by Ted A Sames II, SISS President

A SISS student sent me this video and wanted me to review it and explain it to him.

At SISS we do not teach and recommend exhibition or trick shooting. We do, however, teach The Israeli Instinctive Shooting Method of drawing and presenting the pistol in the defense of your life. I use a PACT Shooting Timer before and after training to record the student’s progress. It is important to be able to draw effectively during a life and death struggle. In the video, I do not observe any type of shooting timer but I do admit that this man is quick. They claim that he achieves .02 of a second which is hard for me to fathom.

In perspective, a police officer has to draw from his double or triple retention duty holster while a civilian would have to draw from a concealment holster. In my experience, most trained police officers can draw and fire the first shot on the target anywhere from 1 to 2.0 seconds-which is considered very good. Drawing from a concealed holster takes much practice and is much slower.

I have been blessed with fine reflexes and have been tested at USF-MOSI and placed in the top 10% of the population. As for drawing a weapon from a holster, having good reflexes is good but the most important aspect is using proper technique. On a good day, I can accomplish the above test in the mid .40s to upper .40s of a second using a duty holster. With practice, my 14 year old SISS student can do the same at .52 to .58 of a second using a poor holster on a good run with the timer. Tactically, your perception of danger may be more critical than drawing speed. I credit myself in being 2 full steps ahead of the real Bad Guy in what could have been very dangerous encounters in my career. Civilians may not have this luxury: Drawing too early when there is no actual danger may land you in jail for “display of a deadly weapon”. Pay attention to your environment and be careful in dealings with strangers.

Google “Human Benchmark” and test your reflexes. The median reaction time was 215 milliseconds. With 5 tries, I was able to achieve 183 with a 274 average. I did this very late last night and I was tired. I plan to re-test myself just for the sport of it. I was always told that the human reaction time is .75 of a second: When the person receives the stimuli and then reacts to it.

Ronin Combat Strategies awards patches to students who have qualified in their standards. People desire to know how they “stack up” against other shooters. They have 4 categories with pistol and rifle standards drills. From the holster and firing one shot into a target from 7 yards, they award the lowest rank with 2.0 seconds and the highest rank of 1.25 and better. This is a good start but I want to up the ante and want 1.0 or better for the highest rank for this standard drill. Get with me at the range and let’s see how quick you are. I will award you a colored patch or serve you a cold beer after-wards…whichever is more valuable to you.