Preparing for Combat through Competition
By Tim Lau


Recently, we have received comments from various readers expressing that competition is impractical or unrealistic training for combat. If you are expecting a gunfight to be the same as shooting an IDPA or IPSC match, we at MSW wholeheartedly agree. However, there are valuable lessons to be learned through competition. The first is the development of mechanical skill. While there are certainly other facets to prevailing in a gunfight, one cannot argue that quickly and efficiently manipulating the gun and putting rounds on target would not be beneficial in a deadly force encounter.

Another benefit is stress inoculation. I have not heard it explained better than Pat McNamara in his book, “Tactical Application of Practical Shooting,” where he states in p.114:

“The most common emotion that disrupts performance is anxiety. Competition can help you deal with that anxiety.”

Gun games are just that: games. They may not have direct tactical relevancy, but if you learn to put the game in perspective and use it as a developmental tool, it has great training value. Try it out for yourself and incorporate it into your larger training strategy.

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