If you’ve followed Modern Combat & Survival at all, you know how we feel about traditional gun ranges.
There are some things this type of traditional shooting training does well, and some things it doesn’t do well.
And, honestly, some people bash on gun ranges and how they’re semi-useless for practical firearms training.
According to my friend Ox, even experienced shooters are making some critical mistakes when it comes to their gun training if that training takes place on the good ol’ “square range.”
Here is a run-down of what he had to tell me.
As A Shooter, Are YOU Making These Killer “Square Range” Mistakes?
We live in interesting times for firearms owners.
There’s more realistic tactical training out there than here has ever been before.
That doesn’t mean training has gotten less expensive, though.
In some cases, it’s even more expensive.
And a lot of people are still using the same old traditional practice routine of going down to the local gun range and shooting at paper targets.
That’s a mistake for a number of reasons.
I’ll go into just a few of them here.
#1: Safety Issues
The biggest negative that I run into when I go to indoor ranges is actually safety.
I absolutely cringe almost every time I go to an indoor range during public shooting hours, and the reason is fairly obvious.
There’s lot of people out there who don’t understand muzzle disciplines.
They think that because they’ve checked to make sure it’s unloaded, they can point it anywhere they want.
I just don’t agree with that.
I don’t like having guns pointed at me, and most people don’t.
#2: Monkey See, Monkey Do
Another big problem that happens at ranges, especially with newer shooters, is “monkey see, monkey do.”
They’ll see someone with a bunch of cool gear.
They’re doing something in their lane.
The new shooter doesn’t know what they’re supposed to do at the range, so they just copy what the guy next to them is doing.
The guy next to them may not know what he’s doing, and he may not be shooting to a standard that the new shooter should really try to imitate.
You’ll get these wannabe shooters who look like an operator and smell like an operator, but they‘re spraying rounds all over the place.
The new shooter sees that and thinks that that’s the standard they need to live up to, and they don’t need to be any more accurate than that because the cool guy’s putting rounds all over.
#3: A Lack Of Dynamic Shooting
Another big problem with traditional shooting training is you can’t do dynamic shooting at most ranges.
You can’t move around.
The targets don’t move while you shoot them.
You can’t shoot at the speeds that you would shoot at in a self-defense situation.
You can’t yell.
Hell, in many indoor ranges you can’t even draw from concealment and then shoot.
That’s a big training issue when you’re training for self-defense shooting, because yelling and drawing from concealment are components of realistic self-defense shooting.
You want to verbally confront your attacker, if possible.
You want to train as realistically as you can to simulate the real thing.
And even if you’re behind the curve and have to draw your gun, and that’s the first thing that you do in a conflict, you still want to be yelling and making it very obvious to everyone around who the intended victim is and who the attacker is.
Those are all things that you can’t do at most ranges during open range time, but they all have a place in realistic shooting training.
When you look at all these factors together, it tells you one thing:
You need to get OFF the square range and start doing some realistic shooting and force-on-force training if your gun training is going to save your life in a real-life encounter.
… but I recently ran across a drill from my friend (and legendary gun expert), Massad Ayoob, that will let you see for yourself what REALLY happens in close-quarters gunfight.
It’s based on the reality of what’s called the “Tueller Drill” – a well-known exercise that – in a nutshell – established that 21 feet is the recognized distance an attacker can reach you before you can engage them with a handgun.
Now, there are MANY things wrong with the results of that famous exercise.
But I think it’s really important for you to realize this yourself – and this simple, safe drill will help you understand…
(Safe) “Tueller Drill” Alternative For Tactical Firearms Training At The Gun Range…
First, you can do this at a live fire range, but I actually recommend using a training gun (like airsoft, SIRT, or “blue gun”) because it’s safer AND you can do this right in your own backyard or larger area.
Ok, Try This Version Of The Tueller Drill The Next Time You’re At The Live-Fire Gun Range…
Grab a friend and your “training gun” and head to a safe, open area.
Holster your weapon the way you normally would carry it “concealed” and pick a target about 7 yards or so away (can just be a tree or some other “man-sized” object to aim at).
Have your friend place a hand on your shoulder, prepared to run.
Whenever your friend is ready, he takes off in a safe direction behind you (where you can’t see him).
As soon as you feel his hand leave your shoulder, draw, aim, and squeeze the trigger, yelling “BANG” loud enough so your friend can hear you.
When he hears ‘bang,’ he stops.
Now turn around…
That short distance between you and your friend is a “kill zone“.
And unfortunately, it’s YOUR death we’re talking about!
That is the distance an attacker can close while you only get ONE round off.
And herein lies a problem…
Experts know it usually takes SEVERAL shots to stop an attacker in his tracks.
In fact, there are only 2 places in the body where you might possibly have the “luck” of getting a 1-shot man-stopper: the brain and the left ventricle of the heart.
That’s one hell of an expert shot if you can hit either of those small targets WHILE your attacker is charging at you full speed!
And that’s why it’s even worse than you think…
To Show You What I Mean, Run “Stage 2” Of The Drill…
You start from your current positions – you in your same “defense spot” with your concealed firearm holstered… your buddy standing where he was when you yelled “BANG!”.
Only this time, your friend runs AT you!
(Again… keep in mind to make sure you’re using a safe version of your firearm for dry-fire.)
For extra realism, try it with your friend holding a training knife, giving his best war cry as he barrels toward you.
When he starts running, you draw, aim, and yell “BANG!” when he’s confidently in your sights.
You’ll never even get your finger on the trigger before he’s right on top of you!
I know you’d like to think you will (because you’ve practiced your draw 1,000’s of times, right?), but we’ve run this drill with everyone from FBI agents to military contractors and not many can do it.
In realistic scenarios, the majority of gun owners clam up and fumble with their weapon.
And we’re talking about a scenario where you KNOW you’re being “attacked”!
In A Real Gunfight, The Odds Are REALLY Stacked Against You…
You won’t know your attacker is coming (criminals know better and prefer to ambush you when you’re not looking)
Most of your shots will miss your attacker – even at super-close distance!
(Fact: Even the highly-trained Los Angeles Police Dept. has only a 28% hit ratio in close quarters. That means about only 1 out of every 3 rounds hit the assailant. Assume you’ll fare worse off.)
3. And we already know that it takes several rounds to physically stop an attacker.
In other words, all that traditional “tactical training” being taught out there won’t do you a lot of good in a close-quarters assault.
You’ll likely need to know how to “fight to your gun”… draw with 1 hand… shoot with 1 hand… and a whole bunch of other stuff not currently being taught at most ranges.
This makes firearms training one of the most important things you’ll ever do.
But there’s a problem.
A lot of shooters, including experienced instructors, are making 5 very specific VISUAL mistakes.
Worse, they don’t REALIZE these mistakes make training scars.
(And during a gunfight is no time to find out about them!)
In this week’s podcast episode, Modern Combat & Survival’s Jeff Anderson looks at each of these 5 visual gunfight training mistakes so that you can make your own gun training more realistic and effective.
Press The “Play” Button Below To Listen In Now…
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Here’s What You’ll Discover In This Week’s Episode:
The mistake almost EVERYONE makes when using the sights.
The one place you NEVER want to look during a stoppage drill.
The reloading mistake that even experts make!
The well-meaning bad habit that could cause you to miss a real threat after a shooting.
A common error to avoid after the threat is down and neutralized (you think).
Don’t ingrain bad habits by training incorrectly.
Learn the right way to train with a gun… and be better prepared to protect yourself and your family with that weapon.
It first seemed like just another normal “Can you please keep it down?” domestic call on a drunken homeowner.
But talking with the man in his hallway, the officer wasn’t getting the response he expected, and things began to heat up.
In one bone-jarring crunch, the officer suddenly found himself being violently hurled into the man’s bathroom, landing on his side on the floor, jammed between the bathtub and the toilet.
As the 200lb attacker continuously stomped away at his head, the officer knew his life was in danger – and his fingers fought like hell to make it to his gun’s grip!
There was only *one thing* that officer said saved his life that fateful night – but you’re not gonna like his answer – and…
Here’s How 1 Cop’s Training FAILED Him In A “Bathroom Gunfight”…
In his own words following the incident, the officer claimed…
“It was LUCK that saved me… NOT my gear, and NOT my training!”
You see, the officer discovered what too many cops (and civilian gun-owners) find out the hard way…
… that real gunfights look NOTHING like they do in the movies and NOTHING like the shooting scenarios being instructed at so-called “tactical” schools around the nation.
I mean, sure… everyone has to master the “basics” of shooting, right?
The proper way to stand… grip your gun… aim through your sights… breathe… trigger pull… “follow through”… blah, blah, blah.
But be honest…
Do you REALLY think you’re going to adopt your textbook “nose over toes” Isosceles stance, extend your pistol in a two-handed grip toward the target, and warn him verbally to back the f— off before you fire?
No, you won’t.
And look, you and I both know that “luck” isn’t a personal defense strategy either, right?
Your TRAINING is the only thing that’s going to save your life when it’s that “no sh*t moment” and you’re forced to pull the trigger is self-defense, don’t you agree?
But ONLY if it’s based on how you’re likely to be attacked in REAL-LIFE – not some fantasy scenario you’re training for down at the typical local gun range – and NOT in some of these “Disneyland” tactical courses that make you feel like you’re Jason Bourne… but send you home with a false sense of confidence in how well you can protect yourself and those you live in a REAL attack.
The “Israeli Carry” is a really good example of this actually…
With an unloaded weapon, students are trained to simultaneous “draw & rack” their firearm, the same way that many soldiers are taught in the Israeli Defense Forces (IDF).
Sure, it looks SUPER cool at the range…
But for the officer in our story, drawing his weapon with one hand while protecting his head with the other may have gotten him KILLED if he also had to rack the slide to chamber a round while on the floor, stuffed between the toilet and shower.
Makes sense, right?
That’s why all gun-owners who understand this no b.s. reality choose to carry with a round already loaded in the chamber of their carry weapon.
But that’s not the only “staging” you can do to be ready for a close-quarters ambush…
In fact, I’ve looked at hundreds of video footage of real gunfights and in our “extreme counter-ambush training”, I suggest ways to modify your sights… your holster… your ammo choice… and other tricks you can use to be “combat-ready” when you’re attacked in close-quarters with no warning.
Look, the hardcore reality is this…
There’s NOTHING about real life-and-death gunfights that look ANYTHING like the typical “7-15 yard” marksmanship training that goes on down at the “square range.”
I think if you’re open-minded and you take a good, hard, honest look at your own training, you might be surprised just how many “fails” you can erase based on the reality of how attacks happen in real-life.
If you want to dig deeper on how I train for real attacks, you might want to check out this report.
Your life – or the life of someone you love – may depend on it my friend.
What CQB Firearms Training Do YOU Think Doesn’t Match The “Real World”?
This training is for new shooters as well as “experts” and it’s going to blow your mind how fast you can literally “program” life-saving skills into your brain (like a computer)…
The online workshop won’t cost you a thing, but the lessons you learn will absolutely transform your “gun-training” into “gun-FIGHT” training using some new tricks that hardly ANY shooters even know about.
How do you practice your handgun, rifle, or shotgun?
Do you do it at the shooting range?
Most people do.
It’s a relaxing, recreational atmosphere where people punch holes in paper, trying to get the holes close together while hitting bulls-eyes..
That’s great for trigger time and marksmanship… but it leaves out a LOT of what you need to know to fire a gun when someone is trying to KILL you.
I talked with Garrett Machine about this recently, and here’s what he had to tell me about improving your gun handling under stress.
Three Tips To Prepare For A Close-Quarters Ambush
Do you “enjoy” shooting?
You might like target shooting… but what about learning to fire a gun under threat?
Shooting becomes a whole different ballgame when a trainer says to you, “Okay, sprint 50 meters as fast as you can, do 10 burpees, then draw your gun from cover, hit this target as fast as you can, change magazines, hit a second target as fast as you can, and when it pops back up, shoot it again.”
When under stress, your shooting skills go to HELL.
Scenario-based firearms training addresses things like physical exertion (the closest way to simulate stress) and rapid fire to center of mass.
Adding in these layers of complexity catapults the shooter much closer to the conditions he or she will face in reality.
It also reveals, very quickly, the need to have hand-to-hand training to back you up when you are clearing your home with a weapon.
Here are three things to keep in mind when shooting under the stress of a real attack, when somebody ambushes you at close quarters.
1. Weapons And Empty Hands Are Both Necessary
Shooting or hand-to-hand skills alone are not enough; you must have both.
Too many shooters just buy a gun and think they’ve got self-defense covered.
Some of these shooters even train in lots of different armed self-defense methods, including force on force scenarios, so they think they’re well prepared.
If you’re not actually training to fight WITHOUT a weapon, though, you’re leaving dangerous gaps in your training.
How can you possibly shoot under the stress of a real altercation if you have to first fight off an ambush attack to draw your gun in the first place?
Integrating empty hand fighting with armed self-defense is therefore absolutely critical.
2. You Had Better Work On Your Physical Fitness
You also need to work on your physical fitness.
You can’t afford to be out of shape and still consider yourself prepared for a real-life altercation.
How can you shoot and run and fight off an attacker if you don’t have cardiovascular conditioning and muscular strength?
The hand-to-hand training is arguably the more important of the two simply because you cannot be focused on the weapon.
The pistol, the rifle, the shotgun… these are just tools.
The real weapon is YOU, and you must excel at using whatever is at hand.
That means you can’t afford to “gas out” and be completely out of breath when your family needs you, or when somebody is on top of you beating your brains out.
3. Drill Constantly
Training is perishable.
That means that the longer you don’t practice, the more “rusty” you become.
You should always be training and drilling to keep your level of skill up.
Here’s a simple exercise you can do.
Stand somebody in front of a door.
Give them an airsoft gun or some other firearm simulator.
Put the gun in a holster and just stand in front of that door.
Then tell them you want them simply to react when the door opens.
Maybe the first time the door opens, somebody is standing there with a rubber knife, and the second the door opens, they try to stab the defender.
Now in that scenario, if you try to go for your gun, you WILL be “killed” before your gun can clear its holster.
On the other hand, if you block and strike, take them down with hand-to-hand skills, THEN draw your weapon, you have a much better chance of controlling the situation.
See what I mean?
It’s all about challenging yourself and constantly improving your skills, under realistic stress.
That way, when it happens for real, you’ll be prepared to face it.
Do You Train To Fight To Your Gun? Could You Fight Off An Ambush To Do It?