AAR – Concealed Carry: Vehicle Environment Skills with FPF Training and Chris Sizelove
-Scott "Jedi" Jedlinski
When – September 20, 2015
Where – FPF Training Range. Culpepper, VA
Cost - $200
Ammo – 250 rounds
My bio to gauge whether or not my opinions are relevant to you:
Lifelong martial artist (TKD, Muay Thai, BJJ), no LEO or military experience (save being an Air Force brat), NRA pistol instructor (who isn’t?). I have received previous training from George Wehby of I4Tactical, Matt Jacques of Victory First, John Murphy of FPF, Aaron Brumley of Solo Defense, Steve Fisher of Sentinel Concepts, and private training with Al DeLeon of the State Dept’s MSD unit. I shoot anywhere from 200 to 400 rounds a week. I try to compete once a month.
I took this class based on the recommendation of Jimmy Smith of F3 Tactical in Chantilly, VA. Being in the industry, Jimmy has had the opportunity to train with many of the top level instructors in our industry. When he gets excited expressing his recommendation for a class, one must take heed and attend the next one straight away.
The first part of the class was the usual introduction of fellow students. The class included people from all walks of life. There were business people, government employees, firearm industry folk (one was former Army and currently in sales and another was a former Marine Sniper and current industry writer), a librarian, a Catholic Priest, and a German Shepard names Atlas. The field was varied and provided an interesting testbed for the day’s training.
The class was taught by Chris Sizelove. Chris is a 15 year Army Veteran, 13 of which has been with Special Operations. He is tall and lean, with a pleasant yet direct disposition. His tattoo sleeve told tales of his time in the 75th Ranger Regiment.
The training started in the classroom. The usual safety briefing followed by a series of concepts regarding why a vehicle specific class in needed for the armed citizen. Explanations of approach, movement around, and situational awareness (Referred by Chris as “SA”) were explained.
Note: Chris’ way of explaining these concepts, tasks, and their execution are explained as if it mission oriented. I do not mean that you will apply these techniques “like a commando” like Chris likes to say. Rather it is stressed that your “mission” as a civilian is to get home safe and protect your loved ones, and it is of no less importance because you are a civilian.
With a little warm up range time, we got into the following procedures
· Vehicle ingress
· Vehicle controls manipulation
· Firearm setup. Methods for the various forms of carry (AIWB, Strong side IWB, OWB, etc.) were covered
· Methods of positioning for firearm manipulation through the windshield and side windows to best mitigate recoil and avoid the vehicle’s obstacles
· Working around a passenger
· Vehicle egress
Note: This is not a shooting class. You will not learn trigger control, cadence, grip, etc in this class. That said, I highly suggest that experience from a reputable instructor through a handgun level 2 class be taken to fully grasp all this class has to offer. I was impressed with the overall level of skill in the class I attended.
We then drilled dry firing out of the training car. After several reps we went hot and shot out of the side of the vehicle with the windows down.
After a brief break, Chris demonstrated the effects of shooting through glass. He explained the different types of glass in a car and how they react to rounds going through them. This was enlightening to say the least.
After several reps, our next exercise was to see how different types of rounds reacted to the structure of the car. He tested ball 9MM, .45, and .223. The behavior of each round may be counter to what you may expect. This led to explanations of points of cover and movement drills with live fire to drive the lesson home.
Finally we lined up our personal vehicles and formed a line and got to shoot out of our own vehicle (side window; window down of course). I learned that my sports car was awesome for going fast and turning corners in the Red Light Grand Prix but offering space for optimal firearm manipulation was not the case. So do I sell it and go buy a Hummer? No, I take the advice that Chris gave me for my vehicle and formulate my defense strategy with those short comings in mind.
In conclusion, this class was fascinating, fun, enlightening, and practical for every day of my life. I want to thank SFC Chris Sizelove for his excellent instruction and John Murphy of FPF Training for hosting him. I believe he is offering one more class this year before Chris gets reassigned outside of Metro DC. In my honest opinion, if you are able and do not take this class you are neglecting something critical to your mission of getting home safe and protecting your loved ones in and around your vehicle.
Be Good. Stay Safe. Get Training.
Scott “Jedi” Jedlinski