Practical Skills and Techniques for Movement and Searching
April 17, 2021 – Pelham, NH

: Ken Allen
Weather: Rain – clouds 36-47 degrees. Cold and Raw
Location: Pelham Fish & Game, Pelham, NH
Class Size: 11
Time: 10:30-7:00
Round Count: 200-250+/- (reduced for ammo shortage)


Ken went through the safety brief, and medical brief having the students with professional medical experience and students with advanced medical training raise their hands allowing everyone to see who they were. Each of us was asked to have at least a TQ on our body. We set up protocols in case a training accident were to occur, how to bring EMS into the club.

Ken walked us through the day on what we going to learn and how the day was going to flow. He explained how to approach doorways, our feet and body positions, muzzle positions, where to go once we broke the threshold and entered the room, and to be extremely careful and mindful of how much we are exposing of our body or our gun to the potential enemy. As this was a 2.0 class and most of us had taken Ken 1.0 or 1.5 “intro to CQB carbine class” prior ….we did not spend much time reviewing the things we learned, such as slicing the pie, etc…

We started off the live fire portion of the class with cold drills from CQB distances about 7 yards. Single shots working our way up to multiple shots into the center mass of our target to warm up. It was a chilly rainy morning and we needed the warmup.

Each student had a doorway threshold made from barrels for us to practice setting up on the threshold, slicing the pie, and eventually making entry “into the room”. Ken talked us through how we had to think and collect data everywhere we could. Was the room center-fed? corner fed? which way did the door swing? Could we hear anything in the target room? Were we sure entering the room was the correct decision?

We did this as a group many times and then individually under Ken's coaching when it was our turn. When we were doing it individually Ken added a buttonhook as we push into the room a bit and searched for a target.

Rooms were made with the range barrels (enough to fill a conex container literally). They were stacked two high so they were a good interpretation of walls and doorways. Steel and paper shoot and no-shoot targets were set up in various positions. We walked the rooms, in the beginning, talking about the movements, and then we went loud and live. We each did it a few times and the rooms changed and we were not given the option to view the layout before our turn up at-bat.

After lunch, we did more complex layouts and moved up to two-man entry. Adding the second person increased our stress because we had another person shooting and moving inside a confined space with you. If you or your partner did something wrong it could have ended badly. Ken put in as many safeties as possible we had two instructors watching and walking with us, we did it slow and methodical and it was all good with zero safety violations.

Ken put T-shirts on the targets so we could not see the vitals on our targets. On some of the drills, anything with a T-shirt was a no-shoot target and sometimes T-shirt targets were shot targets. We had to always be thinking of the lasted rules, how our footwork was to go and our finger and muzzle discipline. A lot to process in a very short time as you are going through while having the class watching you as you ramps up your stress level... It was all self-imposed stress, you had to try to leave it behind and calm yourself down.

Each time we all had gone through the room(s), Ken would have us turn around while he changed the rooms and hallways. He added undercover cops with blue tape somewhere on the target for us to look for, he added hidden targets and kept the instructions vague. It was awesome! (Only one of the students shot a UC and that student is a Police Officer himself. I am pretty sure he did shot the UC on purpose!)

On one run we went from T-shirts that were no shoot beforehand, to T-shirts were bad guys and I walked right down a hall into a T-shirted steel target. I was DEAD! I was so focused on my footwork that I was not paying attention to the updated instructions. Lesson learned. Attention to detail!

We ended the day by cleaning up the range, a debriefing, and certificates. It was a very good day, I enjoyed this class more than the room clearing with a carbine. In the unlikely event I need these skills I figured that I would have my everyday carry pistol, not my carbine.

As I was driving home I was thinking how complex the simple room drills we did. How if it was a real-world situation going down, how little experience I had doing something like this. I have hundreds of hours of training under the watchful eye of competent instructors and how confusing our straightforward uncomplicated scenarios turned out to be in reality. Humbling realization.

Ken is very well-informed, extraordinarily experienced, exceedingly likable, clear in his instructions, and able to coach you in a pleasant likable way that makes you want to learn more from him. Not all instructors are like that! He tells you what he wants you to do, he will demonstrate it, and tell you again fully. I like that method of teaching.