Why we train

Because brain-fade happens.  Action pistol shooters jokingly refer to the timers we use as “brain cell destroyers”; the joke being when the buzzer goes off you forget your whole plan.  Stress is wicked difficult thing to manage, and taking classes that induce stress or competing in a simulated stress environment are ways to ameliorate that problem.


  1. If you can’t do it right ten times out of ten in practice, whatever mistake you made on the runs where you screwed it up in practice will be the same mistake you make when it counts.

  2. Stress! Yes this is why the US Army does so well at war because we practice CAIOS on a DAILY basis, i.e. ‘SNAFU’ BOHECA’ FUBAR’………..

  3. We call the timer the “nuralizer” That beep goes off and your brain falls out on the ground.

    On a slight tangent I just wrote something on teaching yourself to not hesitate to take action, titled “The old lady is just the training aid.” at my blog http://223fmj.blogspot.com it’s meant to be kind of funny, but came about after a discussion with friends about the “bystander effect” and why people hesitate to act.

  4. Oh yes, the timer. Many a time I’ve gone to the line all ready and everything planned out perfectly and when that buzzer goes off I realize my brain just went back to bed and pulled the covers over it’s head and put a Do Not Disturb sign on the door. Of course the more you want to do well on a certain stage or at a certain match, the worse the brain fade usually is.

  5. My last brain melt, I forgot how many shots per target on the last string of the first stage of the IDPA classifier. I gave the SO the deer in the headlights look, said “Gah, I hope this works!” and then put shots into the targets tactical sequence style for some reason.

  6. So right. David Blinder, at Personal Defense Training, http://www.personaldefensetraining.com/, offers a course he calls “The Test.” The Test is a set of scenarios David has set up with the help of “aggressors,” Students run with scenarios with simunitions.
    Your two-handed grip, perfect stance training time is of little use.
    In some scenarios, you don’t shoot at all–or at least you shouldn’t.

    It’s funny how your cool dissipates in seconds and flops around on the ground.

    David does these outside of Atlanta.
    Thanks, David, if you’re reading. Eye-opener course.

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