The following guest  article was written and submitted by Ted A Sames II, President of Sames Instinctive Shooting School. We welcome a variety of points of view on the subjects of shooting and marksmanship. Test them objectively on the range and let the results fall where they may.

Ted A. Sames II on Shooting Technique – A Rebuttal

by Ted A. Sames II


Dear David Monier-Williams:  You are very set in Turnipseed and it was my misunderstanding that you wanted something current or something that works for personal self-defense.  I say this not to offend but many people are looking for other things and I find no fault in this.  I train military and police personnel or civilians that really want to know how to fight and how to win….very quickly.  I do not teach competition techs specifically.  I have an instructor that teaches combat and Cowboy competition and he is very near to the top in his game.  I am “up there’ in many competitions but never achieved greatness because I am too practical to be a gamer. I use my standard SIG P-226 9mm for everything. I am also very responsible and would hate to instruct something that would cause the death of someone in a real encounter.  My advanced courses are very intense and demanding and most civilians do not want to get dirty.  Literally, I have a Ground Fighter Instructor that teaches—Ground Fighting–because the fight usually ends up on the ground.

I am against Turpinseed Tech because:

1. I don’t see any difference between it and Weaver…Weaver is rarely used today because there’s better techs.

2.  Stiff-legged…does not address accuracy and stability while moving and shooting. I have not seen anything involving cover and concealment use.

3.  It focuses on “Skeletal Balance”…in combat, that is strictly a theory to be used in a lab.  Balance is lowering one’s center of gravity…getting low to the ground or on the ground. You can easily see this with Sumo wrestlers, martial artists, cage fighters, startled people and tennis players where they are not sure where the Bad Guy will strike. The Weaver and similar techs were borne from competition where the competitor knows where the Bad Guy TARGET is located. In real life, you may not know exactly where the threat is or where he will strike.

4.  I have a problem with shooting from the hip:  This tech involves a lot of training, is in the realm of trick shooting designed to impress the audience, requires much muscle memory and training to make hits…requires fine and complex motor control which flies out the window when stress levels rise. It does work when a BG has you in a Bear Hug–I teach this in a variation—but does not work with targets at any distance.  Shooting from the hip has no index point: The Universal Cover Mode addresses this by indexing on the sternum. You use this tech when searching a dark factory, house or backyard when you suspect that the Bad Guy could be near or when covering an arrestee for long periods of time. It is extremely accurate (I have hit flies at 3 yards), sets up EZ if a BG grabs your pistol or sets you up for the punch-out to shoot Isosceles. It requires only the major muscle groups in the arms to accomplish.  Martial artists understand this because it is within the “Sphere of Power”…the circular area around the torso-sternum area where the most fulcrum can be utilized and you have to protect this area because it contains your heart and vital organs. Having your hand with pistol on your hip makes no sense and it not natural. I throw a brick at you…you react by getting low, dropping your shoulders,lowering your head, squatting and protecting your face and sternum…this is basic self-defense…it’s Instinctive!  In the UCM…those elbows are tucked in to your sides tightly: When I see instructors teaching “elbows out’ when shooting long arms, I think …”1950s US Marine Corps Rifle”!.  THAT instructor never did a fast room entry but shot good qualification scores as a Marine. In the UCM the pistol is close to your sternum…just enough for the slide to clear. Is Kent a former Marine? My brother and his two sons are and I can’t break them of this really bad habit. I was broken of this bad habit when rapidly going through a doorway and hitting the un-funny bone during a real incident.

At the upper-level training courses, instructors teach a segment about unique or unusual shooting positions…where you would be totally off balance.  Why?  Because in real life, you WILL find yourself in these positions….hanging with one arm, shooting from boat bottoms, many prone positions, behind weird machines, aircraft, shooting from behind the wheel, shooting from the backseat, being pushed forward or backward and returning fire….on and on…The majority of shooting incidents happen around or in vehicles…a good instructor will always have a vehicle on hand.  Portable punching-body bag…kick bags…you bet…we are fighting! I want to bring you to a stress level where you will miss the target because in real life, trained police officers miss 50 to 70% of their shots in real life incidents. I want to inoculate you for the stress of combat.

The Israeli Instinctive Shooting Method addresses all of these concerns. It is very similar in concept to their Krav Maga fighting methods…I need to take these classes myself.

Ted A Sames II, Sames Instinctive Shooting School, President