Thursday, September 24, 2015

Preparing You for Your Personal Protection, Part 2

Whenever you start a new project, whether it is a new home project or training in first aid, you want to be sure you have the proper tools at your disposal.  Aside from learning the basic safety rules of handling a firearm, you will also want to learn how to respond to an emergency where a firearm will be used.  In short, just because you know how to shoot a bullseye doesn’t guarantee that you will know what to do when defending yourself with a firearm.

Mindset.  This is one of the first and most important tools at your disposal.  Arming yourself with the correct mindset will be your best defense against an assailant.   Mindset is your ability to never give up, to be on your guard at all times and respond accordingly.  Responding under stress should be a part of your training at the range and practiced at home.  Training your mind how to respond in an emergency is the same as preparing how to take the final exam in the field of your choice.

There are several steps after equipping yourself with a mindset to win and fight.  First, develop a personal protection plan.  This plan should be what you will do in a confrontation as well as what to do to avoid a confrontation.  Avoiding a situation is equally, if not more important than planning what to do in the event of one.  Don’t think of it as “running away”, but rather adopting a lifestyle where you are choosing to avoid the situation before you are forced to deal with a situation.

Visualize and practice the plan, while you are at the range and at home.  When you are shooting paper targets, imagine the target running towards you.  When you are dry firing at home, imagine there is a threat entering your home.  What would you do?  How would you handle yourself?  Continue this practice and seek additional training.  Your end goal is to be confident in your skills to defend yourself.  Mindset is crucial to your success and your ability to perform under pressure.

Finally, learn to control the encounter.  In the event of a home invasion and you find yourself face to face with an intruder, stay as far away as possible (avoid the threat).  If you surprise the intruder, and are able to hold them at gun point, do not approach them.  Once you have taken command of the situation, the intruder has three choices; they can flee, comply or challenge you.

-          If they have chosen to run away, let them run away.  Call the police and report the situation.
-          If they comply have him/her lie face down, away from you, with arms spread wide, and palms up.  Shout your commands and do not reason with them.  Call the police and report the situation.
-          If they decide to confront you, this is where the final steps of your personal protection come into play.

Once the encounter is over, there are five common responses that we will discuss next time.

In the meantime, take a look at this link -

Monday, September 21, 2015

Preparing You for Your Personal Protection, Part 1

A Gun Owner’s Responsibilities
American’s enjoy a right that citizens of many other countries do not – the right to own firearms.  But with this right comes a responsibility.  It is the gun owner’s responsibility to store, operate and maintain his or her firearms safety.  It is the gun owner’s responsibility to ensure that unauthorized or untrained individuals cannot gain access to his or her firearms.  And it is the gun owner’s responsibility to learn and obey all applicable laws that pertain to the purchase, possession and use of a firearm in his or her locale.  Guns are neither safe nor unsafe by themselves.  When people learn and practice responsible gun ownership, firearms are safe. – NRA Guide to the Basics of Personal Protection in the Home

One of the most important factors for gun safety is to understand the NRA’s three safety rules of gun handling.

1 Always keep you gun pointed in a safe direction. This means any direction where if an accidental discharge were to occur you would not harm someone.  This also means you do not point your gun at anything you do not want to destroy.

2 Keep you finger off the trigger until you are ready to shoot.  Finger simply off the trigger but alongside the trigger guard, in my opinion is not an option.  The safer choice is indexed alongside the frame of the gun.  This habit will also prevent accidental discharge while drawing from a holster.

3 Keep your firearm unloaded until ready to use.   Ready to use is the key phrase here.  Ready to use will depend on your situation and your surroundings.  In your holster as every day carry = ready to use.

Understanding the responsibilities of gun ownership widens the gap between those casual users who shoot for fun and those who want to expand their skill set into personal defense.  Using a firearm as self-defense is a tool of last resort, once the round has left the barrel there is no taking it back.  So you must be sure that you are prepared and adopted the mindset to end another’s life if the situation calls for it.

Deciding to use a firearm in self-defense, users need to evaluate their personal ethics, morals and beliefs as they pertain to taking a life.  If you have an objection to using deadly force, firearms should be omitted from your personal defensive plan.  Only you can decide if using deadly force is right for you.  Remember, there are other options for personal defense and all of your options should be evaluated before deciding on what to include in your plan.

Before you decide to train with any weapon, the first tool in your kit should be the proper mindset.   I will dive further into this topic next time.