Low Speed, High Drag

I spend a lot of time making fun of the high speed, low drag crowd. Some might be surprised to learn this since everything I wear is “tactical” (which means operator who operates and areas of operations to some but means lots of useful fucking pockets and light-weight materials during the summer to me) but I find most of the firearm advice from the Super Awesome Operator (SAO) crowd to be stupid at best and dangerous at worst. Thankfully I’m not alone:

Something else that disturbs me is the desire to look cool while shooting. Way too many shooters are learning their skills from You Tube from people who have a particular look versus having skill and experience. Just because an instructor has a beard, wrap around glasses and tattoos does not mean he is an “operator” even if he does talk the lingo. Nonsense cool sounding terminology does not mean the instructor has greater skill or insight, it just means he/she spends time making stuff up. A “non-diagnostic, linear stoppage manipulation” is still just a “tap-rack” and giving it a cool sounding, complicated name does not make it better. In reality, it makes it more difficult and if you take the time to truly study armed conflict you will understand that simplicity is often times the key to prevailing in the pandemonium that results. It is not “dumbing down” training to try and make it simpler and easier to accomplish.

This is one of my biggest gripe with the SAO crowd. A large majority of them choose form over function. You can go on YouTube and find any number of people wearing a tactical vest covered in AR-15 magazines with a sidearm in a drop-leg holster doing fancy transitions, Captain Kirk rolls, and absurd shooting drills. These SAOs will wax on about how important the skills they practice are and why you should pay them money to teach you. What they almost seem allergic to is the concept of simple is generally preferable. Yes, you can Captain Kirk roll between targets to engaged them. Yes, doing so will keep you on the move. But doing so will also cause your barrel to cover a lot of things it shouldn’t be (because if your muzzle should have been covering them they would be threats you were engaging not space you were transitioning the point of impact through). It will also increase the amount of time it takes for you to aim your firearm at the next target since the motion of rolling is pretty jarring and requires the entirety of your body to move. Meanwhile a simple turn will allow you to cover less unintended space (since you can just aim your gun towards the ground during the turn) and increase the speed of target acquisition since you don’t have to realign every fucking muscle and bone in your body. Turning doesn’t look as cool though so SAO shy away from it.

Furthermore most people aren’t going to be wearing a tactical vest cover in AR-15 magazines while carrying a rifle. And most of us aren’t going to be in a situation where we have to engage the entire fucking Mongol Horde (not to mention few people survive an encounter where it’s just them versus ten or more opponents). Shooting drills that involve a bunch of targets are fun but they serve little practical purpose for a majority of people who carry a defensive firearm outside of a war zone.

As a general rule when seeking firearm instruction try to find an instructor who uses plain English, focuses on simplicity, and spends more time teaching you how to property operate a firearm than performing acrobatics. In other words if an instructor looks low speed, high drag they are more likely to teach useful skills than if they look high speed, low drag.

3 thoughts on “Low Speed, High Drag”

  1. It is times like tis that I am glad my father did the majority of my firearms training, aside from specifics for long range rifle shooting having a former member of the Army Marksmanship Team teaching you how to shoot gives you all of the skills needed to use as few rounds as possible per target and keeps you from doing all of the tacticool BS. That and when he was part of it all it was still a target and skeet shooting focused competition scene instead of the modern 3-gun formats.

    1. What’s kind of funny is that 3-gun tends to go the way of simple being better as well. While there are certainly some optimizations in regards to the game much of it is, in my opinion, pretty practical as far as teaching proper firearm usage. These high speed, low drag instructors seem to have developed their tier negative one strategies based on what happens in action movies.

  2. Calling out 3-gun for being high drag low speed is misinformed zerg. The first thing everyone does in that sport is git rid of all the shit they don’t need. Which means all the tacticool do-dads that weigh down your gear. Only keep what you need to compete.

    Claiming that 3-gunners don’t know correct markmenship is also incredibly inaccurate. I shot cmp matches growing up, and now I shoot 3-gun. The markenship you need for 3-gun is much more practical then the impractical sling, and jacket systems used in cmp, or most other long distance style competitions. The fundamentals don’t change, but the variety of scenarios presented to the 3-gunners over a courses of fire puts them in far more improvised shooting positions than you would see in a cmp match. It teaches you to read your sights, and interpret them at a much wider array of target sizes and distances. Rifle distances will vary from just a few feet.. to 600 yards.

    Having played all sorts of shooting games, I would be confident to say that out of all the games people play. 3-gun is one of the MOST applicable to any sort of real world scenario.

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