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Do you think "gun games" have value similar to training?

Discussion in 'Education & Training' started by ski_dog, Feb 25, 2011.

  1. ski_dog

    ski_dog Oregon Member

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    I've now attended several classes at Oregon Firearms Academy (OFA), have had some training from combat veterans and other trainers, and have been shooting IDPA for several years. I've shot a couple of 3 gun matches, some IPSC, some Speed Steel, and have reached a couple of conclusions: games are great fun, but they are not training. I think that at times it is easy to confuse the two. I am not at all saying that the games don't have some value, as you are manipulating your gun, perhaps your carry gear, and encountering targets that may move or disappear. I believe that the problems arise perhaps even in the descriptions of the stages.

    In IDPA, I have never been shot at by my cardboard target, and have never even contemplated that happening. In the training courses at OFA, that has been spoken of many times: what if you are shot in your strong hand? what part of the target do you shoot first to stop them fastest? what if you don't have a perfect sight picture? These are the questions that the gun games just can't deal with properly.

    My conclusions recently have been to enjoy the games for what they are worth, but to continue to train to encounter evil and violent folks with my carry gear. Any comments? Anyone disagree?
     
  2. MA Duce

    MA Duce Central Oregon Well-Known Member

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    Interesting thought. And I share your opinion. I would think the process of recognizing a threat and target acquisition might be helped by playing this type of game, but unless the game weapon had the same heft and trigger feel as your daily carry weapon the critical task of building muscle memory will probably not be aided.
     
  3. Solo

    Solo Portland, OR Member

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    Any training is good. But how do you train for making quick decisions under stress? This is the one area that I find lacking. You can train to handle your weapon & get very proficient with it, but one piece of the equation is missing. My question isn't meant as a statement; how does a person train for being shot at and still be capable of making good decisions? Being under fire is the only way to learn how a person is going to handle themselves.

    If there was a way for this type of training, law enforcement needs to sign up. I think there would be a lot better decisions made if they would learn when to shoot & when not to.
    Sorry, I kind of got a bit off track. Any training is good.
     
  4. The Cheese

    The Cheese somewhere special Member

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    I would look at it as training is learning and preparing, and "gaming" (ipsc, 3 gun, etc) is practice. You take training to gain new skills and hone the ones you have. Shooting practical type matches gives you a controlled environment in which to see what works in semi-practical situations and get some trigger time while having fun (hopefully). Shooting some practical type matches has helped me refine some of my gear and find out what I like and works for me. Like has been said, its no replacement for quality training, but it has its place right along side it.
     
  5. billdeserthills

    billdeserthills Cave Creek, Arizony Well-Known Member

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    I had a customer tell me his grandson was able to fire his first gun & hit the paper, credits the video games
     
  6. WhyteCheddar

    WhyteCheddar East of Moscow by the Willamette Well-Known Member

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    Practice only makes permanent. Perfect practice makes perfect.
    That being said, if someone is using good fundamentals then the context in which it is being used (IDPA, USPSA etc...) is less of an issue IMHO.
    But its easy to get into bad habits if all of your shooting is in 'games' and you are not working on your fundamentals.
     
  7. wichaka

    wichaka Wa State Well-Known Member

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    As long as one approaches it as a game, its all good. If you want to approach it as training, it can be done.
    You won't be running around with your tail on fire, but if you are in with a group of people that are of the same mind set, it can be a great way to train. If you approach it this way, you'll learn more overall, and be able to apply it to the street.

    First, use the same equipment you use on the street. Going thru the stages will help you learn what works and what doesn't as equipment goes. Second, it'll help you with your movement, shooting on the move, and positional shooting, as well as weapon manipulation thru all that.

    Then have your friends watch as each goes thru the stages. Critique each other on the above, and you'll be well on your way to add to your training regimen.

    On the down side, you may get some snide remarks because you are doing the stages slower and more tactically, but take the penalty points etc. in stride, as you're training for something much larger than the game.
     
  8. djohnson

    djohnson gresham, OR Member

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    Whether you are military, law enforcement or just training as a civilian you can not duplicate the stress off being under fire. The closest even the military and police come is with simunitions training(a version of a paint marking round). My opinion is that these "gun games" can easily be considered training. There are many aspects of training and weapons handling is only a part of it. When you are training yourself to pick up your sights, engage multiple targets and so on you are training for combat. As long as you understand that some of the tactics used in these games are inefficient in a combative confrontation you are fine. In a firefight the first things to go are your decision making and gross motor skills. By properly training both of these (in which I believe the games help to an extent) you will rely on motions you have already taught your body. Train with the same gear you plan to fight with so you are familiar with it when the time comes to use it. And one of the biggest aspects of training in my opinion is your combat mindset. You can turn some of the most elementary gun games into good combat training if you force yourself to think of them as combat scenarios. Just my 2 cents
     
  9. MA Duce

    MA Duce Central Oregon Well-Known Member

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    Valid points, except I THINK you mean FINE motor skills, not gross motor skills are impacted by stress. Gross motor skills would include walking and moving extremities, fine motor skills would be those required for precision aiming and trigger control. Speaking from personal experience, I have been unable to start a zipper into the mating end to zip up a coat after an incident where live fire was required. Not fun, but manageable if you are aware.
     
  10. spengo

    spengo GLORIOUS CASCADIA Active Member

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    I do not consider competitions very good for stress training and definitely no good for tactics training. For mastering the fundamentals, learning how fast you can get accurate hits at different ranges, learning how to set up your gear in a way that works best for you, and otherwise finding out the extents of your shooting abilities and improving on them, competitions are great.

    I highly recommend going to real tactical and defensive carbine and pistol shooting classes. Competitions cannot replace real training, but they can supplement it and help keep your shooting skills in shape over time.
     
  11. MrNatural

    MrNatural Oregon Well-Known Member

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    "What is the opposite of tactics? Competition." - Clive Shepherd, ex-Royal Marine, NRA LE SMG Instructor's course, 1994.

    His words resonate in my mind still.

    Most competition course designers really don't know what they're doing or why. Most competitive shooters can't tell the difference. Makes for some really ungodly horrible game scenarios being accepted as "practical".

    Play or train. Your choice. The two are only rarely compatible.

    A quick filter for evaluating competitions (and training for that matter): Is the shooter DQ'd if he does not take cover?
     
  12. djohnson

    djohnson gresham, OR Member

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    You are right. I meant fine motor skills. In my head I was thinking you must rely on gross motor skills. Thank you for catching that.
     
  13. tlfreek

    tlfreek Vancouver WA Active Member

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    none better than Call of Duty Black Ops - will prepare you for everything you could ever face :)
     
  14. 8ball

    8ball WA Quit talkin' and start chalking!

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    You clearly don't know anything about guns. All the real operators play Medal of Honor. ;)
     
  15. Buddhalux

    Buddhalux Hillsboro, Oregon Active Member

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    Seriously though, go check out Threat Dynamics if you can!!
     
  16. HollisOR

    HollisOR Rural OR, South of Dallas Active Member

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    I'll say No. It is sort of like letting random chance guide your life. Training has a purpose. Not all training is for all types of shooting. While there are cross over skills, which one that cross over is probably a guess unless a person understands the methods of developing a training regimen. Now to contradict myself, probably for the vast majority of us, yeah sure it will help. Very few of us will ever have to use a firearm in a life and death situation. I have slaughtered a lot of dirt clogs, paper zombies and rabid cans in my life.

    If it is serious shooting, than actual/real training designed for a shooters needs, is what is needed.
     
  17. tlfreek

    tlfreek Vancouver WA Active Member

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    uh. try Uncharted 2 - I got too many skillz to lower myself to medal of honor.