Keeping aware of your surroundings will hopefully provide you advanced warning of bad things coming. This advance warning can be used in one of three ways; to quickly draw, to quickly moving or combination of these two.
The Quick and the Not Quick
A pattern you might notice is doing these actions quickly. All to often we put too much emphasis on speed in the beginning of our training journey. If speed was the most pressing condition, it might be easier to quickly move. It is unlikely you need training to perform this action, but training can certainly help. When it comes to a quick draw something we overlook is the importance of drawing quickly to a ready position. Not every event will require quickly drawing and engaging the threat with deadly force. If you pick up on the advanced warning and you feel justified in drawing your gun to a ready position it may be your best option.
Ready Positions, One Less Obstacle
This is where some folks get lost in the weeds. If you heeded the early warning you create more options. Having more options than deadly force may not happen all the time. What we do know is if you are not looking for it you won’t see it when the time comes. As you pay more attention to quickly drawing to the ready position you start to see it’s importance. Yes, there are plenty of ready positions and bastardized versions off these main ready positions. Regardless of which one you gravitate towards spend time working on delivering a quick, first round lethal strike. There is the possibility if you have the opportunity to draw to a ready, the situation may diffuse itself. It may not, and if it does not you are one step closer to delivering effective fire. The point is if you don’t practice this skill it is hard to expect it to be available.
A Sign of Shooting Competence
Of the three main ready positions; high, low and retention I encourage most folks to practice from the low ready. In addition, I encourage this practice to be from the a deeply depressed low ready. Ideally, it should be depressed below 45 degrees. Elevating the pistol from the low ready is more challenging than pressing it out from the high ready or retention. You want to ensure the front sight moves and stops at the exact strike point you wish to hit. If you are practicing from the low ready, delivering one round consistently is your first step. Then working to a three round drill is step two. When you can perform a five round drill on demand its a sign of shooting competence and time to add to your plate.
Move With A Purpose
Moving quickly was another skill I mentioned. This can be a stand alone skill to your shooting development. Can you move quickly and with purpose at the sign of trouble. When I say move with purpose I mean moving to cover, away from danger or even towards positional advantage. Danger does not have to be directed at you for this skill to be valuable. If you happen to be in a situation where bad things are happening to other people it might be advantageous to move. Moving alone is a good tactic, combine moving and drawing your gun become the next step. When you can reliably move quickly, then draw quickly to deliver first round lethal strikes you do more to increase your survival than any piece of gear you find attractive.
When you combine quickly moving with quickly drawing your gun it offers an excellent response to most danger close encounters. Don’t overlook the importance of your quick draw being drawn to a ready position in anticipation of bad things.