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Archive for the ‘Training’ Category

SureFire Field Notes Ep. 64: Practical Shooting with Matt Pranka

Wednesday, July 28th, 2021

SureFire Field Notes is an informational video series with tips and techniques from subject matter experts of all backgrounds. In this episode, Matt Pranka discusses the importance of competitive shooting and relevance to tactical shooters.

Matt Pranka is the owner of Xray Alpha, has 26 years of military experience in Special Operations and is a USPSA Grand Master in production Division.

Xray Alpha instructors has spent decades being sent to all of the hot-beds of action, hunting the enemies of the United States.  We actively put our training to the test on a regular cycle.  We continue to work in this capacity and will consistently be putting ourselves into the fray. Xray Alpha training is driven from the passion of its founder to relay timely and effective training and tactics to the individuals that use them to save others, protect their family, and protect this nation. This isn’t something we want to do for fun or a quick buck, we are driven to give back as something we must do.

Special thanks to Route 66 Shooting Sports Park and the Norco Running Gun IPSC Club.


5.11 Launches New Products for Summer 2021

Tuesday, July 27th, 2021

Irvine, Calif. (July 27, 2021) – 5.11, Inc., the global innovator of purpose-built apparel, footwear and gear, today announced the release of several exciting new products that expand the brand’s offering for outdoor adventurers, public safety professionals and tactical enthusiasts alike. The newly released items are available online and in-stores now.

“To live our mantra of Always Be Ready®, we must continually work to enhance and expand the gear we offer our customers,” said 5.11’s Vice President of Global Product, Matt Page. “The products being introduced this summer were developed with that in mind. Whether its updates to previous lines or the addition of all-new categories, we are excited to bring each one of these items to market.”

5.11’s well-known line of Norris Sneakers is expanding in the summer of 2021 with a Low-Top Norris Sneaker ($100) arriving in August. The same functionality and durability of the original High-Top Norris Sneaker will be available in 2 new colors including black/gum and dark coyote. The High-Top Norris is also getting an update this season with new colorways – coyote, storm, multicam, dark navy, black/woodlands camo, and black/white ($110).

The A/T Series™ Footwear line, an enhanced and expanded offering our A.T.L.A.S™ technology, All Terrain Load Assistance System collection, offers durable and highly technical support for all day performance and comfort.

5.11® A/T™ Footwear Collection

The A/T Arid ($160) offers the full benefits of A.T.L.A.S.™ technology along with a locking ankle eyelet that prevents sand, dirt and other debris from entering the boot. The A/T 6 and 6 side zip ($155) also offer all of the full benefits of the A.T.L.A.S™ technology in a 6-inch height. Additionally, the A/T Trainer line ($130) is now being offered with the signature A.T.L.A.S™ plate for added stability as well as an expanded color offering of Cinder and Turbulence.

A whole new category of innovative training gear was introduced by 5.11® earlier this year with the Physical Training-Ready (PT-R) Line. A key new addition to that line this summer is the TacTec® Trainer Weight Vest ($130.00). Specially designed to intensify workouts, it’s a low profile, lightweight and comfortable vest that features breathable mesh body pads, adjustable stretch cummerbunds, front/rear MOLLE and is compatible with Rogue® weight vest plates. The TacTec® Weight Plate Sandbag ($50.00) offers an alternative to weighted plates as a heavy-duty and adjustable bag that can be filled with sand or other weighted materials and secured in the vest. After many years of request from our end users, 5.11® is delivering its first ever Weight Vest Plate designed specifically for fitness use. The plates are built with a low-profile, ergonomic compound curvature sculptured design in powder coated steel to provide users with ultimate comfort. Available in 2-plate sets at 5.75-pound ($70.00) or 8.75-pound ($75.00) options, the plates also have lashing points and openings that service as easy to grab handles. All 5.11® weight vests and plate carriers are compatible with these products.

A/T Trainer and TacTec® Trainer Weight Vest

To complement its extensive line of load bearing packs and vests, this summer, 5.11® has introduced a wide range of hydrations systems and accessory pouches to allow users to customize gear loads and features to meet specific needs.

The brand partnered with Hydrapak® to produce an ultra-durable, 3-liter hydration system with a fixed center baffle for a slim profile with the new WTS 3L Hydration System ($45.00). The system works in conjunction with 5.11’s packs and the new Convertible Hydration Carrier. The Convertible Hydration Carrier ($50.00) converts from a backpack to a MOLLE pouch via the included uniloops or RUSH® Tier System.

5.11® Hydration System

The new Flex TacMed Pouch ($45.00) allows users to neatly organize and carry medical supplies along with extra magazines by offering both a TacMed supply compartment and a dual AR-Mag compartment. This versatile pouch offers quick access with a pull drop-front opening and clear organization with a bungee compression lashing system, elastic band and slip pockets, compression straps and a front laser-cut platform for adding additional accessories or patches. A Flex Tourniquet Pouch ($30.00) securely fits one tourniquet with elastic compression and internal reinforcement webbing along with durable 500D-nylon construction. The FLEX-HT™ Mounting System and hook/loop straps allow for vertical or horizontal orientation while a pull-out hook/loop flap makes attachment to a plate carrier simple. The Flex Flashlight Pouch ($20.00) offers easy, convenient and durable functionality with a Hypalon pull-tab for quick opening, 500D-nylon construction, internal webbing reinforcement and elastic compression webbing.

Designed as an inner/outer belt system, the Maverick Battle Belt ($140.00) belt features an ergonomic curve and Austri Alpin COBRA® buckle. A loop faced inner belt connects quickly to the laser-cut MOLLE outer belt featuring 5.11’s proprietary TAC-LAM™ high-strength laminate on top of a dual nylon webbing.

Customers looking for everyday carry tools will be happy to see many new items that are keychain or micro hardpoint carabiner compatible. The EDT Hex comes with four tip fastening options including Phillips and slotted screwdriver tips along with T6 and T8 Torx heads ($15.00). The EDT Pry features a pry tip that doubles as a flat-head screwdriver, a ¼-inch driver that works with standard hex bits, as well as a bottle opener ($13.00). The EDT Rescue includes a carbide tip that can shatter tempered automotive glass, a web cutter that makes quick work of a stuck seat belt, and an oxygen key ($13.00).

5.11® EDC K-USB Flashlight and EDT Pry

When it comes to EDC, knives embody “everyday” more than any other tool. The minimalist Base 1SF knife is a quick-access keychain edged tool. It features a 1.5-inch sheepsfoot blade constructed from 8CR13MOV stainless steel. With a one-handed thumb stud opening and frame lock, it can handle everyday tasks directly from your pocket. Measuring less than 4 inches when opened, it folds down to an easily carried 2.365 inches and includes a split ring and micro Hardpoint carabiner for multiple connection options ($15.00). The Icarus DP Mini ($30.00) is a manual folder knife featuring an 8CR13MOV blade and FRN scales.  The perfect everyday knife designed with a 2.8” drop point blade, liner lock, and deep carry 2-point clip attachment.

The EDC K-USB Flashlight keeps 150 lumens at the ready with its dual Hi-Lo settings and keychain-carry design. With a body constructed from aerospace-grade aluminum and IP54 dust and water-resistant rating, it will withstand the daily beating of keychain carry. A battery status LED in the switch reminds users when actively recharging and fully charged using the USB-C charge port ($30.00).

5.11® GTI Capsule

5.11® is also thrilled to announce new products in collaboration with special forces veteran and leader in the tactical cutlery industry, Justin Gingrich, who pioneered the modern tactical tomahawk and has developed some of the most sought-after tactical knife and tomahawk designs on the market.

Gingrich teamed with 5.11® to design the CFA Peacemaker with a heat-treated 4” steel blade and pick head with full-tang steel construction that’s perfect for heavy field use. Best of all, the CFA swings with the accuracy and feel of a hammer. Its skeletonized frame reduces the weight (1 lb. 12.2 oz), which helps make short work of large tasks. A textured handle with removable scales, finished with a tactical pummel tip, provides a sure grip in wet and freezing conditions and it includes a protective sheath with four position belt/MOLLE clip ($140.00).

Gingrich also led the design of the CFK 7 Peacemaker ($120.00). Thanks to the heat-treated steel blade and full-tang steel construction, the CFK 7 Peacemaker can handle tough jobs that lesser knives can’t touch. Blade perforations reduce weight to help make short work of cutting, batoning, and carving. The textured handle with removable scales, finished with a tactical pummel tip, provides a sure grip in wet and freezing conditions and it includes a protective sheath with updated two position 3-inch belt/MOLLE clips.

“The new products in 5.11’s collection this summer offer our end-users with an ultimate sense of preparedness,” said 5.11’s Chief Marketing Officer, Debra Radcliff. “Summer is about being outdoors and active – from 5.11’s loadbearing items to our footwear and EDC gear, each of these categories offer our customers the purpose-built gear they need to feel ready for the summer months ahead.”

Learn more about 5.11’s new and best-selling tactical gear and accessories at www.511tactical.com. Connect with 5.11® on Facebook, Twitter @511Tactical and on Instagram @511Tactical and #511tactical.

Training the Next Generation of ‘CyberCops’

Friday, July 23rd, 2021

New University of Houston Program Recruits ROTC Students
as Future Gatekeepers of Cyber Security

HOUSTON, July 22, 2021 — Not so long ago, a strong password felt mighty enough to keep you safe and your computer data private. But we now live amid heightened risks in malware, phishing, spearphishing and denial-of-service attacks. Even scarier, it is possible for computer terrorists to wreak global havoc by commandeering your personal computer – yes, your own computer – without you suspecting danger until it’s way too late.

Sound frightening? It can be. But in this game, the good guys have critical skills, too.

The fall 2021 CyberCops program – funded by $250,000 grant from the U.S. Navy’s Office of Naval Research and sponsored by the University of Houston with cooperation of the University of Houston-Downtown and Texas Southern University – will introduce the critical field of cybersecurity to students recruited from the three participating universities’ ROTC (Reserve Officer Training Corps) programs.

In recent headlines, accusations of cyber aggression by unfriendly foreign powers reveal how high the stakes are.

Rakesh Verma, computer science professor at the UH College of Natural Sciences and Mathematics, leads the new CyberCops training program.

“The Department of Defense is interested in artificial intelligence and machine learning, and how those fields intersect with the needs of defense. They want students who plan on taking up careers in defense to have that kind of training and background,” said Rakesh Verma, computer science professor at the UH College of Natural Sciences and Mathematics. “Because these are ROTC students, the expectation is they will enter into a D.O.D. agency. But there are a lot of opportunities in the private sector, too, for people coming out with cybersecurity backgrounds.”

In the CyberCops program, students will study how to protect data, networks and computers as they also learn another critical lesson: Always stay a step ahead.

“The students will gain expertise in the intersection of a number of fields, including data science, machine learning and cybersecurity. They will have a semester of classroom training then spend about 10 weeks in my lab on the University of Houston main campus. There, they will study models on statistics, machine learning, natural language processing and data mining,” Verma said.

The term natural language processing refers to programming that “teaches” computers to understand not only the digital language of computers but also written and spoken words in various languages – English, Chinese, Russian and others.

Just how bad are the hackers, terrorists and just plain thieves who troll the internet? Don’t underestimate them, Verma warns.

As an individual, you may be at risk of:

Ransom demands – Your data is locked. “Your computer’s been hacked, and all the data encrypted. Then you might receive a demand to pay a certain number of bitcoins to get it back,” Verma said.

Thieves – Your identity is stolen. “These are criminals whose goal is to make a lot of money quickly,” Verma said. With special software, they enter the dark web where each set set of stolen credit card information sells for about $5, a Social Security number for around $10.

Zombies – And we’re totally serious here. In cybersecurity circles, a zombie is a computer that’s under the control of an attacker. If a cyber terrorist commandeers your computer, all you can do is watch your screen helplessly while someone – on the other side of the world or maybe next door – swiftly moves through the internet with your identity, perhaps with the aim of infiltrating a commercial or government network, or conducting a denial-of-service attack

Risks are greater for government agencies and businesses. In early July, Microsoft announced discovery of the PrintNightmare hack and urged all Windows users to immediately install an update. The U.S. government and its allies later said the hackers were hired by China’s government or its representatives.

Two months earlier, the Colonial Pipeline ransomware attack resulted in a five-day shutdown, fuel shortages in the Eastern U.S. and a ransom of $4.4 million. Eventually all but $2.1 million of the ransom was recovered.

Several companies have faced spearphishing, which targets one individual inside an organization. For example, by weaving in facts easily found on a company’s website, attackers can craft an “urgent” email convincing enough for a trusted employee to move money.

Knowing how to fight the threat is not always easy, especially with deceptions, fake news and social engineering specifically designed to avoid detection. “You have to put yourself in the shoes of the attacker. Think like an attacker and find the weaknesses.” Verma said.

For the six gifted students recruited for the new program, an exciting future may start with CyberCops training on the UH campus. And for your own data, security may someday depend on the critical lessons they learn there.

Defoor Proformance Shooting Open Enrollment Classes Going Up Tomorrow

Tuesday, July 20th, 2021

Defoor Proformance Shooting 2022 open enrollment classes will be live for purchase Tuesday, July 20 at noon Eastern. Full sellouts are expected.

The offerings include multiple pistol, carbine and scoped rifle classes going up and a few new locations.

Remember, every class for the past five years has sold out within a couple hours of posting.


Air Force Special Warfare Training Wing’s Human Performance Squadron Reaches Milestone

Tuesday, July 13th, 2021

JOINT BASE SAN ANTONIO-CHAPMAN TRAINING ANNEX, Texas—The Special Warfare Human Performance Squadron, SWHPS, recently marked its second anniversary.

The SWHPS is the first squadron of its kind in the Department of Defense, and its sole purpose is to provide Special Warfare Airmen and cadre embedded/holistic Human Performance, HP support.

“We reached our two-year milestone as a squadron and I cannot tell you how immensely proud I am of the team,” said Lt. Col. Shawnee A. Williams, SWHPS, commander. “With all of the hard work done to stand up the SWHPS, I am excited to see this capability propel forward every day!”

The SWHPS mission statement is to optimize the performance, durability, and sustainability of the Special Warfare human weapon system by taking an interdisciplinary approach toward the advancement of science and technology throughout the SW operator’s lifespan.

The organizational structure is made up of five geographically separated units, GSU, across the United States coast-to-coast. Within this construct are nine human performance flights supporting 80 Special Warfare cadre, 500 support staff, and 1,100 Special Warfare students annually.

“Our team sets the foundation for building physically superior, mentally sharper, and spiritually stronger warriors who will go into harm’s way to tackle our nation’s most dangerous and difficult tasks,” said Col. George Buse, Special Warfare Human Performance Support Group, commander. “To this end, SWHPS focuses on being brilliant at instilling HP principles in SW Airmen. We also leverage technological advances, research capabilities, and a holistic approach for the sake of further integrating and professionalizing the SW training enterprise,” said Buse. 

Some key accomplishments of the SWHPS include standing up the first SW Human Performance purpose-built facility and hence named the Airman 1st Class Baker Combat Conditioning Center at the Panama City Dive School, Panama City, Florida. This facility occupies 13K square feet, $1.3 million in performance equipment, and serves a joint population of cadre and students with over 700K annual course hours.

At GSU location Yuma, Arizona, the first-ever embedded physical therapist for Army and Air Force personnel position has been established to increase access to care for evaluation, diagnosis, treatment, and injury prevention services for trainees and support staff members at Military Free Fall Courses.

Educationally, SWHPS has established a location at the U.S. Air Force Academy and took on their USAF Physical Therapy Fellowship Program for the Air Force Medical Service, and propelled it forward (was not under the old Battle Field Airmen Model). The Fellowship program has since graduated eight fellows with three more due to graduate in 2021 and has secured national accreditation.

Additionally, SWHPS has established a human performance footprint, across the training pipeline that employs integrated wearable technology, along with HP technician support. This footprint enables SWHPS to track parasympathetic/sympathetic system output, sleep, musculoskeletal health, velocity-based training, and water-based event metrics to include heart rate and physiological data points.

“Another first of its kind is the HP portfolio integration with the Learning Management System/database. The integration will soon provide continuity between training and operational units,” Williams said. “This allows for a human performance portfolio to travel with each member throughout their Special Warfare career.”

The Squadron’s Nutrition SMEs created the first stand-alone performance dining facility and now oversee all menus in support of the Special Warfare Preparatory Program. “It provides a much-needed ‘learning lab for trainees when they first enter Special Warfare,” said Maj. Miriam Seville, the lead dietitian for the Special Warfare Training Wing. “The trainees get to practice the sports nutrition principles that they learn in class and experiment with a wide variety of healthful foods and beverages that fuel and sustain optimal performance.

“This dining facility introduces trainees to what fueling the Human Weapon System can and should look like, and enables them to build habits here that will support them throughout their training and into operational status,” she said.

In November of 2020, the SWHPS graduated the first Air Force Institute of Technology Performance Nutrition Fellow, who now brings world-class nutrition capability, guidance, and knowledge to Special Warfare programming.

Williams added a final thought on the accomplishments of the program, “Over the past two years, SWHPS has set the foundation for an integrated approach to building and maintaining a human weapon system. We have taken a purposeful and tailored approach to embedded HP and coupled it with real-time physiological feedback to the trainees and are also expanding care to the cadre,” she said.

“The future of this organization will be to shape not only Air Force, but DOD policy to enable a lifecycle platform for the SW operator. The SW Airmen will not just experience high-level/holistic HP support in the training pipeline, but rather, they will see it woven into their career field education and training plans, and expanded services offered in their operational units,” she said. “This then lends itself to the creation or standup of a human weapon system program office just like we have for our hardware.

“We are truly on the cusp of a cohesive training environment where physiological, cognitive, and resiliency elements are assessed weekly, if not daily, to propel the individual to their highest potential versus a binary reactive environment,” Williams concluded.

Members of the Special Warfare Training Wing provide initial training for all U.S. Air Force Special Warfare training AFSCs, to include, Combat Controllers, Pararescue, Special Reconnaissance, and Tactical Air Control Party Airmen.

To learn more about SR Airmen or other U.S. Air Force Special Warfare career opportunities, go to: www.airforce.com/careers/in-demand-careers/special-warfare.

By Andrew C. Patterson, Special Warfare Training Wing/ Public Affairs

Warrior West 21 – Crisis Response Leader Training

Thursday, July 8th, 2021

Warrior West 21 showcased quite a bit of training and supination technologies. One of the standouts was Crisis Response Leader Training.

This Indiana company provides computer-based simulation training to develop Emergency and Crisis Response Leaders.

Their customizable training tool called, “The Incident” looks like, and responds like, a third-person, turn-based video game. The characters not controlled by participants are autonomous, and they are programmed to act based on real-world case studies. The simulation can be run as a stand-alone training platform, or various organizations and agencies can participate in the same training scenario remotely (similar to a video game’s multiplayer feature). The training is run all slower than real time in order for trainees to consider consequences.

Scenarios include active shooters, workplace violence, barricaded suspects, chemical and biological containment, major fires, and natural disasters.

Crisis Response Leader Training technologies are available for unit and agency orders from ADS, Inc.

Warrior West 21 – AUFire Training System

Thursday, July 8th, 2021

The Accuracy Under Fire Training System from Dynamis Alliance uses Simulated Injury Technology.

At the push of a button, the trainer can unleash an electrical current directly into targeted muscle groups on the trainee via a remote control. The conductive stimulation temporarily impairs a specific body part and simulates a disabling injury. The AUFire System allows you to select among 7 points of simulated injury within the arms and abdomen.

Dynamis Alliance products are available for unit and agency orders from ADS, Inc.

Warrior West 21 – Strive

Wednesday, July 7th, 2021

Strive is a performance monitoring system used by professional athletes. The EMG sensor array can be integrated into virtually any compression clothing. A removable (for charging) puck is located at the waist which transmits the telemetry and integrates an accelerometer and GPS.

Muscle activation and use data can be accessed via an app on an end user device.

The Strive system is available for unit and agency orders from ADS, Inc.