Here’s A Few Drills That Can Be Done On The RE Factor IQ Target

Photo Apr 23, 10 02 01Here’s a few rifle/pistol drills that can be done on the RE Factor IQ target. Some of these drills have par times, others are a “beat yourself” drill – establish a par time at your shooting level, then push yourself to constantly decrease your par time while maintaining accuracy.  Also keep in mind that even though the square, circle, and triangle all technically measure 3″, the square offers the most “shootable area,” followed by the circle, then the triangle.

Rifle Dot Torture (adapted from Dot Torture by Dave Blinder):

Drill: Shooter will begin with a holstered pistol and rifle in the low ready or high port at the 5 yard line. You will use 10-20 dots.  There is no time limit, this is a marksmanship fundamentals drill.  The strings are shot as follows:

Dot 1 – Hinge and fire one string of 5 rounds for best group. One hole if possible, total 5 rounds.
Dot 2 – Hinge and fire 1 shot, resume ready position and repeat X4, total 5 rounds.
Dots 3 & 4 – Hinge and fire 1 shot on #3, then 1 shot on #4, resume ready position and repeat X3, total 8 rounds.
Dots 5 & 6 – Hinge and fire 2 shots on #5, then 2 on #6, resume ready position, repeat X4, total 20 rounds.
Dot 7 & 8 –  Hinge and fire 1 shot on #7, reload, fire 1 shot on #8, resume ready position and repeat X3, total 8 rounds.
Dots 9 & 10 – Hinge and fire 2 shots on #9, transition to pistol, fire 2 shots on #10, resume ready position and repeat X4, total 20 rounds.
Dots 11-20 – Repeat drills on other shoulder.

Grading criteria: Begin slow enough that all rounds remain inside the circles/squares/triangles.  Once you can shoot the entire course clean, add distance and repeat.

Skills:
Optic offset
Draw stroke
Sight picture acquisition
Trigger manipulation
Target transitions
Cross shoulder marksmanship
Reloads

The Dot Drill 2, iHack, and Command drills can be shot with the rifle as well.  Work target acquisition from both the low ready and high port, as both are valid ready positions, and familiarity with both is going to be an asset.  You can also vary those drills by introducing rifle to pistol transitions.  For example:

Dot Drill 2 Variation:

Drill: Shooter will begin with a holstered pistol and rifle in the low ready or high port at the 7 yard line. You will use 6 dots.  Set your timer par time to 7 seconds. On the buzzer, shooter will engage the target with 4 rifle rounds, transition, and engage the target with 2 pistol rounds.  Conduct the drill 6 times total.IMG_8635

Grading criteria: Track the number of hits achieved within the 7 second par time.  Once you can shoot 6×6 in the par time, decrease par time and push yourself.

iHack Variation:

Drill: Shooter will begin in the high ready position at the 5 yard line.  You will utilize 3 dots.  Set your par time to 7 seconds.
String 1: On the buzzer, engage 3 dots with 1 rifle shot each from left to right, then 1 pistol shot each from right to left.
String 2: On the buzzer, engage 3 dots with 1 rifle shot each from right to left, then 1 pistol shot each from left to right.
String 3: On the buzzer, engage 3 dots with 1 rifle shot each, engaging the middle dot first, then the outside dots in any order, then engage with dots in any order with 1 pistol shot each.
Grading criteria: 16 out of 18 shots on is “passing.”  Once you can shoot it clean, try from the low ready/high port.

Give these a try and post up your times to the comments!

For more drills, check out our shooting drills page.

About the author

Joel is an 11 year veteran of the US Coast Guard, where he has served at various units including the International Training Division and Maritime Security Response Team. He has held qualifications including Deployable Team Leader/Instructor, Direct Action Section Team Leader, and Precision Marksman – Observer. He has deployed/instructed on five continents and served in quick reaction force roles for multiple National Special Security Events in the US. He is the owner of Hybrid Defensive Strategies, LLC in Chesapeake, VA, and can be contacted on Facebook and Instagram. Any opinions expressed here are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the US Coast Guard or the US Government.

Part 3: Fitness Tests from Militaries Around the World

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The New Zealand military’s fitness test consists of Press Ups (Pushups), Curl Ups (basically a crunch) and a 2.4km (1.5 mile) run.  Military personnel are expected to be in the 100 Club.  The 100 Club levels are listed below:

Part 2: Fitness Tests From Militaries Around the World

2.4km Run Curl Ups Press Ups
Male 8 Minutes 130 55
Female 10 Minutes 05 Seconds 118 36

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Part 1: Fitness Tests From Militaries Around the World

The Curl Up requirements are shown here:

Part 2: Fitness Tests From Militaries Around the World

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The IDF (Israeli Defense Forces) fitness test seems to mimic that of the US military’s fitness tests.  It consists of a 3000m (1.86) run, pull-ups and dips.

Part 3: Fitness Tests from Militaries Around the World

The caveat for this is the exercises are all performed with no rest in between and the events can be completed in any order.

There is only pass fail for the pull-ups and dips are pass fail only.  The standard is:

Pull-ups- 11

Dips- 18

There is a point system for the run and the minimum score is 50 or 15:33.

Part 1: Fitness Tests From Militaries Around the World

15:34    Fail  Points 12:47-12:53    75
15:27-15:33 50 12:41-12:46    76
15:21-15:26 51 12:34-12:40 77
15:15-15:20 52 12:28-12:33 78
15:08-15:14 53 12:21-12:27 79
15:02-15:07 54 12:15-12:20 80
14:55-15:01 55 12:09-12:14 81
14:49-14:54 56 12:02-12:08 82
14:43-14:48 57 11:56-12:01 83
14:36-14:42 58 11:49-11:55 84
14:30-14:35 59 11:43-11:48 85
14:23-14:29 60 11:37-11:42 86
14:17-14:22 61 11:30-11:36 87
14:11-14:16 62 11:24-11:29 88
14:04-14:10 63 11:17-11:23 89
13:58-14:03 64 11:11-11:16 90
13:51-13:57 65 11:04-11:10 91
13:45-13:50 66 10:58-11:03 92
13:38-13:44 67 10:52-10:57 93
13:32-13:37 68 10:45-10:51 94
13:26-13:31 69 10:39-10:44 95
13:19-13:25 70 10:32-10:38 96
13:13-13:18 71 10:26-10:31 97
13:06-13:12 72 10:20-10:25 98
13:00-13:05 73 10:13-10:19 99
12:54-12:59 74 10:12      100

Part 1: Fitness Tests From Militaries Around the World

The Canadian military has one of the more interesting fitness tests we found.  The military conducts the Common Military Task Fitness Evaluation (CMTFE). This test is comprised of six evaluations to include:

Escape to Cover_sm

  1. Escape to Cover

General: The escape to cover task was designed to simulate a situation involving small arms fire. During this event, a member must move quickly between points of cover to reach the safety of a bunker.

Task description: With a C7 rubber rifle, the participant runs 10m, stops and takes a knee for 7 seconds then continues to run 50m. The participant moves into a prone position to complete a low crawl (leopard crawl) under 7 hurdles spread out over a 10m mat. Once the participant has physically cleared the last 10m low crawl marker, the participant will get up and run 30m.

Minimum standard: The task must be completed in 68 seconds or less.

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2. Vehicle Extrication

General. This task was designed to simulate the extrication and evacuation of a CAF casualty from the passenger seat of a Ford Ranger Style pickup truck during an international humanitarian operation.

Task description: The participant will remove the 86kg mannequin off the edge of a 76 cm high bench (simulating the front bench of a 1⁄4 ton pickup truck) by grasping and pulling the mannequin. Once removed from the bench, the participant will drag the mannequin 5 meters. At the 5m mark an evaluator will release the mannequin’s lower extremities (simulating the arrival of a second rescuer to assist in carrying the casualty). The participant will carry the 52kg mannequin 5m back to the bench and secure the torso on the bench (simulating lifting the casualty into the back of a rescue vehicle).

Minimum standard: There is no time limit for completion of this task; performance is indicated by pass /fail.

Picking and Digging_sm

3. Picking and Digging

General: This task was designed to simulate the construction of a hasty ablution facility during early stages of an international humanitarian mission; it is performed in two parts as picking and digging.

Part 2: Fitness Tests From Militaries Around the World

Task description: Picking:

The participant straddles the picking simulator and starts moving the weighted beam by swinging the sledgehammer using a picking action. When the beam has moved approximately 1 meter, the participant will make a 180o turn, straddle the picking simulator and continue moving the weighted beam in the opposite direction. After 30 seconds of “work” the participant must stop for a 60 second rest. The work/rest ratio (30 sec / 60 sec) will continue until the participant has moved the weighted beam a total of 4 meters.

A 2 minute rest / water break is provided between completion of the picking task and beginning the digging task.

Digging:

The participant moves 180 kilograms (kg) of loosened gravel from the full dig box to the empty one. After 60 seconds of work the participant must stop for a 30 second rest. The work/rest ratio (60 sec / 30 sec) will continue until the participant has filled the empty box with the gravel of the full box.

Part 3: Fitness Tests from Militaries Around the World

Minimum standard: 18 min of Picking, 18 min of Digging.

StretcherCarry_sm

4. Stretcher Carry

General: The stretcher carry task was designed to simulate a 2-person stretcher carry of a civilian casualty to an evacuation vehicle and a 4-person lift of the stretcher into the back of the vehicle.

Task description: Participant lifts a deadlift bar (43kg) and carries it a distance of 25m. The participant sets down the bar, pauses for 15 sec, and turns around to face the start/finish line. The participant lifts and carries the deadlift bar back 25m, and lowers the bar to the floor at the start/finish line.

Using both hands, the participant lifts the EZ curl bar (21.5kg), up onto the 91.5 cm high platform.

Minimum standard: There is no time limit for completion of this task however the task must be completed without stopping or setting down the deadlift or EZ curl bars outside of the prescribed rest period.

Sandbag Fortification_sm

5. Sandbag Fortification

General: This task was designed to simulate the unloading and passing of sandbags from a pallet during a humanitarian (flood) or defense (fortification) scenario.

Task description: Participants lift a total of sixty 20 kg sandbags from a pallet and places each sandbag on the top of a 91.5 cm high platform.

Minimum standard: Move sixty 20kg sandbags in 15 min or less.

Sandbag Fortification_smPickets and Wire_sm

6. Pickets and Wire Carry

General. This task was designed to simulate the responsibility of one member of a multi-member team during the construction of a pickets and wire fence.

Task description: The participant will make 23 trips carrying objects from a start point out to various points along a 35 m line. Weights of objects and methods of carrying range from 5.4 kg in each hand to 15.5 kg carried unilaterally.

The sequence of the task alternates between loaded and unloaded carries; to simulate picking up and dropping off equipment, returning to pick up another load of equipment until all of the equipment has been moved to the worksite.
The longest trips cover 70.8 m, with a total task distance of approximately 1.3 km.

Minimum standard: 17:30min or less.

How We Feel About Dirty Nasty POGs

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POG (person other than grunt/permanently on the ground), REMF (rear echelon mother f*&%er), FOBbit, non-com, leg, nonner, all used to describe non-combat arms service members. Combat arms personnel are often seen on social media talking down to “POGs”, defaulting to how their service somehow is less notable, dangerous or valorous than that of service members serving in combat arms positions.

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However, is this negative rhetoric warranted?  Are “POGs” somehow lesser in their service than that of combat arms personnel?  We say no, and here is why:

  1. It’s usually about right time and right place, not right MOS-  When I entered into service, I started out as a non-combat SF support soldier.  Upon return from basic training, advance training and airborne school I went to Special Forces Selection and soon after the Special Forces Qualification Course.  While in the course I ran into a buddy at a bar who attended basic training with me and later went on to be a JAG paralegal specialist.  At the time (2005), he had already deployed three times to Iraq and had received two purple hearts for wounds sustained in combat operations.  There I was, on my way to the supposed tip of the spear and this “POG” had already conducted three combat deployments and seen sustained combat operations.   The reality is he had been at the right place at the right time, resulting in him having to conduct the job of an infantryman.  Today there are actual Special Forces soldiers who have spent 7-10 years in an active duty Special Forces unit who have yet to see a combat deployment.  It’s just how the cards are dealt.
  2. They still endure the hardship of war- The reality is “POGs” who deploy to combat zones still say goodbye to their loved ones, go through divorces, miss childbirths, become casualties, burry their friends and endure all of the other hardships associated with war.  Just because they aren’t infantry doesn’t mean they don’t somehow skip out on war.
  3. They are necessary for our military to operate-  That’s right, without “POGs” our military would cease to operate.  Pay, logistics, transportation and every other aspect of a fully functioning military are thanks to “POGs”.

In the end if you signed your life over to uncle sam then your service is more than appreciated.  While service members in combat arms positions do tend to see more combat than that of support personnel, it does not mean that they are somehow lesser in service or sacrifice.  Typically the ones who will say otherwise are those who never served in combat or have experienced what/how support personnel contribute to the fight.   If you’re a combat arms service member reading this post and are systematically losing your mind over our statements, ask yourself; would you be willing to tell a gold star mother of a fallen support soldier that her son’s/daughter’s service was somehow less important, dangerous or relevant than your own?

Here’s A Few Pistol Drills That Can Be Done On The RE Factor IQ Target

IMG_9256Here’s a few pistol drills that can be done on the RE Factor IQ target. Some of these drills have par times, others are a “beat yourself” drill – establish a par time at your shooting level, then push yourself to constantly decrease your par time while maintaining accuracy.  Also keep in mind that even though the square, circle, and triangle all technically measure 3″, the square offers the most “shootable area,” followed by the circle, then the triangle.

Dot Torture (credited to David Blinder):

Drill: Shooter will begin holstered at the 3 yard line. You will use 10 dots.  There is no time limit, this is a marksmanship fundamentals drill.  The strings are shot as follows:

Dot 1 – Draw and fire one string of 5 rounds for best group. One hole if possible, total 5 rounds.
Dot 2 – Draw and fire 1 shot, holster and repeat X4, total 5 rounds.
Dots 3 & 4 – Draw and fire 1 shot on #3, then 1 shot on #4, holster and repeat X3, total 8 rounds.
Dot 5 – Draw and fire string of 5 rounds, strong hand only, total 5 rounds.
Dots 6 & 7 – Draw and fire 2 shots on #6, then 2 on #7, holster, repeat X4, total 16 rounds.
Dot 8 – From ready or retention, fire five shots, weak hand only, total 5 rounds.
Dots 9 & 10 – Draw and fire 1 shot on #9, reload, fire 1 shot on #10, holster and repeat X3, total 6 rounds.

Grading criteria: Begin slow enough that all rounds remain inside the circles/squares/triangles.  Once you can shoot the entire course clean, add distance and repeat.

Skills:
Draw stroke
Sight picture acquisition
Trigger manipulation
Target transitions
Strong hand only marksmanship
Weak hand only marksmanship
Reloads

Dot Drill 2 (designed by Frank Garcia)

Drill: Shooter will begin holstered at the 7 yard line. You will use 6 dots.  Set your timer par time to 5 seconds. On the buzzer, shooter will engage the target with 6 rounds.  Conduct the drill 6 times total.

Grading criteria: Track the number of hits achieved within the 5 second par time.  Once you can shoot 6×6 in the par time, decrease par time and push yourself.

Skills:
Draw stroke
Sight picture acquisition
Trigger manipulation
Recoil management
Balancing speed and accuracy

iHack (taken from pistol-training.com):

Drill: Shooter will begin in the ready position at the 5 yard line.  You will utilize 3 dots.  Set your par time to 3 seconds.

String 1: On the buzzer, engage 3 dots with 1 shot each from left to right.
String 2: On the buzzer, engage 3 dots with 1 shot each from right to left.
String 3: On the buzzer, engage 3 dots with 1 shot each.  Engage the middle dot first, then the outside dots in any order.

Grading criteria: 7 out of 9 shots on is “passing.”  Once you can shoot it clean, try from the holster, then concealment.

Skills:
Presentation
Sight picture acquisition
Trigger manipulation
Target transitions
Draw stroke

Command/”IQ” drills

Command drills are designed to work the “thinking” part of gunhandling, a part often neglected, especially in flat range scenarios, but every bit as important as the physical manipulation of the gun.  While they certainly won’t replace well-designed scenario training, they can drill rapid target identification and engagement.

The IQ target has three shapes, three numbers, three letters, and five colors randomly dispersed across the target. Drills start simple – your partner may call a single attribute, and you must engage all the targets with that attribute.  For example, your partner calls “blue” or “two,” and you must engage all the blue targets or number two targets.  As your proficiency builds, you can up the difficulty.  You could try the numbers game (video preview below), or you can call multiple attributes – “red numbers,” “triangle letters,” etc.  There is no set par time for these drills, because the number of targets engaged will vary by attribute combination.  Push yourself.  Fire as rapidly as you accurately can.

Give these a try and post up your times to the comments!

For more drills, check out our shooting drills page.

About the author

Joel is an 11 year veteran of the US Coast Guard, where he has served at various units including the International Training Division and Maritime Security Response Team. He has held qualifications including Deployable Team Leader/Instructor, Direct Action Section Team Leader, and Precision Marksman – Observer. He has deployed/instructed on five continents and served in quick reaction force roles for multiple National Special Security Events in the US. He is the owner of Hybrid Defensive Strategies, LLC in Chesapeake, VA, and can be contacted on Facebook and Instagram. Any opinions expressed here are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the US Coast Guard or the US Government.

Want To Beat Jet-Lag? Tips From Guys Who’ve Traveled A Lot

By Photo Bucket-list

The RE Factor Tactical crew has some experience traveling abroad and we have devised a few tips to help get over jet-lag as quickly as possible.  Those of us who are often asked to work the same day we arrive need to get into the new time zone as quickly as possible.   So here are a few things that have worked for us.

 

Sleep Aids

There are many prescribed sleeping drugs such as Ambien.  However, these drugs have numerous side effects and may be difficult to get last minute.  We have found that 3-5mg of Melatonin mixed with ZMA are a great, over-the-counter way to help you sleep through the night.  The melatonin (which is naturally formed in your brain when it’s time to sleep) will help get you to sleep while the ZMA is designed to offer a deeper sleep and put you into a REM cycle.  You can also add over the counter sleeps aids such as Z-Quil although these can cause drowsiness the next day.  If you do take melatonin only take it for a few days since some studies have shown your body stops producing it on its own so use it sparingly.

Stay out in the sun

By putting yourself in the sun for prolonged periods you help reset your body’s circadian rhythm which is basically your sleep cycle.  Going for a walk or run in the sun when you would normally be sleeping back at home will help speed up your ability to adjust to the new time zone.

Don’t go to sleep when you’re tired

Stick it out.  If it’s 7pm at night don’t give in and just go to sleep.  By doing so you will be prolonging your adjustment time.  It’s beneficial to get out and go for a walk or some other form of light activity that will help you stay awake until an acceptable bedtime hour.

Here’s The Proper Way to Fly with Checked Firearms

Take caffeine, but only in the morning/afternoon

Caffeine will help keep you awake in the morning and afternoon but don’t take any after around 3pm.  If you drink caffeine to keep yourself awake till an acceptable hour it can wake you up in the middle of the night when your drowsiness wears off.   Caffeine has a 6-8 hour half life so if you drink 100mg of caffeine (about a small cup of coffee) at noon, about 50mg will still be coursing through your veins when it’s time to get to bed.  In the end, caffeine is a drug and should be treated as such.  Most people can only handle around 300mg of caffeine (about 2-3 cups of coffee) before the drug has negative effects and no longer affects their ability to stay awake/perform.

 

If you’re hungry, eat

You may find yourself waking up in the middle of the night starving… It’s ok this is natural.  If you are starving don’t try to go back to sleep, it usually doesn’t work.  Instead, get up and get yourself a light snack but be careful what you eat.  If you eat something that has sugar, such as a candy bar, fruit or cereal you will have a much harder time getting back to sleep.  Try to eat something that is higher in fat or protein and less in carbohydrates to keep from spiking your energy levels.

Don’t use your phone, computer or TV right before bed

The glow of these items has the same effect on your brain as sunlight and will tell your brain it’s day time.  When it’s time to go to sleep you will find it’s a lot easier to fall asleep if you read a book before bed.  If you wake up in the middle of the night avoid the above items at all costs as they will only fuel the fire.

Here’s A Few Pistol-Only Drills That Can Be Done On The RE Factor Kill Zone Target

Photo Apr 10, 13 35 11Here’s a few pistol-only drills that can be done on the RE Factor Kill Zone target. Each drill includes description, times, and skills worked. Some of these are derived from drills I used to have to qualify on quarterly.

Pistol draw:
Drill: Shooter will begin holstered at the 7 yard line.  There will be 1 target 7 yards away.  On the buzzer, shooter will engage the target with 1 round.
Grading criteria: All shots must remain within the “A” zone.
Novice: 2.5 seconds
Intermediate: 1.75 seconds
Advanced: 1 second
Skills:
Draw stroke
Sight acquisition
Trigger manipulation

Pistol multi-target engagement:
Drill: Shooter will begin holstered at the 7 yard line. There will be 1 target 5 yards away and 1 target 7 yards away. On the buzzer, shooter will engage the 5 yard target with 2 rounds, then engage the 5 yard target with 2 rounds.
Grading criteria: All shots must remain within the “A” zone.
Novice: 5 seconds
Intermediate: 4.5 seconds
Advanced: 4 seconds
Skills:
Draw stroke
Sight picture acquisition
Trigger manipulation
Target transitions

Pistol reload:
Drill: Shooter will begin holstered at the 7 yard line. There will be 1 target 7 yards away. On the buzzer, shooter will engage the target with 2 rounds, conduct a slide-lock reload, then engage the target with 2 rounds.
Grading criteria: Shots must remain within the “A” zone.
Novice: 5 seconds
Intermediate: 4.5 seconds
Advanced: 4 seconds
Skills:
Draw stroke
Sight picture acquisition
Trigger manipulation
Slide-lock reloads

Pistol reload variation (for reload isolation):
Drill: Shooter will begin with the pistol on target, finger on the trigger at the 7 yard line.  There will be one target 7 yards away.  On the buzzer, the shooter will engage the target with 1 round, conduct a slide-lock reload, then engage the target with 1 round.
Grading criteria: Shots must remain within the “A” zone.
Novice: 4 seconds
Intermediate: 3.25 seconds
Advanced: 2.5 seconds
Skills:
Sight picture acquisition
Trigger manipulation
Slide-lock reloads

El Presidente (taken from pistol-training.com):
Drill: Shooter will begin holstered, facing up-range at the 10 yard line with 3 targets approximately 24-36” apart (adjust for target array restrictions). On the buzzer, shooter will engage each target with 2 rounds, conduct a slide-lock reload, then engage each target with 2 more rounds.
Grading criteria: Shots must remain within the “A” zone.IMG_9257
Novice: 10 seconds
Intermediate: 9.5 seconds
Advanced: 9 seconds
Skills:
Turning
Draw stroke
Sight picture acquisition
Trigger manipulation
Target transition
Slide-lock reload

Bill Drill (taken from pistol-training.com):
Drill: Shooter will begin holstered, hands in “surrender” position, at the 7 yard line.  On the buzzer, shooter will engage the target with 6 rounds.
Grading criteria: Shots must remain within the “A” zone.
Novice: 6 seconds
Intermediate: 4.5 seconds
Advanced: 3 seconds
Skills:
Draw stroke
Sight picture acquisition
Trigger manipulation
Recoil management
Balancing speed and accuracy

Give these a try and post up your times to the comments!

For more drills, check out our shooting drills page.

About the author

Joel is an 11 year veteran of the US Coast Guard, where he has served at various units including the International Training Division and Maritime Security Response Team. He has held qualifications including Deployable Team Leader/Instructor, Direct Action Section Team Leader, and Precision Marksman – Observer. He has deployed/instructed on five continents and served in quick reaction force roles for multiple National Special Security Events in the US. He is the owner of Hybrid Defensive Strategies, LLC in Chesapeake, VA, and can be contacted on Facebook and Instagram. Any opinions expressed here are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the US Coast Guard or the US Government.