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How fast is your draw? Industry standard tells us to procure the weapon system and have it online and lead delivered on target from concealment in 1.5 seconds.
This time reduction drill is generally setup with an eight-inch circle plate elevated at 5 feet at a distance of 5 yards. Shooter standby… and at the beep we draw and deliver. Some of us can make that happen sub-second and even with only flashing the sights over the intended target or simply point shooting with no sight picture acquired… accomplished by thousands and thousands of repetitions over years of training. In competitions winning and losing can be a matter of a tenth of a second.
The problem here is that we are too focused on “time” and not its counterpart “timing”. You will not be waiting for the beep when you are on duty. “Shooter Standby” now translates to “Officer Stay Alive”. If you are not using your security consciousness mindset and staying situationally aware of your surroundings to the extent the enemy’s presence is not detected when they are operating near and around you this can equate to “Officer Down”.
This is not a discussion at this time about the differences that exist between the competition world and the real gunfighting world. I’m not after the concept of time in the competition world is rewarded with trophies and that prevailing in gunfights is rewarded with life or more time living it. While true that’s not the point today.
Think of it this way, in this situation. You are aware of person you do not recognize near or within your operational space. You have been asked to approach the individual with aggressive friendliness to find out how wonderful their day is going. During this process you have chosen your approach angle, communicated with other team members if they are with you, decided to make contact after things are set up the way you want them to be. Upon contact the person places their hand under their shirt and appears to be acquiring a pistol. You reach for yours. They draw. You draw. They Shoot. You get hit. What options are available at this time cannot be predetermined. You will fight till the lights are out, but you can’t say when that will be. We train past this of course but let’s look at what happened. They beat you on the draw.
Was it because they had a faster draw? Or because they jumped the gun or got to the gun literally before you did. They did not wait for the beep, they were the beep.
Your ability to read a situation and not escalate it is crucial. We are not the bad guys, so we cannot draw first… or can we. What we are talking about here is the title of this article. Time vs Timing… Let me explain the rhythm, tempo or beat if you will of the dynamics that happen in up close and personal / short range gunfighting.
If you see a gun or a printing of a gun on a person, be near yours. If they are near theirs, be on yours. If they are on theirs, Yours is out. If theirs is out, You are engaging. You do not want to be behind in this process. You don’t want to be even one beat behind in this tempo... this rhythm… this gunfight. That is all for now. Standby, Stay Safe, Stay Dangerous but Good, and you will Stay Alive.