AAR- Sentinel Concepts Critical Carbine Employment- Oct 15-16

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AAR- Sentinel Concepts Critical Carbine Employment.

October 15-16
Instructor- Steve Fisher
Location- Benton Gun Club
Duration- 2 days, 1 night

Gear used:
Rifle- Archer MFG EPR with MRO, Streamlight Rail Mount 2, and Assorted goodies.
Handgun- G19 modified to personal taste (not utilized during course except in personal spare time)
Support equipment- RCS VG3 as holster for day one/ night one, JM Custom AIWB mag pouch for day one/ night one, BFG Belt pouches supplemented as needed. Safariland 6378 as holster on day 2.
Belt- Ares Aegis Enhanced

Round count estimated- 1500 rifle, 300 pistol; used- ~1100 rifle, 50 pistol.

Day 1- started off with basic zeroing. Moved into bore offset drills which were actually pretty eye opening. I had always thought bore offset stopped at zero distance, but thats not the case. We then moved on to practicing presentation from low and high ready, cadence, and failure/ reverse failure drills. This emphasized the importance that you can make up for a slightly slower but more accurate cadence by having a faster presentation and more efficient manipulations of the rifle. As an aside, high ready is the way to go unless situation dictates otherwise as far as im concerned. After this we worked on the various types of reloads and how to do them in the most efficient manner. We all learned the importance of making sure you had a spare mag in the first place before starting the reload process. This not only insured you had spare ammo to feed the gun with, but also i creased speed of the reload. Again, efficiency of movement. Lastly we went over malfunction clearances. Some of this was mind blowing as opposed to the way i was taught before. Specifically the double feed and bolt override clearances. Steve teaches a much faster and more efficient means of clearing these thats also super simple. We wrapped up each instruction and practice section with a mini AAR. This was very helpful as it allowed us to all talk out what we learned, which often helped the other shooters as it can shine light on things they had not considered. Many skill competitions were implemented throughout the day to insure we were learning, as well as adding a layer of fun competition amongst us.

Night 1- Night one was honestly a solidification of what was learned on day one, just at night. The methods steve teaches for reloads and malfunction clearances are excellent as they can work for day or night. Its why he teaches them and its readily apparent during the course. Light discipline and search techniques were added in as well and extremely helpful from a knowledge standpoint.

Day 2- Day two added in moving and shooting, as well as dealing with multiple threats. This was great for me as its somthing i hadnt had much practice with prior. Again steve dropped ground breaking knowledge on everyone in regards to how to move efficiently and maintain a balance of speed and accuracy. Day two was capped off with three separate drills that prove to show how sadistic steve can be when it comes to moving and shooting. I personally loved it. It was like mixing cardio day with firearms. In the end it pitted us against each other, but most importantly ourselves.

Take aways:
Day 1- i need to focus on my own personal skill level and not be gamed up by other shooters. Im going to be the only one in my house at night in a HD situation so i need to focus more in that regard. Also i need to work dry fire more on my reloads and malfunction clearances. Especially with my new skill set.

Night 1- light discipline is somthing i occasionally had issues with. So there is that. Also knowing i can work reloads and malfunction clearances as well as i did in the dark thanks to steve's methods is a huge confidence booster. Ill continue working those dry fire at night.

Day 2- shooting and moving is a lot harder and yet less complicated at the same time than i thought. Its harder because there is so much going on at one time its hard to keep focus. Its easier because in the end youve been moving and doing things your whole life. The easiest way to accomplish shooting and moving is to drop any theatrics and just move in the most efficient manner possible.

Overall take away- never give up the damn gun. Stay on it for an extra round. Your life and the lives of your loved ones/ others is hanging in the balance. Never get lazy and give up in training because you better not be giving up on them or yourself.

Last but not least is the fact that Steve is an amazing instructor. He doesnt coddle you along, or play to you as a shooter. He gives it to you straight and holds you accountable the whole time. I love that. I thrive in environments like that and i tend to learn the most that way. He is genuinely concerned about arming you with as much knowledge as he can in the short amount of time he has. Bottom line is he cares and really invests himself into his students. I plan to take many more classes with him and honestly cant wait for the next one.