RDS INSTRUCTOR, AAR
Instructor: Scott Jedlinski
I recently attended a two day Red Dot Sight (RDS) Handgun Instructor course hosted by Texas Tactical Police Officer Association (TTPOA) in Bryan, TX. The course was provided by Modern Samurai Project, LLC. Which specializes in the fundamentals and performance use of red dot equipped pistols for responsibly armed citizens, law enforcement officers and to teach the optimization of the AIWB concealed carry position.
The course was taught by MSP instructor: Scott Jedlinski who is a Master class shooter in USPSA and the 16th recipient of the F.A.S.T Drill (#15) coin and who is a Lifelong martial artist (TKD, Muay Thai, BJJ) currently with a three stripe Purple Belt under Tony Passos. Full disclosure, Scott comped me a slot for this class however I will do my best to be non-biased and give a full thorough review of the course, solely on Scotts ability to teach and the program itself.
We started off the day bright and early in class at 0800 with a total of 16 shooters including myself. Ranging from numerous law enforcement officers new and experienced to running an RDS system on their handguns. The day started with a quick introduction of the instructor, followed up by students introducing themselves. Scott then explained the goals for the course and what was expected, and not expected from students. Scott clearly lets students know at the begging of the class that this is not a tactics driven class but solely a performance based program and an instructor development class in diagnosing inefficiencies in the students attending and their students beyond the class.
This is after all an instructor level course and not a fundamentals course per say, albeit fundamentals are discussed to ensure students are on par & have the ability to teach or demonstrate the material back to their departments. However, no teach backs were conducted during the two day program. Depending how you view teach backs that may or may not be a thing for you. Typically, in a two day program there is simply not enough time for teach backs and on top of that most students are generally already nervous. So, trying to learn the material, new equipment & teach it back can be very problematic at times.
Scott covered various topics in class ranging from, why be an instructor, how Brazilian Jiu Jitsu correlates with shooting and his journey through reaching master class in USPSA. He also discussed various training methods and RDS models & preferences. He explained each one well all while providing real time data to back up his experience with each system.
Red Dot Sight Instructor covered various aspects ranging from gear selection, mounting procedures, focal plane & zero theory, RDS fundamentals, movement work and USPSA stages. Think of this course as more of an accelerated course covering multiple aspects of RDS shooting elements tied in with workshops. Which at the end of the day is Scotts goal of helping students become proficient RDS shooters, but most importantly safe & competent instructors behind the RDS system.
RANGE TIME (TD1)
After a comprehensive classroom session. Scott covered various zero distances before going live. How he prefers a 10 yard zero as a base to allow students to quickly check hits and correct adjustments on the fly vs starting from 25 yards. Shooters than went live confirming zeros at 10 yards. If hits needed to be adjusted, we corrected them than moved on. Scott reinforced that if the hits are there, either confirm at 25 if you’d like or move on with the class as there are more pertinent things to work on.
Scott than went into body mechanics and how they play a role in each fundamental aspect. Breaking down each element such as the stance, bent elbows vs locked elbows, grip, recoil control, draw and vision. It was impressive to see Scott break each one down and apply a BJJ concept to each element and how certain body mechanics effect each shooting fundamental.
One big take away for me was his version of gripping the gun. He called it the Wave Concept. It’s difficult to explain on paper, but essentially its torquing the grip up during presentation to really lock those hands in. Whether you like to drive thumbs forward and press down on the frame was left up to you. Scott did preference he prefers leaving his thumbs up in order not to apply any counter pressure from the thumbs, solely focus on locking in your pinkies and squeezing inward and up with palms. Thumbs are just hanging on for the ride.
During each element that was covered Scott reinforced to measure things by a metric and not by how it always feels or ways we’ve done it. The metric of certain techniques shows if its working or not for each student. Of course, after sufficient reps and practice.
Each element was given a metric which all tied in with national standards and his black patch standards. So, throughout class you were working on various standards in order to be ready for his black patch standards if you so accepted the challenge at the end of day 2. Combining speed, accuracy and real modes throughout class in order to measure and see improvement from each shooter, more on that later.
Scott did a great job of demoing each standard he set at 25, 50 and 75 percent modes in order to drive home the importance of meeting standards and of course demoing. Instructors should always demo. By the end of the day Scott had most if not all students either meeting national or his standards.
We ended the day with a little friendly competition. One of the standards was from the draw, hit one round in the A-zone from the 25 yard line under 1.5 sec. Scott setup two A/C zone steel downrange and had two groups of shooters in a head to head style competition. From each match up the winners went to the winner’s bracket and the losers well, went to the loser’s side until there was only one champion left. I think I won most if not all competitions during class (humble brag ha). If you would’ve asked me that I would be hitting A zone hits back at 25 yards under or at 1.5 sec I wouldn’t have believed you. I was consistently between 1.3-1.4 sec, fastest time was a 1.18.
RANGE TIME (TD2)
The following day Scott dove into what he calls Speed, Accuracy and Real Mode. Explaining each one is separate when isolating certain objectives such as cadence, sub second draw and so forth. However, they do intersect and combine when performance on demand is required. We started the day with accuracy mode in a shooter/coach format. Students were at the 10 yard line and needed to hit 10 rounds in a 2 inch square. Shooters focused on the process while coaches looked for any inefficiencies or bad habits that arose. We did this several times, working through trigger prep, press and not pinning the trigger.
We than went into speed mode working on the bill drill at 7 yards for those not familiar a bill drill is 6 rounds inside the alpha zone under 2 seconds. Reinforcing what we learned on day one and combing it all together. Scott reminded us not to forget about real mode as well. Real mode is simply applying your hits in realistic manner. So, for example the bill drill, 6 rounds in the alpha under 2 sec. Let’s say you hit 5 Alphas and 1 Charlie. Realistically that’s good shooting in real life mode. Don’t dwell on the negative, focus on the positive and reinforce with positivity to your students in order to help drive improvement & performance.
Keep in mind that during each block of instruction there were two simple objectives, pay attention to the feedback of the gun, tracking, feel and dot movement and secondly was the metrics.
Scott then setup a USPSA style competition stage at the end of the day to combine everything that we learned. From the draw to movement, to near and far transitional work with cadence. Of course, hits were accounted for and fastest time with minimal misses wins the game. Scott barely beat me just saying.
BLACK PATCH STANDARDS
At the end of the day Scott offered if anyone wanted to take a run at his black patch standards they could. Unfortunately, I DQ out at stage 3, stupid one Charlie. The standards were as follows:
1. 3&2 Drill. 3 yards. 3 shots to the COM Alpha then transition to 2 rounds on a 3x5 card in the head box. Par is 2.0 seconds.
2. 1 Shot Drill @ 7 yards. 1 shot to COM Alpha. Par is 1.0 second.
3. Bill Drill. 7 yards. 6 shots to COM Alpha. Par is 2.0 seconds.
4. 1 Shot Drill @ 25 yards. 1 shot to COM Alpha. Par is 1.5 seconds.
In closing Scott ran a solid two day red dot sight instructor course. I’ve been to a couple of RDS instructor programs before and I must say I learned an incredible amount of information on increasing performance not only for myself but for students. Scott is a great instructor with a great teaching method and good sense of humor. I can’t recommend this course enough for the amount of information you will receive and great instruction.
For more information on Modern Samurai Project or his standards check out their website at: www.modernsamuraiproject.com/