Course Review - Tactical Response Fighting Pistol


New Member
Feb 29, 2008
We got our training forum and there's nothing in it so I'm pasting a review from a class I took last year. I am not affiliated with TR although I hold the company in high regard. They will be coming to Bastrop next month to teach a rifle class.

I recently had the opportunity to take this class as Tactical Response made a trip to Bastrop, Texas to teach their Fighting Pistol and Advanced Fighting Pistol classes. Due to my schedule (ie lack of vacation) I was not able to stay for the Advanced class but after taking FP, I will definitely be getting back to take Advanced Fighting Pistol as well. Both are two-day classes.

The course started with a short discussion of safety rules, distribution of the course handout, and discussion of the course objective. From the handout: "Develop basic gunhandling and marksmanship skills with the fighting pistol and increase our understanding of its capabilities at contact distance (0-1 yard), close quarters (1-3 yards), and intermediate range (4-15 yards) encounters. Learn basic tactics related to its effective use designed to afford its operator an advantage whenever and wherever possible. Develop the fighting mindset that cannot only enhance our ability to perform, but diminish our adversary's will to fight.

Once we got on the range, students all cleared their handguns and were instructed on how to draw from the holster. This was taught as a three step process: 1, lift cover garment (if necessary) with both hands and get your fighting grip on the gun with strong hand while weak hand stays on chest 2, get both hands on gun in the retention position 3, extend while simultaneously acquiring the front sight and getting it on target. This required a few repetitions for everyone to get right. Then, we started shooting dot drills with a holster/reholster for every drill.

The TR instructors brought a large jug of snap caps and everyone was expected to use them. Malfunction clearances are a big part of this class and everyone was expected to have a snap cap in every fresh magazine. This is a dynamic class, ie you will MOVE every time you draw your gun and you will MOVE some more anytime you have to reload or otherwise fix your gun. Imagine someone is coming at you with a knife when your gun goes down. Will you stop and stand there looking at your gun while you fix it? The natural tendency is to do just that. But to save your life you have to MOVE out of the way of your attacker, and keep your eyes on him as you get your gun running again.

TR also teaches the FAST method (fight, assess, scan, tac load) and you will do a 361 degree threat scan and a tac reload after every drill. To do the scan, both positions "sul" and "norte" are taught, and students are encouraged to mix the two positions up as neither will always apply to your circumstances.

Non-diagnostic techniques for clearing type 1 (fail to fire), type 2 (fte or stovepipe) and type 3 (double feed) were taught and practiced over and over.

The class builds on itself, so as we were taught to shoot from multiple positions (standing, kneeling on one or both knees, supine, and prone), we were still simultaneously clearing malfunctions constantly. Cover was set up and following a short discussion on cover vs. concealment, we were taught how to effectively use cover while using all the techniques from earlier in the class.

Day 2 began with a 4-hour lecture on mindset. The lecture, and accompanying section in the course handout, are worth the price of admission alone. It included outstanding discussions of mindset, controlling fear, situational awareness, layers of response, and MUCH more.

Live-fire exercises on day 2 got interesting! There were many drills forcing us to shoot on the move, and fight to cover. Then, one-handed shooting came into the mixture, followed shortly by one-handed moving drills, and one-handed malfunction clearances. Ever tried to reload or tap-rack with only your strong hand, or clear a stovepipe with one hand? It's interesting, but I now know the best way to do it. (Weak handed, one hand malfunction techniques were covered in the AFP class).

The class ended with a "special" drill that was a very important test. If I discuss the "special" drill in any detail I will be hunted down. Suffice it to say that it was a good drill.

These are just the highlights. Much more is covered in the course than what I discussed here. The class is 9-5 both days.

When the class was over, James Yeager yanked an M82 out of the back of his truck and we all had a go at it. We all stuck around and bull****ted for a while and then I had to head home.

This class costs $400 and is worth every penny. Total rounds fired were around 900. The instructors, James Yeager and Jay Gibson, were top notch and have stout credentials. We managed to talk them into coming back next spring to teach their Fighting Rifle class. I can't wait (literally... I may go up to Camden TN where TR is based and take the class there)!

Details on the course can be found here

Other reviews and pics from this particular class can be found here. You will have to register. PLEASE READ THE RULES FOR THAT FORUM. It is the real deal and the vast majority of people on there carry guns for a living.


New Member
Apr 16, 2008
Lindale, Texas
Thanks Clingman, I appreciate the time and detail you provided. I am looking for a personal defense handgun class in or near to Texas. I have read and devoured every piece of literature, DVD, etc I can find but obviously it will never replace real "hands-on" training by knowledgeable experts. Is there any good schools in Texas that true civilians can attend??


TGT Supporter
Feb 21, 2008
Austin, TX
Thanks for the review. After looking more into Tactical Response and James Yeager, I'm definitely going to have to take a class or 2 from those guys, sounds like they really know their stuff. It looks like they have some upcoming classes in Bastrop or elsewhere in Texas later this year (June I think?).


TGT Addict
May 28, 2008
Ft Worth, TX
I am curious as to why "Sul" is taught as a Scan position. Did the instructor explain the development of Sul and the its intended purpose?

Humm, on re-read, it appears as though you are actually turning your body around 360? Am I just not getting the right mental picture?


TGT Supporter
Feb 21, 2008
Austin, TX
Some people think you will just shoot yourself in the foot with Sul, however when done properly the gun is not pointing straight down, it is a slight angle so that it is pointing a foot or so in front of you. Worst case you can always cup your support hand to cam the gun outward a little more if it's too close for comfort. I know some don't consider it a retention position due to the hand placement, however having the gun close to your body with your support hand in contact with the weapon is still a "retention" position IMO, Sul is just less of one compared to certain others. I like position Sul as it maintains muzzle discipline if you happen to be around many other people. It's a bit more appropriate for police, tactical guys, or anyone operating in a team environment, and is maybe not all that important for just the individual. Here's a good article on Position Sul to better explain it:


The main purpose of Sul is that it puts the muzzle in the safest direction possible. Where it is most appropriate to use is in a crowded environment or team environment where a high or low ready, compressed high ready, etc all would be more likely for you to be muzzle sweeping a civilian, teammate, etc. While it may not be necessary to use all the time, it does have it's place and isn't tactical "window dressing" like some other stances, grips, or positions I've heard of out there.


New Member
Jan 4, 2010
South Africa
Asking for permission

The information on this place is very useful. I would like to ask permission to use some of the information here on my site.I will not just copy and paste, I will put them in my own words and give reference.Thanks



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