Advanced Training Weekend
2009 UPDATE: We have split the AT weekend curriculum into component parts, which we offer at various times throughout the year. You can get all the training included in the AT weekend by taking Defensive Pistol Skills 1, Defensive Pistol Skills 2 (to launch July 2009), AT-1A Low Light Shooting and AT-2.
We developed this program after taking several 3-5 day 'level I defensive pistol' courses from other trainers. Those courses assume that the student has had no prior training of any kind, so the first 1-2 days is typically spent covering material that's duplicated in the Texas CHL course, and running simple range drills to bring students up to a minimum level of markmanship before covering more advanced topics like drawing, use of cover, etc. By requiring the Texas CHL course (or similar training) as a prerequisite, we can progress into the more advanced material quickly rather than subjecting students to a generic review of material they've already learned in a much more state-specific level in the CHL class.
Most trainers offer a wide variety of courses because they believe, as we do, that knowing how to shoot a handgun from a two-handed standing position at a stationary target in good light at close range is not the only skill necessary to be well prepared for a real world confrontation. As students learn in the AT-II scenarios, situations involving real people are much more complex than any paper-target live fire exercise (including those shot in IPSC and IDPA competitions). A variety of skills are needed to avoid or diffuse a confrontation, or survive an attack using the minimum force necessary. The real list of recommended topics includes: marksmanship, gunhandling (drawing, reloading under stress, etc.), low light shooting, tactics, verbal skills, tactics, unarmed techniques, folding knife skills, impact weapon skills, handgun retention/disarm skills, first aid skills and a few others.
The problem is that the only way to get that complete set of skills is to acquire them by attending multi-day courses where each topic is covered in depth. Many students simply don't have the money and time to attend 3-5 day classes. For that reason we have broken up the AT weekend into subsections that can be taken as a whole or taken as separate courses. We also offer 1- and 2-day weekend courses that focus on specific skills in more detail.
The AT weekend concept is to teach the basic skills for many of the essential topics listed above. This provides the students with an overview of what these skills involve and why they are important, and also gives them a basic set they can use. The AT weekend is a good way to move from the 'carry permit' level into the world of advanced level defensive training, and can also serve as a refresher for those that have already taken the in-depth courses and want to practice all the fundamentals in an integrated format.
Topics: see individual course descriptions
Length: nineteen hours
Prerequisites: Texas CHL or instructor approval required.
Required Equipment: see individual course descriptions
Optional Equipment: See the general policies page for suggestions on food, drink, clothing, etc.
Facility: A-Zone Range
Times: 8-5 pm and 7-10 pm Saturday, 9-6 pm Sunday
Additional information: AT I, IA and II were designed to follow each other in the AT weekend format. Here is additional information and photos from previous Advanced Training weekends.