Monday, May 2, 2011

2011 Upper Midwest Special Operations Training Association Conference

The SOTA conference was very successful.  We had a great facility, the entire ball room at the convention center.  That much space allowed us to have separate academic, hands on, and scenario training areas. 

I would like to thank the St Cloud PD who borrowed some wrestling mats from the local high school, and the Ramsey County Sheriff’s Training Unit, especially Sgt.Yochim who hauled up Body Opponent Bags, training glocks, training M-16’s, and Bunker shields so we could train hard, and safe. 

As much as I would love to break down point by point what I taught and how we trained it I’m not going to do that.   Special Operations Control Tactics is taught only to Law Enforcement SWAT teams.  Sharing that information here would be in violation of operational security.

Displaying how SWAT teams operate leaves them vulnerable to “counter SWAT” training by the bad guys.  Granted it’s not all that difficult to figure out what a SWAT team needs to be successful, nor is it all that tough to make things harder for them.  But I’m not going to just give that information away to any jack off with an internet connection.

I do have a 40 hour Instructor development program, and that program is open to civilian contractors.  However, there is a minimum 5 year training with, bleeding on Kasey so he is absolutely sure you are able to, and worthy of, teaching men who will bet their lives on what you are teaching them prerequisite before you are even considered for the Instructor course.

That is what the focus of this blog will be about.  How kick ass my trainers are.

Besides regular (grueling J ) Dojo training, the crew of trainers that helped me with SOTA have been working with SWAT teams as role players and trainers for about 5 years.  They have helped train the Ramsey County SWAT team, the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension Emergency Response team, the River Valley SWAT team, and the East Metro SWAT team.

About a year ago I knew I was going to present Special Operations Control Tactics at SOTA this year.  We used that year to take what we learned teaching those different teams and further refine the process.

When Jimerfield Sensei came to town we really worked on long gun weapon retention and knocked the bugs out of that.
When Marc and Rory were here we did a test run and bullshit test.  They played the role of Operators in the class and helped me to articulate what I was teaching in a way that would be easy to understand.

At the beginning of 2011 we started the Special Operations Control Tactics Instructor Course.  3 hours of training every other Saturday.  This class was designed to help “martial artists” better teach the application of force to Operators, and to teach Operators how to better apply the physics of force (be better “martial artists”).

I couldn’t be happier with the end result, and it really showed at SOTA.

Here are some quotes from class evaluations:
“Lots of feedback from Instructor / Assistants”
“Great Assistants”
“All of the Assistants were very helpful with lots of good feedback”
‘Instructors were all approachable and took time to work with individuals”

Cops in general, but especially SWAT Operators are notoriously weary of civilian Instructors.  So for Operators to not only take the time to fill out a class evaluation but to praise civilian trainers on that evaluation speaks volumes about the instruction my guys provided.

The class was very well received.  Good questions were asked, and because of our preparation they were questions we had asked ourselves, so we had good answers. 

Answers that could be adapted to team’s specific tactics and still work very well. 
As opposed to:
  • Nope you are wrong
  • Every thing you have been doing for years sucks
  • I am right, here is how to do it my way. 

More like:
  • Here is the fundamental principle
  • This is how you use it to achieve this goal. 
  • If your team achieves that goal using this tactic, this is how the fundamental principle enhances that tactic.

Again I couldn’t be happier with how things worked out.  My sincere thanks to everyone who helped me put this class together.

Train hard, train smart, be safe

1 comment:

  1. It's been a pleasure and an honor to be your student.