We were an early adopter of simulator training, and we think it’s an important tool to help you move your shooting and self defense skills forward. There is a reason why Military and Law Enforcement Agencies across our state and nation have been using simulators for decades. They work. Studies have shown that trainees learning, and training on simulators often improve their accuracy by 25% and decision making by 35%. While we don’t have specific information for private individuals obtaining simulator training, we can’t help but believe the benefits are similar.
Simulator training is not meant to be a replacement for live fire, however, this type of training adds a cerebral aspect of training. Using your mind to solve complex, fast developing, unpleasant problems, is an aspect of live fire training that is hard to put into place on the range. Competitive shooting often adds an element of these benefits, but rarely covers as many facets. While competition allows you to use your mind to solve a shooting problem, it does not teach you when it’s best not to shoot. The answer in competition is always to shoot. Simulators have the ability to “branch” into multiple outcomes dependent on the trainees ability to articulate words, use cover, or have a teammate engage, and this kind of complex training just isn’t possible on in life fire.
Using this tech at the basic level allows us to help the defensive minded pistol shooter, or the CCW permit applicant, further their shooting skills in a faster period of time. Secondly, the participant is given an introduction into shoot/don’t shoot decision making as well, allowing them to use their mindset and target identification lessons. We hope that these exercises show the participant there is much more to know and learn besides the fundamentals of pistol shooting.
In our ECS1 & 2 series we take that basic exposure and add more topics of discussion and skills to master. For instance, with the simulator we incorporate lessons in identification, shooting moving targets, verbal skill use, movement to cover, as well as drawing from holster, and shooting on the move. All of these are advanced level skills that we teach in an indoor controlled environment that allows the focus to be on the learning, and not in competition with the 20* or 98* temps of an outdoor range. Further, the cost of operating a simulation gun is much less in this day and age of $20 a box ammunition.
In Summary, we think the simulator allows us to offer more than just shooting skills. We have the ability to have the student learn and practice mind set, movement and decision making skills that can be stopped, analyzed, studied, and given back to the participant, long before they may ever call upon these skills outside of the classroom. We back this belief by allowing our students to retake these classes as often as they wish to participate, at little to no extra charge.