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On training

There’s good training and bad training. When I’m critical of a prominent firearms instructor putting photographers down range, I’m not anti-training. I’m anti-putting photographers down range. When I point out that a MMA fighter breaking a soccer mom’s rib might be something unnecessarily dangerous, I’m not anti-training. I’m anti-unnecessary danger. Apparently, this makes me a pussy* and mediocre. As though there’s this binary relationship where you are to train dangerously or for competition; or you are anti-training. That’s a load.

I’m glad that A Girl and Her Gun is learning the various methods of self-defense and good for her for doing that. Seriously, that’s awesome. But be careful out there.

* I’m picking on Jennifer, who didn’t actually call me a pussy. But I will note: I’ve lost count of the number of car accidents I’ve been in. I haven’t lost count of mine. I’ve been in exactly zero. And I don’t live in a risk-free world. I drive fast. Also, I have jumped out of buildings and off of other structures 378 times. I don’t live in a bubble and no one should.

53 Responses to “On training”

  1. Cargosquid Says:

    “Also, I have jumped out of buildings and off of other structures 378 times.”


    They have these things called stairs?……

  2. Mike V. Says:

    Some people don’t think its possible to train to competence without injury or exposing people to “what its actually like to be shot at.” I respectfully disagree. Using that logic, MMA fighters would never be able to compete in matches because they’d be constantly getting hurt in training. In fact, exposing students to un-necessary risk is not smart bordering on criminal recklessness, IMHO.

  3. Mike V. Says:

    BTW, do they never pick up their brass at that range?

  4. The Duck Says:

    Well there is no reason why anyone should be down range, it does not cost that much to set up a remote camera,also that Hollywood hold 360 wouldn’t happen in any of my classes. By it’s very nature training is limited, absolute safety is paramount, there really is a reason for rubber knives, blue guns etc. There is a list of 50 plus people in the book “Training at the Speed of Life” by Ken Murray, that died because safety protocols were not followed I’m sure the list has grown. It is not a question of if, it is a question of when something bad is going to happen.

  5. Alan Says:

    In my elite operator training school we actually shoot you so you know what it feels like to get shot.


    If you don’t want to get shot, you’re a pussy.

  6. Gun Blog Black List Says:

    You tend to swing your pistol and shoot at what you are looking at. Someone that is distracted by the photographer while shooting may just swing their bullet hose over to what they are looking at.

  7. Breda Says:


  8. Jerry Says:

    Her trainer still needs an ass-kicking.

  9. Jennifer Says:

    I’m glad you didn’t really think I was calling you a pussy. Not my intent at all. I didn’t intend to imply you were anti-training either. The dust-up with A Girl was only part of my motivation for the post, and I should have made that clear. Maybe her training was unnecessarily dangerous, maybe not. The fact that she got hurt sounds like an accident to me.

  10. Barron Barnett Says:

    Did anyone actually go read how she got injured?

    Am I the only one that bothered to read it?

    Here it is just to make sure:

    After my cocky smack talking deal, he grabbed me and picked me up to throw me on the ground. Normally, I fight to get a way, but this time I grabbed him into me, pulled him down on top of me and pushed(I suspect he helped launch himself as to not completely crush me)him over my head. Unfortunately, I pulled him right on top on my body and the weight of his body landed right between my breast as I hit the ground. I heard some cracking and thought, Huh, that hurt.

    I think we need to ban gravity because you know a student grappling a trainer and causing him to land on top caused an injury.

    He didn’t punch her so hard to break ribs. He didn’t throw her into something to break ribs. She pulled him down and he landed on top of her. Gravity, weight, and momentum from that act broke ribs.

    Honestly everyone needs to chill the fuck out. Shit happens and as Jennifer says everything carries with it some risk.

    On top of that, have none of you considered the fact that this is also therapy for her? It allows her to realize pain heals and further helps destroy the deer in headlights reaction.

    Should anyone ever get that injured while training, if at all possible no. Does it happen, yes. Period, don’t try and tell me it doesn’t, I saw plenty of injuries while I did sparring in karate. While pads normally kept you safe, it wasn’t a sure thing.

    Hell, look at the injuries training for football, not to mention injuries in the sport itself. Give me a break folks and stop making a freaking mountain out of a mole hill.

  11. Breda Says:

    Oh, please. Therapy. Give ME a fucking break.

    Also, there’s a reason women don’t play football.

  12. A girl and her gun Says:

    Unc, I think it is crazy awesome that my training has sparked a respectful(for the most part) serious dialog about training and someone critizing or disagreeing with my training or my choices does not make them a pussy.

    Most people who have followed my journey know that my problem has been being a pussy. I didn’t have any fight in me. As I said at Jennifer’s place, it will take me about 6 weeks to heal from this, but it took me nearly a year to get over being a willing victim in my own attack. I am not looking to be a badass or constantly break bones, but for me this was a huge step in breaking a mindset of total compliance. That happened before the rib injury. The rib injury is not what taught me that lesson.

    Anyway, I appreciate the dialog.

  13. SayUncle Says:

    Excellent, keep up the good work.

  14. Barron Barnett Says:


    No injuries in gymnastics either? Volleyball (there were no guys volleyball teams while I was in school). Or how about soccer? Water polo?

    Any sport risks injury. Physical training including sparring risks injury.

    If you don’t want to do it then don’t. No one is forcing you, just like we don’t force people to carry guns.

  15. Alan Says:

    I don’t think anyone is arguing that there shouldn’t be any risk of injury in an activity. The question is whether the risk of injury is the point of the activity or incidental to it.

    If it’s the point, then it’s a fetish and not what I would consider good training. If you get off on standing down range or getting beat up then more power to you.

  16. Caleb Says:

    Also, there’s a reason women don’t play football.

    I’m sorry, I didn’t catch that. I couldn’t hear you over the sound of how wrong you are.

    you’re right though, we should probably not let women do anything dangerous because they’re so delicate and fragile; so no boxing, martial arts, lacrosse, hunting, shooting guns, cheerleading, riding bikes, etc. They should just sit around and talk about cats and nail polish.

  17. Breda Says:

    Barron. A woman running the risk of being tackled (and having ribs broken) by a man who outweighs her is not the same type of “sport” as gymnastics so please do not even try to draw a parallel.

    A responsible trainer would take precautions that this sort of injury didn’t happen, wouldn’t encourage this “I’d rather get the crap kicked out of me than be afraid” nonsense.

    And @Caleb? Those are women playing football against other women. What’s your point?

  18. A girl and her gun Says:

    @Alan, the point of my training is not to get hurt. I have been working with this guy for several months and this is the first injury except for lbruises. When I first started my bruises were huge, but now, even with increased pressure on those same spots, the sessions do not produce many bruises. Conditioning. If you go back to the months of post talking about my training you will see I couldn’t hit him and many, many people said he should just hit me, like their trainers did, but mine didn’t. He did not think beating up a woman(or anyone)would be beneficial to training. Also the very week before, we set up a 2 hour session and were going pretty strong. He stopped the training at 1.5 because he said breaking a bone or getting hurt is not the point. It could happen and we are not training with kit gloves,but we/he is not reckless. When I write a post I am pretty much writing it to my friends… The 1000 people that visit me everyday and they know my struggle and that much of my fist pumping and bravado was based on the thrill of concurring a long help mindset of victim.

    However, I will say I love this kind of training.

  19. Breda Says:

    Also, way to make the debate personal. Are you always this bitchy?

  20. Caleb Says:

    @Breda, you’re the one who said “women don’t play football.” I just pointed out that they do. If you wanted to qualify it after the fact as “against men”, plenty of women have done that too.

    It’s not a nerf world.

  21. Alan Says:

    What is the definition of “is” again?

  22. Barron Barnett Says:

    Never the less the risk is there. Period. Everyone is acting like the trainer didn’t give a shit, or that this was to be expected given what she was doing. The whole point of my comment is ANY sport has risk of injury, period, full stop, no exceptions.

    People seem to be too lazy to read and comprehend what exactly happened. Instead the argument is, don’t do that, don’t train like that, you’re a woman and you’re not acting like one. You need to go train with other women, because you might get hurt. Here I thought statistically men attacked women, not women attack women.

    Is there a force and size disparity? Yeah, and that becomes a factor in a real brawl. She’s not training to spar in a dojo or boxing ring. She’s training for real life which brings a bit more risk. Which brings me around to my final question though? She’s not you so why are you berating her choices?

    If she wants to do force on force training, she can do it with whoever she wants knowing the risks. Just because you mitigate the risks doesn’t make them 0.

    And yes, women do play football with men. There was a big kerfuffle when I was in high school because of girls joining the football team at one of the schools in our conference.

  23. Beaumont Says:

    I agree with Unc about stupid stunts such as placing photographers downrange & other similar drek.

    Now, it appears to me that the injury was not, strictly speaking, training-related. It sounded more like the result of horseplay.

    Having said that, Jen’s June 7 post does not appear to refer to Unc by name or implication, so I am somewhat puzzled by this post.

  24. Evyl Robot Michael Says:

    *grabs popcorn, settles in to watch*

  25. Weer'd Beard Says:

    Move over Michal and hand me that throw pillow!

    **Cracks a 32oz Soda**

  26. Robb Allen Says:

    *** Reports WEERD’s 32oz soda to the NYPD***

  27. Barron Barnett Says:

    ***Joins Weer’d and Michael on the couch, two 16oz, high fructose corn syrup sodas, one in each hand*** Suck on that Bloomberg!

  28. A girl and her gun Says:

    Lol, well I am done. Explained all I can. Off to enjoy my weekend. Enjoy your popcorn and soda boys.

  29. Evyl Robot Michael Says:

    Take it easy, A Girl!

  30. SayUncle Says:

    A girl, I think you explained it just fine.

  31. Janelle Says:

    A friend of mine plays women’s rugby. It can be just as brutal as any other contact activity. She wound up dislocating and breaking her jaw. How is that any different? The size and/or gender of one’s opponent doesn’t matter, injuries can happen.

  32. Gun Blog Black List Says:

    “***Joins Weer’d and Michael on the couch, two 16oz, high fructose corn syrup sodas, one in each hand***”

    New York reload.

  33. Jennifer Says:

    ***Sets out ash tray***
    While we’re pissing off Bloomberg

  34. Evyl Robot Michael Says:

    *uncaps one of Say Uncle’s porters.*

  35. HL Says:

    Your wives will all be furious when they catch you on the couch watching women’s MMA, rubgy, and football.

    “What are you doing with that throw pillow!?”

  36. Caleb Says:

    @HL wins the internet.

  37. Cargosquid Says:

    Gun Blog Black List:

    “***Joins Weer’d and Michael on the couch, two 16oz, high fructose corn syrup sodas, one in each hand***”

    New York reload.

    THAT would make a great Demotivational poster…..

  38. Barron Barnett Says:

    I will totally make one this weekend Cargosquid!

  39. Barron Barnett Says:

    ***Lights up a a cuban cigar, they suck but while we’re in the mode of pissing people off, lets get a twofer!***

  40. wizardpc Says:

    @37 well now I have my weekend project

  41. wizardpc Says:

    refresh fail

  42. An Ordinary American Says:

    The nano-second you hear a shot fired at you in anger, or you see yourself accosted by an individual serious about doing you some bad juju, or when you suddenly find yourself knocked to the ground from behind and now you’re fighting for your life, wishing you’d trained a little harder or been a little better prepared is a waste of brain cells.

    Personal defense and how you train for it is every bit as much of a personal decision as which gun to carry and when to carry it.

    But for those who have actually been victims, been robbed, been in combat, the opinions of those who haven’t will always take second place to the experiences of those who have.

    *shrug* I had someone just a couple of days ago preach to me how to handle an IFE (In-Flight-Emergency). I asked him what (pilot) ratings he had, and he had to admit that it was all simulator experience on a home-computer. “But it doesn’t matter,” he insisted. “Because in theory it’s all the same.”

    I just nodded and walked away.


  43. BenC Says:

    I am willing to bet that the majority of the people who have successfully defended themselves have never had any advance training in either hand to hand or just like the majority of the people who have used a fire extinguisher to put out a fire have never had any advanced firefighter training.
    Most people are not attacked by special forces/ninja/ secret agents they are attacked by thugs who have probably shot a gun even less than they have and rely on intimidation to be successful.
    Does that mean training is bad? No. Does that mean you won’t ever need it? No. But the chances of mean having to use my gun to defend myself are low and the chances that the advance training will be the deciding factor are even lower.
    I would love to take an advance training one day but I don’t fell unable to defend myself without one.
    @Girl if you enjoy this training and it makes you feel better good for you keep at it but I get tired of people claiming that if you haven’t taken any hand to hand combat or advance shooting classes that you are unable to defend yourself.

  44. Barron Barnett Says:

    Just the same Ben, I get tired of people bitching about other people and their training because they were injured. Not through malice or negligence, but because of an accident. As Unc talks about up top, putting people down range is stupid. Ending up with cracked ribs because you pulled someone down wrong and it dropped weight through your sternum is an accident. It was a risk of the maneuver.

    There’s a bunch of people running around passing judgement and they didn’t even bother to go find out what happened. All they saw was, “Injured during training.” Instead of just reminding people to be careful it turns into an argument of why force on force is bad and pointless. It isn’t, you need to be comfortable with it, accept the risks, and be careful. If you don’t like it, then don’t do it.

    Also remember, A Girl knows the numbers first hand quite well, and it’s for that reason she knows that just because it’s rare doesn’t mean that some how you’re exempt. Her attack was at least two sigma out of the standard deviation.

    *Also she hasn’t been telling anyone that they must have this type of training. I don’t think you intended it that way but it was implied with how you combined her with the note about it.

  45. Scotty Says:

    Man, this conversation has taken wings in the last few days. Unc, I read your comments in the orig thread, and I apologize, as I think my comments came off a little harsher than I remember them being, and I think I aimed them at you more’n I should’ve. Now that I have had a bit of time to think about it a little bit more… (deep breath)

    – Who here carries a back up gun? Or a knife? Why? Because plan A may not always be there, correct? I see hand to hand training as being in the same category as a back up weapon. Can’t get to or can’t use your primary gun (snagged in draw, face down on pavement with bag guy on top, malf, in an area where you cannot carry, whatever), it’s good to have a back up plan. You’d suggest someone TRAIN with their back up plan, right? Whether that be knife fighting techniques, shooting that .38 spcl airweight, or doing hand to hand training, having a back up plan without knowing how to use it is not a plan. The comments suggesting she needs to do something else (or rather, she doesn’t NEED to do THIS) strike me as somewhat FUDD-ish. You wouldn’t restrict her from choosing a .38 spcl airweight, why restrict her from hand to hand. Or anyone, male or female, for that matter,

    – All training, heck all activity has a risk of injury. Ripping on her, her trainer, her technique, her choice of back up plan because she got hurt is unhelpful, and quite frankly, reek of jackassery. If you look at injuries for any athletic activity (football, gymnastics, karate, skiing, track, whatever), more people are injured in the first few weeks than in the following years. Why? Football players learn to take the hit. Karate competitors learn how to roll with the throw. Boxers learn how to take a punch. It’s as much toughening up as becoming coordinated. You do this over and over in practice, so the first time you get hit, or thrown, or punched, is not in a competition, or a fight. Because the first time you get hit you get stunned or hurt, and if you are stunned or hurt, you are not competing or fighting. Obviously there is a risk, you are getting HIT. But the next time you get hit, you’ll be a little better off. And the next time, a little better yet. But you have to train as hard as you intend to compete or fight. You don’t learn to get hit by reading a book, or sitting on the couch watching kung fu movies. Or being a condescending jackass making comments online.

    – And, btw, it is a good, good, good thing to encourage the “I’d rather get the crap kicked out of me than be afraid” nonsense. First, it’s confidence. The confident student learns faster, much faster, because they are more aggressive, more likely to try new things, and will spend their time on the balls of the feet (where they are balanced), than on their heels (where they are not). To suggest other wise means you’ve never tried to teach a newbie an athletic move.

    – Breda, women and men generally don’t play sports together. How many high school, college or pro sports are co-ed? I can’t think of any. I really don’t get your point. Why don’t women play college football? I’d guess it has as much to do with physicality as politics. If women played football then by title IX football scholarships wouldn’t count against men, and more males could get athletic scholarships, then feminists would howl.

    – Jerry, please tell me you are kidding with this kiss his ass crap?

  46. comatus Says:

    Scotty, there is only one co-ed collegiate sport. Of all the damn things, it’s rifle.

    For what it is worth, I’d rather have people beat themselves up in close-combat training all season long, and outlaw that fag game of football. In this I am not alone: it was banned by several of the original states, and more than one king of England. When it’s time to kill someone, don’t feel up their ass on the fields of Eton (or Martins Ferry, for that matter). Shoot them.

  47. Social Media Sebastian Says:

    I really don’t get your point.

    Uhm…like most people she doesn’t like saying “oops, I was incorrect” and is using a largely semantic dodge instead of offering a mea culpa?

    List of people who’ve never done that = null set.

    It is cute when those two get into it. 🙂 And Caleb just admitted what most married men won’t, to wit, having any knowledge at all about chicks in lingerie playing football.

  48. Jerry Says:

    Kick, not kiss.

  49. Scotty Says:

    Comatus, didn’t know about rifle. Don’t think they had that at my school. Of course, I wasn’t interested in shooting then, so maybe I just missed it. In the Olympics, it’s not co-ed, right, they’re scored separately? And which fag game of football are you referring to? Football, soccer or rugby? I tend to like the American version, tho not enough to actually watch it live on the weekend.

    Jerry, haha. Yeah, saw that typo after submit. Sure changes the meaning of the sentence, eh? But why do you want to kick his ass? I don’t get that. He’s training someone, and they accidentally got hurt. It happens. Could’ve happened to one of his guy students. Not sure what the prob is there.

  50. Martini Says:

    Am I the only one still trying to figure out what Unc was talking about when he said ” Also, I have jumped out of buildings and off of other structures 378 times.”?

Used three kinds of generics. I liked the Levitra Pills more, although the others acted quite well. Perhaps it all depends on the characteristics of each organism.