What’s Wrong With This Picture: Disruptive Environments Edition

I consider the entire world a disruptive environment. I’m OK with that. As the Talking Heads pointed out, heaven is a place where nothing ever happens. As the touchy-feely T-shirt says (or would, if there was enough room) life turns out best for people who make the best of how things turn out. Which is often a matter of proper training. Which doesn’t include a perfunctory left-right “goon check” after sending lead downrange. (You need to actually look.) Here’s another one: training with a steel target removes uncertainty. The CLANK tells you you’ve hit your target and cues you to move on to the next. Under stress, in the real world, you probably won’t know exactly where your round went and (more to the point) if it did any good. Other than that?


  1. avatar Haiku Guy says:

    How much do you pay
    To stand in front of trainee
    Pulling his weapon?

  2. avatar Dillon says:

    Why do we have to consistently rag on this type of training? What else would you have them train on? You got what you got, training is not perfect. You have to use what you can, not like you can put real people out there to shoot at? There are solid things taught in these classes, sure maybe people think it looks dumb but who cares, if it saves your life…. A lot of this ragging just sounds like excuses for not training.

    1. avatar Ron Burgundy says:

      The metal target argument is not too bad I’d say, you don’t know how your rounds will impact in real life by the ‘pling’ sound. Paper or something else non-plinking would be good.

      The ‘goon check’ looks silly, but it’s just a mannerism that needs to get hammered in that’ll make you snap out of tunnel vision.

      Dumping rounds from inside a car is great for loss of hearing and should be a very very last resort.

      1. avatar Not Your Mother says:

        Steel is great for what it does. It’s better than paper, but if you’re concerned about “pings” instilling bad habits, then work paper targets for some of the drills. Shake it up a bit. It’s not hard.

        Probably the single best way to get past the bad-habits from training issue is to do Force On Force with “real” targets, i.e. Simunitions or Airsoft (from a real trainer, not the 26 year old neighbor who still lives in his mom’s basement down the street).

        1. avatar Scott says:

          I think in the real world, if you shot someone, you would hear some “report” from the baddie… gargling or screams or yelps. If you hear nothing, fire again for good measure.

  3. avatar Fingers says:

    Looks pretty intense.

    I would rather go do it, learn some things, modify it to suit my own training needs. What we need is a comparison with anything else out there that is equivalent.
    Otherwise we are just armchair quarterbacking it.

  4. avatar CPO15 says:

    Mick Huxnall, Simply Red. Maybe the Talking Heads too, but not in my memory.

  5. avatar Hello World says:

    Actually what annoys me is people standing and shooting; at no point should you be still unless you’re behind cover. Also, another thing that annoys the shit out of me is people like Corey and Erika who continually look behind when they’re done standing and shooting. If you need to look behind you to see if there’s a “threat”, you’re already fucked.

  6. I’m looking forward to more “tactical thoughts” from the online marketing expert.

    [Something about “staying in one’s own lane” needs to be inserted here]

  7. avatar Dave S says:

    Shouldnt ANY DGU be the last resort?

  8. avatar Fabian_CH says:

    I’m not sure, are you criticizing the course? Might have to cut back on the sarcasm if you are, I’m not quite getting your points…

  9. avatar Mike Crognale says:

    I disagree with the “perfunctory goon check” comment. As a graduate of Frontsight I agree that the look is absolutely necessary. If I ever have to defend against the goons I’ll be moving for cover and checking six all the while. I learned that as part of the Defensive Handgun course at Frontsight.

    1. avatar Ron Burgundy says:

      I mentioned in another post that it looks silly, but I think one of the main purposes is to get out of tunnel vision. If you learn to look around, that helps a ton.

      1. avatar Not Your Mother says:

        The only improvement on the “goon check” would be to do it the Gabe Suarez way, which is to both turn your head and your muzzle in the same direction.

        Beyond just “snapping out of tunnel vision”, what will you do if you’re gun is pointed straight ahead at 12:00, but you actually do see another “goon” at 3:00? You’ll scramble to react. BUT, if your muzzle and head sweep side to side, you’ll be precious microseconds ahead of your adversary.

        The downside is that many (most?) instructors won’t teach that method, not because it’s inferior, but because they are scared of the square range safety rules and liabilities their lawyers warn them about.

    2. avatar Rightontheleftcoast says:

      Just a newb at this, but in two different handgun courses, one by LEO trainer, one by former Navy Seal, the “get off the x and look behind” motion after the shots, was part of the basic course. One used steel plates, the other paper at a close enough distance to see results. I learned a lot from both, well worth the money.

    3. avatar TJ says:

      “Perfunctory” was the important part. He said don’t do a perfunctory check, actually look.

      1. avatar Mike Crognale says:

        Yeah, I got that part. Frontsight trains to look, hard. Not just a quick head turn. The other thing that got mentioned is about not moving after the first shot without assuring the original threat was neutralized. Front Sight trains us to put two in the center mass and follow the perp to the ground maintaining an aim point with the gun. During this we were taught to look hard in both directions to assess any additional threat. If the perp tries to return fire then one shot to the cranial cavity. Then MOVE.

  10. avatar J says:

    The problem with real life is, its hard to replicate and keep all of the range “safety rules” we have become accustomed to. Shoot and move scenarios are by their very nature a little tricky especially in larger number but we performed these kinds of maneuver drills in the Corps fairly regularly.

    There is no question you have to move folks up to it slowly and deliberately but once they are there, you need to push them to the next logical step, which is adding movement with a little artificially introduced stress.

    I really didn’t see anything in this that seemed out of line.

  11. avatar Doug says:

    Re: steel targets, shooting something like paper that doesn’t give feedback that it’s been hit trains you to shoot AT something and then move on, whether you hit it or not. If you shoot at someone and they just stand there and continue to shoot back at you, you should keep shooting, not move to the next target because you popped off X number of rounds. The ring of the steel should be taken as a reaction by your target, proof that your firing has had effect. In the field instead of hearing the steel ring and seeing the plate vibrate, your target may go down, flee, or duck behind something.

    Not to mention that in a training environment if you’re not hitting your target you need to make corrections, and you can’t make corrections without first knowing that you’re missing.

  12. avatar Chance says:

    Robert Farago versus Travis Haley? You’re out of your league, dude.

    1. avatar Tod says:

      lol, +1
      Just about the only critique folks here are going to legitimately have on guys like Haley is that they’re too Hollywood. Aside from that, let the guy do his stuff.

      1. avatar Joke & Dagger says:

        Trust me, that dude is no operator. He has no goatee.

  13. avatar nemsis says:

    The only problem I see is I wasn’t there.

    1. avatar Infantry_Steve says:

      same here-I’d love to train w/ HSP if i ever get the chance.

      As far as the goon check goes: yeah they look silly, but (as has already been pointed out) a major benefit to training to “check for cuz” is that it forces you to take your eyes off the original target and does a decent job of not only accounting for tunnel vision but snapping you back to reality.

  14. avatar matt says:

    Is this guy a gun trainer or A confused metrosexual businessman with ADD? I mean if you go thru his website he also sells his own lip balm, shower cleanser, moisturizer, sun screen and shaving gel. The only two people they talk about on his site is Travis and Jon Chan who leads a team of writers and artists and software developers. I mean who the hell came up with the business plan for this guy?

    “Hey lets start a company!”
    “What are we going to do?”
    “Gun training, skin creme, software development, web site design, social networking, film, photography, and creative services.”
    “Thats brilliant!”


    I swear some people will just buy anything remotely connected with magpul. I guess it is proof of how effective marketing is.

    1. avatar J says:

      I’ve heard of diversification but that’s disturbing…

    2. avatar matt says:

      And jesus christ his stuff is expensive. I get a 16 oz bottle of Dial shower gel for $4 or $5, he is selling 9 oz for $25. And his shaving gel is $30 for 3oz compared to $6 for 9.5 oz of Edge gel. Plus you have to factor in shipping. I wonder who the hell buys that stuff. I guess tacticool operators who are performing critical tasks in which razor burn might effect their performance:

      Designed for military, law enforcement, adventurers or businessman who spend time in the outdoors or on the road, Turo Multi-Active Shave will both exfoliate and protect skin, defeating razor burn and inflamation that can distract when performing critical tasks.

      1. avatar J says:

        That’s fine; he’s working with his wife as well…family business but, a little disclaimer might be in order. Not your typical business mix for sure.

    3. avatar Chance says:

      Haley’s wife is a dermatologist, and he’s had several flair-ups of melanoma. Consequently, skin care is something of a big deal for him.

      1. avatar matt says:

        That may be, but I’m pretty sure I can get sun screen which is just as effective for a fraction of the cost

        1. avatar Chance says:

          This is true.

    4. avatar Kvjavs says:

      Travis Haley has/had skin cancer. That’s why he’s pushing an importance of skin protection in the field.

      I think you’re just jealous that he has established himself so well in the industry.

  15. All the training I have taken has us doing a complete three-sixty looking for additional threats after initially engaging the target, then topping off our weapons.

  16. I’d rather shoot at steel than dump dozens of rounds into the same paper target standing in a line before looking at it like a lot of classes do.

    In a multiple threat drill like this you need targets that react in some way otherwise counting shots on paper instills worse habits of shooting X-rounds and moving on without knowning what it did to the target.

    The clang = bad guy falling down or whatever. It’s a better stimulus than zero response from shooting paper.

    Use of falling steel would be even better. Particularly a target like the MGM Triple Dropper that takes several good hits to fall down all the way.

    1. avatar Giao Nguyen says:

      One of the classes I’ve attended teaches following the target down as part of it. It trains you to see and verify that the target is down before moving on. That class’s approach to (rifle) safety is very different from Haley’s. Watch some of his other videos. Haley will promote going on safe while you check. The class I attended promoted going on safe AFTER everything is clear, post goon-check.

      These are subtle differences between classes. I leave you to determine which one is best for you.

  17. avatar jmkcolorado says:

    not with you on this one, robert…
    (but do agree with “goon check” vs “actually look”)

    however, your preference for steel clank is misplaced. even in competition, just because you hear “clank” doesn’t mean the plate falls.
    if you train yourself to hear the clank and then move on, you’re going to end up losing, dead, or worse.
    principle dictates that you shoot until the threat is ended: the threat is down, you’re somewhere else, or you have another, more imminent, threat to face.

    i’m at the bottom of the ladder when it comes to expertise, but i gotta tell ya’ – haley was Force Recon. and very little of what he teaches has been contradicted by the various SWAT, LE, PMC, and SEALs that i’ve trained under.

    i’ll stick with him (and them) on this kinda stuff.

  18. avatar tfunk says:

    My biggest issue was the damn music.

    Oh, and the flagging of participants from time to time. 🙂

  19. avatar Regulus says:

    I used to think gun owners where on the same side. Now I’m starting to see there is a “Caste System” among us.

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