Training is a Very Personal Thing

By ninpo_student of The Ready Line and Deus Ex Machina

Training is a very personal thing. You have to tailor your training and resources to your particular mission set. Figure out your needs and build a program to support that. I’m a huge fan of the 90% solution. Give me a technique, tactic or procedure that covers 90% of what I may be faced with and I’ll audible it to work for the other 10%. Software is the most critical component of any training program and you should try to address shortcomings or flaws in your game through training first. However, not all problems can be fixed that way. Hardware is also a critical piece of the puzzle. My take on equipment is to use what I need to fill those voids I can’t address through training. Some things are so useful that they are mandatory in my opinion, such as lights, lasers and optics on carbines or lights and optics on a fighting pistol. With a quality product, those categories are incredible force multipliers.

Using a war belt setup, bandolier or bag setup to address carriage issues for equipment is another place where solid equipment choices reap benefit. A thought out and well configured setup enables you to fight and train without the distraction of equipment issues. We’ve all been at a class (or gunfight in my case) with a sub-optimal setup that required bandwidth to deal with, taking away focus and attention from the problems at hand. What you consider unnecessary may be something another dude considers critical. Something else to think about on the equipment side is that the private market has been driving the evolution in the gear market for a while. Companies like Velocity Systems and Blue Force Gear saw deficiencies on the soft goods side based on experience and addressed them, raising the bar across the board. The .mil could give a care if your stuff is comfortable or even reliable as long as it checks the box that you got it. Without the large civilian market, .mil guys would have no recourse to rectify those issues.

I spend roughly 60-70% of my training time with a pistol, for a couple of reasons. One, those same skills that work on a pistol effectively translate over to the carbine fairly well, while the reverse is not true. Two, the pistol is more difficult to shoot well and tends to deteriorate faster without sustainment training. Lastly, if I ever have to shoot someone again, it will likely be with a pistol, so I want to be up to speed with my likely weapon. I still spend time with a carbine, because those skills need sustainment training as well. Here again is an area where the .mil and LE benefit disproportionately from the civilian training market. Outside of SOCOM in the .mil, training methods and TTPs are outdated and archaic. The prevalence of excellent training choices today allows the dude who wants to master his profession a way to do so. This was not the case in the late 90’s and early 00’s. I wish it had been, the early GWOT would have been different for a lot of dudes who died because their training failed them.

Ultimately it’s up to you to decide what’s appropriate for you and your situation. Like Sammy, should someone enter my home without permission, he’s getting the bees from a carbine, it’s far more efficient to use in close quarters than a pistol and kills people better. The go bag located with it holds extra ammo should it be required, marking equipment for danger areas and casualties and first aid gear in the event myself or a family member is injured in the encounter. I carry two spare mags and a blow out kit with my pistol everyday in the event I happen to be in the same place as a retard intent on doing stupid stuff. To me those things aren’t over the top, they are reasonable solutions to potential problems. While I do use armor at work, if I had the chance to jock up before a gunfight I’ll do it in a heartbeat, I’ve seen it save lives, mine included.

Lastly, your argument is the same one made to restrict our 2nd Amendment rights by the opposition ( I’m not making the argument that you share their beliefs, only that it’s the same logic applied ). Why do you need that ? Why do you need to train for that ? Most gunfights are over in a few seconds with only a couple of rounds fired at close range. However, not all of them are. Without training and experience, those outliers are much more difficult to mitigate successfully. Hard, realistic training builds confidence which gives you options not available to those without. There are literally dozens if not hundreds of people who I could have shot under the ROE that I didn’t because I knew I had them if it went to guns. That confidence from solid training gave me that leeway. Folks spend their time and money where they deem appropriate. It doesn’t always make sense to others. If these things aren’t for you that’s awesome. I hope that you are pursuing training avenues that cover the things you do need to shore up. Just don’t be surprised when others have different priorities. Yours may seem just as odd to them.

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