While I’ve received both the Basic and Advanced level Rangemaster instructor certifications, my quest continues with the Master level certification being the next milestone. Each certification has proved to be challenging and, while they were very doable, I don’t think either would have been possible without putting in a fair amount of work beforehand. As of writing this post, I’ve got a little less than two months to prepare for it and this post will cover what I’m doing about it.
The course description indicates that range work will include a full day of double-action revolver work, working mirror image, and more advanced skills with a concealed carry handgun. Mirror image means working left handed for a right handed shooter and vice versa. What I don’t know is what we will be tested on in order to earn the certification and this had me worried a little bit.
Why did it worry me? In view of the work I’ve put in over the past few years to develop my shooting proficiency with a concealed carry pistol and without the same luxury of time to do that for my revolver proficiency, which I’ve never measured, and I’ve never attempted to do anything beyond weak hand only shooting with my left hand. As such, I suspect that qualifying in mirror image or with a revolver is going to be difficult.
Why am I no longer worried? Thanks to a short exchange I had with John Daub, who happens to hold a master level certification, which I initiated by asking for advice on what to work on, my concerns were set at ease. He reminded me that I already know what to expect from the Rangemaster instructor development courses and what Tom Givens expects from his students. He also reminded me that hyperfocusing on the outcome can be detrimental to performance and it behooves us to be process focused. And that was exactly what I needed to hear and what I intend to do to prepare for the upcoming class and certification.
I know that I will need a reliable pistol, the VP9, and a quality inside-the-waistband (IWB) holster for it. I will also need a reliable revolver, the S&W Model 66 Combat Magnum, and a quality holster for that. I know that I will need quality ammunition and that the pistol and revolver need to be zeroed for it. I know that I need to be familiar with the process of drawing each of those tools from a holster and getting good hits on paper. I also know how to achieve the necessary familiarity and that mastery, while desirable, is not required for the outcome I’m after.
So what’s the action plan? The plan starts with gathering all of the written materials that have been provided in the previous instructor development courses in addition to Tom Givens’ Concealed Carry Class book and making it a point to review all of them between now and the day the Master level development course begins. Additionally, I’m going to divide up my practice time three ways. One part will remain dedicated to maintaining my proficiency with the carry pistol. Another part will be devoted to mirror image work from the holster. The final part will be devoted to revolver work from the holster. This includes dry fire, live fire, and even match time. That’s right, I plan on alternating local matches between shooting right handed, left handed, and with the revolver. All of this should provide the familiarity I need to do well in the class in addition to making sure the equipment is squared away. It won’t be a walk in the park, but it is very doable as long as I remain relaxed and focused on the process.
I suppose it’s time to put away the competition gear for a bit, break out gear I will use in class, and get to work.