I’m writing this post for my friends who are looking at training, but are afraid they’re gonna do it wrong.
First of all, even training imperfectly is still an improvement over not doing it at all. You don’t know what you don’t know, and going to a shooting class is a great way to figure out those unknown unknowns in a safe, controlled environment.
But, if you want some specific suggestions about how to get the most out of your class, here’s a list I compiled from my experiences and some friends I talked with. Just to keep it real and less preachy, I’m also going to list when I failed at doing what I recommend.
Continue reading Advice For Your First Shooting Class(es)
As the DC-MD-VA area slowly opens back up from COVID-19, the number of training classes available has slowly increased. While I try to be cautious and only take outdoor classes, wear my mask, etc., it has been nice to get back into shooting more heavily again.
One class that was supposed to happen in April, but got delayed to June, was the Intermediate Action Shooting Class that Arlington RPC was putting on at AGC for the newer Givati RPC. Having not done a class with the instructor or at AGC, I thought this was a great opportunity to get out of the house and do some shooting.
Continue reading ARPC Intermediate Action Shooting Class AAR
After signing up for the Defensive Pistol II clinic I took recently, I had contacted Green Ops about the possibility of doing some private or semi-private instruction afterwards. I had a new rifle I had built that needed to be put through its paces, and I needed to knock off some rust in preparation for getting back to some multi-gun matches. I offered to share the time with another student to knock some of the cost off, and I think that turned out well.
One of the neat things about private instruction is that it gives you the chance to focus on the things you want to focus on. My fellow student was interested in transitions; I wanted to put a little time into splits and distance shooting. We got everything done plus a bit more!
Continue reading Green Ops Private Instruction Impressions
It has been a long time since I’ve gone shooting, probably 2.5-3 months. The pandemic and resulting lock-down has been brutal in many respects, but the closure of all the ranges and mass class cancellations has been particularly tough on me. When I found out that Green Ops was doing their Sunday clinic at an outdoor range, I jumped on it. It’s not a “no risk” sort of situation, but I felt that the outdoor setting greatly mitigated the possible risks to the point that I felt it was safe enough to participate in.
What did I think? Read on.
Continue reading Greens Ops Defensive Pistol II Clinic AAR
Do you regularly dry-fire? If you’re a gun owner, I’m hoping the answer is yes.
Do you effectively dry-fire? Well, that’s a much trickier question, and it has as much to do with how you’re planning to use your gun(s) as what you’re doing.
After meeting with the Mantis team at SHOT Show 2020 this year, they were kind enough to send me a gratis review copy of the Mantis X10 Elite. I say this up front so we have full disclosure! I have been dry-firing with it for a month almost every day across a variety of platforms, and I now have compiled enough information and experience that I think I can write a decent review of it.
I’ll give you the bottom-line up-front first: it is not a magic solution that bypasses putting in the work, and it (currently) has its limitations, especially for competitive shooters. It is, however, a phenomenal diagnostic tool. It will tell you the truth in ways that a par timer will not. It will show you bad habits in a way that a shot timer will not. If you are a serious shooter, especially a newer one who is getting more seriously into competition and defensive/tactical shooting, this device can provide you information that will make a difference in how you draw and fire. For more details, read on.
Continue reading Mantis X10 Elite Review
I’m not really much of a shotgun shooter. I do quite a lot of practice with rifles and pistols, but shotguns never seem to figure into the mix as much. This is generally because I shoot at indoor ranges most of the time, and they almost never allow birdshot or buckshot. Shooting slugs is an expensive, and often uncomfortable proposition. I know I am not alone with this problem.
When I see a shotgun class that works with my schedule, I jump on it. When Justified Defensive Concepts released their 2020 schedule and the Defensive Shotgun Essentials Seminar was on it, I signed up as soon as I could. Now that I’ve taken it, I can tell you what I think!
Continue reading JDC Defensive Shotgun Essentials Seminar AAR
Like many, many other people, I went out and bought a five pack of Baofeng UV-5R radios when I heard that they were going to be “banned”. (When the government decides to ban something that’s not going to kill you by using it, stocking up is almost always a great idea!) Given that the UV-5R still seems to be for sale, I’m not 100% sure what happened with the banning part, but everyone’s got them now. However, the radios are not doing anyone any good by sitting in a box in a closet, so F3 Tactical arranged to start doing basic courses in radio theory and how to configure the UV-5R and similar Baofeng radios. I missed the first class in January due to a family scheduling conflict, but I was very excited to be able to make it for the second class, held on “palindrome day” (also Super Bowl Sunday).
I had a really good time, and learned a lot. Read on for whether it’s right for you!
Continue reading F3 Tactical Baofeng Radio Course AAR
I felt that it was worth announcing for my local readers that the big local training vendors have at least partial 2020 calendars up. Like any good training junkie, I schedule way out in advance so I can fit classes in around my competitive shooting schedule (expect MUCH more of that in 2020).
Green Ops: Schedule is here. Green Ops is also hosting the yearly local Modern Samurai Project class, so check them out if you’re interested in that. They’ve also told me there’s still a few more classes they’re going to add once they work out physical hosting. There is a LOT to love about the schedule this year; more advanced classes, more classes on Sundays, TCCC, etc.
Justified Defensive Concepts: Schedule is here. Broadly similar to last year – which is a good thing – but I expect to see a couple additions as the year goes on.
FPF Training: Schedule is here. It’s clearly not complete, but there’s already a lot of solid classes for 2020 on there, including some very well-regarded visiting instructors.
PNTC: Schedule is here. There is some really neat stuff in this calendar, and it’s basically the only place in the area for extreme long range shooting.
TOC, LLC: Schedule is here. A couple new courses this year. Not looking like they’re going to fit into my schedule, unfortunately.
Shadow Hawk tends to post their classes up on a quarterly basis.
As I’ve progressed as a shooter, I try to tailor the classes that I take to address my particular needs. It’s a little hard to list out my needs, as my shortcomings are myriad, but tightening up my speed while maintaining accuracy is certainly high on my list. When I saw Justified Defensive Concepts’ 2020 schedule, and the Speed Shooting & Shot Calling class on it, I knew I was not going to miss it.
If you want some indication just how much I was not going to miss it, here’s the story. I am writing this AAR from Las Vegas, where I will be attending SHOT Show for the first time. I got home from this class at 11:15 PM on Sunday night – as expected – secured my weapons, went to sleep at 11:30 PM, and woke up at 4:15 AM on Monday to catch a flight to Las Vegas. That is punishing, and I was pretty fatigued on Monday, but I think it was worth it.
Continue reading JDC Speed Shooting & Shot Calling Class AAR
I had the pleasure of attending the Green Ops Defensive Pistol Clinic this past Sunday. I was looking through my blog to refresh my memory about it, and it turns out that it has been a full year since the last time I took this clinic. This was kind of a surprise! I go to a lot of these clinics, but it seems I’ve branched out quite a bit. It did make me excited to see how it has evolved since then, and I was not disappointed!
Read on for the AAR!
Continue reading Green Ops Defensive Pistol Clinic I AAR