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Ex-Delta guy on competition

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#1 the_swede

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Posted 14 November 2013 - 10:30 AM

Whole article found here: http://www.tigerswan...rswan-May09.pdf

 

 

The company’s unusual name was born in the old mining town of Tiger in the Swan River Valley of Colorado, but its foundation is firmly rooted in Fort Bragg, North Carolina, home of the U.S. Army Special Operations Command. The two principals, Jim Reese and Brian Searcy, are both veterans of the Army’s most elite Special Operations unit and it is from this fraternity that the company draws its staffing. Searcy, a retired Sergeant Major and top ranked competitive shooter whom the Army also sent to Harvard for an executive leadership program, describes TigerSwan as a risk mitigation crisis management company, “Providing solutions to uncertainty.” As you would expect from men of their background, it also has a strong core competency in firearms and tactical training.

 

All the TigerSwan instructors have experience in competitive shooting, and this strongly influences their training program. It may seem incongruous that veterans of the most elite hostage rescue unit in the world would draw from civilian competitive shooters. In actuality, it dovetails neatly with their philosophy of acquiring the best available information and adapting it to their mission requirements. Searcy argues that the closest thing to combat is shooting in competition. As for those who dispute that by saying, “Competition isn’t combat,” Searcy agrees. He believes that you use competition to practice shooting and you practice tactics when doing tactical training such as force-on-force or flowing through a shoot house. He states that most people who dismiss competition shooting “use tactics as an excuse for poor marksmanship.”

 

As for whether competition develops bad habits that will show up if a shooter is involved in a gunfight, both Searcy and Copper just smile and say they’ve never had a problem distinguishing between the two. Searcy recalls that even within their unit, there was resistance when the first group of operators started training with civilian competition shooters, as many operators already believed themselves to be the best shooters in the world. Searcy’s assault team was the first to train with Rob Leatham, and Copper notes that the “high grip” was one of the things they adopted once it was proven to help operators shoot better. As for those techniques that were discarded, Copper replies, “I don’t remember since we never used it.”

 

As Operations Sergeant Major for their unit, Searcy relates that he was largely responsible for the annexation, refurbishment and reopening of additional ranges on Fort Bragg, which allowed civilian shooters and soldiers to shoot against each other in monthly competitions. Searcy grins and says, “It’s one thing to get beat by a fellow unit operator, but quite another to get beat by some 50-year-old, overweight civilian.”

 

Having shot almost every type of competitive sport from skeet to bull’s-eye to Service Rifle and IPSC, Searcy believes it is impossible to improve without shooting in competition, as you will inevitably plateau if shooting only on a square range by yourself. The stress of being against the clock, against other shooters and having an audience watch you forces you to develop the mental management necessary to execute the correct subconscious weapons handling skills under pressure.

Having trained with the best civilian competitive shooters, and filtering what works in the ultimate competition of real world combat around the world, TigerSwan now offers that information to military, law enforcement and civilian students. “Not to pass on that experience and knowledge would almost be criminal,” says Copper.

 

Amazing what common sense can do.


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#2 Perfecto

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Posted 14 November 2013 - 10:45 AM

But wait, one million Tac-Timmies can't be wrong.


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#3 Les

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Posted 14 November 2013 - 11:16 AM

But wait, one hundred thousand IDPA members can't be wrong.

 

FIFY


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#4 ZombieTactics

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Posted 14 November 2013 - 12:33 PM

 

 

As for those who dispute that by saying, “Competition isn't combat,” Searcy agrees. He believes that you use competition to practice shooting and you practice tactics when doing tactical training such as force-on-force or flowing through a shoot house. He states that most people who dismiss competition shooting “use tactics as an excuse for poor marksmanship.”

 

There is no contradiction in any of this.

It begs the question as to why so many competition-bigots make fun of tactical training, force-on-force or shoot-house exercises.

If this opinion piece makes the case that "timmies" should stop criticizing competition, it equally makes the case that competition-is-king types need to check their premises as well. 


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#5 the_swede

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Posted 14 November 2013 - 02:13 PM

There is no contradiction in any of this.

It begs the question as to why so many competition-bigots make fun of tactical training, force-on-force or shoot-house exercises.

If this opinion piece makes the case that "timmies" should stop criticizing competition, it equally makes the case that competition-is-king types need to check their premises as well. 

 

I think the Timmy-bashing among the competition crowd is not because the comp guys despise force-on-force, shoot houses etc etc in general or don't realize that combat shooting requires some other/different training as a complement. I think it comes from watching a lot of the guys who take part in that kind of training wearing their plate carriers and yelling "CONTACT FRONT" who are not cops or military but normal citizens who probalby not will get in to a fire fight wielding an AR15. Their combat effectivnes would probably increase more if they joined an USPSA club and bought one of Master Ben's books doing 15 min of dryfire every night. But to each his own.

 

 

“...use tactics as an excuse for poor marksmanship.”

 

 

I think this is very true! When I practice on our range at work I meet a lot of guys pulling all kinds of excuses "but you didn't scan & assess" "Yeah I hit the target, he would've gone down from all those hits that are somewhere low left in the legs."



#6 ZombieTactics

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Posted 14 November 2013 - 02:51 PM

... guys who take part in that kind of training wearing their plate carriers and yelling "CONTACT FRONT" who are not cops or military ...

 

... a lot of guys pulling all kinds of excuses ... "Yeah I hit the target, he would've gone down from all those hits that are somewhere low left in the legs."

 

I have issues with this behavior as well.



#7 foofighter

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Posted 14 November 2013 - 03:39 PM

There is no contradiction in any of this.

It begs the question as to why so many competition-bigots make fun of tactical training, force-on-force or shoot-house exercises.
 

 

Because its usually a bunch of fat COD players who badly want to join the army, but their moms wont allow them.

Instead they spend their lives researching tactical superiority and taking stupid classes from Bob Bincus and Jimmy Jaeger (or whatever their names are) hoping and preparing that some catastrophe will happen so they can rescue a virgin somewhere and maybe finally get laid.

 

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#8 TheBlackKnight

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Posted 16 November 2013 - 07:24 PM

There is no contradiction in any of this.

It begs the question as to why so many competition-bigots make fun of tactical training, force-on-force or shoot-house exercises.

If this opinion piece makes the case that "timmies" should stop criticizing competition, it equally makes the case that competition-is-king types need to check their premises as well. 

 What happened here is a misrepresentation of the issue. 

 

What you won't find is a large number of competition shooters bagging on tactical training wholesale, but rather the James Yeager Contractor Fantasy camp Force on Paper shit, and the overall snubbed nose attitude Tactical Hipsters have towards "bullet golfers". 

 

What you will find is a large number of "defensive shooters" who either where lied to, or have decided to shun and shit on action shooting competition wholesale. 

 

 

Just a shooting rant here: All mental stuff aside, I have met many people in the defensive shooting realm who I think over analyze tactics (mostly bad shooters who i think are trying to make up for their shooting). Now I'm not GI Joe but I have studied the details of many gunfights and I believe (again all mental stuff aside.....which is THEE most important) that most of the time the victor was the guy who was just faster, more accurate and flat out better with a gun. Now don't get me wrong I am all about tactics and I've got some back ground in them. I just think because of the fact they are much less black and white (where good shooting is not) many people decide to focus too much on them and in turn less on being more skillful with their weapon.

-Bob Vogel
 

 
There is a large group of people who hold this type of belief. You will find plenty of LEO's and civilians who have been told competition is bad and believe it. Some cite the lack of tactics and others the specialized equipment. The underlying thing that I have seen is that these folks see themselves as "serious" people and competition shooters as "gamers" who are not serious. No matter how good the competition shooter is he cannot be seen as "serious" because he plays a game; he must be discounted and rejected. The most vocal of this crowd is the trainer who wants to teach them. This group is much larger than all the competitive shooters combined so there is a lot of MONEY to be made catering to them. That is why the debate rages on and the belief that competition is bad is promoted and protected. Just follow the money to find a school near you to be taught the evils of comp!

-Keith Garcia


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#9 funshoot

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Posted 17 November 2013 - 11:35 AM

>> It begs the question as to why so many competition-bigots make fun of tactical training, force-on-force or shoot-house exercises.

 

Because low skilled timmies that make fun of competition as untactical fare poorly there (if they ever show up...) due to a lack of fundamental skills. Instead of realizing and correcting their low fundamental skills they instead insist on tactical training, force-on-force and/or shoot-house exercises.

 

This is endemic in military and police circles who just can't be bothered to ever learn fundamental skills. Civilians attending Operator Fantasy Camp are likely worse. There's no emphasis to train solid fundamentals. Everyone thinks they understand fundamentals because any novice can quote their training institution's description of them. Novice shooters know the fundmentals. Master shooters apply the fundamentals.

 

Skill standards good enough to pass qualification in basic/academy will continue to pass a twenty year veteran. No public sector marksmanship training procedure requires any skill progression beyond basic. Not one! Many tactical trainers don't even bother to establish any skill baseline or insist such a thing isn't useful.

 

Can't pass a simple ball-and-dummy drill or suppress flinch well enough to pass a dot drill. Never mind, we need Simunitions for force-on-force.

 

Can't complete El Presidente with 12 hits somewhere on target (never mind elapsed time or score) but that's gaymer shit. We need to train for Dynamic Critical Incidents in the shoothouse.

 

Can't shoot a series of shots well enough to be called a group from any position beyond prone supported but we're designated marksmen preparing for tactical environments.

 

Then some novice level turd billing himself a tactical trainer tells these fools that practicting for and participating in local competition will somehow instill bad habits.


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#10 mustakrakish

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Posted 17 November 2013 - 03:26 PM

Most police and military small arms training programs aren't designed to produce good shooters.  They're designed to produce shooters who can administratively handle weapons without inadvertently killing someone and who can usually be trusted to sling lead in the correct general direction.  Shooting is a very small part of what most of them do and the fortunate reality is that many of them will never do it in anger, ever.  Thus, with public sector training budgets being what they are, the emphasis is most commonly focused on skills that are used more frequently.

 

Force-on-force is an extremely useful tool, especially when first used to open a shooter's eyes to the inadequacies of only shooting cardboard on kd ranges.  However, it was never meant for the beginner's class, and should not be used as such.  As you noted, an unfortunate reality of the public sector is that most communities never move beyond the beginner's class by design.



#11 funshoot

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Posted 18 November 2013 - 01:42 PM

Most police and military small arms training programs aren't designed to produce good shooters ... Force-on-force is an extremely useful tool, especially when first used to open a shooter's eyes to the inadequacies of only shooting cardboard on kd ranges.  However, it was never meant for the beginner's class, and should not be used as such.  As you noted, an unfortunate reality of the public sector is that most communities never move beyond the beginner's class by design.

 

I appreciate it isn't possible to insist on high level skill upon graduation from recruit/academy training. It's called <em>basic </em>training for a reason. The problem is the complete lack of required progression.

The first time musician plays "Hot Cross Buns" after learning how to hold the instrument. The first time programmer codes up "Hello World." The first time shooter completes a simple qualification at academy, basic or CHL class. All good.

There's a problem if the musician or programmer remain stuck on "Hot Cross Buns" or "Hello World" ten or twenty years later. Yet, a cop or soldier can successfully qualify on the same academy/basic qualification course throughout their career. They forever remain at novice levels unless they get involved in higher-level programs, such as competition. Worse, Dunning-Kruger effect fools them into believing their service experience merits value in this realm and an equally ignorant public believes them.

Force-on-force is extremely useful. So is a better application of fundamental skills. Too bad the personnel who remain at beginner levels demand the former and ignore the latter.


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#12 mustakrakish

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Posted 18 November 2013 - 04:02 PM

I like your analogy, but I'm not sure that it applies here.  To continue with it, we're not discussing musicians for the most part; we're discussing people in other trades who have a small chance of being called upon to play a song one day.  Let's run some numbers:

 

Justifiable homicides per year: 400 is a good round number, although it can vary a bit higher or lower than that by year.  (Source: http://www.fbi.gov/a...e-data-table-14 ).  As that only covers shootings that resulted in someone dying and the FBI doesn't track total shootings, we have to estimate that part.  Let's multiply this by five for a good conservative SWAG, so we'll say 2000 shootings per year.

 

How many LEOs are in the US?  In 2008, it was around 1.1 million, of which ~765,000 have the power to arrest someone.  I'm comfortable with assuming for the purposes of this thought experiment that only LEOs with arrest powers will be shooting at anyone, even though this isn't entirely accurate.  If we divide the number of shootings by officers, we wind up with a .026% of an individual officer shooting at someone on a given year.  If we multiply that by a thirty year career, the chance rises to 0.078% - almost, but not quite, completely insignificant.

 

Admittedly my math is rough - I'm using some estimates and assumptions (although I believe that I'm erring very conservatively and suspect that the numbers are actually lower), and some agencies obviously will be operating quite a bit above the national average.  I suspect that even with the busier agencies, the number is still below 1%.

 

Now, if we compare the time the average officer will spend shooting "for realz" with the amount of time he or she will be driving around, responding to medical emergencies, writing tickets, talking on the radio, interacting with the public, or even doing paperwork, and we accept that there's only so much money and time (time being the biggest factor), and that training budgets should be used as efficiently as possible, we start to see that shooting is pretty far down on the list of priorities...as it currently is, and as it probably should be.  They're police officers first, and shooters...well, not even second.  More like tenth.

 

The situation in the military is the same for most commands.  Even after wrapping up a decade of two simultaneous wars, you'll find that the ratio of personnel shooting at other people to personnel doing something else is very, very small.  Even the people who were shooting generally did not do a whole lot of it.

 

To go back to the budget issue, it's not always just a matter of being an officer down on the roster for the shift or paying the OT for someone to cover him.  Sometimes it's a very basic matter of infrastructure.  When I was playing the training game back in the heady days of the early oughts, we had one indoor and one outdoor range, each with 12 lanes, serving three bases and numerous commands.  We could reliably knock out 60 shooters per day, per range, when using the "afloat" course of fire - basically kindergarten for shooters and the course used for wrench-turners and electricians standing watch on duty days in a secure area.  When we had security personnel qualifying and had to run the PWC, that slowed down to 15 or 20 shooters per day.  We simply did not have enough hours in the day to train all of the personnel that we were responsible enough so that they could shoot the PWC safely, never mind actually run them through the course.  Fortunately, we did not have to.  Upper management rather wisely accepted that the watchstanders on the waterfront were probably never going to fire their weapons outside of a range (NDs notwithstanding), but that the security that protected them could probably benefit from additional training.



#13 TheBlackKnight

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Posted 18 November 2013 - 04:23 PM

Shooting is a low probability skill no question, but it's a high liability one. Is it really cheaper to pay out for lawsuits then to supply even a box of ammo every so often, and require higher standards as one acquires hash marks?

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#14 dravz

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Posted 18 November 2013 - 07:05 PM

Shooting is a low probability skill no question, but it's a high liability one. Is it really cheaper to pay out for lawsuits then to supply even a box of ammo every so often, and require higher standards as one acquires hash marks?

sent from mah gun,using my sights

 

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#15 rballz

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Posted 18 November 2013 - 07:19 PM

What's Pincus think of this article?



#16 B_Seehawer

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Posted 18 November 2013 - 11:31 PM

What's Pincus think of this article?

Who fucking cares?

We only hope that the article is big enough that he choked on it.

#17 foofighter

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Posted 19 November 2013 - 12:25 AM

Shooting is a low probability skill no question, but it's a high liability one. Is it really cheaper to pay out for lawsuits then to supply even a box of ammo every so often, and require higher standards as one acquires hash marks?

sent from mah gun,using my sights

 

Yes. Do the math.



#18 mustakrakish

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Posted 19 November 2013 - 04:09 AM

Shooting is a low probability skill no question, but it's a high liability one. Is it really cheaper to pay out for lawsuits then to supply even a box of ammo every so often, and require higher standards as one acquires hash marks?

sent from mah gun,using my sights

That's what insurance is for.  It's a sad state of affairs, but I don't make the rules.



#19 funshoot

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Posted 19 November 2013 - 11:04 AM

Now, if we compare the time the average officer will spend shooting "for realz" with the amount of time he or she will be driving around, responding to medical emergencies, writing tickets, talking on the radio, interacting with the public, or even doing paperwork, and we accept that there's only so much money and time (time being the biggest factor), and that training budgets should be used as efficiently as possible, we start to see that shooting is pretty far down on the list of priorities...as it currently is, and as it probably should be.  They're police officers first, and shooters...well, not even second.  More like tenth.
 
 

You make great points but the problem is far greater then resource limitations. We don't need to spend more military resources, time or money, but make better use of what is already being spent. Most public sector training is so deficient improvements can be made just by cleaning up current procedures.

 

In the military context, we have Drill Sergeant Nitwit, himself a novice level shooter, "teaching" raw recruits marksmanship. DS Nitwit is limited to regurgitating nonsense passed on to him by some other novice level shooter. We're lucky if he's even bothered to look up what the actual standards are.

 

Because qualification standards are set low enough that a complete new shooter instructed by a novice can pass them, and because DS Nitwit is completely unaware of what good shooting looks like, he believes he is "good." If he has deployed overseas, he's incorrigible.

 

He'll probably never bother with any higher level shooting experience, such as organized competition. If he does, there are plenty of vocal tactical instructors online and elsewhere to console him into believe his loss was due to a flaw in the competition, not his lack of skill.

 

A competent marksmen can surpass military and police "expert" standards by 300%, possibly more. Many handgun standards can by surpassed by 600% or more. I even wrote a book about this outlining the particulars. But you'd have to attend events to interact with people capable of this.

 

Consider the cost of maintaining a RETS (Remote Engagement Target System) "pop up" range at 40 rounds per attempt and no feedback of where shots are going. Compare this with the cost of simple shooting exercises on a 25 meter range, shooting three round groups and getting feedback of every shot. Better yet, compare the cost of dry practice.

 

The Department of Defense and police departments spend plenty of time and money on shooting. What we lack is will.

 

Motivated teenagers involved in organized competition and motivated to dry practice at home are better marksmen than most school-trained snipers, to say nothing of the general military population. Uncle Sam greatly outspends them but the kids have greater motivation to improve and actually do it.

 

Until this sort of problem is addressed, no amount of money spent on public sector marksmanship training will ever yield significant improvement.


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#20 ZombieTactics

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Posted 19 November 2013 - 11:08 AM

 

Because low skilled timmies that make fun of competition as untactical 

 

Where are all of these timmies "making fun of" competition? I know some people who have given some thought to what is useful and what is not in a given context ... i.e. competition vs. "real world" (or whatever loaded term someone wants to use), but that's an entirely different matter unless someone is extremely thin-skinned.

Yeager gets brought up a lot in this context ... yet he openly recommends USPSA competition to his students. There's no derision or "making fun" coming from his direction towards competitors.

I've personally witnessed Pincus (another popular foil here) teaching CFS to IDPA/USPSA shooters. He didn't make fun of" anything, he simply taught his material and noted how the contexts of competition and self-defense have different markers for success. Is that a radical notion or just common sense?

Seeklander teaches different courses for competition and self-defense. Is he making fun of himself, or does this GM (with actual real-world experience) simply know that there is a difference and teach accordingly? Is this making fun of anything or anyone?

There are guys like Paul Howe who don't find much value in competition. Nonetheless, I've never heard of him making fun of anyone or putting them down. Where's the beef?

Honestly, there are few people who have attended more self-defense and "tactical" classes than I have, and I have never heard anyone (student or instructor) putting down competitors or making fun of them. I am the only person I know of who even engages in "good-natured ribbing", and I am hardly really getting in a twist about any of it. Even at that, I've been very open about the need to add competition to my activities. There is no better way to work certain skills, period.

Seriously, is there even an analog for the derisive term "timmie" or "timmay" used towards competitors regularly anywhere? Given that making fun of "timmies" is a big thing here and elsewhere, your complaint seems like a giant case of projection. 



 






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