Wednesday, September 1, 2010

The Academy...

I'm referring, of course, to the Fox Reality television show The Academy. I was watching this "reality" show recently when something caught my attention.

When the recruits are at the range they start every firing cycle standing "cowboy" with their hand on their gun, milking it to get a good grip. This is apparently the way the LASD teaches its people to shoot.

Isn't the idea to be able to put your hand on your gun WITHOUT WARNING? That's how I was always taught, and how I teach. You start with your hands in front of you where they normally are. Like you're writing in your notebook, or resting your arms across the front of your belt to cover your weapons, or (God forbid) FIGHTING with someone.

Teaching an officer to start a firing cycle with his or her hand on the gun does the officer no favors. If that officer should ever need to draw their firearm quickly, they may spend precious seconds SEARCHING for it because they are so used to already having their hand there to begin with. They also may get used to having time to get a good solid grip before drawing, which is unrealistic. An officer should be able to place his or her hand on their firearm and ALREADY BE in the right position to grip it firmly.

Another side effect of training officers the LASD way, is that they may get so used to having their hand on their gun that they begin walking around with their hand CONSTANTLY on their gun. Many people see this as unnecessarily threatening or intimidating, and I tend to agree. I see it as something I try to avoid.

When the proverbial fecal matter collides with the air circulation device, we depend upon our training and muscle memory to get the job done without a lot of thought. If I have my hands in a different place each time, and I have to reach my hand down to grip my gun and unsnap my holster, I can reliably do so quickly because I always reach to the same place as part of my drawing movement no matter where my hands are to begin with. I can get a good solid shooting grip instantly, and draw within a couple of seconds.

It kinda makes me wonder how many of those kids run around with their holsters unsnapped too...

1 comment:

Mad Jack said...

You're right about this one. Whatever it is that you have to do by way of defending yourself, rest assured that the bad guys are not going to allow you time to get ready. For instance, when you see the right shoulder drop it's a sure bet your hands will not be up in fighting position. Ditto with your pistol.