I learned a long time ago that there are a lot of instructors but very few teachers. If you don’t get what I mean then read on, if you will.
I have had a long and very rewarding career and a great retirement life as well. I survived over 4 decades in law enforcement by some luck and by making some pretty solid choices along the way. Some of those choices were life savers for sure. Choices like staying in shape, training hard and always watching the people I come in contact with. I may have slowed down a bit but I still try to stay loyal to my old routine.
I started my law enforcement career at the young age of 19. It was the early 1970’s and the law enforcement profession was full of war veterans from the Viet Nam War. My first training Officer was an Army Veteran that had lived through some very dangerous assignments while overseas. His name was Ken. I spent hundreds of hours with Ken and learned the ropes while patrolling the streets of a small community in the Los Angeles area. I learned because he taught from experience. I looked up to Ken and respected his advice and criticism. I soon became aware that there was a big difference in how training officers teach.
I heard stories from other officers that I had graduated from the police academy with.Officers that worked in agencies from all over California. Stories that concerned the training they were receiving on the streets. Some of these rookies received very little training that was meaningful. Training from a book or checking off the boxes to get through the night doesn’t work out in the long run. In my opinion you need a mix. Some bookwork a little of the check boxes and a huge amount of time spent listening to someone with real world experience.Your teacher / trainer should watch after you, in the beginning like a mother grizzly watches, protects and prepares her cub for living in the wild.At the end of the training period you should feel confident and ready to go solo.
CCW training needs to be taken seriously and a lot of thought should go into the company and person you choose to teach you the ropes as Ken taught me in my beginning of law enforcement. Consider some of the following when researching and choosing your instructor:
- What is the instructor’s background?
- Does the instructor have “real world” experience?
- Are you looking for a Jedi or an Obi Wan to train with?
- Do I really want a $99.00 class? Please don’t fall for this! Hopefully you chose your weapon and gear with some thought as well.
- Where does the instructor do the training? Indoor range or outdoor? It matters a great deal.
- Call the instructor and ask them all your questions. Evaluate their responses especially the answers about experience and training styles. Spend some time. A CCW lifestyle is like nothing else you will decide to do. With CCW comes major responsibilities and commitments.
- After a discussion with an instructor decide whether they have your best interests at heart or are they just checking the boxes and going through the book to get it over with.
- Do you get some real instruction at the range or just a quick overview and “shoot and scoot”?
There are so many things to consider on this subject. The training you decide on is of paramount importance. I teach one on one. Unless it’s two people that know each other or they are related in some way it’s one on one. You need privacy. Privacy to discuss your concerns and get your questions answered. That means that an instructor should never look at their watch. They should not have an ending time to the course they offer. When I am asked how long the classes last, I say they last until you’re comfortable with the weapon(s), gear and knowledge you’ve obtained