Being in a gunfight is probably one of the most demanding situations that a human being can endure. If you want to have a fighting chance of getting out alive, you will have to be quick, be alert at all times, be able to make quick judgement calls, and be able to adapt to situations as they present themselves. Hollywood has done an excellent job of glorifying life and death struggles to the point that people come to expect reality to mirror the big screen. One of these illusions is shooting positions that you can take around cover. You will often see people in the movies coming up around cover and exposing themselves widely in order to take a quick shot before going back behind cover. You also see people in competition carelessly leaping out from behind cover in order to engage multiple targets, leaving themselves wide open to their paper threats. These are not good examples of how to behave under fire in close and long range engagements.
I feel that alot of trainers try to teach textbook positions, sometimes in the attempt to at least provide a reference on how to use cover while defending yourself. It sounds good in theory, but i feel that establishing textbook methods for using a weapon around cover in a firefight is not really teaching people what they need to know. No two people are going to be the same and not everyone has the same reaction to life and death situations, no matter their level of training. The best way to train someone in this area is to teach them the basic principles of using cover, and let them find their own balance and method. The principles to follow are very simple, and you will find yourself wanting to follow them if you should find yourself in a shootout. These principles are: keeping a low profile to minimize your overall silhouette, be fast and accurate when coming out from cover to take shots, be aware of your surrounds at all times, maintain stability and balance in your positions so you don’t get knocked back from recoil, and remain adaptable to the situation at hand. If you follow these basic principles, you will have a fighting chance to survive the engagement. Remember that no plan goes as you intend for it to go, and you will sometimes have to get into shooting positions that are not necessarily the most comfortable in order to stay in the fight.
David served in the USMC for a few years. Deployed twice and got wounded. Retired and moved to Alaska. Has a passion for reviewing and testing guns and gear of all kinds. Enjoys working to dispel myths and show that you can train and practice in a realistic, safe, and practical way.