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I recently had the opportunity to use some basic self-defense tactics. I am a competitive shooter, I've been to both competitive and defensive shooting schools, and I have my CCW. That said I found myself in a rather odd place using various shooting tactics.

A couple weeks ago some shooting buddies and co-workers got together to play paintball. While you can't compare getting shot with a paintball versus a bullet, the object is the same, don't get shot! I found myself shooting on the move, shooting on the move to cover, shooting while retreating, and paying great attention to my use of cover.

I know this sounds odd, but I've often heard of people going at each other with airsoft guns to see what works and what doesn't. Paintball unlike reality provides multiple assailants to say the least but serveral principles are the same. Especially when you are in a position of a defender. I am by no means suggesting using paintball for training. I'm simply relaying a few things I noticed while playing.
 

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Wes, I think you'll find some agreement from our members--at least this non-inflammatory types! ;) I used to do some of the paintball thing occasionally, and my experiences sound similar to what you described. For me, the most interesting times were at an indoor facility, a former factory with multiple levels, different sized and shaped rooms, tricky lighting, etc. All the years of IPSC/IDPA, etc. made me relatively hard to hit, while I could at least sometimes connect while in motion. Also, previous firearms training classes had showed me the advantage of trying to attack paintball opponents while they were in "fatal funnels"--the staircases were my favorite place to jump 'em. Fish in a barrel, every time.. :)
 

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Paintball can be a excellent training tool, however, the scenarios must be DESIGNED as such, and your mindset should be different than if you're just out to have fun with your buds. By the same token, IDPA can improve your abilities, but it still a game and not a substitute for specific tactical training.

I went to a school a while back that used non-lethal munitions for force-on-force, the stress level equaled that of a real dopehouse raid (been on a few!:D ). On the other hand, the live-fire on dummies was much more fun, but practically stress-free.
 

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Paintaball may be good for handgun simulation if you 'play right'. The few times I played it was outdoors where there are a number of problems.

1. Range limitations of paintball vs rifle.
2. Accuracy limitations of paintball vs rifle.
3. Capacity of paintball guns (lots of the hardcore guys were spray and pray big time).
4. The fact that a bush is not cover from incoming rounds when you are being fired at with a rifle or handgun.
5. People taking unnecessary risks because it is a game/you don't die.

I think it could be useful, but simunitions or airsoft (with proper ppe) would probably be better. You have to set it up to play within the confines of a handgun fight with like minded folks to see the most benefit.
 

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K1500 said:
I think it could be useful, but simunitions or airsoft (with proper ppe) would probably be better. You have to set it up to play within the confines of a handgun fight with like minded folks to see the most benefit.

I got to test a couple of Airsoft guns on Sunday and after doing so, some buddies and I are going to get them and use them for some "force on force" exercises, dry fire, and just plain fun.

They're not as messy as paintball, the guns are realistic (and we can use our carry gear), and although they're not as painful as a paintball hit, you certainly know when you're hit.

But I think the bottom line is the intent of all of the participants. Playing paintball usually ends up as a lesson in how fast and quick little kids are while they spray with a paintball hose.
 

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IMHO paintball (nder the right circumstances as mentioned above) can be a useful training tool.

I've used Simunitions for years (an instructor) and love it...the downside is that you have to wear certain safety equipment (like in paintball) that makes it non realistic. The good side is that there is a pain payment for making mistakes!!!:D

I've got to look into the Airsoft stuff...Years ago (about 18-20...back when cops used revolvers!;) ) we used to load our own rounds with a primer and some powdered cotten used to "mark" the opponent. This worked fairly well as long as you were close enough. The range thing is an issue...but since most gunfights are close affairs anyway it's a moot point for the most part.

Just remember to keep your simulation scenarios as realistic as possible (and to conduct them in a safe location where your actions cannot be misconstrued as an actual attack!)
 

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Good trick I learned in the Army (worked outside, and in MOUT)

I'm Up..

He Sees me..

I'm down..

Keeps that annoying MILES crap from going off and indicating you're dead. Paintball was always fun inside the houses still being built when I was in High School. Knowing what I know now it would likely be a whole lot different. Airsoft guns available stateside are OK, but the ones available in Japan are just amazing. I like the things myself, but for tactical training, while annoying, I think the old .mil may be on to something with MILES. Sure wearing the halo and the harness is a PITA when you're low-crawling and whatnot, but it's not much of a hinderance in MOUT. I thought some of the IDPA stuff I shot before was intense, adrenaline++ the first time I breeched in our MOUT training.

I got on a rant somehow, perhaps its the lack of sleep.
 
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