Archives for March 2013

6 Signs Your Aren’t Maximizing Your Training Effectiveness

Does your training gear still look brand new?

When you train your goal should always be to train effectively. If every training session doesn’t get you closer to your goals, then you are really just wasting time, money, and your energy. Sometimes it can be difficult to really know how effective you are in your training. Below you will find a list of warning signs that suggest your training may be ineffective. How many of these apply to you?

The data in your training log shows no progress

In your training log or journal, you should always be seeing a trend of progress. Your shooting splits should be decreasing over time. Your max reps or weights should be going up, and scores in general should improve.

When you look at your log, you should be able to see this progress. Maybe not on the scale of each session or even each week, but over several months you should be getting better. If you are constantly gaining and losing again, you might want to consider redesigning your program to improve your consistency.

You don’t have a log

You do have a log right?

Not everyone believes in tracking progress, but I do. When you do see trends of growth and improvement you have the record of who, what, when, why, and how. Without it you can’t learn from your successes or your mistakes. And those long term trends are hard to see without it.

Furthermore, seeing improvement is a great motivator.

You haven’t checked your progress against your goals

Do you periodically check the data in your log against the goals you set at the beginning of the year?

If not you are missing out on an opportunity to directly measure how effective you are being. Having good, measurable goals means that you can easily see just how well you stack up to your plan.

Your equipment still looks shiny and new

If your equipment isn’t wearing out at least a little, or it is collecting dust, you probably aren’t training often or hard enough.

As an example the Glock 17 I use for most of my dry-fire and live fire training has some smooth shiny spots where the finish is starting to rub off, and the inside of the magwell is dinged up from thousands of repetitions of reloads. If the gun still looked new, you would probably say I wasn’t using it.

The same goes for any other training gear you have. Ever see an experienced black belt’s belt? The guys who train the hardest always have tattered belts after years of training… and it’s not from the washing machine…

You haven’t adjusted your plan

When you set out to achieve your goals, you make a training plan. Certain days get set aside for certain things and you plan out how you will achieve your goals.

As the saying goes: no plan survives contact with the enemy.

As you compare your results with your goals, you should be adjusting your plan. Some areas might not be getting the attention they need while other areas might be showing more progress and you can afford to redirect those efforts to your weak spots.

If you aren’t adjusting your plan regularly, you aren’t thinking critically about your training, and therefore are not maximizing your effectiveness.

Your plan hasn’t stayed the same for longer than a week

On the other hand, changing your plan too often can be your downfall. If you don’t give your plan at least a few weeks or months to prove itself, you are doing yourself a disservice.

No plan can really prove its effectiveness or lack thereof in a few days. Stay the course long enough to see if it works. Only when it has been given enough time to demonstrate how effective it is should you change your plan.

These are just a few signs you can watch for in your own training. Any of these can be an indicator that you aren’t maximizing your effectiveness in your training.

Do any of these warning signs sound familiar? Are there any other warning signs I missed? Post in the comments below.

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How Much Use Do Your Snap Caps Get?

My snap caps have seen hard use.

About a month ago, as I came back from the dead so to speak with my own training, I found my trusty training tools on the brink of their own demise. My snap caps are probably the most used tool in my training arsenal. They get used every day I dry fire, and they have seen thousands upon thousands of repetitions through my guns.

As I tried to clear one out of my Glock, I had some difficulty with extraction. Upon inspection I found that the snap cap rim was beginning to tear off. If I had owned these for a few days or weeks, I would say that the product was faulty. But after almost a year of daily dry-fire, these snap caps have held up great.

Best uses for snap caps

Using snap caps during dry-fire can be a great way to protect your firearms from unnecessary wear and tear caused by dropping the firing pin on an empty chamber. While this benefit alone is a great reason to use snap caps, I find that their value goes far further.

Malfunction Drills

Snap caps are excellent for malfunction drills. You can easily create double feed and misfire scenarios with your snap caps for practice clearing them.

When combined with live-fire, snap cap utility is fairly obvious. A snap cap can represent a misfired round. When randomly loaded into your magazines, they can create unexpected malfunctions.

In dry-fire sessions the snap caps can take the place of both the malfunction rounds and fresh ammo. When performing a malfunction clearing drill, always make sure a follow-up round gets chambered properly, validating your technique. Create double-feeds by placing a round in the chamber before easing the slide forward on a full magazine.

Reloading Drills

Snap caps are excellent additions to emergency reloading drills. Fresh magazines with snap caps allow you to ensure a round gets properly chambered. Dropping the slide too early during a reload can be a disaster, forcing you into an immediate action drill. Training with snap caps keeps you honest about the timing of your reloads and ensures you don’t drop that slide too soon.

How much use do your snap caps get?

I obviously use snap caps quite a bit in my own training, to the point where I would consider them disposable short-term-use items. Personally I keep a package of spares on hand for the next time the rim breaks off one of my snap caps.

How often do you use snap caps in your training, and what do you use them for?

Don’t already use snap caps? I use and highly recommend the snap caps from A-Zoom. Support small business and Indestructible Training by ordering yours from our friends at WTBGU. (Disclaimer: the preceding link is an affiliate link, and I will receive a commission for anything you buy through this link).

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