I occasionally get push back or skepticism during courses when I have guys utilize the rifle’s safety while doing mag changes up close at say…7-10 yards. So I present them with this situation; you and I are fighting side by side from behind cover. The fight is mid-range. The cover is small. This is close quarters. I am within inches of you while performing a magazine change, or while moving around you to better my position. At times my muzzle may be oriented over your bow. Do you want me to use my rifle’s safety? I’m thinking your answer will be “Yes”.
If we are fighting together in close quarters, not only do I want you to use your safety while working alongside of me, but I am hoping that your safety manipulation is spontaneous.
Push back comes from those too lazy to perform the appropriate amount of meaningful repetitions until safety manipulation becomes an intuitive task or until one can perform this at a subconscious level.
If you can’t think to ‘Safe it’ at seven, what makes you think…you can think to do it instinctively, in close quarters?
SGM, US Army (Ret)
Patrick McNamara spent twenty-two years in the United States Army in a myriad of special operations units. When he worked in the premier Special Missions Unit, he became an impeccable marksman, shooting with accurate, lethal results and tactical effectiveness. McNamara has trained tactical applications of shooting to people of all levels of marksmanship, from varsity level soldiers, and police officers who work the streets to civilians with little to no time behind the trigger.
His military experience quickly taught him that there is more to tactical marksmanship than merely squeezing the trigger. Utilizing his years of experience, McNamara developed a training methodology that is safe, effective and combat relevant and encourages a continuous thought process. This methodology teaches how to maintain safety at all times and choose targets that force accountability, as well as provides courses covering several categories, including individual, collective, on line and standards.
While serving as his Unit’s Marksmanship NCO, he developed his own marksmanship club with NRA, CMP, and USPSA affiliations. Mac ran monthly IPSC matches and ran semi annual military marksmanship championships to encourage marksmanship fundamentals and competitiveness throughout the Army.
He retired from the Army’s premier hostage rescue unit as a Sergeant Major and is the author of T.A.P.S. (Tactical Application of Practical Shooting). He also served as the Principle of TMACS Inc.
Gunfighter Moment is a weekly feature brought to you by Alias Training & Security Services. Each week Alias brings us a different Trainer and in turn they offer some words of wisdom.