Training at home with LTC Garcia

Another idea for #USArmyReserve Soldiers training at home. Lt. Col. Garcia of the Service Pistol team set up an air gun range in his garage.

Home air gun range.

Air guns, such as this one based on the SIG 320 (M17), can be used safely at home.

Indoor gallery courses (Smallbore and Air gun) were among the first formal #PostalMatch events directed by then Chief, Army Reserve Lt. Gen. Sutton dating back to the 1960s and featured in Army Reserve Magazine, the predecessor to Warrior-Citizen.

See this archived copy of Army Reserve Magazine from 1969.

Read more about LTG Sutton and USAR marksmanship history in the USAR Course of Fire Book.

Remote Training During COVID-19

#RetentionViaReadiness #PostalMatch #LetsGoShooting #RoadtoAwesome #KeepPounding #AmericasArmyReserve #USArmyReserve #WeaponsMaster

“The Army is basically in a stop-movement configuration… Number one, we’re real careful about where we congregate, where we go. Number two, we’re very, very careful of making sure we don’t become vectors, we don’t spread this virus, because we went to the wrong place, we got in too-big a group, we were shaking hands when we shouldn’t have done it, we’ve been traveling in places which may have had more exposure to the virus… Unless you get clear authority to conduct a battle assembly, you’re not doing it. We need to avoid congregating and prevent the spread of COVID-19.”
– COVID-19 Guidance, Lt. Gen. Charles Luckey
https://www.usar.army.mil/COVID19/

Isolation and quarantine are public health practices used to stop or limit the spread of disease. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends everyday preventive actions to help prevent the spread of respiratory viruses, including avoiding close contact with people who are sick. This prevents gathering for Battle Assembly or training but telecommuting and Distributed Learning remains an ideal option. The Army Reserve Postal Match Program is a type of Distributed Learning in that Soldiers and units conduct locally-hosted events as part of a larger, Reserve-wide aggregate. Using simulators allows this to done remotely while still providing objective skill development.

The current Training Circulars dictating small arms training (TC 3-20.0 and TC 3-20.40) direct units to Maximize Virtual Systems to augment live fire training and that Table II (Preliminary Live-Fire Simulations) is ideally a simulations-based demonstration of the Soldiers’ performance while applying the primary capabilities of their weapon in a virtual environment. Motivated Soldiers interested in competition and other advanced training can readily benefit from systems affordable for home use. This is especially useful for conducting effective training while satisfying the directive from Army Reserve leadership to avoid becoming a COVID-19 vector.

Spc. Dan Lowe, 175th TC Co. (79th Sustainment Support Command), is an Olympian and member of the Army Reserve Marksmanship Program. On the civilian side he runs Firing Line Solutions and uses a SCATT Shooting Trainer for practice at home. “Given the COVID-19 Guidance, I started the 2020 Corona Cup, a series of Postal Matches using SCATT simulators,” said Spc. Lowe. “There are matches for international rifle, Service rifle, and sporter air rifle.”

SCATT trainers are a popular simulator for competition shooters that uses an optical sensor attached to the gun that gives real-time, visual feedback via support software running on a laptop or other computer. “I’m practicing my standing position by dropping onto the target, using my SCATT at home in my pajamas. It’s all starting to make sense. I’m still waiting for my trigger control coaching, so I don’t mind the 10.0’s for now,” said competition shooter and Registered Nurse Michelle Adams. “I have targets for Air Rifle [as shot in the Olympics] and scaled SR targets used in Service Rifle.”

Christopher Moriarty competes in Service Rifle with his daughter, Shannon. Using their SCATT, she earned a High Power Master classification with less than a year of consistent training. “The most important piece of learning to read the wind in Service Rifle is shooting centered and accurately called shots. If you’re shooting itty-bitty groups in the center, you’ve got most of a minute of wind error before you start losing points. If you’re using the whole 10 ring, a 1 minute wind error might result in a dead center shot… or a shot well into the 8 ring. It’s really hard to notice that your wind call was off by a minute when sometimes it’s a pinwheel, and sometimes it’s an 8!,” said Christopher Moriarty. “SCATT taught me that my hold and squeeze can be sub MOA in the X, but result in a wide 7 due to followthrough.”

Chief Warrant Officer Andy Knote, 316th ESC (Military Intelligence Readiness Command), is a Distinguished shooter competing with the Army Reserve Marksmanship Program since 2005 and uses another home-based trainer for similar effect called the MantisX. “Dry fire is the most essential marksmanship training, but it can get boring – thus losing effectiveness – really fast. MantisX offers a way to make dry fire training more interesting, allows us to capture the data for analysis, and provides us the data to set specific, measurable, achievable, realistic, and timely training goals.” To handle training with firearms lacking a Picatinny rail, Chief Knote created a configuration using strong adhesive tape and a small rail attached to a magazine, an option that has since been adopted by the company as a standard accessory.

Master Sgt. Russell Moore (416th TEC), NCOIC of the Army Reserve Service Conditions (Combat) Team and multiple All Army Champion, is assisting with a push for more locally-hosted Best Warrior Competition events as another option. “The Best Warrior Competition provides a platform for Soldiers to demonstrate their lethality skills and knowledge against the best the USAR has to offer. Without the ability to run host Company and Battalion events, organizers must get creative while maintaining consistency, uniformity, and difficulty,” said Master Sgt. Moore. “In regard to the marksmanship piece, there are several USAR-issued and purchasable solutions to assist in selecting your unit’s Best Warrior and to help increase their readiness and lethality. Systems such as the Laser Shot, EST 2000/3000, and the legacy Laser Marksmanship Training System (LMTS) have been in our inventory for years. Additionally, there are commercially available devices like the SCATT and MantisX available on GSA Advantage that can provide individuals an excellent array of skill building and scored practical exercises using the standard M4 and M9. Soldiers can be videoed executing these marksmanship tasks as well as other incorporated physical activities. By using Google Duo, Skype, Snapchat video or any other streaming video service, Soldiers can be evaluated and scored without coming in contact with too many others.”

Simulations devices are an effective means to conduct training at low cost and are required by Army doctrine. Home-based simulators are affordable for individuals while providing objective scoring remotely and away from the range. Combined with a Distributed Learning approach such as the Army Reserve Postal Match Program and locally-hosted Best Warrior Competition, this offers training when Soldiers can’t congregate.

https://www.usar.army.mil/News/Article/2132536/remote-training-during-covid-19/

Barricade for New Qualification

#LetsGoShooting #RoadtoAwesome #KeepPounding #AmericasArmyReserve #USArmyReserve #WeaponsMaster #PostalMatch

From Maj. Jesse Campbell, (COIC, 412th TEC)

If you’re looking for a commercial barricade to practice and conduct the new U.S. Army qualifications and Postal Matches:

http://usmolders.com/portfolio-posts/14515/

9-Hole Firing Barricade, Part# USM-54, $242.06
9-Hole Firing Barricade Base Set, Part# USM-109, $55.00

Sharpened Steel Improves Leadership, Training

#LetsGoShooting #RoadtoAwesome #KeepPounding #AmericasArmyReserve #USArmyReserve #WeaponsMastery #USARCombatTeam #USARPistolTeam

Fort Knox, Ky.

Events held by the Hatchet Battalion leads to multiple Soldier training successes, Excellence In Competition, and the Army Reserve’s national-level marksmanship program.

Soldiers of the 2-397th (104th Training Division) conducted a Leader Training event called Sharpened Steel at Fort Knox to hone skills necessary to Soldiers and leaders. The Hatchet Battalion successfully completed two Excellence In Competition events with several Soldiers earning permanent awards for their superior performance.

Holding both pistol and rifle versions of Service Conditions (Combat) Excellence In Competition events at Fort Knox, the pistol event resulted in one Soldier being awarded the EIC Bronze Pistol badge and the rifle event had two Soldiers achieving the distinction. This was the first time the Hatchet Battalion held either event and their command reports a heightened Soldier interest growing as a result.

Their training began with each Soldier establishing Data On Previous Engagements at each yard line and cadre like Sgt. 1st Class Frasier noticed the advantage of using these types of targets. “For many, it was their first time seeing how their shot groups opened up as they moved further from the target.”

The training culminated in an Excellence In Competition Rifle event consisting of timed stages from 400, 300, 200, and 100 yards, and then a Close Quarter Battle stage shot at 75, 50, and 25 yards. The Pistol event was a mix of precision and speed from multiple positions and distances at 30 yards and in. This training is a holistic test of Soldier lethality because it incorporates short and medium range engagements, different shooting positions, speed reloads, and – in the Rifle event – a 25 yard rush to each firing line.

Even Soldiers finishing lower in the rankings found value in the event. Supply NCO Sgt. Vanderpool explained, “I’ve never been taught a lot of the marksmanship techniques that were shown. I learned a better way to hold the M16 and gained confidence in my marksmanship skills.”

In addition to the event being a tremendous training opportunity, Sgts. 1st Class Daugherty and Combs received their EIC Bronze Badge, which supersedes the expert badge on the Army Service Uniform, for scoring in the top 10% of the match.

Also during training year 2019, the Hatchet Battalion had two Soldiers compete as members of USAR Competitive Marksmanship Program, with Sgt. 1st Class Combs participating on the Service Pistol team and Command Sgt. Major Michael Ball participating with the Service Conditions/Combat team at the Armed Forces Skill At Arms Meeting. Their participation on the teams has improved the Battalion’s marksmanship training as they bring what they’ve learned back to the unit. As an Army Reserve Drill Sergeant unit, the Hatchet Battalion’s Drill Sergeants will take what they’ve learned and teach it to new Soldiers in Initial Entry Training, which will immediately impact marksmanship skills across the entire force.

https://www.usar.army.mil/News/News-Display/Article/1965677/sharpened-steel-improves-leadership-training/

Army Reserve Soldiers Enhance Retention with Postal Match, History

#LetsGoShooting #RoadtoAwesome #KeepPounding #AmericasArmyReserve #USArmyReserve #WeaponsMastery #USARPostalMatch

Solid training events are an ideal way to enhance Soldier retention and Postal Matches offer an approach accessible to all units.

Fort McCoy, Wis.

Members of the Great Lakes Training Division (84th Training Command) led by Cpt. Joshua Gisi (HHD Commander), Master Sgt. Jeffrey Bruce (Senior Command Career Counselor), and Sgt. 1st Class Theodore Stevens conducted Army Reserve Postal Matches during their weapons qualification at Fort McCoy. The training created a very high qualification rate, with all but one Soldier in attendance passing successfully.

For the Postal Match, the GLTD Soldiers fired the Margaret Thompson Murdock and William James Sutton Postal Match. “We are a One Star Command providing Observer Trainers for command group operations and this was our first time firing any of the Postal Matches. It was a test run for us,” said Master Sgt. Bruce. “We also reviewed the biographies of the Soldiers each match is coined after. The unit appreciated the historical connection, especially the Equal Opportunity lessons found in Maj. Murdock’s story. The new revisions to the Postal Match are a dramatic improvement over the old design and we appreciated all the changes and updates.”

In addition to the training value, which integrates well with the Army’s current progressive and gated Weapons Training Strategy detailed in TC 3-20.0, these Postal Matches also provide a high retention value. “I am a Senior Command Career Counselor and as Special Staff to a Brigadier General, I work with all of our down trace units on retention, sponsorship, and recruiting programs. Being able to help a down trace unit conduct a Postal Match adds value of me doing a Staff Assisted Visit,” said Master Sgt. Bruce. “I am proud of my HHD allowing me to test my ability to add this training to their event so I can offer it to other units. I feel these Postal Matches enable me to do my job better, make drill time more enjoyable, build morale with in units, improve marksmanship skills, and add value to the Army overall.”

Good training such as this is an ideal way to increase Soldier retention throughout the Army Reserve. “When I was an Army Reserve Career Counselor, a Water Reclamation unit I supported had the strongest retention with Soldiers fighting to join,” said Master Sgt. Bruce. “It’s not that water reclamation was overly rewarding, it was because the unit hosted a Schützenschnur (German Armed Forces Badge for Weapons Proficiency) every year and they created a massive draw as Soldiers enjoyed serving when they were able to do motivating training. Postal Matches are a way every unit can offer something similar for their Soldiers.”

Unit: 84th Great Lakes Training Division (GLTD)

Other News:
https://www.usar.army.mil/News/News-Display/Article/1950559/army-reserve-soldiers-enhance-retention-with-postal-match-history/