The weekend class is the standard format for most firearms and self defense courses, and for good reason. It gives the average practitioner an opportunity to get time in with any of a vast array of high quality professional instructors who specialize in traveling to convenient nearby locations for relatively little time commitment and reasonable market prices.
The issue though, is what happens after the class. What happens between the basic shooting course you take this summer and the more intensive one you take next? Or, for our purposes, what work have you done between the beat down Craig Douglas brought to you and the next time you audit your skillset, or between the course and the time you need to perform.
For shooting skills the path is fairly easy to access. Hit the range, practice the skills you learned, log your progress and score some standard shooting drills and you'll see improvement. If you want to truly get exceptional at shooting start shooting practical shooting sports such as USPSA.
For weight lifting its simple too. Want to get stronger? Get some good coaching on your form, download the Stronglifts app and pick heavy things up and put them back down. You will get stronger. Need a bigger gas tank? Plenty of cardio waiting out there for you.
All our discreet skill sets are fairly straightforward to access. Got a hole in your ground game? Find a legit BJJ school and get to work. Gotta work hands? Boxing. Do some research, find legit schools and get in with a solid MMA program.
But what if what you really need to do is work on your In Fight Weapons Access (IFWA as per Craig)? What if waht really drives you is the need to fight a dude in a car with a simunition gun? Did you go to a practical knife class like the ones offered by Chris Fry and now you need to practice that stuff?
Well, then you need a crew of liked minded lunatics who don't look at you like you have 3 heads when you say you need to work on escaping the bottom of a boot party with a gun in you belt. You need a crew that thinks that sounds like a damn good time! You need a fucking training group! We cannot do this alone.
Its a little bit more involved though than just finding a couple guys to throw down with. That's the first piece of the puzzle, but then where we go from there takes a great deal of work and time. We have to talk about time commitment, study materials, long term sustainability, formats, and more.
Over the last decade or so I've made every damn mistake I can imagine on this path. I've tried a great many approaches, spent a great deal of time trying to get good at stuff that's not functional under pressure, and had friends come and go in this training group journey. For the folks looking to get that started, I'm going to share my experience and thoughts on this process with you over a couple of posts. I'm going to attempt to organize my thoughts on the subject and all the things I've been able to share with others when they ask me about this.
Lets get to work!