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#32969
Ok , since we are stuck at home cause of Covid , i think this is good time fire up to forum with deep philosophy of shooting subject.

The subject is very simple Military vs Civilian shooter. Which one is more progresive and accurate? In this case lets focus not for USA, generally for al NATO army.

Example: my shooting isnt super in Army , please consider it due to Multi nationalty i did army in several diffrent countries. One of them is Israel which is famous with uniuqe gun fight style. But no one ask me my Dominate eye or even check for it. I didint know untill 38 age years old , i am right handed but my Dominate eye was Left. This is found it by my first day in Olympic shooting class by my shooting teacher. it was so simple , why no one test me before? He force me to use my left hand, he change my technique all over and today i am very accurate with my left hand thanks to him.

Second is, in Army i never shoot with Pistol. I dont have a pistol even. Yes i had M16 , G3 , G41 , Galil even Mauser and M1. But example i never get change to shoot with AK ever. Today i am looking my self that what i learn from Army as shooting technique is nothing. But in Army i had change get combat experince which is i cant get in civilian life. But if my shooting isnt accurate , what is worth it in army?

I am looking at youtube like Jerry Miculek, Andrey Kirisenko , Rob Leatham these guys so fast i never saw in my life people like them in Military.

So do you think Civilian shooter has more open mind , more innovator and they are traning more harder than Military shooter? Or Military shooter has always conservative technique but more accurate.

What do you thinking ?

Please consider it we are talk about shooting range issue not real combat.
#32974
Good topic!!!

I think the main difference is in the style of training. I have not served, but have friends I shoot with in matches that have. As you mentioned, most infantry only have basic rifle training, and if any pistol, it's very minimal. The military guys I shoot with in IDPA and USPSA, had to learn from scratch like the rest of us. A couple were special forces and had combat training, mostly room clearing in a group with rifles, not individual. They had some pistol, and have done well in matches. Again, they told me they also had to learn stage planning which is just as, or more important than being an accurate shooter. Stage planning is a huge part of USPSA, not so much in IDPA, as target threat priority and slicing the pie for shooting around barriers pretty much dictates how you'll run the course.

If you look at law enforcement, most have very little training as well, unless you're in SWAT. The majority only qualify yearly and it's pretty basic. There are a few that shoot in our matches. They train on their own, and shoot the matches to be more competent out on the street. There's no question that shooting local matches will make you a better and safer shooter.

Competitive shooting requires a ton of training! Guys like Max Michel, Jerry Miculek, and Rob Leatham are all sponsored shooters, competing at a very high level. They put in tons of hours training at the range, and dry firing that the average shooter just can't do. During this Covid downtime, I've been dry firing a ton. Setting up my 1/3 scale targets and running a bunch of USPSA qualifiers. I setup wall barriers and portals to simulate what you'll see in matches. Yea it's not the same as live fire, but how you approach them and working on accurate target transitions is super beneficial. I'm also working with a new gun, so this has been very helpful.

So to directly answer your question, I would say a level "C" USPSA civilian shooter would be better in a match than a newer shooter with military experience.
#32977
Yeah when it comes to handguns most civilian shooters have alot more shooting experience then general military guys. Anyone who's taken any type of pistol courses beyond a basic handgun course will have better handgun training then most soldiers not in high speed units. In the U.S. unless things have changed I think the only ones who do any type of pistol shooting are officers, some vehicle crew members military police and some SF units.

Same for police, I have family members who are NYPD or retired NYPD, shot with some of my cousins NYPD coworkers a couple were pretty lousy shots and had poor saftey discipline muzzle sweeping people.
#32979
Retired Marine here. I shot competitively for more than 10 years in military, was PMI (Primary Marksmanship Instructor) nearly my whole career, shot with and coached on the Marine Corps Rifle team for some time. The Marines and Army actively compete in almost all disciplines, including Olympic shooting, and some of the Action shooting events. They'll take some of their better shooters and turn them loose with almost unlimited ammo for practice and competition locally and often Nationally. I believe you will see members of the Army team an a number of high-level events in the United States. The most useful return is getting information and techniques that can be incorporated in and utilized in training the "average" Soldier or Marine to make them more efficient in combat. There is also an element in public relations where the military team members are more than willing to share whatever they can with the shooting public, and gain national attention for their shooting efforts, especially in national and international shooting events. I hope this helps some.. not sure if it answers the questions you've asked. Anyway, it's a good question. As for the "average" military guy or gal? I think most of them would be more competitive in rifle events as the average military doesn't get a lot of time spent with a handgun. At least that's my experience.
#32984
Ben W. wrote: Sat May 09, 2020 3:21 pm Retired Marine here. I shot competitively for more than 10 years in military, was PMI (Primary Marksmanship Instructor) nearly my whole career, shot with and coached on the Marine Corps Rifle team for some time. The Marines and Army actively compete in almost all disciplines, including Olympic shooting, and some of the Action shooting events. They'll take some of their better shooters and turn them loose with almost unlimited ammo for practice and competition locally and often Nationally. I believe you will see members of the Army team an a number of high-level events in the United States. The most useful return is getting information and techniques that can be incorporated in and utilized in training the "average" Soldier or Marine to make them more efficient in combat. There is also an element in public relations where the military team members are more than willing to share whatever they can with the shooting public, and gain national attention for their shooting efforts, especially in national and international shooting events. I hope this helps some.. not sure if it answers the questions you've asked. Anyway, it's a good question. As for the "average" military guy or gal? I think most of them would be more competitive in rifle events as the average military doesn't get a lot of time spent with a handgun. At least that's my experience.
Hi Ben

This is very clear informaiton and thank you very much. Pistol inst best gun for Military. It may good for Police forces in Urban , bot in Military concept Knife could be more usefull than Pistol. So this very normal Military doesnt care about pistol shooting , but in your case you are Marine and PMI. Regular Solider practice with gun in 10 years as you did in 10 days. In regulary Army traning they are checking Dominate eye , or how squize the trigger or dry fire practice? I dont think so. Regarding to army unlimited Ammo is very important key i think. I belivie Civilian shooters more wedded for shooting practice.Cause this hobby. But main problem is budget. But Civilian shooter has more diffrent caliber experinces. In army that, i never knew even how much the bullet price . Untill i get civilian and starting to buy ammo for my personel fire arm :)
#32990
A couple of thoughts from a civilian:

- An old Vietnam vet once told me "the only reason to use a pistol is to fight your way to a rifle".

- Rob Leatham had a great quote in one of his videos: "We play a game, combat is totally different. That being said, you probably don't want to be in a gunfight with me"

- I don't see how you can separate the games or training from combat. They are all simulating combat in one way or on some level or the other. Otherwise, there wouldn't be a need for targets.

- I have never experienced it, and I am sure extensive training is helpful, but actually being shot at probably affects your opinion on this topic tremendously.
#32994
GlennSFX wrote: Sat May 09, 2020 2:03 pm So to directly answer your question, I would say a level "C" USPSA civilian shooter would be better in a match than a newer shooter with military experience.
Oh lord, hate to say it but I agree with most of what @GlennSFX said.

Most LEOs I've been around, if they don't shoot competition, don't shoot that well or train that much.
Military forces, less SPEC Warfare, don't shoot or train with handguns that much.
My personal military training was twice a year could I hit the ocean from the back of a moving warship with a .45 cal 10 times in a row. I could, I've actually seen sailors that could not. No, really, they could not.

It took me a while to wrap my head around competition shooting. After the first match I shot, I realized I needed to change everything I was doing at a range when I practiced. And lots o' dry firing too.
#32996
"Hi Ben

This is very clear information and thank you very much. Pistol inst best gun for Military. It may good for Police forces in Urban , bot in Military concept Knife could be more useful than Pistol. So this very normal Military doesn't care about pistol shooting , but in your case you are Marine and PMI. Regular Solider practice with gun in 10 years as you did in 10 days. In regular Army training they are checking Dominate eye , or how squeeze the trigger or dry fire practice? I dont think so. Regarding to army unlimited Ammo is very important key i think. I believe Civilian shooters more wedded for shooting practice.Cause this hobby. But main problem is budget. But Civilian shooter has more different caliber experiences. In army that, i never knew even how much the bullet price . Until i get civilian and starting to buy ammo for my personal fire arm :)
[/quote]


The U.S. Marine Corps places a high value on accurate shooting. Every Marine is considered to be a Rifleman; each Marine is expected to pick up a rifle when called upon and do a credible job with it. Annual training is one week long, and there are dry-firing practice and trigger control exercises virtually every day. Individual attention is given to eye dominance and whether left or right handed, and personal instruction is given over the course of the week. We typically shot iron sights at 200, 300 and 500 yards. 600 yards when we were shooting the M-14, but moved up to 500 yards with the M-16A1 and A2. I'm not sure where they go back to now as I was shooting an A2 when I retired.

I am not familiar with any of the other branches and what their firearm training program entails, but I doubt it's more comprehensive than the Marines.
#32998
I once took a business associate who lived in Taiwan to the range. He said that he was familiar with the AR15 because two years Army service was mandatory.

It turns out that they shot one 20 round magazine each year on an indoor range which constituted their entire firearms training.
#33002
My Personal Instructor has told me me a book load of stories about about the lack of skilled handgun shooting he's dealt with while qualifying/training LE and ex-Military. His reasoning - not all LE and Military personnel are necessarily "gun guys & girls" like us here. The civies who progress through CCW and then move on to the various levels of Defensive Handgun training will out-shoot the average LE/Military counterpart - BUT, the average LE/Military counterpart generally develop stronger mental stamina (or are predisposed - read "Type-A") and nerve to stand strong during a combative encounter than the average well trained shooting civilian.

Neil 8-)
#33004
ncjw wrote: Sat May 09, 2020 7:09 pm I once took a business associate who lived in Taiwan to the range. He said that he was familiar with the AR15 because two years Army service was mandatory.

It turns out that they shot one 20 round magazine each year on an indoor range which constituted their entire firearms training.
Took a Korean colleague to the range he'd served in the ROK Army he was a fairly decent shot, but I think they train a bit more there, and we only did AR and AK no handguns. Did handguns and rifles with former Soviet Paratrooper who was in Afghanistan did good with rifles so so with handguns said he didn't get any handgun training but had a stetchkin for awhile til an officer stole it but he had never used it in combat.
#33005
In Israel example every person after finish the Army service , must go to traning twice per year untill 50 years old. This is standart regulation. So most of basic soldiers has knowledge and practice with AR15 or Tavor. But again , now one explain all tricks and recoil managment of rifle.

So let me ask another by who founds these rifle holding technique? Example C- Clamp or Magwell Grip? By Military or civilian shooters?
#33006
There’s a lot of good points in here. Civilian shooters that seek out training and do this as a “hobby”, for lack of a better word, are much more involved and knowledgeable than general military personnel. My own experience put me with special groups within Navy and Marines, I was sent to scout sniper school, trained in many aspects of close quarters with pistol and rifle, occasionally even got to play with vehicle mounted stuff (they’re even more fun than you think). That being said I guarantee there are better shooters than me on the civilian side.
#33007
In war, there are about 20K rounds expended for each enemy KIA. They are used up in covering fire, suppressing fire, area fire and a tiny few by the snipers and DM's. Almost zero are pistol rounds.

As my Dad once told me (he was an artillery crew Sergeant in 1950), most enemy casualties by far in WWII were from artillery, then small arms.

OTOH, almost all gun related homicides in the US are via handguns.
#33013
There are definitely different levels of training within the military.

My Navy experience ranged from, the most basic pistol qualification in boot camp in the early ‘90s, using .22 cal 1911s. The goal of that training was mostly to take kids who may have never held a gun, and make sure, they could operate it without shooting something they didn’t intend to shoot.

Training prior to deployment with a Fleet Hospital, was actually given to my unit by Marines. They focused us more on proper operation, proper technique, accuracy, and techniques to get our weapons running, and keep them running if problems were encountered.

I participated in local fleet matches, and the coaching from fellow competitors and range officers here, did more for my target shooting technique than most other military qualification training.

Auxiliary security force training and field medical training with firearms was also conducted by Marines. More practical and combat oriented training was taught here. One handed operation, jam clearance, different reloading techniques, shooting from cover, moving, etc.

Even Navy qualification training evolved in the 24 years I was in. First pistol quals were just keeping rounds on a target. Making you shoot double action and single action (once the M9 was fully integrated).

Things changed after 9-11. At one point there were more Sailors with boots on ground in Afghanistan and Iraq than on ship decks.
My last pistol qualification required different distances, standing, kneeling, prone. Mag changes. DA to SA transition. Low light and police flashing light shooting. Strong hand only, weak hand only.

I still saw more one-on-one coaching and training and useful critique at the competitions.

Also, nothing replaces repetition and practice. In the military, there are too many other things in the way of performing frequent regular practice. They can’t give every member an unlimited supply of ammo and a few hours a week on the range. Most competitors did that on their own because they enjoyed shooting.

Most military units operate on fire superiority, which means there will be more than one person firing at targets in a threat area. Precision isn’t needed by every member under this kind of philosophy. Suppressing the enemies movement and allowing you unit to maneuver is the key. Then apply a little “overkill” just to make sure and you may be safe to continue to advance.

Bullseye shooters trying to get the perfect sight picture, wind drift, and come-ups on their sights are not really trained in dynamic combat shooting. And those who have to lay down a lead cloud, to pin and outmaneuver an enemy, may not make the best bullseye shooters on a 600 yard static range.
#33024
Being military doesn’t automatically make you John Wick. At the end of the day talent and practice is what drives your skill and it doesn’t matter if you have any military background or not. Pistols in my opinion train a lot more than a combat effective or non-MOA focused rifleman. The trigger discipline and sight acquisition of pistol shooting is extremely hard to acquire for anyone and most military infantry just don’t train with pistols. That being said pistol basics can easily translate to rifle shooting. I’ve seen multiple family and friends in the military say they are better at rifle when the truth is they are just experienced in rifle. Anyone with more pistol experience can go behind a rifle and shoot a rifle just as good or better than a non operator military rifleman. The biggest obstacle for a military shooter is the elitist mentality. They are so vocal about being in the military so it’s more noticeable when they shoot bad since they usually build up an entire story about military equipment and experience vs training or practice.
#33029
Just additonal information. Today USA biggest gun market in world. Firearm found it with military propose. But today civilian generally hold more guns in world. Example U.S civilians own 393 million guns, just consider it USA has 1 - 1.3 million troops today. (No Suprise with this numbers why goverment hate us) Each day more civilian going to shooting range and practice with fire arm. So this is no suprise more civilian came out with competitive shooting skill. Example in army i never saw some one try to shooting with rifle with Fast Drill style, Cause they have full auto mod in rifle. But cause of limited access for full auto fire arms for civilian, civilian shooter i think found it Fast Drill shooting. Today any sporting civilian rifle may turn in Professional shooter hands to full auto rifle or even faster that.
#33084
I'm an Army Vet of 16 years with a few deployments. I had a short stint shooting competitively in Germany & Ft. Benning. The majority of skill gained was practicing on my own and with others of higher talent & experience in a civilian/off duty capacity. I don't think it's a them vs. us argument. What the Army gave me was a solid base / platform of shooting I could build on. Both complimented each other b/c I could take skills from one and apply it the other.
#33345
Going through this thread one thing strikes me the most. Everyone pays respect to their military members and law enforcement while also they have flaws. And that my God I can't remember a forum that's had so many different ppl from different nations talking about these topics. It's wonderful to see and gives me hope for a future where borders don't mean a lot

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