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Annie on the right, her friend K on the left.

StructureClearingK&Annie.jpg


Clark Sparrow, of Sparrow Defense in Bogart, GA ran a simunitions structure-clearing class last fall. He's running it again in March and is using this catwalk observation photo of Annie and K in some of the promo material.

I will note that Annie successfully "eliminated" two threat actors during the day but, during one exchange, she also suffered a "mortal wound" to the top of her left thigh. The resulting bruise indicated that a real shot would most likely have shattered her femur and ripped her femoral artery. It was high enough that it may have also shattered her pelvis and would have been extremely difficult for an amateur to successfully stop the bleeding.

In other words, even though she definitively "killed" the bad guy, she would likely have bled to death in a matter of minutes.

We have never been soldiers or LEOs. We have never been paid to run toward the bad stuff. We have no delusions of being "tacti-cool" and no desire to be "plate carriers." Only in the worst-case scenario, being left with no alternative, would we ever be clearing a structure. But if you're going to train, you better train for the worst-case scenario.

At minimum, it can help you understand the consequences of your choices.
 

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The way the real cops clear a structure is send in the k9 first. Unless you are clearing blocks in Fallujah, or the doggies are tied up elsewhere. I can promise you that clearing a building with a real armed bad guy or guys in there is not a game, and a scenario where Joe Civilian should need to do that would be as likely as me winning the NY lottery (I live in the Midwest). How much are they charging for that "training"?
 

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Is there any reason why a concealed carrier shouldn’t seek training on how best to work angles in a structure? The average “Joe Civilian” concealed carrier isn’t going to shoot anyone, ever, statistically speaking. By that logic, why bother to train at all? I say good on them for seeking knowledge.
 

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your are so lucky to have Annie protecting you;) good for both of you. you prove education never ends. you ar e both inspiring
 

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All training is good training. Even if you learn what not to do. Learning to shoot while moving, utilizing cover and concealment, tactical reloads, slicing the pie, clearing structures, all great training for cops, soldiers, civilians alike. Learn your weapon and keep it handy.
 

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Is there any reason why a concealed carrier shouldn’t seek training on how best to work angles in a structure? The average “Joe Civilian” concealed carrier isn’t going to shoot anyone, ever, statistically speaking. By that logic, why bother to train at all? I say good on them for seeking knowledge.
My hyper-sensitivity is to the army of faux-SWAT/"special ops" people selling training of questionable provenance to unknowing people. No, all training is not good training, as we have seen from some of threads in this sub-forum showing some ace instructors having the unknowing shoot rounds past each other's heads.

I do not know the guy involved in the training school in this thread, but a casual google search showed that apparently the same person had a one-sided gunfight with a family pet. Things may be different by region and over time, but in the time and place I was a law enforcement officer, sending a round down the tube to dispatch a dog was not only a no-no, it was a sign of cowardice and weakness, so it just did not happen.

My shooting circle of about 8 guys includes about 3 or 4 ex cops, no ex military except me. A bunch of clowns tried to get us to buy a training package from them by citing resumes full of military achievements. I told my friends it was bogus and, after they all saw the presentation, they agreed.

There is lots of good training out there. I suggest being choosey about where to spend money because this is all about the bucks.
 

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My hyper-sensitivity is to the army of faux-SWAT/"special ops" people selling training of questionable provenance to unknowing people. No, all training is not good training, as we have seen from some of threads in this sub-forum showing some ace instructors having the unknowing shoot rounds past each other's heads.

I do not know the guy involved in the training school in this thread, but a casual google search showed that apparently the same person had a one-sided gunfight with a family pet. Things may be different by region and over time, but in the time and place I was a law enforcement officer, sending a round down the tube to dispatch a dog was not only a no-no, it was a sign of cowardice and weakness, so it just did not happen.

My shooting circle of about 8 guys includes about 3 or 4 ex cops, no ex military except me. A bunch of clowns tried to get us to buy a training package from them by citing resumes full of military achievements. I told my friends it was bogus and, after they all saw the presentation, they agreed.

There is lots of good training out there. I suggest being choosey about where to spend money because this is all about the bucks.
So maybe it's an example of what not to do...
 

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I guess that is so. As I stated, I am hyper-sensitive about this issue. To me, it is like seeing the bogus war heroes wearing uniforms or decorations they did not earn. Except here, there is the additional factor of a financial incentive to sell any and all as training. There are not too many Jeff Coopers out there. Shop carefully.
 

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My hyper-sensitivity is to the army of faux-SWAT/"special ops" people selling training of questionable provenance to unknowing people. No, all training is not good training, as we have seen from some of threads in this sub-forum showing some ace instructors having the unknowing shoot rounds past each other's heads.

I do not know the guy involved in the training school in this thread, but a casual google search showed that apparently the same person had a one-sided gunfight with a family pet. Things may be different by region and over time, but in the time and place I was a law enforcement officer, sending a round down the tube to dispatch a dog was not only a no-no, it was a sign of cowardice and weakness, so it just did not happen.

My shooting circle of about 8 guys includes about 3 or 4 ex cops, no ex military except me. A bunch of clowns tried to get us to buy a training package from them by citing resumes full of military achievements. I told my friends it was bogus and, after they all saw the presentation, they agreed.

There is lots of good training out there. I suggest being choosey about where to spend money because this is all about the bucks.
You make a good point that there are shysters out there. Hopefully the free market weeds them out. Word gets around and folks don't buy their product. Train safe. Train often. Protect you and yours.
 
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Discussion Starter #12
The way the real cops clear a structure is send in the k9 first. Unless you are clearing blocks in Fallujah, or the doggies are tied up elsewhere. I can promise you that clearing a building with a real armed bad guy or guys in there is not a game, and a scenario where Joe Civilian should need to do that would be as likely as me winning the NY lottery (I live in the Midwest). How much are they charging for that "training"?
Another thing that isn't a game is jumping into a situation you know nothing about and proceeding to lecture everyone.

You admit you don't know the man involved in the training school. You should have started and stopped right there. Because you certainly don't know anything about us and are wholly unqualified to comment on our choices or decisions.

I agree it is critically important to understand and acknowledge the vast difference in how professionals clear buildings. It is equally important to acknowledge that professionals clearing buildings are often coming from the outside - a position of relative safety and a situation with resources.

We lowly Joe Civilians are usually the ones caught inside, unprepared, with little but our wits and whatever we have strapped on our bodies to get us out. Your opinion is irrelevant here, but our opinion is that learning something about maneuvering to safety in such a situation is more useful than cowering in a corner hoping someone like you can rescue us.

That's what the course was about. It was taught by several people, one of whom is a well-regarded and experienced Rangemaster instructor we have known for several years. The students were all experienced shooters who have worked together before. The course was a sort of "trial run." You wouldn't know any of this, of course, because you didn't bother to ask.

You aren't the only person on the internet who goes shooting with real cops. Two Saturdays a month Annie shoots with members of the Walton County Georgia Sheriffs Office Tactical Response Unit, and has done so for a couple of years. Real-life, active-duty, tactically-trained LEOs. The kind that wear the gear, carry the weapons and drive the armored vehicles. We have cookouts with them sometimes. You might even say they're our buddies. You wouldn't know any of this because, again, you didn't bother to ask.

Every Sunday afternoon Annie trains for 4-5 hours with an advanced shooting group that usually includes one or more active-duty LEOs and/or ex-military personnel. Annie can hold her own with these folks when the group shoots POST/FBI/Air Marshall quals. Once again, you wouldn't know this because, well, you know...

Your google-fu aside, I read on the internet that Donald Trump colluded with the Russians, Saddam Hussein had WMDs, and Anna Nicole married for love. But I didn't go off lecturing people about it until I asked a few questions.

As I said in the OP, we are not ex-mil/ex-LEO or anything else. You can bet your a$$ that if we are outside a structure when the trouble starts we will be going away from it, and leaving the clearing to trained professionals. But as Joe Civilians who take seriously the need to be both as competent and capable as we can be, my acknowledgment of our limitations is not at all a sign you should jump in and make a bunch of assumptions about us and what we should or shouldn't be dong.

You haven't added a single positive thing to this thread. You didn't ask any questions, no one asked for your opinion. You didn't provide any useful criteria by which other readers might make better decisions. You just thumped your chest and bitched about something you don't know anything about. Thanks for being one of the people who make the internet what it is.
 

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TWF: Sorry I came across that way, or you took it that way. As I said, I have seen so much of this nonsense from people overselling their military and/or law enforcement experience that it appears to be commonplace and a lot of folks fall for it. I have seen people on this forum asking sincere questions about various kinds of training where to a professional the answer is an obvious, "No, do not waste your time." My points were to 1) keep the training applicable to likely, real world scenarios, and 2) be skeptical of anyone making money off of you for training purposes until they and the training are proven OK. I think you are reading more into my posts than was there.
 

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It's great that Annie is interested in learning how to actually fight with a pistol. If nothing else, Annie now understands the risks involved, and she has some idea of how to move through a hostile environment should the circumstances demand it. Sometimes you end up choosing to do something, not because the odds are favorable, but simply because the odds are better than the alternatives.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
It's great that Annie is interested in learning how to actually fight with a pistol. If nothing else, Annie now understands the risks involved, and she has some idea of how to move through a hostile environment should the circumstances demand it. Sometimes you end up choosing to do something, not because the odds are favorable, but simply because the odds are better than the alternatives.
For me, and for Annie as well, these types of courses are about coordination. Most defensive training is done in an isolated context - as if only the perpetrator and the defender exist. But a significant number of bad things occur to couples, families and groups. Plus, when you start waving firearms around people can get hurt a long way off. Most of us are probably familiar with how many bystanders are shot by NYPD every year.

So classes like this, if they are well-run, can be enormously helpful in getting familiar with keeping your partner safe, coordinating communication, coordinating movement, etc.

If Annie and I are together and something bad happens it is highly likely that we will both be armed. If Annie is with almost any of her female friends and something bad happens, they are all likely to be armed. (In fact, if Annie is with almost anyone she knows and something bad happens, it’s likely everyone will be armed.) Add to this that we are not youngsters anymore and spend the great majority of our time inside some sort of structure.

Now which is better - that they (or we) have some prior experience coordinating communication, movement and safety? Or not?

This was a safe, simulated environment for people to learn about dangerous situations. The course used multiple video and photo angles to review participant movements (as well as multiple live observers.)

Simply seeing yourself unknowingly muzzle someone you’re supposed to be keeping safe is an enormous eye-opener. Knowing the mistake you just made caused you, or your partner, to get shot is a big wake-up call. It is a stark reminder that once you unholster that firearm a lot of bad $hit can happen.

This is definitely not a beginner course. It might not even be an intermediate course, and it should never be treated as playing Rambo on a movie set. As much as anything, participants should have a mature, well-informed defensive mindset. But I want that anytime I am (or we are) around people carrying lethal weapons.

At the end of the day, all of this is about worst case scenarios. It is statistically improbable that we’ll ever need it. But the fundamental act of carrying a firearm is a preventive measure against a statistically improbable event. So making better decisions, getting better at assessing the immediate situation, and improving one’s chances of avoiding a lethal mistake under stress are important to us.


Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk
 

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Discussion Starter #16
TWF: Sorry I came across that way, or you took it that way. As I said, I have seen so much of this nonsense from people overselling their military and/or law enforcement experience that it appears to be commonplace and a lot of folks fall for it. I have seen people on this forum asking sincere questions about various kinds of training where to a professional the answer is an obvious, "No, do not waste your time." My points were to 1) keep the training applicable to likely, real world scenarios, and 2) be skeptical of anyone making money off of you for training purposes until they and the training are proven OK. I think you are reading more into my posts than was there.
Understood @Greenrunner. As far as I am concerned the issue is hereby laid to rest. Carry on.
 

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Thanks. I probably should stay out of this training subforum. I think I keep my mouth shut pretty much but have a tendency to pop off here.
 

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Simunitions training is dangerous so I would hope that the instructor is competent to conduct the training. Other than that there isn’t much better training than force on force. You may never clear a building but to know that you can engage a threat while being shot at and hurt is a crucial survival skill.
 
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