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In-Hand Handgun Retention

Discussion in 'Strategies, Tactics, and Training' started by luzyfuerza, Jan 7, 2020.

  1. luzyfuerza

    luzyfuerza Member

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    What do you do if your handgun is in your hand, and a bad guy grabs it?

    Greg Ellifritz' thoughts about in-hand handgun retention are worth considering.

    https://www.activeresponsetraining.net/your-tactical-training-scenario-in-hand-weapons-retention

    Key take-aways:

    1) Maintain your distance from threats
    2) Practice and use retention position
    3) Recognize that both autopistols and revolvers can be disabled by simply gripping the gun, and
    4) Train in and practice techniques that reduce the bad guy's ability to hold onto your gun.
     
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  2. lemaymiami

    lemaymiami Member

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    I think that weapon retention is one of the most important skills for an armed citizen - and the least taught... In my own experience I was in charge of training for a hundred man department and we took weapon retention very seriously....

    Two things to remember... our trainers could disarm any officer when their weapon was still in its holster (and these were the currently available retention holsters -and all of the actions came face to face, from the side - or from the rear, even when the officer knew the attempt was coming...) and there really are BGs out there who never carry a firearm since their planning and fully able to take yours....

    Once that sidearm is in your hand - distance and situational awareness is your best friend in keeping control of your weapon. If I can get within reaching range of an armed individual, he or she is in real jeopardy (and not just of losing their weapon either...). Very, very few of us is a martial arts champion and all of us should remember that a significant number of police officer deaths each year - were done with their own weapon... That should have very serious implications for every armed citizen...
     
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  3. LaneP

    LaneP Member

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    I probably don't have the correct answer but in my mind (because that's the only place I've been in any gunfights to date) if I have a pistol out front and someone lunges inside the zone of arm's reach, my next reaction will probably be to pull the trigger in response to what I perceive to be a lethal threat. I hope to never be put in such a circumstance of course.
     
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  4. ms6852

    ms6852 Member

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    Punch to the throat or poke an eye out. You just gotta be quick.
     
  5. bdickens

    bdickens Member

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    Weapon retention is another argument in favor of what some deride as the "death grip."
     
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  6. taliv

    taliv Moderator Staff Member

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    i'm not an expert but weapon retention problems should mostly be from the holster. if you can't hang on to a weapon in your hand, something is wrong.

    for civilians, pointing your gun at someone and talking seems pretty hollywood fantasy. the time from holster til the third bang should be under 2 seconds. 2 seconds is a long time, but if the bad guy is close enough, there are lots of little things you can do to make it harder to grab, especially keeping it moving.

    standing there fully extended pointing it like an uke or actor is just stupid. hopefully nobody actually does that
     
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  7. Jeff White

    Jeff White Moderator Staff Member

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    Learn to shoot from retention! If you must have your gun in your hand while an assailant is close enough to grab for it, it needs to be held in close to your body. Get some professional training in shooting from retention. It's not the kind of skill you can teach yourself by watching a video or looking at photos in a book or on a webpage.
     
  8. luzyfuerza

    luzyfuerza Member

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    ^^^^This.

    I also believe that learning to get shots on target from retention, while not shooting yourself, is an essential skill for self-defenders.

    Shooting from retention reinforces the importance of immediately and automatically moving your support hand to your chest during the drawstroke. The muzzle blast also reminds you of the power of your handgun, and how close the bullets you fire from retention are to your own body parts. The consequences of doing it wrong are big.

    Find someone who knows how to teach the skill, and practice doing it right, dry, until you complete the action perfectly, every time. Learn how to adjust your pectoral index so that your gun is pointed where you want it to be when you dry press the trigger. Then, and only then, do you even think about trying it using live ammo.
     
  9. Corpral_Agarn

    Corpral_Agarn Member

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    Fight like it's raining and you're the third monkey on the ramp to Noah's Ark.

    +1 on shooting from retention.

    Always recommend training. Especially for a skill that is basically hand fighting.
     
  10. luzyfuerza

    luzyfuerza Member

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    and

    I used to think this, too.

    Then I learned some techniques for disarming someone who has a gun in their hand. Even when the person with the gun knows a disarm move is coming, action always leads reaction.

    Which takes us back to point 1): Maintain your distance from threats.

    As lemaymiami pointed out above:

     
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  11. WrongHanded
    • Contributing Member

    WrongHanded Contributing Member

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    This is a complicated situation because the devil is most definitely in the details here. I would treat a scenario like this as a grappling match. Because once the BG has a solid grip on your gun or gun hand, unless there is time and retention enough for a debilitating or at least shocking strike, it's largely going to come down to leverage.

    So if a knife is not present on the non-dominant side of your body, I believe directing their body whilst not letting go of the gun, may be the surest way to regain control of it. There are some judo throws and sweeps which could be attempted (with some technique modification) whilst both holding the same object. And though they will most likely not result in a successful throw, if they do not it may be because the BG just lost their grip on the gun.

    Using your feet may work too. Piston kicks to the lower legs, and knees in particular, can be very effective. And whilst this may put your feet in danger of being shot, better to shoot yourself in the foot, than have the BG use your own gun to shoot you dead.
     
  12. Jeff White

    Jeff White Moderator Staff Member

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    In the EST/TRT school jointly ran by the Illinois State Police and the Air Force Security Police at Scott AFB way back in the 80s there were 3 days of defensive tactics. Bruce Siddle ran that part of the program. (Some of you older guys will probably recognize the name) We spent a lot of time on disarms and stripping a gun from someone’s hands. It’s not a super hard, ninja skill. There are plenty of videos of inmates practicing disarms in prison yards.

    If you must have your gun in your hand, keep everyone back even if you have to back away. Keep your gun tucked in and like I said before, learn to shoot from retention. A blade you can access with your weak hand is something to think about.

    These aren’t skills you can learn on a forum, a video, a book or a video. Find a trainer who covers this situation. You probably won’t find the training you need at your local dojo because it’s a combination of several different disciplines.
     
  13. LiveLife

    LiveLife Member

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    And I honed my point shooting based on his techniques



    In reality, things move very quickly. Both of my 6th Dan and 8th Dan TKD masters taught weapons training and disarming pistols from shooters (Both were shooters). They demonstrated how fast they could move in 10-15 feet so bad breath close situation was something they had us prepare to counter.

    This video demonstrates for concealed carry, "distance" may not ensure your safety against knife attack and may require going to floor option. At 7:55, video demonstrates simply blocking or putting non shooting hand out may not be enough and at 8:05 demonstrates a better option to not get stabbed.

     
    Last edited: Jan 7, 2020
  14. scaatylobo

    scaatylobo Member

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    One of THE reasons I do not like open carry.

    It invites a gun grab,and even if you maintain control [ big IF ] there might be a discharge !!.

    And if you have not actually had hands on training with blue guns [ or their ilk ] then you are NOT READY = even if your super fast on the keyboard and can try to come up with a spunky answer to my rant :)
     
  15. jamesinalaska

    jamesinalaska Member

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    Akido.

    The Japanese resolved this problem 2-3 centuries ago. How do you draw, strike with and retain your weapons? The answer was the martial art we call Akido.
     
  16. Double_J

    Double_J Member

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    Many years ago a friend and I practiced retention shooting, and some force on force with airsoft pistols. disarms can be fun once you know the basics and defending is a bear as stated above. Shooting from retention took some training and LOTS of practice, live fire, dry fire, and airsoft.

    I am not about to try anything like that again as I am out of practice and I have this thing about being shot or stabbed...it's just not my thing.
     
  17. film495

    film495 Member

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    head but … ftw if that fails, have you seen the episode of walking dead where Rick bites the guys face?
     
  18. Good Ol' Boy

    Good Ol' Boy Member

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    I've said it before but I'll say it again, if the fight is bad breath distance I'm not going to introduce a gun into the fight in the first place, I'm going HTH.

    If I can get an opening after that where I'm fairly confident then I'll present whether that's retention or otherwise.

    Still the advice so far is certainly worthwhile and I'd love to do some retention training if it ever became available.
     
  19. luzyfuerza

    luzyfuerza Member

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    Retention of a weapon in the hand and disarming a close-in attacker are two ends of the same stick. They take a partner to learn and practice, and both players get a chance to learn each skill.

    By coincidence, today's ASP lesson seems applicable:



    This is obviously an absurd example, but if either manager had had any experience in "this is OUR gun" scenarios, things could have turned out very differently.
     
  20. JTHunter

    JTHunter Member

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    A swift kick to the family jewels can double them up. Then grab the head and slam it downwards as your knee comes up. Excruciating.
    You can also kick out the knees but this doesn't stop their hands.
     
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  21. MedWheeler

    MedWheeler Member

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    This is why I'm working on making the switch to weak-side carry for my second gun. It's certainly a viable (and justifiable) option.
     
  22. luzyfuerza

    luzyfuerza Member

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    Presumably, to give you the possibility of drawing and using the backup during a hand-to-hand struggle for your primary? Whether in the holster or in the hand?

    When I carry a backup, its a J-frame in my non-dominant-side pants or coat pocket. Same gun in same location if I need deeper concealment and can't carry my IWB EDC. My knife is clipped to the same pants pocket. J-frame practice is mostly off-hand shooting at close targets.

    But, I just realized, I've never shot my BUG from retention. On either the non-dominant OR dominant side. Definitely a hole in my training. Gotta work on that during my next dry session and range trip.
     
  23. Golf-21-Bravo

    Golf-21-Bravo Member

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    Obviously situational awareness and shooting from retention are key but the OP mentions that the attacker already has hands on the pistol so that takes things into that weird, ill-defined realm where firearms defence meets martial arts/combat sports/H2H.


    If this happens then we’ve basically entered a grappling match where if the attacker is bigger, stronger, faster, more aggressive or is a better grappler then the attacker will probably win. To negate this you’d have to train grappling aimed toward firearm defence which is still trained rather badly in RBSD arts like Krav etc where they still rely on compliant and static drills. If anyone wants to train in this hybrid area of combat then they’d need to do it with a training pistol that fires (airsoft or simunitions), minimum safety gear and against fully resisting opponents. Anything less is fantasy and wishful thinking.


    So yeah, in a nutshell. Shoot from retention!
     
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  24. mljdeckard

    mljdeckard Member

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    In my carry classes, I tell people if there was one thing I wish I had more time to train, it would be retention. Nothing good happens when your gun gets taken away from you.

    In a perfect world, all of us would be fit and proficient in martial arts. But most of my students are housewives whose husband talked them into carrying. Just getting them to carry is a challenge. I tell them they need to go to a shooting academy and get more training, and I know most of them aren't going to. Even in the army, most soldiers learn just enough about grappling to get themselves into trouble. (And when we do our occasional, sporadic combatives training in my unit, all I am thinking is; "I REALLY wish I could just shoot this guy and be done with it. Where's my knife?")

    The techniques I have seen that are the most simple and easy to remember came from Tiger McKee's "The Book of Two Guns".
     
  25. Shawn Dodson

    Shawn Dodson Member

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    During handgun retention and disarming training I learned the closer I was to an adversary while confronting him at gunpoint the more danger I was in. I also learned the opposite - if a bad guy had me at gunpoint the closer I was to him the more danger I was to him than he was to me. The reason? The reactionary gap. If the gun is within arms length of a bad guy (and vice versa) the bad guy can move to quickly disarm me before I have a chance to react effectively.
     
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