After Action Report: Mar 2016 Teufelshund Tactical HK Pistol and SMG Operator Course
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Thread: After Action Report: Mar 2016 Teufelshund Tactical HK Pistol and SMG Operator Course

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    Default After Action Report: Mar 2016 Teufelshund Tactical HK Pistol and SMG Operator Course

    With another three days of successful training in the books, I sit here tonight sorting through photos, notes and thoughts in order to summarize this great experience. I do this, not to serve as some sort of self-indulgent marketing tool, but instead to serve as a tangible reference to all that participated to review and serve as a memory of the training, but also, hopefully, to help inspire other shooters who may read this and who are looking for unique and rapidly progressive performance, Heckler and Koch-focused training that simply does not exist elsewhere. Though exhausted after training days started at 0730 and ran until dark each night in order to ensure the most “bang for their buck”, I’m happy to say that it is a rewarding feeling of exhaustion.

    As with our previous classes, my friend, Paul, (owner of Frontline Defense) was gracious enough to provide us access to his outstanding range complex in Warrenton, NC. For both the pistol course and the SMG course, we had complete use of his 300 meter range, allowing us to conduct a full range of varied and challenging drills. A busy weekend, with a two day sniper competition, as well as normal range members occupying other ranges in the complex, it truly was exceptional to have such exclusive access to ourselves. As always, many thanks to Paul and his staff for supporting us.



    This weekend also served as the first appearance of my old friend, Ben, as an Instructor with Teufelshund Tactical. After more than a year of “apprenticeship” and providing superb backside to support to previous training courses, it was time for me to admit that this training endeavor has grown beyond the scope of what I can sustain by myself. Having Ben on board has proven hugely beneficial for me, as well as all of the other students, as we were able to pair up for demos before each drill and then cover more ground in providing immediate feedback to the students, as well as an additional focus on safety. This also allowed us to maximize the full potential of our time, fitting in more drills than previously possible for the students. But don’t worry, some things never change. Ben still was kind enough to hand me back a filthy SMG at the end of each day for cleaning.



    To my students from both classes, Adam, Michael, Casey, Jackson, Peter, Kevin, Kyle, Paul, Rob, Brent, Gai, David, Pat, Scott, Sean, Jonathan and my old buddy and classmate, Tommy, I’m humbled by your willingness to travel great distances and make the commitment to training with all of us. It continually reminds me what an outstanding group of like-minded individuals we have as members of HK Pro Forum. Every one of you came armed with an excitement towards what we would provide to you and willingness to approach it all with an open mind, soaking up all that was being thrown down before you (drinking from the HK fire hose, as one student said).

    The license plates on these two trucks (mine and Tommy's) let everyone else know that they found the right classroom location.



    Day One consisted of the first iteration of a Heckler and Koch focused Pistol Course. This very compressed program began in the classroom with a presentation on the full line of Heckler and Koch commercial pistols. Design, history and the unique features of each model were covered before transitioning to the classroom instruction on a new baseline for understanding the fundamentals of adaptive handgun shooting. From there, and an appreciation for how many Sheetz Gas Stations there are in rural North Carolina, we made it to the range.

    I wondered, coming into this, what Heckler and Koch pistols the students would be bringing, and I have to tell you, it was quite a range. We had representation in the form of the P9S, P7, USP, HK45C, P30, VP9 and even a Mark 23.













    Then, starting out at very close range and utilizing a series of unique target and drills specifically designed and sequenced to build upon each other, we rapidly progressed through performance and proficiency improvements. Stance, body positioning that eliminated unnecessary tension, controlling momentum, maximizing efficiency, leverage, friction, grip, eyes, sights and trigger control, were all individual steps up a ladder towards the end state of effective rounds on target. In just a few short hours, students made tremendous gains, not just in their shooting ability, but also in their confidence.



























    Static shooting gave way to movement, angled, lateral, forwards and backwards. Single targets progressed to multiples. Draws and reloads were stressed again and again until those actions smoothed out and muscle memory began to form.







    Always a great confidence booster after focusing so precisely at close range, we stretched our legs with a “walk back” drill. Start at 25 meters and shooting at a steel sillouette, each student made the steel ring all the way back to the covered are beyond the 100m line.



    After dinner out and the departure of a few of our pistol course students, we met again on day two in the classroom. This time, the focus was on a brief history of Heckler and Koch sub-machineguns. Then we moved on to instruction on how to adjust the sights and set BZO before covering adaptive shooting fundamentals with a focus specifically on these weapons.



    For the SMG course, students brought with them several UMP conversions, a few MP5s and a MP5-N and a couple of MP5Ks. I ran my MP5SD, while Ben had a UMP.



    At the range, we began with confirming our zero. Then, as a confidence booster, and an appreciation for the controllability of these weapons, each student was shown a demonstration on how to properly control a full magazine dump on fully automatic and then asked to do the same; always a crowd pleaser. Here is a linked video of me providing the demo on controlling the UMP.45:

    http://youtu.be/y3Eoz_p6RCo

    From there, it was very similar in focus as the pistol training had been: Begin building the foundation of proper shooting techniques at the base and working up. Accuracy always coming first, we progressively added speed. Pushing the students up progressively, we found the wall at which they currently could not push beyond and then provided them the positive feedback and support to push well beyond it.







    So impressive was their responsiveness, I quite simply, on several occasions, could not believe the level of performance I was witnessing. Part of this I’m confident was a factor of the positive mental attitude that we were fostering as instructor to students, but it was contagious and we were pleased to see, especially when we started working in team drills, how supportive the students were to each other.











    The end of day two (day one of the SMG course) wrapped up again with the challenging walk back drill. This time though, taking greater advantage of the length of the range, though starting out 25m from the steel target, we finished with each of us placing a round on the target at the 200m line; much farther than any of the students thought they would ever be able to be effective with a sub-machinegun. In fact, most of us were able to hear that pleasing ring of the steel on just or second shot from that distance. Pretty damn impressive, guys.



    Another dinner out and late night of cleaning weapons and we were back bright and early in the classroom again for day three (day two of the SMG course). This focus was on an overview of the full line of Heckler and Koch sub-machineguns, followed by a detailed explanation of their operation principles and finally a period of limited armorer training. The latter exposed the students to the tools and skills necessary to support the maintenance of these weapons beyond what the owner’s manuals provides.



    Back at the range, the day began with a demonstration of pistol caliber ammunition being fired through a windshield. An eye opening experience for all, it was a clear representation of both the challenges associated with shooting through barriers and the necessity for choosing the right type of performance ammunition; a focus of part of the classroom training from the previous day.















    We then picked up where we had ended the previous day with our live fire drills with transition drills and then working in pairs. Again, that gave way to more movement drills and multiple targets. Then, to build their confidence under the self-induced stress that only the sound of a shot time can provide, we ran a series of “standards drills”. Designed to bring all of the skills taught together, it became both an impressive display of performance and proficiency gains, but also a source of good humored competition. In the end, Brent, a returning student from an earlier course, with a wild custom-painted UMP conversion and HK Pro edition HK45C, won the majority of the drills and claimed the title. But, to break the tie between the two runners up, Jonathan and Tommy were forced to a “first to hit the steel target wins.” The difficulty though, was that the steel was 284m away. Amazingly, they both struck the steel with the same amount of attempts; another tie. So, they were forced to run the same challenge again, but with their pistols this time, from a supported position. With six rounds fired to score his hit, Tommy won the challenge. Pretty impressive indeed. Where else can you say you shot your VP9 and hit steel at 284m?

    Afterwards we completed several more challenging drills focusing on speed, accuracy and trigger control, before wrapping up as the sun went down again.





    We ended each day in the dark, with a debrief of the day’s events, and on this final day, it was no different. Each student was asked to provide his “sustains and improves”; things that can be used make the next course better; a constant focus on continuous process improvement. We also assessed whether the student’s goals were met. Again, I can only explain it as humbling for Ben and I to receive such positive and sincere feedback from the students. With a varied level of experience coming into this training ranging from no previous formal instruction to several very experienced shooters, the trend was that expectations were surpassed, goals were exceeded and it was clear that they were all impressed with the ability to progress so rapidly in performance in such a short period of time.

    Even more impressive, and one of my goals for the students from this training program, was their ability to begin to self-diagnose their own issues. Where at the beginning of the day, a student would miss the mark on a specific drill and possibly be confused as to why or blame it on his weapon, in which Ben or I would provide the corrective recommendation, by the end of the day, before we could even provide such a comment on an increasingly rare missed shot, they would already have recognized that issue and were asking to run the drill another time, so they could correct it themselves. That level of self-awareness as a shooter is rarely found in such a compressed period of time and it left a lasting impression on all of us that the programs provided here are comprehensive and effective.

    With our final debrief completed, the class presented me with an unexpected and unnecessary “class gift” of a custom print combining my background, my company and my appreciation for two fine Heckler and Koch sub-machineguns. A truly impressive presentation, that I can assure you will find itself in receipt of valuable real estate on my gun room wall as soon as I can get it over to and back from my frame shop. Thanks guys.



    Looking back now, I found it was funny, with all of the thanks you were all giving to Ben and me for the instruction we provided and comments about all the fun each of you had, honestly we had just as much fun, if not more, than each of you. Sharing this Heckler and Koch knowledge, providing a solid base of adaptive shooting fundamentals, while meeting new friends and having a blast along the way, is a reward all in itself. With your feedback, I’m already leaning forward with continued improvements for future training and I’m again grateful and humbled that so many of you have already committed to coming back for more. It was a pleasure to sling lead with all of you.



    Last edited by Marine0303; 03-08-2016 at 01:41 PM.
    SF,

    James

    Heckler and Koch Certified Armorer (Heckler and Koch)
    Heckler and Koch Pistol, Submachine Gun and Rifle Instructor (Singleton International)

    Owner, Teufelshund Tactical

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    James and Classmates: A sincere pleasure to shoot with all of you! I learned so much from the instruction and from all my classmates. A sincere pleasure and ready to take it to the next level. C u at the next "MP5 Operators" event. vr/Pat S.

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    James

    Many thanks for sharing your knowledge and positive support in your first HK Pistol Course. Your methodical instruction gave me a much greater in depth understanding of the mechanics that make a shooter consistently successful. I was amazed at the speed of improvement of our entire group through the training process. I left with the ability to self diagnose my pistol work. Returning home to my KY farm I had another range day this weekend and put into practice the things I learned. Amazing progress! "Teach a man to fish......"

    Thanks to you and Ben for the great instruction and to my classmates for a great day at the range.

    -Kevin

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    James, reading your AARs are the highlight of my daily HKPRO consumption. Well written and look forward to attending your course one day when I PCS CONUS.

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    Truly awesome.

    I'm not done making the trip, not by a long shot. Thanks for the AAR, I can truly relate to how great it was.
    Bobby D
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    "We bleed hk red!"

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    Absolutely awesome course and instruction by you and Ben. Shooting through the car window was the highlight. If anyone is wanting to learn how to push themselves with a subgun and/or refine their techniques, I can't say enough good things about this course and the program of instruction. The level of professionalism displayed by James and Ben really set the tone for the class and allowed the students to focus on positive range work and fostered a great learning environment for the most basic shooters to the more advanced. No one felt left out and as a result push ourselves further than expected. Great group of fellow students and I will definitely be making a trip to more courses in the future.
    V/r

    Tommy







    HK Certified UMP and VP9 Armorer

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    The Librarian
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    Superb AAR James!
    "...but just like every other clone, they are copies of the original and copies are never as good as the original."

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    Thank you to all evolved, as this was my first class beyond NRA safety and CCW, I came into it not knowing what to expect from the class, or myself to be honest. I came out with several new drills that I will be adding to the roster of my range trips from here on as well as a great deal of confidence in my shooting as well as my ability to adapt and absorb the information provided. I will be keeping my eyes on the lookout of the next HK pistol classes that you guys can put together!

    **also, if/when all of the photos and videos get put up from class, please let us know where to find them! I'm curious to see all of the gems that were surely captured!

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    Gets the Shakes if No HK Contact in 24 Hour Period
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    "I came out with several new drills that I will be adding to the roster of my range trips from here on as well as a great deal of confidence in my shooting as well as my ability to adapt and absorb the information provided."

    This is one of the goals for all Instructors, and is exceptionally achieved with James & Ben.
    Bobby D
    NRA Endowment
    NRA Chief Range Safety Officer
    EMT-B
    KB9RDL

    "In einer Welt aus Kompromissen, einige Männer machen keine".

    "We bleed hk red!"

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    Absolutely!

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