“Thoughts on a Training Experience”
On June 24th, 25th , and 26th I attended my 4th training evolution with John McPhee, a retired US Army SGM.
With my beautiful fiancé, we undertook two days training the pistol, and one day the carbine.
I have spent years learning the craft of firearms, and I have been fortunate to have been trained by some ofthe best police and military trainers, active and retired, this country has to offer. Some have emphasized high repetitions of live gun fire, often under induced stressful circumstances, while others have professionally combined a blended experience of firearms, blades, and empty hand combatives for a fuller spectrum. Often, these highly trained and experienced men have demonstrated, advocated, and coached me on various techniques and approaches that seem at significant odds from each other, based on their own unique and highly personal experience in combat.
I have learned much from all of them. However, John McPhee is unique in the training world, in that he has spent significant time studying “The Modern Coaching Method,” and has delved in to the real meaning of “perfect practice.” Utilizing technology to carefully study and analyze technique at a frame-by- frame pace, the smallest components of perfect practice are broken out and studied, discussed, and reflected on, all with an eye on assessing if each component is as efficient as it can be alone and in concert with the whole evolution.
This is in keeping with the scientific coaching principles that studies have shown lead to outbreaks of “virtuosos” in music, art, sport and the whole myriad of human endeavor. Component parts, each practiced as perfectly as possible, alone and over time in combinations leading to the whole. I often refer to this as re-wiring the human hard drive, John discusses what actually happens in the creation of neural pathways in the human brain that are deliberately made efficient, letting the inefficient neural pathways “die on the vine” from disuse.
Alternating between discussion, attempts at “perfect practice,’ and analysis, then going back and doing it all again on another component part of the defensive use of a firearm, it is an in-depth, highly effective way to learn and grow. Less live fire, deeper learning.Perfection is not achieved, nor can it ever be. As I like to say, there was only one perfect Man, and they hung
Him from a tree, but perfection is strived for, growth is attained, and significant progress was made by all participants. John’s classes are small, maximizing one-on- one coaching. Videos are made and analyzed, to leave each student with a coached model to review, reflect on, and practice from. All and all, a rewarding and skill enhancing training experience. Highly recommended.