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Gunfighter Moment – Jeff Gonzales

During our classes we ask students how do you train to run fast? At times we get some interesting responses, but the one we are looking for is “run fast”.

The ultimate balance

The balance of speed and accuracy should be everyone’s ultimate shooting goal. The mistake we see most often is when a student wants to put speed over accuracy in the early stages of their development. The basics form your foundation and that foundation will need to be rock solid because at some point you will need to hit the gas. A slow accurate shot is no better than a fast miss. I’m sure we have all heard the expression of not knowing your limits until you push yourself. I couldn’t agree more with that statement, but it is a tad bit more complicated.

Hitting the track

When we talk about pushing the limits a race track is the usual analogy. You hit the straightaways with your hair on fire, but have to negotiate the turns and this is where we find our limits. However, the mistake folks make is thinking they are a race car in the first place. A race car is built from the ground up to handle those high velocities with pinpoint steering. However, the average student is riding a mini-van with little family decals on the back (not that that’s a bad thing). While I can drive it on the race track, it is really not going to go fast and it will definitely not handle those curves well.

The failed road test

That is where the foundation comes into the equation, you have to build it from the ground up. I can get that minivan over 180mph, I just throw it out the back of a cargo plane. Obviously the sudden stop isn’t the best for return trips. Taking the time to ramp up is critical, it is also the most frustrating. There is so much that you have to think about, while it looks easy, shooting is a complex task. Once you have taken the time, put the work in to build up your vehicle you have to take it out on the track and push the limits. You will never know if the new tires or the engine are going to perform to your expectations until you push the limits.

Hit the gas big time

At a certain point in the class, usually once we have covered the fundamentals well enough and students have demonstrated satisfactory performance the next step is to get them to shoot fast. I literally tell them I want you to shoot as fast as you can guarantee the hit. That means every time you are engaging the target you are doing so as fast as your vehicle can handle the curves. Having standards are the only way of knowing if you are pushing your limits, without them you are guessing. Standards for both speed and accuracy. When I see a student fail, it is not because he wasn’t fast enough, it was because he wasn’t accurate enough to meet the standard.

Speed is important, but not at the sacrifice of accuracy, but being accurate needs to be fast enough.

– Jeff Gonzales
Trident Concepts, LLC

Jeff Gonzales of Trident Concepts, LLC is a decorated and respected U.S. Navy SEAL who has worked in a variety of environments and capacities throughout the globe. He specializes in personal protection tactics and training for armed and unarmed conflicts. His motto is “Concepts that meet reality”. Jeff’s goal is not simply to train you, but to better prepare you for the worst-case scenario.

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.

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3 Responses to “Gunfighter Moment – Jeff Gonzales

  1. Allen says:

    He’s also an ex-con. Seems that gets overlooked by those who run websites and want to have readers. Convict is a convict no matter what he was jailed for.

    • Terry B. says:


      I don’t know the man or what criminal act you say he served time for. But there is nothing wrong with ex-cons. I have a couple in my family. If he served his time…and hasn’t returned to crime…I don’t see an issue.


      I like the racetrack and car analogy. I have seen people bypass the fundamentals and outrun their headlights many times in training.


    • DI says:

      Sure you’re not thinking oh Gabe Suarez?