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Thread: AAR: Defensive Pistol 1, Green-Ops, Culpeper VA, 4/7/24

  1. #1
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    AAR: Defensive Pistol 1, Green-Ops, Culpeper VA, 4/7/24

    This past Sunday, 4/7, I attended Green-Ops Training’s Defensive Pistol 1 class in Culpeper, Virginia. This is an 8 hour course focused on the efficient application of a pistol in a defensive context and topics covered included appropriate gear, marksmanship, one handed shooting, malfunction clearances, reloads, use of cover/concealment and proper shot placement for stopping the threat effectively. This was the second course I’ve taken with Green-Ops, the other being their Advanced Application of Pistol Fundamentals back in February. Taking this course after the other was beneficial for me as I was able to work on the deficiencies identified in the first class in the time between them which gave me more confidence coming into this Sunday.

    The lead instructor was Luke, assisted by Brian, Phil and Dex. All the instructors were very professional, funny and encouraging and made continual rotations through the students so we were always getting feedback and instruction from different perspectives which I found very helpful. They gave straight forward critiques or corrections followed by the “why” behind it and were quick to give confirmation and encouragement for good performance. There were eleven students so we were all able to shoot every drill for multiple reps w/o a need for relays. There was a thorough safety and evac briefing before we got started with specific jobs assigned in case of an accident. There was never a point during the day when I had any concern regarding safety, everyone was squared away. They also discussed the importance of incorporating dry fire, timers and competition into your training as well as use of force considerations in the morning brief.

    I ran the course from concealment with a G19/EPS Carry out of a DarkStar gear Apollo holster & JMCK mag pouch from appendix using a mix of Glock and Magpul 15 & 17 rd mags. Mods to my pistol are minimal: SCD, 10-8 irons, Glock “-“ connector and Talon Pro grip tape. Total round count for the day was 319 rounds of Speer Lawman 147. I brought a G47 set up identically (except for a full size EPS) as a backup, but it stayed in the bag. I experienced no stoppages or other issues with my gear. Considering the scope of the course I assumed most people would be shooting from concealment, but I turned out to be completely wrong as everyone else was running from duty type OWB rigs.

    We started out with some basic marksmanship drills to evaluate everyone’s skill level then talked about stance, grip and draw techniques and ran some drills to work on those. The staff was in no way dogmatic, pointing out that every gun/hand combo is unique and offered alternatives to their preferred techniques based on what works for the individual. Another aspect of the curriculum that I liked was that the techniques and drills presented were followed by a qual/test/competition that focused on those skills. For example, we worked on strong hand/support hand shooting techniques, then shot some target transitions and reload drills which lead into the IDPA 5x5 classifier, which uses those skills. They set up a walk back elimination contest on C zone steel out to 85yds, which was really fun and added some pressure before we shot the Green-Ops Pistol Patch test which includes a draw to headshot at 7yds and a 25yd bill drill. The instructors made sure to point out that at 7 yards the head box is a bit bigger than the steel at distance, and at 25yds the A zone is much larger, giving everyone a great reference and some confidence going into the test. There was a demo and discussion on techniques for shooting around cover/concealment before we rotated through a few reps of shooting pairs on steel from behind a barricade starting from standing, then dropping to a knee, going prone shooting under the barrier and then back up the other side in reverse. It was good fun and good practice since it’s something I rarely get to do.

    Throughout the day the competitions and qualifications added some pressure and helped students evaluate their performance. Besides the walk back drill, we shot the Green-Ops Gamble (I hope I got the name right) where they put a 3x5 playing card on each target and you initially back up to whatever distance you think you can guarantee two hits within the par time and watch the other shooters with the option to step back further if you want to push your luck. We shot the FBI qual (passed 100%), the IDPA 5x5 classifier (down 2 for a total 22.29s), and the Green-Ops Pistol patch standards, which are VERY tough. The Pistol Patch standard consists of 4 courses of fire from the holster and must be shot clean on standard USPSA A zones: 1)Headshot @7 yds par=1.5s (1.71s clean), 2) 3-Reload-3 @7yds par=4.0s (5.20s clean), 3) 2 shots SHO-2 shots WHO @7yds par=4.0s (6.14s clean), 4) Bill drill @25yds par=6s (5.64 down 2) for a total time of 18.69s and a fail. I really enjoyed shooting all these standards and seeing how I stacked up. The Pistol Patch standard is something I’ll strive for, but it’s very challenging and I know I’ve got a long way to go to reach that level of proficiency, especially the SHO/WHO portion.

    By no means is this a comprehensive list of everything we did or learned during the course of the day, but it’s what stands out in my mind. I had an awesome time again with the Green-Ops staff and the other students, learned a lot, gained more confidence and identified the areas I need to really focus on to keep improving. I was happy with my performance Sunday, especially the improvements in accuracy and speed I saw compared to how I shot at the previous class. I ended up as top shooter on the FBI qual and the Pistol Patch standards and was fortunate enough to earn the Green-Ops ‘Top Shot” coin for the class. I will absolutely be taking more Green-Ops classes in the future and would highly recommend them to anyone interested.
    Here are a few photos from Sunday:
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    Last edited by Chefdog; 04-10-2024 at 06:29 PM.

  2. #2
    Awesome AAR. thanks for training with us and see you next time.

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