Prone position pistol shooting: What are the benefits of training?

Learning how to shoot a pistol from a prone position is essential because you become a smaller target, in a firefight you can be wounded and forced to shoot from the ground. This video is very informative and a good source of training. What are your opinions?

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2 biggest differences between LEO and military small arms training:

  1. LEO = primary shooting position is standing, military = primary shooting position is prone.
  2. LEO = defense of self/others only, military = offensive tactics for the purpose of destroying the opposing forces, infrastructure, and resources.

I spent a lot of time training to fight on my belly as a young fella.

P.S. Nowadays, it’s a lot harder to get up/down than it was back then. :tired_face:

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My personal thought on the matter is that one should at least experience firing from every conceivable position, even if you don’t necessarily ‘train’ for it. Try lying on your back, in the sun, head towards target, looking upwards and back, firing a rifle with your weak hand only, timed. My first time, at 25 yards, I got 2 rounds out of 20 on a 12" plate in 1 minute with an AR 5.56.
Not easy, but now I know how it feels at least.

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Excellent points there brother @Ken38. In the police department they taught us kneeling position shooting. Big difference than military training. I agree though about getting up and down quickly is not as easy is it once was. In the military you train to fire rifles from prone.

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In the military, 99% train on rifles…period. Yes, I failed to mention that HUGE difference. It should be number 1.

Maybe this is because I spent a few years recently helping train and cert LEOs on patrol rifle (ie carbine). In TX, that’s been taking up a lot of the use of force training budget and time for about 5-6 years now. But they still do not train prone. That was a constant curriculum criticism of mine. But cops are typically not in as good of shape as infantrymen, either. They REALLY hate lovin’ on Mother Earth. Infantrymen would rather crawl than get shot. We’re funny that way. But even this has changed in the post-911 era of military combat training due to all the body armor.

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That’s a nice gig you got there brother @Ken38. Have you ever traveled to the state of VA to share some knowledge because I would take your training class.:+1::+1:

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Only to teach fly fishing for disabled kids and veterans a couple of times.

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Good points, but train in every possible position. This is also a criticism I have of many indoor ranges is that they are designed to allow a minimum number of shooting positions.

This also reminds me of something Clint Smith was saying once. He was talking about a woman in a wheelchair that comes and takes a class with him once a year. When they get to the range, the first thing he does is dumps her out of her chair onto the dirt. Why? Cause if she is ever attacked, that is probably the position she is going to find herself in.

So train in every way your range allows.

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Ok…so the pro’s are that you are a smaller target for someone to shoot. However, the con’s are:

  1. less mobile - takes longer to get up and move to a better cover position or get up and run…
  2. less field of view - in a kneeling position, your head is basically on a swivel and you can scan your surroundings quickly to ensure no one is sneaking up on you from another location. When you are in the prone, your field of view is hampered and you might have to adjust your body to scan the area taking more time and energy and exposing yourself.
  3. You are not shielding your loved ones - Let’s be honest…yes, you want to protect yourself, but my first priority is to shield my loved ones (kids, wife, etc). I would rather take a round myself than my kid be the recipient of one. Part of my Krav Maga training is to always separate the threat from my loved one. so I’m always in the middle and facing the threat. As someone who has see even the most well trained soldiers freak out when bullets fly, my concern is your wife and kids who are currently hiding behind you who stick their head up looking for a place to run and since you’re in the prone, they’re exposing themselves to flying rounds.
  4. lastly, we’re not meant to sit there in some long drawn out fire fight. We have limited rounds and our objective is simple, stay alive and safe. So laying down on the ground rather than finding a way to escape the area is the wrong path to take. Even if you are encountering a threat with ZERO cover, I’d still rather crouch so that I can back away and flee that area. Have you ever seen a person back up in the prone vs backing up while crouching? Face the threat but give yourself options.

My verdict, I’m not having to stand and fight like I did in the military so prone is not my first, second or 20th choice and certainly not something I’d EVER want or choose to do.

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Shooting prone or even on your back is another tool in the box that I would submit that if your first experience is in a gun fight will not work out well for you.

How many of you when standing on your hind legs have turned the gun 90* and tried to line up the sights and hit the target at say 10 yards?

Or even more fun but less difficult is to turn the gun completely upside down or lay flat on your back arch your head and shoot it?

How many of you have ever tried to shoot your pistol at 100 yards?

Ever tried skipping a bullet off the ground under a car?

These are not John Wick movie cuts they are all things that have been taught at high level gun classes that I have attended and are still being taught to LEO, Operators and other folks. As one instructor put it “If you are knocked to the ground laying on your side and the only viable weapon you have is a pistol if you don’t know this technique I can promise you that you will miss and become a target again.” Do not laugh at a funny looking tool, it may only serve one purpose but if you need that tool you best know how to use it before you need it.

Cheers,

Craig6

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My right angled screwdrivers don’t come out of the toolbox very often, but they have earned their place and I know how to use them.

Wish I still had the property to properly train at :frowning:

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@Erik10 you definitely bring up some good points and I agree with them all. I want to clarify that I don’t mean get into a firefight while you are in the prone position. You may not have cover and maybe you have fallen, you may need to get a round off until you can run to cover. That’s what I’m saying.

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I think it is a good idea to train laying down, you might trip and fall, or the only cover is very low to the ground. As others said, just tools in the box.

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I get it…I’m just helping to educate the new shooters so they don’t fall victim to some instructor who’s trying to make an extra buck by teaching classes on whatever they can come up with.

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In my honest opinion: the prone position is a good tool to have in your tool box. You may not use it very often, in fact in most scenarios in the civilian world it is very rare if you need it.m, because it is better to stay more mobile to run away from the fire fight and to safety. Not like you are being ordered to take an objective and have to low crawl through mud, barbed wire, and under gunfire to take a machine gun nest. Our main objective now is just to survive and be a good witness. In most cases that means tmretreating to safety, not advancing to destroy.

But from a survival standpoint, if you ever find yourself in one of those unique scenarios where you’re stuck in the middle of a cross fire, you have nowhere to retreat to, and the only cover you have is the curb of a sidewalk, you’re going to be glad you rehearsed that prone position. It’s that tool you never use, but always keep around that will probably save your life.

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@Erik10 I actually seek out instructors that train in "non standard " methodologies. I’ve trained with the best of the best and I seek non conformist methodologies. In general those that choose to go down that path have experience on their side. There are things that I teach that confound “normal” logic but work every time. I’m at the point in my game where I have seen just about every new wizz bang technique on the planet in one form, shape or another. I’m not likely to go away from science and math for “feel” because I have been able to quantify feel, It’s a really long story that involves a no kidding rocket scientist a bottle of scotch and a couple million tax payer dollars to prove what I was telling him over a camp fire.

Don’t immediately discount a tool that has a single purpose, if nothing else you have that information and you have learned something new.

Cheers,

Craig6

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Nice to know…so what that says to me is, you were never in the military, you have cash to burn, and you’re trying to prove something to yourself or others. That’s fine brother, knock yourself out. You do whatever makes you happy.

Most people don’t need the nonsense classes…er…“non-standard”, they need the fundamentals and practice. If you want to play gung-ho…who am I to tell you where to waste your money.

@Erik10 You crack me up. Given the opportunity you would not learn something new because it did not fit in your tiny box of reality? That would be a waste of time which is imminently more valuable than money. Your assumption that the military does not go to civilian schools for training is highly flawed, especially in dynamic fields like gun fighting and shooting in general which is how they bring that knowledge back to the team house and spread it around to be used by others thereby improving overall effectiveness. You are convinced of your opinions and I welcome you to them.

Cheers,

Craig6

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Yep, that’s it. have a nice day.

In that same vein, there are those of us concerned that there are new shooters that may take a CC class and do the basics to pass live fire, then never even practice on their own to improve skills. Knowing that that class does not automatically ensure ones safety can only be a good thing.

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