At close range? You need different options

Creating distance between you and an attacker is generally a good and desirable thing. Trouble is, creating it in an effective manner – and knowing WHEN to create it.

Leslie Buck of Tactical Arts Academy participated in a study with Texas State Troopers. Leslie played the bad guy, and the Trooper knew Leslie was going to draw on him. They performed this experiment repeatedly at different distances between the participants.

I pulled my training gun on the troopers nearly 200 times and every single time, they died. Why? They knew it was coming, but they clearly lost over and over again. The problem was that they were trying to out-draw me. Though I would love to say it was because of my awesome draw stroke, it was simply because action is faster than reaction. I start first, and they were trying to catch up.

Emphasis added.

Yes, our monkey brain tells us to “get away” or to bash head with rock (these days, that translates to draw our own gun and shoot). However, that’s obviously not the effective strategy. What is?

Lt. Ballarta suggested they consider trying to grab or trap the hands of the bad guy before trying to draw their own gun. The difference was huge. At close range, the majority of participants were able to stop or redirect my draw and get their own gun out to get shots on me.

The results of the study clearly indicated that when already close, coming even closer was safer.

But again, we’ve got “monkey brain” to overcome, and that requires training and practice. And this sort of skill comes from scenario training and “force-on-force” (you don’t get this sort of thing on the square range, flinging lead at cardboard targets).

There’s a lot more to it, and I suggest you give Leslie’s full article a read.

Useful stuff there.

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