emphasized continuing the fight beyond firing a couple of shots into the assailant from dracula sul, since one or two rounds, perhaps poorly placed since you're shooting from close retention, probably won't be a fight stopper. You need to get them turned around and start shooting them in the back or the back of the head.

Randy gave us an anti-carjacking lecture. In part, this was intended to get us ready for the vehicle shooting later this afternoon. However, it went quite a bit beyond just how to shoot from a car into things like general anti-carjacking techniques and strategies to avoid being ambushed in a parking lot.

At this point we were finished with airsoft and blue gun drills for the class, so we geared back up with live weapons and brought out some camp chairs and practiced shooting while seated. When you're shooting on the line, while seated, there's no way to draw without covering yourself or someone else (unless you're the guy way down at the end of the line). In the spirit of being responsible for one's own mistakes, Randy instructed us not to cover other students when drawing. As far as not shooting ourselves, well, these drills really underlined the importance of good trigger discipline. We shot targets to our left, then turned around and shot to the right. Aside from potential excitement during the drawstroke, these angles are relatively easy. Shooting to the rear while seated, on the other hand, is a bit more of a challenge. In most circumstances, it would probably be better to get out of the chair and shoot from kneeling or standing, but if you're in a car, or trapped in a booth at a restaurant, that might not be an option. We practiced both torquing ourselves around to shoot, and getting to a kneeling position from the chair and firing.

As I mentioned earlier, one of the things that always comes up during force on force drills is how common it is to get hit in the hands or arms (I have two bloody welts on my forearm from getting shot during the 3 on 1 drills that attest to this). Thus, it may be necessary to shoot one handed, perhaps with the off hand. Obviously the best way to do this would be to pass the gun from the injured arm to the working one as we did on Saturday, but the obvious reaction to getting shot in the hand or arm would probably be to drop what you are holding, so Randy had us practice grabbing our guns from the deck with your support hand and firing. He also demonstrated a one handed reload and had us practice that during our after action drills.

At this point we moved the camp chairs out of the way and did a few final reps of getting off the X, first against paper targets, then against Ted, a falling steel target with plates representing the vitals in the chest and head underneath a person-shaped plastic shell.

We adjourned to our cars for some dry fire practice drawing and aiming at threats in various directions. Aiming directly out the drivers side and passenger side windows is fairly easy, as is aiming at targets diagonally ahead of the car on the driver's side. Targets closer to straight ahead are more difficult, as are targets to the rear passenger side. Targets on the driver's side to the rear are much more difficult really requiring you to twist around in the seat and shoot from an uncomfortable position. It seemed like this was a bit easier for the guys with roomier trucks, as opposed to my sedan. One way to get around this is to pop the door open and lean out and shoot, but if the door is locked this may take too long.

While Randy recommended leaving your seatbelt unbuckled until you're actually moving, to provide easier access, if you're carjacked at a stoplight, your belt may be buckled anyway. I found that the belt itself wasn't really an obstacle to getting to my gun, but when the belt was holding the cover garment in place that made things difficult. Ripping the cover garment out from under the belt with the support hand seemed to be the best way to provide access.

After dry firing, we loaded up our pistols and lined up the cars for live fire from inside our vehicles. It was just like a drive through, we pulled up, shot Ted on Randy's command, and drove to the back of the line. Each person got at least two runs at each position (passenger side, driver's side, forward, and rear). Randy described a short scenario for each string of fire (my favorite was the chainsaw wielding guy in a gimp suit). He also included one scenario where shooting wasn't an appropriate response, to emphasize that in your car the accelerator pedal is often a better tool for resolving a dangerous situation than a firearm. I managed not to shoot my car, but I think I'll probably spend a while picking brass out of odd places inside of my car.

This was really a great class. In particular, Randy did an excellent job integrating gun focused fighting skills with knife and empty hand skills. I've had a fair bit of pistol training and a little bit of experience with more combative stuff, but this is the first training experience I've had that really integrates them. This wasn't just a pistol course and a combative course mashed together, the integrated, fight focused nature really pervaded the entire course.

I've felt that hand to hand and knife skills have been a hole in my skillset ever since I took CRG and force on force from Gabe two years ago. After taking this class and Tom Sotis' class earlier this summer I feel like I'm starting to get a handle on the non-firearm stuff. I definitely want to continue with Sotis' classes as well as taking the 0-5 foot class from Gabe Suarez when he comes to South Carolina a year from now.

As I said in my AAR for the snubby seminar on Friday, these were the first SI classes I've taken from an instructor other than Gabe. Gabe is obviously the headliner when it comes to Suarez International instructors, but Randy did a great job teaching this class. I would not hesitate to take another class from him in the future.

I would definitely recommend both the Extreme Close Range Gunfighting course and anything taught by Randy Harris!

Suarez International Snub Nose Seminar/Pistol Tune Up

In early September I attended a one-day snub nose seminar and pistol tune up class taught by Randy Harris. This was my first Suarez International class taught by someone other than Gabe Suarez. I had a chance to meet Randy back in June when he hosted a class Tom Sotis, but I hadn't previously taken a class from him. However, I'd heard good things from others who had.

As the dual title implies, this class had two, somewhat distinct purposes. One was to focus on using snubby revolvers for self-defense, the other was to serve as a one-day introduction/refresher for the Suarez Close Range Gunfighting curriculum for folks who wanted to take the Extreme Close Range Gunfighting class the following day. I had CRG in Salt Lake two years ago, and practice my skills regularly, so I was primarily interested in the snub nose portion of the class.

The class was fairly small, with a total of four people, including me (there were some fairly last minute cancellations). All of the attendees had some previous defensive shooting experience, though two had not previously taken Close Range Gunfighting.

The class was held on the back 40 of a farm just outside Florala, Alabama. We used some large, cylindrical hay bales as a backstop and shot to the accompaniment of mooing cows in the next field.

I used my Smith and Wesson 642 for the class. This gun is stock, save for a set of Crimson Trace laser grips. I did a little bit of work out of a Fist kydex pocket holster that I usually use to carry this as a backup gun, but I spent most of the time using a plastic Fobus belt holster, largely because it was most convenient (and got a little "Barney Miller" ribbing for doing that). Most of the other revolvers in the class were Smith and Wesson j-frames of one description or another, though there was one Ruger. One student shot the class using his Sig and Makarov autoloaders, using a borrowed j-frame only for a few revolver specific stuff reloading drills.

After the standard safety lecture, Randy started by talking about the history of pocket revolvers, from efforts to cut down cap and ball Colts to the Ruger LCR. One thing he noted was the tendency of some people to carry j-frames as a pacifier, seemingly hoping that it's mere presence would bring them peace (or at least peace of mind). In reality, being able to effectively win a fight using a j-frame probably takes more training and practice than using an autoloader.

He also spent a bit of time passing around various revolvers, noting different features, including hammerless or shrouded hammer models, ejector rod length, and differing frame materials (with the stainless steel Ruger weighing in at twice what an Airweight j-frame did). Several of the guns had XSSights front dots on them, one standard dot (a S&W M&P model) and one big dot.

We also discussed ammunition choices. Randy is not a big fan of the .357 out of a snub nose. In his opinion, the extra kick and muzzle flash are not worth it when weighted against the relatively modest increase in velocity the magnum round gives out of such a short barrel. His carry load (and mine) is the +P Cor-Bon DPX round.

The range portion of the class started out with some drawstroke work. Randy emphasized a fairly simple drawstroke based on bringing the gun up to the pectoral muscle and punching it straight out towards the target. We started out doing the punching motion with our fist, then moved on to some dry practice. Once everyone had the basic drawstroke down, Randy had us start incorporation movement. He gave a brief explanation on the virtues of getting off the X for the benefit to the folks who were new to the SI method, then we did some dry fire drills.

Moving on to live fire, we started out with some slow fire accuracy work from about four yards. Small revolvers are difficult to shoot well, and given their limited ammo supply, it is particularly important to put each round where it will be effective. Given how little I've actually shot my j-frame I thought I did pretty well here. Aside from one shot that I jerked, I had a fairly tight group, eating one ragged hole in the cardboard.

After a few strings of fire, we started working with different reloading methods. Randy had us compare speedloaders to speed strips, and doing a full reload from a speed strip to loading two rounds only. We also traded guns around, to give each shooter a chance to try drawing a second gun rather than reloading. This was one of the few times during the day I actually worked out of my pocket holster on the left side. Even from a pocket holster, drawing a second gun is definitely quickest, about on a par with reloading a semi-automatic. If possible, the New York reload is definitely the way to go.

Randy also introduced after action drills. Most of it was the usual SI stuff (assess the target, look for other bad guys down range, sul scan, reload, check for injury). One interesting variation he described was using the #2 position in the drawstroke (with the gun held in the primary hand only, up against the pectoral muscle, pointed about 45 degrees downward) instead of sul. This allows you to keep the off hand free to block with in case you turn around to find a fist or knife coming at you. This does seem to have it's merits, but between previous SI classes and shooting with the Utah Polite Society, sul is pretty ingrained for me so that's what I used for most of the class.

We broke for a late lunch and everyone drove over to a local eatery for some food.

After lunch, we got to the meat of a CRG type course, getting off the X, live fire, in every direction. We started out working the forward diagonals, to the 2 o'clock and 10 o'clock directions. I've done this before, so I didn't have much trouble with the moving and shooting. However, Randy wanted us to follow each burst of 2-4 rounds to the body with a round or two to the head. I really struggled with the headshots, particularly when going to the left and shooting one handed. I hadn't been using my laser for most of the day, but I turned it back on now. It helped a little bit (the day was cloudy enough to make it visible) but most of my trouble seemed to be trigger pull related. I definitely need some more practice with this gun.

Once everyone was comfortable with moving to 2 and 10, we worked the other directions, starting with 3 and 9 o'clock, then the rear diagonals, 5 and 7 o'clock. The 3 and 9 weren't too difficult, but I found moving to the 5 and 7 while firing the snubby considerably harder than doing the same thing with a Glock. The combination of a smaller gun and heavier trigger pull makes it much more challenging. To finish up the GOTX portion of the class, we did a bit of movement directly away from the target, to the 6 o'clock.

We also did some work with multiple attackers. Moving off to the right, we practiced transitioning from the closer attacker to another. This is where the j-frame's limited ammo capacity becomes an obvious shortcoming. Given how badly pistol bullets suck, five rounds to distribute among two attackers just isn't that confidence inspiring. We didn't even try to do anything with three targets.

Next Randy demonstrated how to reload a revolver one-handed. This is quite an exercise, starting with squirming your hand around to simultaneously slide the cylinder release forward and push the cylinder out (the fellow shooting the Ruger noted that this is an area where the pushbutton cylinder release is an advantage). If the chambers are fairly clean (which they weren't by this part of the class) the empty cases can be ejected by raising the muzzle, jerking the gun back, and bringing it to a sudden stop. If this doesn't work, it's time for some more finger squirming to get your hand far enough forward to hit the ejector and pound the butt of the gun into your leg. This will generally free all but the most recalcitrant case. Shove the barrel inside your waistband (a bit of a trick with the short barrel of the snub nose) retrieve a speedloader and load the gun, then close the cylinder against your body. This tortuous process generally seemed to take at least thirty seconds, not something you want to be doing in the middle of a gunfight. Of course, then Randy had us do this only using the left hand.

After we managed to get our guns back into action with only one hand, Randy brought out Ted, a falling steel target with plates representing the vitals in the chest and head underneath a person-shaped plastic shell. We got off the X at about five yards and tried to knock Ted down. This proved a bit challenging, because once you got far enough off the X the angle became oblique enough that even a solid hit would not necessarily knock the target down. Either a hit very early, or multiple hits in rapid succession were required. Some folks got off to one side or the other and shot more than ten rounds at it, including several hits, without knocking it down.

We moved back to about fifteen yards and did some long range shooting (fifteen yards definitely qualifies as "long range" with tiny, double action revolvers). At this distance, Ted was pretty difficult to knock down. I managed to get only one or two hits on the steel from each cylinder of ammo, but I'm pretty sure even my non-steel hits were probably hitting the plastic body of the target.

I probably fired more rounds through my j-frame in this class than I have since I bought it. I feel quite a bit more comfortable with it now, though some additional practice will definitely be required. In particular, I need to work on sooting it one-handed. Two handed, I could be relatively accurate, but with one hand my accuracy went completely to hell.

In hindsight, I kind of regret using the belt holster so much. Since I only carry this gun as a BUG in my left pocket, I really should have gone hardcore and shot the whole class left handed from the pocket holster.

From what work I did from the pocket, and watching others draw from there, it seemed like you could draw fairly quickly and effectively, even when getting off the X, if you started out with the hand on the gun. If you had to reach into the pocket and acquire a firing grip, it about doubled the time required and make it difficult to get off the X at the same time. Being able to have your hand on the gun without alerting others is an advantage to pocket carry, but it's also practically a necessity to deploy the gun quickly from the pocket.

Reloads are challenging with speedloaders, painfully slow with speed strips, and downright tortuous one-handed. On the other hand, the New York reload rocks! I am happy carrying my Glock, but if I were to go with just a j-frame, two of them are definitely the way to go.

This was a good class overall, I definitely got a lot out of it. If it had a shortcoming, it was probably the effort to serve both as a snubby class, and as an intro to the Suarez Close Range Gunfighting curriculum at the same time. The trigger time, even on the most basic CRG type drills was welcome, but some of the explanations of why to do these things were a bit redundant for me. I don't really need to be convinced of the virtues of getting off the X. Looking at it from the other side, those who hadn't had CRG before, I have to wonder if these explanations kind of got short shrift amid all the snubnose specific stuff. I think they probably got a solid intro to the basic CRG skills, but they probably could have used some more repetitions and more explanation of the whys and wherefores of getting off the X and after action drills in lieu of the snubby specific stuff. That being said, I can see why these two elements were combined. This was a very small class as it was, cutting out either element would have made the class even smaller (I probably wouldn't have come without the snubby stuff, for instance).

I think a snub nose specific class is a great idea for anyone who regularly carries a small revolver, whether as a primary gun, backup, or both. A snubby's characteristics are different enough from a medium to large autoloader that some gun-specific instruction is very useful. Randy Harris did an good job presenting the material and coaching students. I left this class wanting to train with him again, which was good because I was registered for the Extreme Close Range Gunfighting class starting the next day!

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

One Strange Adventure

From the Perry City News:

Somewhere on a Perry Mountainside

Saturday 11-07-08 5:45PM

Perry Police and Box Elder County law enforcement responded
to a call of
suspicious activity Saturday evening on the bench
above Perry and Willard.
Perhaps a group of terrorist were training
in the area? Perry Police
arrived at the base of Perry canyon
and set up a road block just as darkness fell.

Officers manning the road block must have become concerned
when half dozen
trucks and SUVs crawled down the mountain
in the dark toward them. At some
point more back up must
have been called. Fortunately for all concerned, a
individual on a quad was 5 minutes ahead of the convoy of

When officers stopped this armed individual the officers learned
that the
group was conducting an advanced concealed weapons
class and was hosted by
a local licensed concealed firearms
permit (CFP) instructor. The name of the
group was the
“Utah Polite Society”. This must have been great relief to

the officers.

By the time the convoy reached the road block the officers were
all smiles,
friendly and very cordial. As the back up officers
arrived the first
officers were more involved in bringing up the
newly arriving law
enforcement than worrying about 20 heavily
armed men in the trucks.

A female Box Elder Sheriff Officer took over as spokes person
for the law
enforcement group and explained the call that had
come into dispatch. She
apologized for the inconvenience and
explained that the group had done
nothing wrong. She recorded
the CFP instructors name and released the

She recommended that if the group was to do this again, that
someone call
into Sheriff’s dispatch to let them know what
going on and avoid suspicion.
Some of the officers commented
that the group lived up to the name “Utah
Polite Society”.
All officers conducted themselves in a professional,

courteous and proper manner.

The CFP instructor feels this was a very positive encounter for
all parties
involved and a great wrap up for the day. The instructor
feels that to
avoid being mistaken as a terrorist cell this activity
should be done at a range.

This is another example why it is necessary for the Box Elder County
Commissioners to take some steps to establish a practice firing range
its citizens.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Point Shooting Progressions Class Scheduled

Working with Suarez International and directly with SI Staff Instructor, Roger Phillips, we are pleased to announce four days of Point Shooting Progressions Training in June 2010. Two classes are offered back to back: Point Shooting Progressions (PSP) June 10-11 followed by Advanced Point Shooting Progressions (APSP) June 12-13.

The Suarez website describes Roger Phillips and PSP this way:

Roger began his journey in pistolcraft, as many of us did, in the world of the Modern Technique. But early on, he learned the lessons taught in the crucible of force on force. Specifically with the issues of movement while shooting. Roger continued his study of movement, but also looked deeply into the “secret science” of point shooting.

He sought out and trained with just about every living notable proponent of point shooting. But unlike many others who consider themselves “point shooters” Roger realized, partly from his Modern Technique background with proactive shooting, and partly from his exposure to force on force, that it was not an "all or nothing" situation. He realized that at times one needed to point shoot while looking directly at the adversary. Other times, nothing but a perfectly sighted shot would suffice. He developed a very eclectic system that incorporates both systems, sighted fire and point shooting, to accomplish the mission, which simply put is “shoot without being shot”.

That system was discussed, developed and worked on at our internet forum Warrior Talk. Eventually it morphed into the series of classes that Roger teaches via Suarez International.

From Rogers' website, APSP is described as:

This course picks up where the original Point Shooting Progressions course left off. This course will require one of the handgun PSP course as a prerequisite (PSP, PSP/FAN, PSP/FOF.) This will give us a student base that does not require any of the point shooting fundamentals. We will pick up the skills that you already own and push them as far as we can go. Speed, draw stroke, movement, and accuracy will be the main focus. Same building block approach, drill after drill pushing the limitations as far as we can possibly push them. Think PSP on steroids!

These classes can be taken together or separately, but please note for APSP you'll need to have taken PSP prior to it. You can register for PSP at the Suarez website as well as APSP. If you bundle the two together, Suarez provides a $100.00 price break.

Both classes will be held at the typical UPS venue, Hendriksen PMMA Range at exit 134 I-80, east of Salt Lake.

As mentioned in a previous post, more training from Suarez International is on the horizon; we will keep you posted as the details are finalized.


Utah's Personal Protection Laboratory